College basketball fans have already experienced plenty of unpredictability throughout the 2013-14 season, and the impending NCAA Tournament isn’t likely to be any different. The storylines throughout each round promise to be plenty captivating, too, as the 2014 field offers up quite the hearty mix of perennial powerhouses, rising mid-majors, and intriguing March Madness newcomers.
NCAA Tournament Tickets from Vivid Seats
Shop the Vivid Seats marketplace for NCAA Tournament tickets available throughout each round leading up to the highly anticipated Final Four, which for the first time ever, will take place at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
The No. 1 Seeds
For the first time in school history, the Wichita State Shockers were awarded a No. 1 seed, and at 34-0, will attempt to become the first national champion to finish the season undefeated since Indiana accomplished the feat back in 1976. The Virginia Cavaliers, meanwhile, won the ACC regular season for the first time since 1981 and captured their first conference tournament title since 1976 en route to earning the program’s fourth-ever No. 1 seed and first since 1983.
Widely considered the tournament favorite, the SEC’s Florida Gators were awarded the top overall seed for the second time ever. The last time it occurred was the memorable year of 2007, in which the Billy Donovan-led program won its second consecutive national title – the last school to capture back-to-back championships. Lastly, the Arizona Wildcats secured the top seed for the sixth time in program history, and last won an NCAA title back in 1997.
Interestingly enough, of the four No. 1 seeds, Wichita State has most recently reached the Final Four, having done so in 2013 as a No. 9 seed. Florida last advanced in 2006 and 2007, followed by Arizona in 2001, and Virginia in 1984.
NCAA Tournament bid distribution was a bit different than in years past though only slightly due to conference realignments. With seven bids, the Big 12 led the pack for 2014, followed by the Atlantic 10, ACC, Big Ten, and Pac-12 with six apiece, and rounding out the rest were the American Athletic Conference (4), Big East (4), SEC (3), Mountain West (2), and West Coast Conference (2).
Loaded Midwest Region
Experts have tabbed the Midwest as the early favorite for the tournament’s toughest region. Notable teams included in the Wichita State side of the bracket include No. 2 Michigan, No. 3 Duke, No. 4 and defending champion Louisville, No. 8 Kentucky.
NCAA Tournament newcomers for this year include Cal Poly of the Big West and North Carolina Central of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference.
NCAA Tournament Dayton Tickets | UD Arena – March 18-19
Matchups: Albany vs Mount St. Mary’s, NC State vs Xavier, Cal Poly vs Texas Southern, Iowa vs Tennessee
NCAA SECOND & THIRD ROUNDS
NCAA Tournament Buffalo Tickets | First Niagara Center – March 20-22
Matchups: Ohio State vs Dayton, Syracuse vs Western Michigan, UConn vs Saint Joseph’s, Villanova vs Milwaukee
NCAA Tournament Milwaukee Tickets | BMO Harris Bradley Center – March 20-22
Matchups: Wisconsin vs American, Oregon vs BYU, Michigan vs Wofford, Texas vs Arizona State
NCAA Tournament Orlando Tickets | Amway Center – March 20-22
Matchups: Colorado vs Pittsburgh, Florida vs Albany/Mount St. Mary’s, Saint Louis vs NC State/Xavier, Louisville vs Manhattan
NCAA Tournament Raleigh Tickets | PNC Arena – March 21-23
Matchups: Duke vs Mercer, UMass vs Iowa/Tennessee, Memphis vs George Washington, Virginia vs Coastal Carolina
NCAA Tournament St. Louis Tickets | Scottrade Center – March 21-23
Matchups: New Mexico vs Stanford, Kansas vs Eastern Kentucky, Wichita State vs Cal Poly/Texas Southern, Kentucky vs Kansas State
NCAA Tournament San Diego Tickets | Viejas Arena – March 21-23
Matchups: Arizona vs Weber State, Gonzaga vs Oklahoma State, VCU vs Stephen F Austin, UCLA vs Tulsa
NCAA Tournament San Antonio Tickets | AT&T Center – March 21-23
Matchups: Baylor vs Nebraska, Creighton vs Louisiana Lafayette, North Carolina vs Providence, Iowa State vs NC Central
NCAA Tournament Spokane Tickets | Spokane Arena – March 20-22
Matchups: Cincinnati vs Harvard, Michigan State vs Delaware, Oklahoma vs North Dakota State, San Diego State vs New Mexico State
NCAA East Regional Tickets | New York – Madison Square Garden | March 28-30
NCAA Midwest Regional Tickets | Indianapolis – Lucas Oil Stadium | March 28-30
NCAA South Regional Tickets | Memphis – FedEx Forum | March 27-29
NCAA West Regional Tickets | Anaheim – Honda Center | March 27-29
Arlington, Texas – AT&T Stadium
Final Four and National Championship Tickets | April 5 and 7