NCAA Basketball on Sling TV: 2016 NCAA Championship Game

Apr 04, 2016 by Scott Ross

#2 Villanova (34-5) vs. #1 North Carolina (33-6) (9pm ET Monday, TBS)
On Saturday, the Villanova Wildcats unleashed a tenacious D and a white-hot shooting hand that culminated in the biggest blowout in NCAA Final Four history. The ‘Cats defeated the Oklahoma Sooners 95-51, hitting 71% from the floor, including 61% from three-point land, while junior guard Josh Hart led all scorers with 23 points on 10-of-12 shooting. As a team, Villanova was so hot of the eight guys who hoisted a shot, only one of them, Darryl Reynolds, hit on less than 60%, and to be fair, he only missed on his lone attempt.

Villanova’s defensive effort was equally suffocating as they held the Sooners to a season-low 55 points (their previous low had been 63) and a... Read More

March Madness on Sling: The Final Four

Apr 02, 2016 by Scott Ross

#2 Villanova (33-5) vs. #2 Oklahoma (29-7) (6:09pm ET Saturday, TBS)

The Villanova Wildcats didn’t have anyone score more than 13 points, no one grabbed more than eight rebounds, or dished out more than three assists, but they still managed to defeat the number-one-seed Kansas Jayhawks 64-59. Kansas pulled within one with just 17 seconds to play, but ‘Nova made four free throws down the stretch for an 18-of-19 finish, to send the Wildcats to their first Final Four since 2009, their fourth overall. They won it all back in 1985, defeating Georgetown in one of college basketball’s great upsets – something they seem to specialize in.

The Sooners upended the top-seeded Ducks 80-68 after they built themselves an 18-point halftime lead... Read More

March Madness on Sling TV: The Elite 8

Mar 27, 2016 by Scott Ross

#10 Syracuse Orangemen (22-13) vs. #1 Virginia Cavaliers (29-7) (6:09pm ET, TBS)

Trailing by one with 23 seconds to play, the Syracuse Orangemen’s Michael Gbinije retrieved the block of his own layup, making good on his second chance to give Syracuse its first lead in nearly 10 minutes on their way to a 63-60 victory over Gonzaga. Gbinije led the Orangemen in scoring 20 (albeit on eight-of-23 shooting), adding four rebounds, three assists, two blocks and two steals.

Virginia went into halftime against the Iowa State Cyclones with a 14 point lead and never looked back, despite a 30-point night from ISU’s Georges Niang by dominating the boards (33-24) and shooting 56% from the floor. The Cavs’ Anthony Gill led the team in scoring with 23 points on... Read More

March Madness on Sling TV: Sweet 16 - Day 2

Mar 25, 2016 by Scott Ross

: #7 Wisconsin vs. #6 Notre Dame The two lowest seeds left in the tournament square off. Wisconsin upset 2-seed Xavier thanks to a pair of 3-pointers by Bronson Koenig in the final 13 seconds to win 63-60, while Notre Dame barely survived a scare from 14-seed Stephen F. Austin, needing a last-second layup by Rex Pflueger to win 76-75. (7:27 pm ET, TBS)

#5 Indiana vs. #1 North Carolina: The Indiana Hoosiers beat Kentucky 73-67, behind Thomas Bryant’s 19 points and 5 rebounds, and Yogi Ferrell’s 18 points, 5 rebounds and 4 assists. The North Carolina Tar Heels scored 51 points in the second half to pull away for an 85-66 victory over Providence, as Brice Johnson led the ‘Heels with 21... Read More

March Madness on Sling TV: Sweet 16

Mar 24, 2016 by Scott Ross

We’re getting down to the wire – it’s just a little over a week left until the 2016 NCAA champion is crowned. But, let’s not get ahead of ourselves; we still have the sweet, sweet, Sweet 16 the indulge in this weekend before we know who will be facing off next weekend for the Final Four.

