WE DANCE CINCINNATI! Bearcats Play Friday In Sacramento
March 12, 2017

NCAA BRACKET | Official Bearcats Interactive Guide, Presented by Skyline Chili | NCAA Tournament Central

CINCINNATI - The University of Cincinnati men's basketball team returns to the NCAA Championship for the seventh straight season with a first-round game against Kansas State on Friday, March 17, at the Golden 1 Center (15,745) in Sacramento, California.

Cincinnati is one of eight schools in the nation to play in seven consecutive NCAA Tournaments, along with Duke, Gonzaga, Kansas, Michigan State, North Carolina, VCU and Wisconsin.

UC (29-5) is the No. 6 seed in the South Region while the No. 11 seed is Kansas State (21-13). The Wildcats knocked off Wake Forest in a First Four game in Dayton Tuesday to advance and face the Bearcats. No. 3 UCLA (29-4) and No. 14 Kent State (22-13) are the other South Region teams playing in Sacramento.

The game will tipoff at 7:27 p.m. ET and be televised by TruTV with Spero Dedes (play-by-play), Steve Smith (analyst), Len Elmore (analyst) and Ros Gold-Onwude (sideline) calling the action. The game will also air on 700 WLW AM with Dan Hoard (play-by-play) and Terry Nelson (analyst) on the call.

TruTV is available in Cincinnati on UC's campus (61), Time Warner Cable (220/1220 HD), Cincinnati Bell (39/539 HD), DirecTV (246) and Dish (242/9430 HD).

UC closed out the regular season with a 29-5 mark and a 16-2 record in American Athletic Conference play. The Bearcats advanced to the American Athletic Conference Tournament Championship but fell to rival SMU. Troy Caupain, winner of the American's Sportsmanship Award, and Kyle Washington were Second-Team All-American Athletic Conference selections and freshman Jarron Cumberland was tabbed as the American's Sixth Man of the Year and a member of the league's all-rookie team. Gary Clark and Jacob Evans earned spots on the American's All-Tournament Team. Evans (13.8 ppg), Washington (13.1 ppg), Clark (10.7 ppg) and Caupain (10.2) all averaged double-digits while Clark (7.8 rpg) and Washington (6.9 rpg) led the squad in rebounding.

Kansas State enters the tournament with a 20-13 overall record after posting an 8-10 record in the Big 12 to earn the six-seed in the 2017 Phillips 66 Big 12 Men's Basketball Championship, where they upset third-seed Baylor in the quarterfinals before falling to second-seeded West Virginia in the semifinals. The Wildcats will be making their 29th all-time appearance in the Big Dance and their first since the 2014 tournament. Participants in the Final Four on four occasions (1948, 1951, 1958, 1964), KSU holds an all-time record of 33-32 record in the tournament. Head Coach Bruce Weber will be leading his Wildcats into the NCAA Tournament for the third time in his five seasons in Manhattan.

The Bearcats holds a 6-1 lead in the all-time series and have won the last six meetings with the most recent meeting ending in an 86-70 victory for UC inside the Armory Fieldhouse on December 2, 1968. The two teams have met in three neutral site games with UC holding a 2-1 advantage. The last time these two teams met at a neutral site came on March 19, 1961, in Lawrence, Kan., where the Bearcats took a 69-64 victory in the NCAA Midwest Region title game to earn a berth into the Final Four ahead of UC's second of two national titles in a row.

Wake Forest heads into the First Four with a 19-13 overall record after finishing 9-9 in the Atlantic Coast Conference this season. The Demon Deacons recently played in the 2017 New York Life ACC Tournament as the 10-seed and downed 15-seed Boston College in the first round (92-78) before falling to seven-seed Virginia Tech (99-90) in the second round one day later. WFU will be making their 23rd appearance in the NCAA Tournament and their first since reaching the second round of the 2010 event. Head Coach Danny Manning will lead his Demon Deacons into the national tournament for the first time in his three seasons in Winston-Salem with the team looking to improve upon its all-time NCAA record of 28-22.

The Bearcats lead the all-time series with the Demon Deacons, 5-2, despite Wake Forest having won the last two meetings in a row, including WFU's 74-70 victory in Cincinnati on January 22, 2005. The only time the two teams met at a neutral site came December 29, 1958, with UC claiming a 94-70 win in the Dixie Classic.

The Bearcats are making their 31st overall appearance in the NCAA Championship, seventh consecutive and 21st in the past 26 seasons. UC has compiled a 44-29 record on the way to winning two National Championships (1961 & 1962), making eight regional finals (1959-63, 1992-93, 1996) and six Final Fours (1959-63, 1992).

UC is a No. 6 seed for the third time in its postseason history, all under Head Coach Mick Cronin, and is seeded in the South Region for the first time since 2004. UC is 5-3 all-time in South Region play.

Friday will make UC's sixth NCAA Tournament game in the state of California. The Bearcats are 3-2 in those games. UC played in the 2001 West Region, beating BYU and Kent State in San Diego before falling to Stanford in the regional semifinal in Anaheim. The Bearcats also placed third in the 1960 NCAA Final Four in San Francisco, losing to Cal before beating New York University in the third-place game. The driving distance between Fifth Third Arena and the Golden 1 Center is 2,299.4 miles.

While fans are encouraged to purchase tickets through the UC Athletics Ticket Office, UC was allocated a very limited number of tickets for the first round game in Sacramento.

Based on such limited availability, all orders will be allocated based upon UCATS Priority, first by giving level and then by priority point order. All season ticket holders are able to place a ticket request through www.gobearcats.com/tickets by logging into their online account. Fans can also call the Athletics Ticket Office at 513-556-2287 on Monday between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET.

First and second round tickets are $100 apiece at the Golden 1 Center. All tickets will be available at the will-call window in Sacramento beginning approximately two hours prior to tipoff. The location will be determined at a later date and sent via e-mail to all patrons who purchase tickets. A photo ID will be required to claim the tickets. Ticket purchase rights are non-transferable.

On Monday, March 13, UC will continue to accept and finalize NCAA ticket requests from UCATS Presidential Society members, George Smith Society members and patrons contributing at the All-American level and above as well as all other UCATS members and men's basketball season ticket holders.

Members of the Presidential Society are eligible for up to six tickets and George Smith Society are eligible for up to four tickets to the first and second-round games. Patrons contributing at the All-American level are eligible for up to two tickets for the first and second-round games. All other UCATS members and season ticket holders are eligible to request up to two tickets. Those eligible UCATS members may request tickets by logging into their account at www.gobearcats.com/tickets and clicking "Request My NCAA Tournament Tickets". All requests must be submitted by 5 p.m. ET on Monday, March 13.

UCATS members who are not men's basketball season ticket holders will have to call the athletics ticket office at 1-877-CATS-TIX to make their request.

The credit card that is entered will be charged for the first-round game Friday, and provided the Bearcats move on, will then be charged for the second round game Sunday.