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The Second Half Of The Elite 8 Will Be Determined Today

Utah is among the teams swooping into the Sweet 16 round today. Can they help carry the Pac-12 deeper into the NCAA Tournament?
Utah is among the teams swooping into the Sweet 16 round today. Can they help carry the Pac-12 deeper into the NCAA Tournament?
Godofredo Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

The second half of the "Elite 8" in the NCAA basketball March Madness tournament will be determined today, as the South and East regionals play their "Sweet 16" round games.

CBS has the South region coverage, and TBS takes care of the East regional.

Depending on your internet service, the games are also available via The NCAA's Tournament stream.

It's an especially important day for the Pac-12, with teams in both of the games in the South Regional in Houston, both looking to join Arizona in the "Elite 8", though both are the underdogs, whereas the 'Cats were favored to beat Xavier to advance.

There's also a 3rd team from the region in the Houston (the west did better in the south than they did in the west!), so someone Beaver Fans know something about will reach Sunday. Can the west beat up on Duke?

The afternoon starts off at 4:15 PDT, when 11 seed UCLA (22-13) takes on 2 seed Gonzaga (34-2) in Houston. The Bruins were a subject of much discussion as to whether they should even be in the tournament, never mind that they didn't wind up in one of the at-large play-in games, but the tournament selection committee has been vindicated in including them.

The Bulldogs, perennial champions of the West Coast Conference, have already beat the Bruins, 87-74 back in mid-December, and in Pauley Pavillion. The ‘Zags were the only team to walk into Pauley and then walk back out with the win besides UCLA all season.

The evening in Houston wraps up with the other Pac-12 team in action, when 5th seed Utah (26-8) takes on 1-seed Duke (31-4), at about 6:45 PM PDT. The Utes capitalized on some local Pac-12 support to win the Portland sub-regional, upsetting Georgetown last weekend.

The Blue Devils are the sole 1 seed who was not an automatic qualifier, and as such was a bit of a controversial 1 seed, vs a #2, given that Duck also didn't win the ACC regular season title, as well as not even making their tournament championship game.

The East regional in Syracuse, New York, which is the only one without a #1 seed (after Villanova was upset, starts off at about 4:35 PM PDT, with an ACC conference confrontation, when 8 seed North Carolina St. (22-13) takes on 4th seed Louisville (26-8).

The Wolfpack turned in the upset of the regional top seed Wildcats, as well as beating LSU, while the Cardinal sent 2 of the better mid-majors home last weekend, beating UC-Irvine by 2 points, and then dispatching Northern Iowa.

The East regional wraps up the evening, with a game starting AFTER 10 PM locally, at 10:07 EDT at the earliest (7:07 PM PDT). So Beaver Fans, and Pac-12 fans in general, who are all too well acquainted with absurdly late starts, can certainly relate.

The game will match 7th seed Michigan St. (25-11) from the B1G Ten and 3rd seed Oklahoma (24-10) from the Big XII. The Spartans turned in the second biggest upset of the region, ousting Virginia, while the Sooners spoiled on of the best Cinderella stories of the tournament, beating Dayton, who had to win one of the Play-In games to get into the tournament.

Women's Sweet 16 Starts

It's also a big day for the Pac-12 in the Women's NCAA Tournament, which gets their "Sweet 16" round underway today. Both of the remaining Pac-12 teams are in action, and both are mild underdogs.

The Greensboro Regional starts at 4 PM PDT, with 4th seed North Carolina (26-8), whom Oregon St. beat this season on their own floor, takes on 1-seed South Carolina (32-2), the team that ended the Beavers' season and tournament last year. ESPN has the coverage.

The Greensboro Regional wraps up at about 6:30 PM PDT, which is 9:30 EDT, and so of course, a Pac-12 team is involved, as 3rd seed Arizona St. (29-5) takes on 2-seed Florida St. (31-4), another of those ACC hoops teams.

ESPN2 has the coverage, but don't be surprised if there's a little overlap, as that's the same channel that has the 4:30 PM PDT game that is the Oklahoma City regional opener. But once again, Pac-12 fans are well experienced with having the start of their games crowded by an earlier telecast.

That game sends 3-seed Iowa (26-7) from the B1G Ten against 2-seed Baylor (32-3) from the Big XII.

The Oklahoma City regional wraps up at 7 PM PDT, which is a 9 PM local start, so of course there is a Pac-12 team involved in that one too, as 4-seed Stanford (26-9) takes on 1-seed Notre Dame (33-2) (do all ACC teams make the tournament?). That game will be on ESPN, but though the Beavers lost the last time they played each of the teams, don't throw something at the screen!