3 Texas A&M vs. #2 Oklahoma

Texas A&M clawed their way into the Sweet 16 after being down 12 with 44 seconds to play, they came storming back to tie Northern Iowa before going on to win 92-88 in double overtime. The Sooners managed to hold VCU at bay thanks to the hot hand of leading scorer Buddy Hield, who hit 11 of 20 for 36 points, while grabbing seven rebounds. (7:37 pm ET,... Read More

March Madness on Sling: Second Round Action

Mar 19, 2016 by Scott Ross

Thursday was one of those days that wreaks havoc on a person’s tournament bracket – the rumor is only .1% of all brackets have yet to be busted. But, that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the rest of the Big Dance. Besides, when else will your boss be sort of fine with you watching TV at work?

Midwest Regional

#12 Arkansas-Little Rock Trojans (30-4, 17-3 Sun Belt) @ #4 Iowa State Cyclones (22-11, 10-8 Big 12) (6:10pm ET Saturday, TNT)

The Trojans joined a long line of 12-seeds who’ve risen up to strike down Goliath, beating Purdue in double-overtime. The Boilermakers led by 13 with 7:14 left to play following a Ralph Davis three-pointer. The Trojans’ Josh Hagins went off, scoring 15 points on five-of-seven shooting, two... Read More

March Madness on Sling: First Round Action

Mar 17, 2016 by Scott Ross

March Madness on Sling: First Round Action

There is more college hoops going on this month than any sane person could watch – but that’s no reason not to try.

TBS, truTV and TNT are each showing four games on Thursday, we wanted to make navigating each session much easier by highlighting one from each “day part” (as the folks in ad sales like to call it) along with the full slate of today’s action.

#9 Butler Bulldogs (21-10, 10-8 Big East) @ #8 Texas Tech Red Raiders (19-12, 9-9 Big 12) (12:40pm ET Thursday, TruTV)

Over the previous nine seasons, the Butler Bulldogs had four different coaches, played in three different conferences, made eight NCAA tournaments, went to two conference finals, and compiled a tournament record of 15-7,... Read More

First Four on Sling: Holy Cross Crusaders at Southern Jaguars, Michigan Wolverines vs. Tulsa Golden Hurricanes

Mar 16, 2016 by Scott Ross

Crusaders @ Jaguars (6:40pm ET Wednesday, truTV)
The Holy Cross Crusaders had a miserable season, going 14-19 overall and just 5-13 in Patriot Conference play. But when the chips were down, the Crusaders stepped up, sweeping four conference tourney games, including wins over the number one, two and four-seeded teams. In the final against Lehigh, the Crusaders were outrebounded 34-23, but Lehigh hit just 38% from the floor. This is Holy Cross’ first NCAA appearance since 2007 and their 13th overall. They’ve gone 7-12 in tournament play and won it all in 1947.

Southern’s season had turned into something of a dumpster fire as they lost four of their last five regular season games, dragging their record down to 19-12. But they got their... Read More

First Four on Sling: Florida Gulf Coast vs. Fairleigh Dickinson; Vanderbilt vs. Wichita State

Mar 15, 2016 by Scott Ross

Florida Gulf Coast Eagles @ Fairleigh Dickinson Knights (6:40pm ET Tuesday, truTV)

The Eagles went into the Atlantic Sun tourney with the second-best record in the conference at just 8-6, but got hot at the right time and won three in a row, including the final, an 80-78 overtime stunner against Stetson. The 20-13 Eagles are led by junior forward Marc Eddy Norelia, who averaged 17.2 ppg and 9.2 rpg. In FGC’s only other tournament appearance in 2013, they upset second-seed Georgetown on their way to the Sweet 16, where they lost to the Florida Gators.

