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Note: The numbers listed next to players' names are their current standing in the latest iteration of our Top-100 Prospect Rankings
12:15 PM CBS St. Louis, Missouri
#7 Dayton Dyshawn Pierre
#10 Syracuse #63 Michael Gbinije, Tyler Lydon, Malachi Richardson, DaJuan Coleman
While many analysts felt Syracuse had no business being invited to the NCAA Tournament considering their resume and lack of quality wins, there is no doubt that this will be a tough matchup for Dayton, a gritty team without the same talent-level as the Orange. Look for this to be a low-scoring and not particularly aesthetically pleasing affair.
Dayton has stumbled to the finish line somewhat, with four of their eight losses coming in the last eight games, but few teams are as competitive defensively as the Flyers. It will be very interesting to see what kind of game-plan Archie Miller, one of the most respected young head coaches in the industry, will come up with to counter Syracuse's vaunted 2-3 zone. While Dayton is not a great outside shooting team overall, their three best players, Charles Cooke, DyShawn Pierre and Scoochie Smith, are all very capable from the perimeter.
For the Orange to have a chance of winning this game, they'll need big games from their young and highly talented freshmen Tyler Lydon, Malachi Richardson, and Franklin Howard, who has played an increasingly important playmaking role as of late.
Michael Gbinijie is one of the oldest prospects in the 2016 senior class, but is also one of the most versatile. He has good size at 6'6 and the ability to play either guard spot thanks to his strong ball-handling and passing ability. He's also an excellent perimeter shooter. He's been wildly inconsistent throughout his career, so getting a good game from him will be huge for Syracuse.
12:40 PM truTV Brooklyn, New York
#2 Villanova #91 Josh Hart, Daniel Ochefu, Jalen Brunson, Ryan Arcidiacono
1:30 PM TNT Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
#7 Oregon State #49 Gary Payton II, Drew Eubanks, Stephen Thompson
#10 VCU Melvin Johnson
2:00 TBS Spokane, Washington
#4 California #3 Jaylen Brown, #14 Ivan Rabb, #74 Tyrone Wallace, Jabari Bird
#13 Hawaii Stefan Jankovic
1:30 p.m., TBS
Shooting 8/42 (19%) from the field the past four games, physically gifted freshman Jaylen Brown (#3) has struggled quite a bit thus far in the month of March. He'll have to re-find his scoring touch for Cal if they are going to have any chance of making a NCAA Tournament run. With Ty Wallace out for the tournament with a broken hand he suffered in practice this week, the Bears will need Brown to handle the ball more than he typically does, and make good decisions.
Ivan Rabb (#14) will have a huge size advantage inside the paint against Hawaii's 6'7 PF Mike Thomas, but may actually be the one tasked with defending their stretch-5 Stefan Jankovic, a Missouri transfer who has a very high skill level. Jankovic averages a robust 24 points per-40 (61% 2P%, 38% 3P%) and can score from all over the floor, but has a reputation for being extremely soft defensively, which makes this an important game from his standpoint as well.
2:45 PM CBS St. Louis, Missouri
#2 Michigan State #13 Deyonta Davis, #19 Denzel Valentine, Bryn Forbes, Gavin Schilling
#15 Middle Tennessee
3:10 PM truTV Brooklyn, New York
#7 Iowa #53 Jarrod Uthoff
Few teams have struggled as much as Iowa has late in the season, going from being ranked in the top three of the AP poll to earning a disappointing 7-seed, relative to how they started.
4:00 PM TNT Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
#2 Oklahoma #9 Buddy Hield, Isaiah Cousins
While Cal-State Bakersfield will certainly be overmatched in terms of talent in this game, and may struggle to score enough points to keep up, it will be fun to see the game-plan they put together to try and slow down Wooden Award candidate Buddy Hield. They do a great job statistically of getting stops, which might give them a chance to keep this game somewhat close if they can find a way to make shots.
Hield has slowed down somewhat over the past month or so, which was probably inevitable after his torrid start, so it will be interesting to see how he's able to perform in the Tournament with much of the attention of opposing defenses (and the entire world for that matter) on him.
4:30 PM TBS Spokane, Washington
#5 Maryland #16 Diamond Stone, #36 Melo Trimble, #51 Jake Layman, #58 Robert Carter, Rasheed Sulaimon
#12 South Dakota State Mike Daum
Daum is a below the rim player with long arms and a strong frame, who gets by on his terrific timing and basketball instincts. He shoots a very funky looking 3-point shot from above his head with a slow release that he's able to throw in the basket with great touch, even without bending his knees. He can use his size and high release point to get his shot off against most big men, even in the mid-range area, which is a nice advantage and something South Dakota State might have to utilize in a game where they are severely overmatched talent-wise.
