SOUTH REGION, FIRST ROUND
Who: No. 6 Cincinnati vs. No. 11 Kansas State
When: Friday, 4:37 p.m.
Line: Cincinnati by 2
Three things to watch:
Head start: One bonus of being a First Four play-in entry is you get a head start to the tournament, and that’s the case for Kansas State, which beat Wake Forest 95-88 on Tuesday in Dayton, Ohio. But the travel was immediate. The Wildcats – in the NCAA Tournament for the 21st time in 26 years – had to hustle to Sacramento to prepare for a rested Cincinnati team.
Evans excellence: Cincinnati guard Jacob Evans is a finalist for the Jerry West Shooting Guard of the Year Award, so you know he can fire away. He has scored in double figures in 30 of 34 games and will be a focal point for Kansas State.
Defensive minded: Kansas State is 14-1 when holding opponents to 65 or fewer points, and Cincinnati averages 75. Kansas State has held 11 teams to 40 percent shooting or less during the season, so one can imagine the focus here.