The Knights finished the regular season just 15-14, tied for second in the Northeast Conference, but beat number one-seed Wagner 87-79 to earn a ticket to the... Read More

NCAA Tournament Insider: Kentucky, Wisconsin, Michigan State & Duke

Apr 03, 2015 by Robb Todd


Everyone is talking about it. But the Wildcats say that belongs only to them, 38 games into the season.

Check out the legal battle that’s brewing over “40-0”: last week, the University of Kentucky “sent a cease-and-desist letter to Louisville lawyer David Son, whose company is selling blue-and-white ‘40-0’ T-shirts on his website,”

None of that will matter if Wildcats don’t win two more games. But how could they possibly lose? Here’s one answer.

It’s a good question, indeed, but maybe people should be a little more concerned about Duke, which faces a 7 seed in its game. (No disrespect, Michigan State.) Duke seems to be peaking and that peak extends all the way to the NIT. Stanford beat Miami in OT, 66-64, to win... Read More

NCAA Tournament Insider: Blowouts, Stenographers, Insane Stats, Parting Gifts

Mar 27, 2015 by Robb Todd

Kentucky’s record-setting destruction of West Virginia makes it easy to forget there are other teams in the Sweet 16.

Oh, but there are other teams. Notre Dame, Wisconsin and Arizona made that clear last night, and tonight Duke—hey, remember them?—will have a chance against Utah to put its stamp on things. As will a few other talents squads.

But does even mentioning teams other than Kentucky feel like whistling past a graveyard? Here’s a warning from the Wildcats’ latest victim:

“They were what I thought they were,” West Virginia coach Bob Huggins said after the 78-39 blowout. “That’s the best defensive team I think that I’ve ever coached against. And when they’re making shots, there’s nobody going to beat them.”

Here’s what else you need to... Read More

NCAA Tournament Insider: Guaranteed Victory, Calipari's Next Move, Viewer's Guide

Mar 26, 2015 by Robb Todd

Kentucky’s quest to go undefeated continues tonight against West Virginia, which also knocked out the Wildcats five years ago, almost to the day. Bob Huggins remembers it well.

Still, with so many people certain that Kentucky will steamroll everyone in their way, there is a lot of focus on Coach John Calipari’s future in the NBA. One report even calls him “desperate” to try again at the professional level.

There’s always a lot of talk about a lot of things and here’s a little more smack from West Virginia freshman guard Daxter Miles, Jr.: “I give them their props, salute them for getting to 36-0. But tomorrow, they’re going to be 36-1.”

To do that, the Mountaineers will rely, as usual, on the press. That’s... Read More

NCAA Tournament Insider: Predictions & More Predictions

Mar 25, 2015 by Robb Todd

If only we could predict the future. That’s what creates the madness in March: we can’t. Not even a little bit, and it reminds us that we don’t really know anything for certain. (That goes for you, too, Kentucky fans – and you, too, IRS!)

Because of this, it emboldens people to make even wilder predictions. Since there’s no prediciting this stuff, anything we say could be correct.

But here are some pretty solid preditions. At least more solid than Jell-o:

• This year’s tournament isn’t over but this story makes predicitions about which eliminated teams will make the tournament again next year.

• Kentucky Coach John Calipari failed in his first gig in the NBA. Here’s a prediction about how he’d do if he tried... Read More

NCAA Tournament Insider: Sweet 16, Crying Piccolo, & March Madness Money

Mar 24, 2015 by Robb Todd

The Sweet 16 is set and everyone’s bracket is looking pretty darn good. Well, 14 brackets out of 11.57 million are looking good. That’s how many people correctly predicted the Sweet 16 correctly.

If you didn’t get them all right (and you didn’t!) there’s no reason to cry about it. Roxanne Chalifoux has cried enough for all of us, and she cried while playing the piccolo for the Villanova band as she watched her team fall to N.C. State. Those tears earned her a gig with The Roots.

