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2021 March Madness Schedule
Updated: September 2021

2020 March Madness Schedule

College basketball’s regular season ends a bit later than in most years with the final games played on Saturday, March 8th. By the end of the following week, all of the conference tournaments will have been completed and the NCAA Selection Committee will begin the process of determining the tournament’s 68-team field.

 

Sunday, March 14, is Selection Sunday and college basketball fans can watch the Selection Show on CBS and ESPN. The 32 conference tournament winners and the 36 at-large entrants will be revealed as will their respective regions and seeds.

 

The 2021 NCAA men’s tournament will begin with the First Four on Thursday, March 18th. The First Four games are held at the Mackey Arena and Assembly Hall. The winners of Thursday’s games will advance to play in the First Round of the tournament, which begins on Friday, March 19th.

 

Second round play continues on Sunday, March 21st. After the first weekend of play in the tournament, the Sweet Sixteen will be played on Saturday, March 27th at the Bankers Life arena. The Regional Semifinals also knows as the Elite Eight will take place of March 29th. The Final Four will begin on April 3rd and the national championship game will be played on April 5th. The elite eight, final four and the national championship games will be played at the Lucas Oil Stadium.

 


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    History of the Tournament

  • The original NCAA tournament was nothing like the spectacle that it is today. The very first tournament took place in 1939 with just eight teams. Oregon beat Ohio State 46-33 in Patten Gymnasium on the campus of Northwestern University. The first expansion of the tournament came in 1951 when another eight teams were added. The 16-team format last just two years and between 1953 and 1974 the NCAA tournament featured anywhere between 22 and 25 teams.

     

    In 1975, the tournament expanded to 32 teams and in 1979 jumped to 40. The ’79 tournament was one to remember as Earvin “Magic” Johnson led the Michigan State Spartans to a victory over Larry Bird and the Indiana State Sycamores. The game increased the demand for college basketball and the NCAA took note expanding the tournament against to 52 teams in 1983 and 53 in 1984. The following year in 1985, the NCAA moved to 64 teams.

     

    During the first decade of the 2000s, the tournament consisted of 65 teams. One play-in game determined whether the 64th or 65th team moved into the first round. Beginning in 2011, the field was expanded to its current level of 68 teams with four play-in games.

 

 

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2021 March Madness

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