Duke selected as top overall seed in the 2019 NCAA Tournament

Author: WINK News / CBS News
Published: Updated:
NCAA March Madness. (Credit: CBS News)
NCAA March Madness. (Credit: CBS News)

Looming at the top of this year’s March Madness bracket: Duke and its freshman force of nature, Zion Williamson. The Blue Devils earned the top overall seed in the NCAA Tournament on Sunday, joining Virginia, North Carolina and Gonzaga as No. 1 seeds for the three-week hoops extravaganza that kicks off this week.

Williamson missed five games after wrenching his knee when his Nike sneaker blew out in a regular-season game last month. He’s healthy again, playing well and not concerned about another potential injury that could impact his status as the likely top pick in the NBA draft later this year.

The tournament starts Tuesday with a pair of play-in games, then gets going in full force Thursday. The Final Four is set for April 6-8 in Minneapolis, where Duke is the early 9-4 favorite to win it all.

The three teams from the ACC as No. 1 seeds ties a record for one conference. “They earned their right to be there,” said Stanford athletic director Bernard Muir, the chair of the selection committee.

Virginia gets a top seed for the second straight year, hoping to avoid another colossal embarrassment; the Cavaliers will face Gardner-Webb a year after becoming the first top seed to lose to a No. 16 since the bracket went to 64 teams in 1985.

The bracket, as always, included a few surprises and a few more debatable decisions from the selection committee that’s been holed up at a Manhattan hotel this week, crunching the numbers.

Mid-major Belmont made it off the bubble, one of seven teams from non-power conferences to earn at-large bids. That was the highest number since 2015. Other bubble teams were Temple, Arizona and St. John’s. Missing the tournament were Alabama, TCU and Indiana.

Michigan State made a strong bid for a No. 1 seed with its win Sunday over Michigan in the Big Ten title game. Instead, it was put on the “2” line, with a potential Elite Eight matchup against Duke in a tough East region.

Muir said Michigan State leapfrogged another No. 2 seed, Kentucky, by winning the Big Ten but “at the same token, we thought Michigan and Michigan State would both be on the ‘2’ line.”

Printable 2019 NCAA Bracket

2019 NCAA Tournament bracket. (Credit: CBS Sports)
2019 NCAA Tournament bracket. (Credit: CBS Sports)

Schedule for the 2019 NCAA Tournament

6:40 p.m. (16) Prairie View A&M vs. (16) Fairleigh Dickinson truTV Dayton I
After conc. I (11) Temple vs. (11) Belmont truTV Dayton II


Wednesday, March 20 — First Four

6:40 p.m. (16) NC Central vs. (16) North Dakota State truTV Dayton I
After conc. I (11) St. John’s vs. (11) Arizona State truTV Dayton II


Thursday, March 21 — First round

12:15 p.m. (10) Minnesota vs. (7) Louisville WINK Des Moines
12:40 p.m. (14) Yale vs. (3) LSU truTV Jacksonville I
1:30 p.m. (12) New Mexico State vs. (5) Auburn TNT Salt Lake City I
2 p.m. (13) Vermont vs. (4) Florida State TBS Hartford I
After conc. I (15) Bradley vs. (2) Michigan State WINK Des Moines II
After conc. I (11) Temple/Belmont vs. (6) Maryland truTV Jacksonville II
After conc. I (13) Northeastern vs. (4) Kansas TNT Salt Lake City II
After conc. I (12) Murray State vs. (5) Marquette TBS Hartford II
6:50 p.m. (10) Florida vs. (7) Nevada TNT Des Moines III
7:10 p.m. (15) Abilene Christian vs. (2) Kentucky WINK Jacksonville III
7:20 p.m. (11) Saint Mary’s vs. (6) Villanova TBS Hartford III
7:27 p.m. (16) Prairie View / Fairleigh vs. (1) Gonzaga truTV Salt Lake City III
After conc. III (15) Montana vs. (2) Michigan TNT Des Moines IV
After conc. III (10) Seton Hall vs. (7) Wofford WINK Jacksonville IV
After conc. III (14) Old Dominion vs. (3) Purdue TBS Hartford IV
After conc. III (9) Baylor vs. (8) Syracuse truTV Salt Lake City IV


Friday, March 22 — First round

12:15 p.m. (10) Iowa vs. (7) Cincinnati WINK Columbus I
12:40 p.m. (9) Oklahoma vs. (8) Ole Miss truTV Columbia I
1:30 p.m. (14) Northern Kentucky vs. (3) Texas Tech TNT Tulsa I
2 p.m. (13) UC Irvine vs. (4) Kansas State TBS San Jose I
After conc. I (15) Colgate vs. (2) Tennessee WINK Columbus II
After conc. I (16) Gardner-Webb vs. (1) Virginia truTV Columbia II
After conc. I (11) St. John’s / Arizona State vs. (6) Buffalo TNT Tulsa II
After conc. I (12) Oregon vs. (5) Wisconsin TBS San Jose II
6:50 p.m. (9) Washington vs. (8) Utah State TNT Columbus III
7:10 p.m. (16) NC Central / North Dakota St. vs. (1) Duke WINK Columbia III
7:20 p.m. (14) Georgia State vs. (3) Houston TBS Tulsa III
7:27 p.m. (12) Liberty vs. (5) Mississippi State truTV San Jose III
After conc. III (16) Iona vs. (1) North Carolina TNT Columbus IV
After conc. III (9) UCF vs. (8) VCU WINK Columbia IV
After conc. III (11) Ohio State vs. (6) Iowa State TBS Tulsa IV
After conc. III (13) Saint Louis vs. (4) Virginia Tech truTV San Jose IV


Saturday, March 23
Second round: Hartford, Salt Lake City, Des Moines, Jacksonville

Sunday, March 24
Second round: Tulsa, Columbus, Columbia, San Jose

Thursday, March 28
Sweet 16: Louisville, Anaheim

Friday, March 29
Sweet 16: Washington, D,C., Kansas City

Saturday, March 30
Elite Eight: Louisville, Anaheim

Sunday, March 31
Elite Eight: Washington, D.C., Kansas City

Saturday, April 6
Final Four: Minneapolis
WINK — Jim Nantz / Bill Raftery / Grant Hill // Tracy Wolfson

Monday, April 8
National Championship Game: Minneapolis
WINK — Jim Nantz / Bill Raftery / Grant Hill // Tracy Wolfson

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