When Michigan was slumping earlier in the season, the coach started thinking Super Bowl, not Final Four. John Beilein conjured up the highlight-reel catch that Patriots receiver Julian Edelman made during New England's game-tying drive in the Super Bowl, and said the Wolverines should keep that sort of play -- an outlier, as he called it -- in mind.
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Two national player of the year front-runners, Frank Mason III of Kansas and Caleb Swanigan of Purdue, will lead their teams against each other in the Midwest Regional semifinals on Thursday night. In many ways, they're a microcosm of their teams.
The NCAA Tournament's first weekend closed with a flourish, a Sunday full of scintillating games after three days of good-not-always-great basketball. That put the madness back in March and should carry over into a regional round filled with great matchups and big-name programs. Here's a rundown of the top games, players, coaches and interesting story lines for the Sweet 16: ___ TOP GAMES UCLA vs. Kentucky, South Region; Friday, Memphis. Blue bloods in Bluff City.
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- No. 4 seed Purdue (27-4) vs. No. 1 Kansas (30-4) Third round, Midwest region; Kansas City, Missouri; 9:39 p.m. EDT. BOTTOM LINE: Kansas ran roughshod through UC Davis and Michigan State to reach the Sweet 16, which will be played about 40 miles from its campus in Lawrence.
MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Wisconsin's win over defending national champion and overall No. 1 seed Villanova shook up office pools around the country, though the tested Badgers aren't a typical No. 8 seed in the NCAA Tournament. Eleventh-seeded Xavier might be a surprise team in the regional semifinals, but with their 3-point prowess, the Musketeers are capable of shooting their way past any opponent.
MILWAUKEE (AP) -- When Purdue needed him the most, when the Boilermakers were on the brink of a heartbreaking loss, Caleb "Biggie" Swanigan lived up to his nickname -- over and over again. Swanigan had 20 points, 12 rebounds and seven assists, and Purdue reached the Sweet 16 for the first time in seven years with a wild 80-76 victory over Iowa State on Saturday night.
Results from the second round of the NCAA Tournament on Saturday: ___ EAST REGION WISCONSIN 65, VILLANOVA 62 BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Top-seeded Villanova was bounced from the NCAA Tournament by eighth-seeded Wisconsin, which overcame foul trouble for two of its stars in the second half Saturday to upset the defending champions 65-62 in the East region. Nigel Hayes scored 19 points, dropping a layup in traffic with 11.
NCAA TOURNAMENT Wisconsin ousts Villanova UNDATED (AP) -- There will be a new champion crowned in NCAA men's basketball on April 3. Wisconsin made sure of that by knocking off Villanova. Nigel Hayes hit a tiebreaking layup with 11.4 seconds left as the eighth-seeded Badgers beat the No. 1 overall seed, 65-62.
The Latest on Day 3 of the NCAA Tournament (all times Eastern): 12:05 p.m. It took three days for the NCAA Tournament to produce a major upset. It was a stunner that busted a ton of brackets. Villanova, the defending national champion and the top overall seed, was upended by eighth-seeded Wisconsin 65-62. Fellow No.
A look at some interesting things as we head into Saturday, the first day of the second round of the NCAA Tournament: SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE There will be plenty of parent shots during two games Saturday. No. 12 seed Xavier and assistant coach Luke Murray, son of actor-comedian Bill Murray, faces third-seeded Florida State in Orlando, Florida.
MILWAUKEE (AP) -- Iowa State starts four senior guards, and each of them averages in double figures. Purdue might have the most imposing frontcourt in the country. Big 12 versus Big Ten. A clash of styles in the NCAA Tournament. Monte Morris and the speedy Cyclones take on Caleb Swanigan and the bruising Boilermakers in the second round Saturday night at the home of the NBA's Milwaukee Bucks.
MILWAUKEE (AP) -- It could have gone either way, really. Just three short years ago, Purdue was in bad shape, and the questions about Matt Painter were growing in frequency. With his future in the balance, Painter recruited his way to a turnaround -- one player at a time.
MILWAUKEE (AP) -- No. 4 seed Purdue (26-7) vs. No. 5 seed Iowa State (24-10) Second round, Midwest Region; Milwaukee; 9:45 p.m. ET. BOTTOM LINE: Iowa State goes for its third Sweet 16 appearance in four years, while Purdue is trying to make it to the third round for the first time since 2010. The red-hot Cyclones have won 10 of 11, storming through the Big 12 Tournament before downing Nevada 84-73 on Thursday night.
MILWAUKEE (AP) -- The drought is over for Purdue. Vincent Edwards and company finished it off with one big push against Vermont. Edwards scored 15 of his 21 points in the second half, and the Boilermakers held off the Catamounts 80-70 on Thursday night for their first victory in the NCAA Tournament in five years.
Results from the first round of the NCAA Tournament on Thursday: ___ WEST REGION NORTHWESTERN 68, VANDERBILT 66 SALT LAKE CITY -- Northwestern got its first-ever NCAA Tournament victory, 68-66 over Vanderbilt, after Commodores guard Matthew Fisher-Davis inexplicably grabbed Wildcats guard Bryant McIntosh on purpose, sending McIntosh to the free throw line for the go-ahead points with 15 seconds left.
MILWAUKEE (AP) -- Naz Mitrou-Long and Iowa State love to shoot from deep. Same for Marcus Marshall and Nevada. Led by Dakota Mathias, Purdue set a school record for 3-pointers this season. Ernie Duncan and Vermont, they're game, too. Welcome to the first day for the Midwest region of the NCAA Tournament, where some of college basketball's best shooters are ready to fire away at the home of the NBA's Milwaukee Bucks.
MILWAUKEE (AP) -- No. 4 seed Purdue (25-7) vs. No. 13 seed Vermont (29-5) First round, Midwest region; Milwaukee; 7:27 p.m. EDT. BOTTOM LINE: Lots of intriguing matchup possibilities in the frontcourt, led by Big Ten Player of the Year Caleb Swanigan and Vermont freshman Anthony Lamb. Swanigan might be the best big man in the NCAA Tournament, and Lamb leads the Catamounts with 12.6 points and 5.4 rebounds per game.
When NBA scouts critiqued Caleb Swanigan's weaknesses last spring, he got right to work. Swanigan committed himself to workout program that was designed to improve his body, extend his shooting range and become a better all-around player.
NEW YORK (AP) -- Josh Hart scored 19 points, including the game-winning basket with 9.6 seconds to play, and No. 2 Villanova beat Seton Hall 55-53 on Friday night in the semifinals of the Big East Tournament. Hart's three-point play on a rebound was the fifth lead change of the final 4 minutes and there were two ties.
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Michigan's basketball players woke up Friday in the same city they'd be playing in that afternoon. What a refreshing change during what's been quite a week. They ate breakfast at a regular hour. Watched game film as usual, too. Heck, the Wolverines even got to wear their proper blue road jerseys -- with their last names printed on the back and everything -- to face 13th-ranked Purdue in the Big Ten quarterfinals.