Daum loves to operate from the short corner, where he can drive in both directions using a deceptively strong first step and finish off the glass using soft touch and crafty counter-moves with either hand. He can also post up a bit, showing strong footwork, body control and the length to use different angles, which will he'll need to use to the fullest to score over the top of the long wingspans of Diamond Stone and Robert Carter. He gets to the line a ridiculous 10 times-per-40 minutes, and converts a terrific 81% of his free throw attempts once there.
Daum's biggest challenge in this game will be his porous defense, which may be compounded by the fact that he needs to guard two of the most skilled big men in the country in Stone and Carter. In the Summit League he often appears simply too slow to guard power forwards and too below the rim to offer any real rim protection, struggling to cover ground or get over the top of screens. This is likely one of the biggest reasons he only plays 20 minutes per game despite being, on paper, one of the most prolific and efficient scorers in college basketball, and will be a huge hindrance to his professional aspirations if he isn't able to address it.
6:50 PM TNT St. Louis, Missouri
#7 Wisconsin #41 Nigel Hayes, Ethan Happ
#10 Pittsburgh Michael Young, Jamel Artis, James Robinson
This is a sneaky fun matchup between an incredibly versatile combo forward in Nigel Hayes, going up against the strong frame and terrific toughness of Jamel Artis. Hayes has had an up and down junior campaign, seeing his 2P% drop an alarming 13% and his 3P% drop by 9% from last season, as he has been forced to shoulder a significantly larger offensive responsibility in the wake of Frank Kaminsky and Sam Dekker moving on to the NBA. Still, there is a lot to like about Hayes' excellent passing ability, terrific length and tremendous all-around basketball IQ. Scouts will be looking to see how he deals with the physicality of Artis, and to a lesser extent Michael Young, who will both be looking to go right at the more highly regarded Hayes.
7:10 PM CBS Brooklyn, New York
#3 West Virginia Devin Williams
#14 Stephen F. Austin
This is an interesting contrast in styles between the full-court press of West Virginia and the methodical offense of Stephen F. Austin, who generate quite a few turnovers themselves on the other end of the floor.
7:20 PM TBS Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
#3 Texas A&M #85 Danuel House, Jalen Jones, Tyler Davis, Tony Trocha-Morales, Alex Caruso, D.J. Hogg
#14 UW-Green Bay
7:27 truTV Spokane, Washington
#1 Oregon Dillon Brooks, Tyler Dorsey, Jordan Bell, Chris Boucher
#16 Holy Cross/Southern
9:20 PM TNT St. Louis, Missouri
#2 Xavier Jalen Reynolds, Trevon Bluiett, Edmond Sumner
#15 Weber State #73 Joel Bolomboy, Jeremy Senglin
9:40 PM CBS Brooklyn, NY
#6 Notre Dame #11 Demetrius Jackson, #88 Zach Auguste, V.J. Beachem, Steven Vasturia, Bonzie Colson, Rex Pflueger, Matt Ryan
#11 Michigan Zak Irvin, Aubrey Dawkins, Derrick Walton, Duncan Robinson, D.J. Wilson
Demetrius Jackson has had somewhat of an up and down junior season, and will need to get back on track to help Notre Dame win this game. He shot just 4/20 in the ACC Tournament this past weekend, and will need to bounce back if he wants to solidify his standing as a lottery-level prospect heading into the offseason. If he isn't able to assert his will in a game against a point guard with limited physical tools like Derrick Walton and Michigan's porous defense, NBA scouts will have some concerns.
9:50 PM TBS Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
#6 Texas #54 Prince Ibeh, #68 Isaiah Taylor, Kerwin Roach, Eric Davis
#11 Northern Iowa Wes Washpun
9:57 PM truTV Spokane, Washington
#8 St. Joseph's #42 DeAndre Bembry
#9 Cincinnati Troy Caupain, Octavius Ellis, Gary Clark
Few players helped themselves in conference tournament play as much as DeAndre Bembry (#42) did this weekend in the Atlantic 10 Tournament at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. Under the watchful eyes of numerous NBA scouts in New York, Bembry had 60 points, 18 rebounds, 15 assists, 5 turnovers and 3 blocks on 24/42 from the field in three games, helping his team win the championship in impressive fashion.
Bembry has a chance to further improve his standing in the eyes of NBA teams with an intriguing matchup with a hard-nosed Cincinnati team, one of the best defensive units in college basketball according to most metrics. The Hawks will need him to make an impact in a variety of area. As a tall ball-handling wing who can do a little bit of everything, Bembry's versatility will play a key role in the Hawks' ability to overcome this strong and athletic group. This is likely the toughest team St. Joe's has faced since early in the season, making it an important game for Bembry from a scouting perspective.