All right ladies and gentlemen - let's get right to our gameday notes. Here are the relevant information for tonight's broadcast:
THURSDAY'S GAME IN MEMPHIS
Venue: FedExForum (18,119)
Game Time: 6:45 p.m. (PT) / 8:45 p.m. (CT)
TV Station: CBS
TV Talents: Kevin Harlan, Len Elmore, Reggie Miller, Rachel Nichols (sideline)
Radio: AM 1150 (KEIB)
Radio Talent: Chris Roberts (play-by-play), Tracy Murray (analyst)
There is more on the official site including all the quotes (if you care to) from yesterday's presser. You can also watch the presser with comments from Kyle Anderson and Jordan Adams on YouTube here. And, if you really want to watch Steve Alford go on and on about his idol Bobby Knight go here.
This is UCLA's 10th trip to Steve-16 in last 20 years. We call this "Steve-16" around here because 5 of those trips came under Steve Lavin, who was a fraud posing as a "basketball head coach." Given that even a scrub like Lavin can routinely take UCLA caliber talent to Steve-16, pardon us for not being swept away with another trip to this game with victories over mid-major programs.
As PauleyDog pointed out Steve Alford's tournament resume is still not all that impressive despite what happened in San Diego. Maybe he will get his first meaningful win tonight against Florida. We certainly hope so for the sake of four letters and the Ben Howland recruited players who remained loyal to Coach's program.
Florida game is a big deal around here and it beating the Gators transcends all the other issues we have been talking about since the current head coach was introduced in Westwood. So we have been talking about this matchup all week (and anticipating it since the brackets were announced which gifted UCLA with a cakewalk to Memphis). To read up on matchup thoughts go here and here. You can also read up P's breakdown on statistical matchup here.
Ralph is traveling with the team to Memphis. He filed this video report yesterday:
Some other notes/reads for this am:
Someone at CBSSports took the time to rank the starters from 1-80 on the remaining teams. Guess which team has the most talented players in the matchup b/w UCLA and Florida.
Speaking of tonight's matchup - Nate Silver's 538 gives UCLA a 3.32% chance of winning the tournament as of Monday but we have a 28% chance of beating Florida. So there.
Lastly, Bryce Alford has a fanbase:
Local fans getting autographs/pictures with Bryce Alford. "We love watching your shot. Your dad was my hero growing up."— Jack Wang (@thejackwang) March 26, 2014
They are all Hoosiers.
Anyway, here is the TV schedule for tonight's action.
Thursday NCAA Regional Semifinals
|South||(10) Stanford Cardinal vs. (11) Dayton Flyers||FedExForum
|715p||CBS||Kevin Harlan, Len Elmore, Reggie Miller, Rachel Nichols|
|West||(2) Wisconsin Badgers vs. (6) Baylor Bears||Honda Center
|747p||TBS||Marv Albert, Steve Kerr, Craig Sager|
|South||(1) Florida Gators vs. (4) UCLA Bruins||FedExForum
|945p||CBS||Kevin Harlan, Len Elmore, Reggie Miller, Rachel Nichols|
|West||(1) Arizona Wildcats vs. (4) San Diego State Aztecs||Honda Center
|1017p||TBS||Marv Albert, Steve Kerr, Craig Sager|
Note: Times listed above are Eastern.
Remember that regardless of your TV service or which network is carrying a game, you can watch any NCAA Tournament game online via March Madness Live though your desktop/laptop browser or smartphone/tablet app. The complete schedule of today's games and TV carriers is posted below, and BN's full coverage of March Madness can be found here.
We can use this an open thread until our game thread goes up.