Anyone who grew up obsessed with March Madness has their stories of how they managed to watch the NCAA tournament from school or the office. In high school, I snuck a portable handheld TV that my mom had — this was the mid-1990s — and grabbed a glimpse of the CBS feed whenever I could.
Today, of course, we are spoiled. All of the games are on a cable network or the March Madness streaming app. I’ll have four screens going until there’s only a need for three, three until there’s only a need for two, and so on.
But some may not be on my level. For those of you who may just have the bandwidth for one game at a time, here’s my best guess for what will be the game to watch during each part of the day throughout the early part of the tournament.
No. 1 Baylor vs. No. 8 North Carolina, 9:10 a.m., CBS: The defending national champion Bears could have their hands full with the Tar Heels if the team that blew out Marquette on Thursday shows up. But consistency has been North Carolina’s Achilles heel.
No. 3 Tennessee vs. No. 11 Michigan, 2:15 p.m., CBS: In the last decade, only Gonzaga (23) has won more NCAA tournament games than Michigan (22). The Wolverines have a way of putting it together in March and have more of a track record than Rick Barnes’ Volunteers. That said, Tennessee is a clearly better team this season.
No. 4 UCLA vs. No. 5 Saint Mary’s, 4:10 p.m., TBS: The Bruins were on the brink of a first-round exit against Akron, but they’re sure to play better Saturday. They’ll have to, because Saint Mary’s looked like a team that wants to keep playing for a while, making Indiana look like the mid-major program.
No. 1 Gonzaga vs. No. 9 Memphis, 6:40 p.m., TBS: The Bulldogs struggled to get separation from Georgia State before Drew Timme and Chet Holmgren simply took over. Memphis is one of the few teams that can come close to matching Gonzaga’s talent, but the Tigers haven’t proven that they have the seasoning — yet.