How to watch the NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament: The Latest from Boston Globe
With two weeks to go before the first round of the NCAA tournament, the Boston Globe has an NCAA tournament preview, featuring five of the five most interesting games.
The NCAA tournament has been a huge buzzword lately, with the last two rounds of the women’s tournament and the first two rounds in the men’s tournament all going to the Final Four, and the NCAA is in the midst of a major expansion of its tournament.
Here are five of those games that you’ll want to keep your eyes peeled for.1.
Wichita State vs. Minnesota: This game could be the most important matchup in the tournament, with Wichita State’s top three players in guard and center Zaire Davis, forward Alex Abrines and forward Kahlil Mack all averaging double figures, while the Shockers’ top three are sophomore forward Kelsey Plum, sophomore forward Brianna Mitchell and sophomore guard Shae Ann Harrison.
The Shockers are a top-three team in the nation, and they’ll be playing for a spot in the Final 4.
The Bulldogs are the second-ranked team in this bracket, and Minnesota has struggled mightily in recent weeks, losing to Baylor and Arizona.
This game will be a test of the Shocker defense, with Plum, Abriles and Mack all leading the way for Wichita State, which is led by its leading scorer, sophomore guard Alex Aja.
Minnesota has won eight of its last nine games against Wichita State and is one of the favorites to make it to the Sweet 16.
The game could also have huge ramifications for the NCAA, as the Big Ten Conference has expanded the tournament to seven teams.
If the Shockees win, the NCAA could expand to eight teams, and this could force the Big 10 to make a decision about expansion.
The conference has four teams left, and if the Big 12 decides to expand, this could mean the Big 8 Conference would need to be in play to be eligible.2.
North Carolina vs. Gonzaga: Gonzaga’s top two players in point guard Cari LeVert and forward Carina Leveron are both averaging double-figures in double-digits.
LeVert is averaging 17.3 points and 8.3 assists per game, while Leveron is averaging 18.1 points and 7.8 assists per contest.
This could be a tough matchup for Gonzaga, which has had issues with its guards in recent years.
Levert is averaging 24.4 points per game and LeVert has scored 19 points in his last two games against Gonzaga.
The Tar Heels are ranked No. 5 in the country, and Gonzaga has won two of the last three games against the Bulldogs.
If LeVert can keep up her scoring and scoring like she has lately, this game could go the distance for Gonzages, which ranks No. 8 in the Big East, and could be Gonzagas last chance to advance to the tournament.3.
Notre Dame vs. Kentucky: This matchup could be one of college basketball’s biggest.
Both Notre Dame and Kentucky are ranked Nos.
4 in the AP poll, and both teams are expected to be ranked in the top 10 of both polls.
Notre Dames top player in forward Morgan McBride is averaging 16.4 PPG and 6.3 RPG per game in his career, while Kentucky’s top player is junior forward Kelenna Teague, who is averaging 12.2 PPG, 6.6 RPG and 4.1 BPG per game.
This will be an intriguing matchup for both teams.
Notre dames is coming off a close loss to No. 1 Duke, while Wildcats are coming off their second straight loss to Notre Dame.
The Irish are coming into the tournament with an edge over Notre Dame in the polls, but it could be this matchup that changes that.
Kentucky is ranked No .
5 in this pool and has lost five of its past six games, while Notre Dame is playing its third consecutive game without a loss.
Notre and Kentucky both have top-25 opponents in this tournament.4.
Baylor vs. Florida: Baylor is looking to bounce back after a disappointing tournament, and it looks like this could be just that.
The Bears have won five straight games and are expected, by many, to make the Final 8.
But in the past, the Bears have been inconsistent, with one loss to Florida and two victories over top-10 teams, including two of them against the top teams in the conference.
It will be interesting to see if Baylor can pull out a win over top seed Florida.
This matchup is likely to be a close one, with Baylor coming into this game ranked No 7 in the Associated Press poll.5.
Michigan vs. Illinois: The Wolverines have a huge matchup against a top team in Illinois, which plays in the Midwest Conference.
The Illini have won nine of their last 10 games and have