Nova fans know deeply that nobody is invincible but you’ll still have a difficult time persuading anyone that Kentucky can be beaten. The Wildcats are even odds in Vegas to win it all while UCLA is... Read More

NCAA Tournament Insider: A Record of Madness, Wet Your Whistle, & Promises, Promises

Mar 20, 2015 by Robb Todd

Everyone knew there would be upsets, but not as many knew which teams would be upset. Who picked UAB over Iowa St., raise your hands?

Well, maybe you picked Georgia St. too. Maybe you’re a genius! Maybe you thought about picking Wofford over Arkansas because of The No. 5 Jinx but changed your mind at the last second.


You also never doubted that the NCAA made the right choice with UCLA and you are all in favor of NOT reviewing goal tending calls. Sorry, SMU.

There were a record five 1-point games yesterday—madness!—but that’s all history. We have to live in the now and now you need to know this:

A breakdown of every game today.

Even better: a breakdown... Read More

NCAA Tournament Insider: Kentucky, Kentucky, Kentucky ... (Notre Dame?)

Mar 19, 2015 by Robb Todd

There has been so much talk about Kentucky it might get a little tiresome but there is just so much to talk about. But … let’s remember that today’s games tip off with another team worth paying attention to: Notre Dame.

The ACC newcomer is having a moment.

“It is different to say Notre Dame won the ACC championship,” North Carolina Coach Roy Williams said after his Tar Heels fell to the Irish, 90-82, in Saturday night’s title game.

And it’s different to think of Notre Dame as a school that is better at basketball than football.

While not many people think Kentucky can be beaten, the few who do target the Fightin’ Irish as one that could—but first they have to beat Northeastern in today’s first... Read More

NCAA Tournament Insider: Jesus on Speed-Dial, Obama Fills Out Bracket, Cinderellas

Mar 18, 2015 by Robb Todd

BYU blew a 17-point halftime lead against Ole Miss. Surprised? Hey, that’s the type of thing that put the “madness” after March.

Hampton dispatched Manhattan and had fun doing it, even though they now have to face Kentucky. Check out Hampton’s bench celebrate this free throw. That’s a team that seems unconcerned with the carnage that awaits them against the Wildcats. But wait a minute … let’s not forget what happened to BYU and, for that matter, what happened to Duke last year against Mercer.

Maybe the Pirates—that’s Hampton, btw—will pull off the greatest upset in tournament history. That sounds crazy, but it’s not impossible. It’s just nearly impossible. Plus, Hampton coach Edward Joyner has Jesus’s phone number on speed-dial.

“Hey, Jesus, first of... Read More

NCAA Tournament Insider: First Four, Bold Predictions, A Different Kind of Bracket, Fuzzy Math

Mar 17, 2015 by Robb Todd

It will be hard not to feel a little sorry for the winner of the tournament’s first game tonight. Yes, the winner.

Manhattan and Hampton are playing for the right to go up against unbeaten No. 1 seed Kentucky.

But don’t feel too sorry for the Jaspers' RaShawn Stores, no matter what the outcome. Stores, a senior point guard and team captain, has had a storybook career, and this profile in the New York Times is worth reading.

Stores walked on at Manhattan and won over Coach Steve Masiello, who understood very well what Stores was trying to accomplish. Masiello had walked on at Kentucky when he was a player.

“He means everything,” Masiello told the Times. “He’s an extension of me on the court.... Read More

Selection Sunday & 8 Questions for the NCAA Tournament

Mar 13, 2015 by Robb Todd

The field will be set Sunday and the mayhem—dare we call it “madness”?— will begin Tuesday. But a lot of the wagering has already begun, surely only where it’s legal.

Did you know that about $9 billion is bet on the NCAA men’s basketball tournament?

That was question No. 1. Here are a few more.

2) Can anyone beat Kentucky?

This might be the only question that matters. We should have saved it for last.

3) Is North Carolina State, despite coming of a loss to Duke on Thursday, the team most likely to shock the nation by upsetting a one or two seed in the second round?

The answer is no because if you know anything at all about... Read More

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