March 17, 2013
SALT LAKE CITY - The University of Utah is hosting NCAA Men's Basketball second- and third-round games on Thursday and Saturday at EnergySolutions Arena. West Region No. 1 seed Gonzaga will visit along with New Mexico, Arizona, Pittsburgh, Wichita State, Belmont, Harvard and Southern University.
Four second-round West Region games will take place on Thursday, two in the afternoon session and two in the evening session. The winners will meet in a pair of third-round games on Saturday at times to be determined.
No. 8 Pittsburgh (24-8), out of the Big East Conference, will face No. 9 Wichita State (26-8) in Thursday's opening game at 11:40 a.m. MDT on TBS. Pitt is one of only seven programs nationally to advance to the NCAA Tournament in 11 of the last 12 seasons. Wichita State fell to Creighton, 68-65, in the Missouri Valley Conference tournament final.
Gonzaga (31-2), the No. 1 seed in the West Region, will face No. 16 Southern University (23-9) in the second game Thursday afternoon at approximately 2:10 p.m. MDT on TBS. The Bulldogs won both the West Coast Conference regular season and tournament titles. Southern won the SWAC tournament championship.
No. 6 Arizona faces No. 11 Belmont in the first game of the Thursday evening session at 5:20 p.m. MDT on TNT. The Wildcats finished in a three-way tie for second in the Pac-12 Conference during the regular season. The Bruins, who won the Ohio Valley Conference tournament in their first year in the league, join Kansas and Memphis as the only three NCAA Division I programs to earn NCAA Tournament automatic bids six of the last eight years.
New Mexico, the No. 3 seed in the West, will take on No. 14 Harvard in the final game of the day at approximately 7:50 p.m. MDT on TNT. The Lobos won both the Mountain West Conference regular season and tournament titles for the second consecutive year. Harvard earned an automatic bid by winning the Ivy League regular season championship for a second straight season.
The third round games will take place on Saturday. Game times and television information is still to be determined. All of the tournament games will be televised nationally on CBS, TBS, TNT and truTV. The announcers for Salt Lake City are Spero Dedes (play-by-play), Doug Gottlieb (analyst) and Jamie Maggio (reporter).
All-session and single-session tickets are available at the EnergySolutions Arena box office. Fans can also log on to http://www.ncaa.com/final-four#!tickets_hospitality or call 800-888-8499. For complete tournament information, including a live bracket and helpful fan links, go to www.utahutes.com/ncaa.
The University of Utah is no stranger to hosting NCAA Championship events. This is the second time the U. is hosting NCAA Tournament games at ESA. Utah has hosted men's NCAA basketball first- and second-round games on 13 occasions at the Huntsman Center. Utah has also hosted NCAA regional rounds three times--most recently in March of 2010 at EnergySolutuions Arena--and the 1979 NCAA Final Four featuring Michigan State's Magic Johnson and Indiana State's Larry Bird.
2013 NCAA Men's Basketball Championship - Salt Lake City (EnergySolutions Arena)
Second Round - Thursday (March 21) West Region 8-Pittsburgh (24-8) vs. 9-Wichita State (26-8) 11:40 a.m. MDT TBS 1-Gonzaga (31-2) vs. 16-Southern Univ. (23-9) Approx. 2:10 p.m. MDT TBS
West Region 6-Arizona (25-7) vs. 11-Belmont (26-6) 5:20 p.m. MDT TNT 3-New Mexico (29-5) vs. 14-Harvard (19-9) Approx. 7:50 p.m. MDT TNT
Third Round - Saturday (March 23) Pittsburgh/Wichita State winner vs. Gonzaga/Southern Univ. winner TBA Arizona/Belmont winner vs. New Mexico/Harvard winner TBA