The four Indiana college basketball teams that earned spots in this year’s NCAA men’s basketball tournament are being spread across the country for their first round games.
The Butler Bulldogs (27-6), No. 5 seed in the Midwest Regional, travel to Buffalo, N.Y., to face No. 12 seed Old Dominion (24-8). Coach Todd Lickliter’s Bulldogs, an at-large selection for this year’s tournament, tied the school single season record with 27 wins, and were regular season co-champs of the Horizon League.
Butler’s season started off strong as the team took home the 2006 NIT Season Tip Off title. The Bulldogs were ranked in both the Associated Press and ESPN/USA Today Top 20 polls for 15 consecutive weeks.
The Butler-Old Dominion game is scheduled for Thursday at 2:40 p.m., Eastern time. Two Indy venues are holding viewing parties:
• Butler Campus: Reilly Room, Atherton Union, 4600 Sunset Ave.
• Moe & Johnny’s (formerly the Bulldog): 5380 N. College Ave. 317- 255-5220; must be 21 to attend.
The Indiana Hoosiers (20-10), No. 7 seed in the West Regional, are headed to Sacramento, Calif., to take on No. 10 seed Gonzaga (23-10) tomorrow night (approximate tip-off time is 10 p.m.). This is the second straight year that these two teams will face off in the tournament; the Zags beat the Hoosiers 90-80 in the second round last March.
Coach Kelvin Sampson’s first season with the Hoosiers was an impressive one. The squad was undefeated at Assembly Hall (15-0), and finished third in the Big 10 with a 10-6 conference record. Led by D.J. White (13.7 points per game) and Roderick Wilmont (12.5 ppg), this year’s Hoosier team was awarded an at-large bid in the NCAA tournament.
The Purdue Boilermakers (21-11), No. 9 seed in the Midwest Regional, head to New Orleans to square off against No. 8 seed Arizona (20-10) Friday night (tip-off time is scheduled for 7:20 p.m.).
This is the Boilermakers’ first appearance in the NCAA tournament since 2003. Coach Matt Painter’s team goes into this year’s tournament having won eight of their last 12 games. Three of those losses were to the top-ranked team in the country, Ohio State.
Seniors Carl Landry and David Teague lead the Boilermakers in both scoring (18.9 and 14.3 ppg, respectively) and rebounds (7.1 and 5.1, respectively).
Notre Dame (24-7), No. 6 seed in the Midwest Region, fly out to Spokane, Wash., and take the court against No. 11 seed Winthrop (28-4) tomorrow.
This is coach Mike Brey’s fourth trip to the NCAA tournament in seven seasons with the Fighting Irish. It’s the team’s eighth straight postseason appearance (NIT in 2000, 2004, 2005 and 2006), and their first appearance in the “Big Dance” since 2003.
Seniors Russell Carter and Colin Falls led the Notre Dame team in scoring (17.2 and 15.4 ppg, respectively), while junior Rob Kurz and freshman Luke Harangody were the top two rebounders for this year’s Fighting Irish (7.9 and 6.3 per game, respectively).
All NCAA men’s games are televised by CBS Sports.