2022 March Madness live stream: NCAA Tournament TV schedule, watch Sweet 16 streaming online Thursday

The 2022 NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 schedule has been dissected, and even re-picked by our experts, has finally arrived with Thursday night’s action from the West Region in San Francisco and the South Region in San Antonio. The evening will feature two of the three remaining No. 1 seeds in action and both of the only No. 2 seeds, including Duke squaring off with No. 3 Texas Tech in the latest — and possibly final — stop on the Mike Krzyzewski retirement tower.

From a viewing perspective, the evening will get started with No. 1 seed Gonzaga taking on No. 4 seed Arkansas in the West Region (7:09 pm ET) with the other early slate option being No. 2 seed Villanova and No. 11 seed Michigan — one of four double-digit seeds to make the Sweet 16 — in South Region action (7:29 pm). Bouncing between those games will provide anything a college basketball could desire, from a track meet in Gonzaga-Arkansas to the slower-paced half-court battle between the Wildcats and Wolverines.

The first late-slate game is perhaps the one that will draw the most intrigue as No. 2 seed Duke tries to keep this historic season rolling in a matchup with No. 3 Texas Tech in the West Region (9:39 pm). But don’t get so caught up in narratives that you miss out on what could be the best game of the entire day: the nightcap in the South Region between No. 1 Arizona and No. 5 Houston (9:59 pm).

Enough with the schedule. Here are the storylines to watch on Thursday night, followed by a live streaming guide for all the action.

Duke faces toughest test of tournament run

Ever since the second-round matchup with Tom Izzo and Michigan State was set, it was clear that every time Duke takes the floor in this NCAA Tournament there was going to be a potential for it to be the final game for Krzyzewski as a head coach . Facing an old friend in Izzo and a common foe in Michigan State brought even more attention to the Coach K retirement tour side of things, but what Texas Tech lacks in narrative it makes up for in being an even tougher challenge for the No. 2 seed Blue Devils.

Texas Tech brings a level of defensive efficiency and intensity, particularly on the perimeter, that Duke has not had to face often this season. There are currently no ACC teams who rank in the top 40 in adjusted defensive efficiency, according to KenPom, and the only teams in the top 50 are North Carolina (No. 42) and Duke (No. 43), teams whose numbers have benefited from the boost of two tournament wins. How Duke’s guards handle the on-ball pressure will determine what kind of game unfolds and whether or not the Blue Devils’ talent advantage will be enough to win what the oddsmakers think will be a close game.

Speaking of the odds, Duke opened as an underdog for just the fourth time in 26 Sweet 16 games under Coach K. Each of those previous three times, according to ESPN’s Chris Fallica, the Blue Devils were bounced from the tournament before reaching the Elite Eight .

West Coast 1-seeds on upset alert

No. 1 seed Gonzaga beat No. 9 seed Memphis by four points and No. 1 seed Arizona needed overtime to beat No. 9 seed TCU by five points. Both of these teams, who also ranked as the top two overall seeds in the field on Selection Sunday according to the committee, will be in action on Thursday night in hopes of continuing tournament campaigns that nearly ended much earlier than expected.

In No. 4 seed Arkansas, Gonzaga will find a team that is happy to play its up-tempo brand of basketball. In fact, Eric Musselman’s Razorbacks might welcome the challenge after drawing Vermont and New Mexico State — both teams with below average pace metrics on the season — in the first two rounds. Arkansas has wins this season against Kentucky, Tennessee and Auburn, but achieved all three victories in the comfy confines of Bud Walton Arena. Tapping into that same magic in San Francisco might be a challenge, but Gonzaga should not look past the Razorbacks’ ability to make this game difficult.

Arizona should have no worries about taking its opponent seriously after No. 5 seed Houston dispatched No. 4 seed Illinois by double digits in the second round. The Wildcats already went toe-to-toe with a tough team from Texas and barely got out with their season intact, so to look past Kelvin Sampson and Cougars would be a costly mistake. Houston’s defense can make a team uncomfortable like TCU, only the Cougars have a deeper collection of offensive weapons and a much-higher level of efficiency on both sides of the ball. Arizona wants to run, while Houston wants to grind. The contrast of styles will make for a fascinating game.

San Antonio plays host to Villanova-Michigan rematch

The first South Region seminal features a rematch of the 2018 national championship game between Villanova and Michigan, where the Wildcats claimed the program’s third NCAA Tournament title with a 79-72 win. The stakes are somewhat smaller, as is the seating with that Final four in the Alamodome and this weekend’s regional action in the San Antonio Spurs’ AT&T center, but neither team is taking the opportunity lightly. Even though the seed line shows Michigan as a No. 11, this Wolverines team has hit another gear and gone to a level more reflective of the name on the uniforms. This is Michigan, back in the second weekend for the fifth time in the last five tournaments, trying to advance to the Elite Eight for the second straight year.

Compared to the other top teams in this field, Villanova has flown under the radar with a consistency that has lacked the kind of urgency that draws headlines. After a seven-year Sweet 16 drought was broken during Jay Wright’s first national title run in 2016, we kind of expect the Wildcats to be lurking around with a shot. What Villanova fans are hanging their hat on is how this team has found ways to win handfuls of close and competitive games coming down the stretch of the regular season and into March. In the 14 games Villanova has played since the beginning of February, 10 of them have been decided by single digits, and the Wildcats are 9-1 in those games and 12-2 overall.

Sweet 16 live streaming guide on Thursday

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