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Andy Katz | NCAA.com | March 26, 2022

The men's Elite 8 field no one saw coming, re-ranked by Andy Katz

Saint Peter's players bomb coach interview after another historic upset

Don’t even get me started on who had St. Peter’s in the Elite Eight or that the Big Ten shouldn’t have had nine teams in the field or that the ACC must have been the best league since it has three of the final eight.

The regular-season and the conference tournaments have NOTHING to do with the selections/seeds and ultimate outcomes of March Madness. One-game elimination means there will be chaos and correctly predicting what will happen is nearly impossible.

No data would tell you that these eight teams would end up in the final weekend of the season.

How do we know this? Because, of course, nobody had a perfect bracket — again!

And the previous season has nothing to do with the current bracket just like 2023’s bracket will have zero to do with the final outcomes of this tournament.

Ranking the final eight is still based on who teams beat, the overall talent and predictions. So, that means we will all likely be wrong again. As much as I would love to say St. Peter’s should be in the top four because of the Peacocks improbable wins over Kentucky and Purdue, the 2 and 3 seeds in the East Region, it is hard to do so based on their overall resume, talent pool and what may still happen.

But they have earned not to be last in the final eight rankings.

So, of course, this will present debatable points.

Here we go:

1. Houston: The Cougars have proven to be the toughest team remaining in the field. Kelvin Sampson isn’t a finalist for the Naismith Coach of the Year award but he may end up being the coach of the NCAA tournament. The Cougars outmuscled Illinois and then Arizona for two of the more impressive wins, thus far. If you had polled anyone after last season’s Final Four, let alone earlier this year, and said which of the four Final Four teams from 2021 would be back in 2022, there is no way the answer would be Houston! And yet, the Cougars are the last team standing among that group.

2. Kansas: The Jayhawks are the final No. 1 seed remaining. Kansas has found a re-engaged and healthy Remy Martin to lead them. They have one of the four remaining player-of-the-year candidates in Ochai Agbaji. Bill Self has been here before and while the wins over Creighton and Providence weren’t overwhelming, Kansas still remains a solid machine heading toward New Orleans.

3. Villanova: The Wildcats have Collin Gillespie and other teams do not. He has proven to be a game-winning player who can crush teams' hopes with dagger threes, free throws and ball handling. Jermaine Samuels can pick up key boards. The Wildcats are winners. This team doesn’t make many mistakes and finds a way to close out games. The Nova-Houston game should be the most intense of the Elite Eight games.

4. Duke: The Blue Devils showed tremendous moxie by handling challenges from Michigan State and then Texas Tech and rising up to win. Paolo Banchero has played like a top-three pick, Jeremy Roach was outstanding in the clutch against the Red Raiders and Mark Williams has been a rim protector/stopper in the post. Duke didn’t look like a title contender a few weeks ago, but the Blue Devils do now.

HERE'S TO HISTORY: The Elite Eight table is set, from the fate of Coach K to Saint Peter's

5. Arkansas: The Hogs, like Houston, have played at another level defensively. They throttled Gonzaga in the Sweet 16. Jaylin Williams was money from the perimeter. JD Notae finishes around the rim and can break down defenses to get to the rack. This team has something special going on and feeds off Eric Musselman’s energy. There’s no reason why the Hogs can’t be one of the teams to cut down the nets in New Orleans.

6. Saint Peter’s: The Peacocks run tremendous offense under Shaheen Holloway (a likely done deal to his alma mater Seton Hall when this is over). But it was their defense that was so impressive Friday night. They did a great job of pressuring Purdue and fluttering their guards. Purdue continued to start their offense far out and even when the ball got inside, they were pests and forced awkward angled shots. St. Peter’s can beat North Carolina and get to the Final Four — said NO ONE two weeks ago. But it could really happen.

BRACKETS: Here's how many brackets picked seven Elite Eight teams right (Perfection, there was not)

7. North Carolina: The Tar Heels found a way to beat UCLA by going to struggling Caleb Love. He delivered big-time Friday night. I still love the high-low action of Bradey Manek and Armando Bacot. The Tar Heels better not fall prey to being another team that overlooks the Peacocks or they will be the latest brand name to be stunned.

8. Miami: The Hurricanes had a methodical win over Iowa State and continued to get strong play out of Kameron McGusty and Charlie Moore among others. This team took a punch from Iowa State at one point and came back and finished the Cyclones off. This Miami team has had moments of greatness and some average as well. Yet, here they are, with a legit chance to get to the Final Four. 

2022 March Madness schedule, livestream links

Click or tap on any of the games below to be taken directly to that live stream or box score.

