Published: Wed, March 15, 2017
Sport | By Stephen Hansen

NCAA Tournament: Duke vs. UNC National Championship Is A Real Thing

NCAA Tournament: Duke vs. UNC National Championship Is A Real Thing

UConn is the No.1 overall seed in the women's NCAA Tournament. No. 13 Florida Gulf Coast (26-8) in the Stockton Regional, No. 3 Florida State (25-6) vs. Villanova has claimed victory by an average margin of 30.3 points in three straight tournament-opening wins, but failed to advance to the Sweet Sixteen in five tournament appearances prior to last year's national championship win.

The Huskies are expected to be the No. 1 overall seed for the fourth-straight year after finishing the regular season a flawless 29-0. UConn is the four-time defending national champion after claiming the title in Indianapolis, Indiana with an 82-51 win over Syracuse in the 2016 title game. Keep an eye on third-seeded Maryland, one of just three teams to lose by only single digits to the Huskies this season, back in December.

SC opens play against Big South tournament champ UNC Asheville in Columbia on Friday.

Maine, though, beat New Hampshire in the conference tournament semifinals and second-seed Albany earned another NCAA berth with the win in the title game.

Walz, a former WKU assistant, twice led U of L to the Final Four, losing in the national championship game to CT in both 2009 and and 2013.

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The NCAA Tournament begins this weekend and UConn's road to fifth consecutive national title starts at Gampel Pavilion. In my article this morning, I projected the Orange would fall between a 4-6 seed and that 7 would be a little low .

Speaking of historic programs, the NCAA Tournament's South Region is home to some of the game's most prolific teams. The other projected No. 1 seeds are Notre Dame, South Carolina and Baylor. If you think we're just spit balling awesome scenarios, I assure you we aren't.

There was some media speculation heading into Selection Sunday as to whether or not Duke's run to the ACC Tournament championship would knock UNC off the 1 line.

Tipoff for for the first round game against Belmont is scheduled for noon. The team suffered a big loss as Chris Boucher was injured during the conference tournament and will miss all of March Madness. The Trojans won the Sun Belt Conference Tournament and earned the 15 seed in the East region.

"At this point, [the seeding] really doesn't matter", Frese said on ESPN. The process will start by naming the four No. 1 seeds for each region, which will be followed by a region-by-region reveal.

Throw in a perennially unsafe mid-major like Butler, an upstart Seton Hall squad, and grossly under-seeded Wichita State, and that's quite an elite region.

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