The 2018 NCAA Tournament returns Thursday after a three-day hiatus with the start of the Sweet 16. Four games are on the schedule, and several teams are hoping that their Cinderella stories continue.
The action starts with No.11 Loyola-Chicago, who is the lowest-seeded team remaining in the field. Four other teams seeded No.7 or lower will compete Thursday night, as well, hoping to get one step closer to the Final Four.
It certainly wouldn’t be shocking to see one or even a few of those teams make it to the Elite Eight. Loyola-Chicago is just a one-point underdog against No.7 Nevada in Thursday’s opener. No.7 Texas A&M is getting fewer than three points against No.3 Michigan. No.9 Kansas State and No.9 Florida State are both less than six-point underdogs.
No.5 Kentucky seemingly has the easiest road to the Final Four. They’ll face Kansas State, who defeated No.16 UMBC in their second-round game. A win Thursday would give Kentucky a matchup with either Loyola-Chicago or Nevada Saturday. The Wildcats faced two double-digit seeds in the first weekend of the tournament.
The last game on Thursday’s schedule might be the most exciting. Florida State vs. No.4 Gonzaga features the night’s largest over/under by far. The Seminoles reached the Sweet 16 by upsetting No.1 Xavier.
Thursday’s games will be played in Atlanta and Los Angeles. CBS and TBS will show the contests on TV.
Here’s a look at the complete schedule and picks for Thursday’s Sweet 16 games, as well as updated betting odds, according to OddsShark.
No.11 Loyola-Chicago (+1) vs. No.7 Nevada, 144 [CBS, 7:07 p.m. EDT]
No.7 Texas A&M (+2.5) vs. No.3 Michigan, 136 [TBS, 7:37 p.m. EDT]
No.9 Kansas State (+5.5) vs. No.5 Kentucky, 136 [CBS, 9:37 p.m. EDT]
No.9 Florida State (+5.5) vs. No.4 Gonzaga, 152 [TBS, 10:07 p.m. EDT]