GAMES TIME TV CITY Venue
National Championship — Monday, April 4
No. 1 Kansas 72, No. 8 North Carolina 69 9:20 p.m. TBS New Orleans, Louisiana Caesars Superdome
RESULTS TIME NETWORK CITY SITE
First Four — Tuesday, March 15
No. 16 Texas Southern 76, No. 16 Texas A&M-Corpus Christi 67 6:40 p.m. truTV Dayton, Ohio UD Arena
No. 12 Indiana 66, No. 12 Wyoming 58 9:10 p.m. truTV Dayton, Ohio UD Arena
First Four — Wednesday, March 16
No. 16 Wright State 93, No. 16 Bryant 82 6:40 p.m. truTV Dayton, Ohio UD Arena
No. 11 Notre Dame 89, No. 11 Rutgers 87 9:10 p.m. truTV Dayton, Ohio UD Arena
First Round — Thursday, March 17
No. 11 Michigan 75, No. 6 Colorado State 63 12:15 p.m. CBS Indianapolis, Indiana Gainbridge Fieldhouse
No. 4 Providence 66, No. 13 South Dakota State 57 12:40 p.m. truTV Buffalo, New York KeyBank Center
No. 9 Memphis 64, No. 8 Boise State 53 1:45 p.m. TNT Portland, Oregon Moda Center
No. 1 Baylor 85, No. 16 Norfolk State 49 2 p.m. TBS Fort Worth, Texas Dickies Arena
No. 3 Tennessee 88, No. 14 Longwood 56 2:45 p.m. CBS Indianapolis, Indiana Gainbridge Fieldhouse
No. 12 Richmond 67,  No. 5 Iowa 63 3:10 p.m. truTV Buffalo, New York KeyBank Center
No. 1 Gonzaga 93, No. 16 Georgia State 72 4:15 p.m. TNT Portland, Oregon Moda Center
No. 8 North Carolina 95, No. 9 Marquette 63 4:30 p.m. TBS Fort Worth, Texas Dickies Arena
No. 12 New Mexico State 70, No. 5 UConn 63 6:50 p.m. TNT Buffalo, New York KeyBank Center
No. 15 Saint Peter's 85, No. 2 Kentucky 79 (OT) 7:10 p.m. CBS Indianapolis, Indiana Gainbridge Fieldhouse
No. 5 Saint Mary's (CA) 82, No. 12 Indiana 53 7:20 p.m. TBS Portland, Oregon Moda Center
No. 9 Creighton 72, No. 8 San Diego State 69 (OT) 7:27 p.m. truTV Fort Worth, Texas Dickies Arena
No. 4 Arkansas 75, No. 13 Vermont 71 9:20 p.m. TNT Buffalo, New York KeyBank Center
No. 7 Murray State 92, No. 10 San Francisco 87 (OT) 9:40 p.m. CBS Indianapolis, Indiana Gainbridge Fieldhouse
No. 4 UCLA 57, No. 13 Akron 53 9:50 p.m. TBS Portland, Oregon Moda Center
No. 1 Kansas 83, No. 16 Texas Southern 56 9:57 p.m. truTV Fort Worth, Texas Dickies Arena
First Round — Friday, March 18
No. 7 Ohio State 54, No. 10 Loyola Chicago 41  12:15 p.m. CBS Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania PPG Paints Arena
No. 2 Auburn 80, No. 15 Jacksonville State 61 12:40 p.m. truTV Greenville, South Carolina Bon Secours Wellness Arena
No. 3 Texas Tech 97, No. 14 Montana State 62 1:45 p.m. TNT San Diego, California Viejas Arena
No. 3 Purdue 78, No. 14 Yale 56 2 p.m. TBS Milwaukee, Wisconsin Fiserv Forum
No. 2 Villanova 80, No. 15 Delaware 60 2:45 p.m. CBS Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania PPG Paints Arena
No. 10 Miami (Fla.) 68, No. 7 No. 7 Southern California 66 3:10 p.m. truTV Greenville, South Carolina Bon Secours Wellness Arena
No. 11 Notre Dame 78, No. 6 Alabama 64 4:15 p.m. TNT San Diego, California Viejas Arena
No. 6 Texas 81, No. 11 Virginia Tech 73 4:30 p.m. TBS Milwaukee, Wisconsin Fiserv Forum
No. 4 Illinois 54, No. 13 Chattanooga 53 6:50 p.m. TNT Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania PPG Paints Arena
No. 2 Duke 78, Cal State Fullerton 61 7:10 p.m. CBS Greenville, South Carolina Bon Secours Wellness Arena
No. 11 Iowa State 59, No. 6 LSU 54 7:20 p.m. TBS Milwaukee, Wisconsin Fiserv Forum
No. 1 Arizona 87, No. 16 Wright State 70 7:27 p.m. truTV San Diego, California Viejas Arena
No. 5 Houston 82, No. 12 UAB 68 9:20 p.m. TNT Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania PPG Paints Arena
No. 7 Michigan State 74, No. 10 Davidson 73 9:40 p.m. CBS Greenville, South Carolina Bon Secours Wellness Arena
No. 3 Wisconsin 67, No. 14 Colgate 60 9:50 p.m. TBS Milwaukee, Wisconsin Fiserv Forum
No. 9 TCU 69, No. 8 Seton Hall 42 9:57 p.m. truTV San Diego, California Viejas Arena
Second Round — Saturday, March 19
No. 8 North Carolina 93, No. 1 Baylor 86 (OT) 12:10 p.m. CBS Fort Worth, Texas Dickies Arena
No. 1 Kansas 79, No. 9 Creighton 72 2:40 p.m. CBS Fort Worth, Texas Dickies Arena
No. 11 Michigan 76, No. 3 Tennessee 68 5:15 p.m. CBS Indianapolis, Indiana Gainbridge Fieldhouse
No. 4 Providence 79, No. 12 Richmond 51 6:10 p.m. TNT Buffalo, New York KeyBank Center
No. 4 UCLA 72, No. 5 Saint Mary's 56 7:10 p.m. TBS Portland, Oregon Moda Center
No. 15 Saint Peter's 70, No. 7 Murray State 60 7:45 p.m. CBS Indianapolis, Indiana Gainbridge Fieldhouse
No. 4 Arkansas 53, No. 12 New Mexico State 48 8:40 p.m. TNT Buffalo, New York KeyBank Center
No. 1 Gonzaga 82, No. 9 Memphis 78 9:40 p.m. TBS Portland, Oregon Moda Center
Second Round — Sunday, March 20
No. 5 Houston 68, No. 4 Illinois 53 12:10 p.m. CBS Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania PPG Paints Arena
No. 2 Villanova 71, No. 7 Ohio State 61 2:40 p.m. CBS Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania PPG Paints Arena
No. 2 Duke 85, No. 7 Michigan State 76 5:15 p.m. CBS Greenville, South Carolina Bon Secours Wellness Arena
No. 11 Iowa State 54, No. 3 Wisconsin 49 6:10 p.m. TNT Milwaukee, Wisconsin Fiserv Forum
No. 3 Texas Tech 59, No. 11 Notre Dame 53 7:10 p.m. TBS San Diego, California Viejas Arena
No. 10 Miami (Fla.) 79, No. 2 Auburn 61 7:45 p.m. truTV Greenville, South Carolina Bon Secours Wellness Arena
No. 3 Purdue 81, No. 6 Texas 71 8:40 p.m. TNT Milwaukee, Wisconsin Fiserv Forum
No. 1 Arizona 85, No. 9 TCU 80 (OT) 9:40 p.m. TBS San Diego, California Viejas Arena
Sweet 16 — Thursday, March 24
No. 4 Arkansas 74, No. 1 Gonzaga 68 7:09 p.m. CBS San Francisco, California Chase Center
No. 2 Villanova 63, No. 11 Michigan 55 7:29 p.m. TBS San Antonio, Texas AT&T Center
No. 2 Duke 78, No. 3 Texas Tech 73 9:39 p.m. CBS San Francisco, California Chase Center
No. 5 Houston 72, No. 1 Arizona 60 9:59 p.m. TBS San Antonio, Texas AT&T Center
Sweet 16 — Friday, March 25
No. 15 Saint Peter's 67, No. 3 Purdue 64 7:09 p.m. CBS Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Wells Fargo Center
No. 1 Kansas 66, No. 4 Providence 61 7:29 p.m. TBS Chicago, Illinois United Center
No. 8 North Carolina 73, No. 4 UCLA 66 9:39 p.m. CBS Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Wells Fargo Center
No. 10 Miami (Fla.) 70, No. 11 Iowa State 56 9:59 p.m. TBS Chicago, Illinois United Center
Elite Eight —  Saturday, March 26
No. 2 Villanova 50, No. 5 Houston 44 6:09 p.m. TBS San Antonio, Texas AT&T Center
No. 2 Duke 78, No. 4 Arkansas 69 8:49 p.m. TBS San Francisco, California Chase Center
Elite Eight — Sunday, March 27
No. 1 Kansas 76, No. 10 Miami (Fla.) 50 2:20 p.m. CBS Chicago, Illinois United Center
No. 8 North Carolina 69, No. 15 Saint Peter's 49 5:05 p.m. CBS Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Wells Fargo Center
Final Four — Saturday, April 2
No. 1 Kansas 81, No. 2 Villanova 65 6:09 p.m. TBS New Orleans, Louisiana Caesars Superdome
No. 8 North Carolina 81, No. 2 Duke 77 8:49 p.m. TBS New Orleans, Louisiana Caesars Superdome

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