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    The NCAA has gotten mostly positive reviews for its new women's Sweet 16 format during March Madness. Hosting games it two cities instead of the traditional four set attendance records and produced higher TV ratings. The two regionals combined to set an all-time attendance mark for the Sweet 16, following up the record mark set the first weekend. 

      Jordan Miller entered the transfer portal two years ago and wasn't immediately on Miami's radar. That is, until a guy who the Hurricanes know as "Clutch" called. Clutch's real name is Gary Collins and he coached Miller during his AAU years. He called Miami assistant Bill Courtney and predicted Miller would be a breakout star. Fast forward two years. Clutch was right, and Miller and the Hurricanes are headed to the Final Four in large part because of his perfect shooting performance against Texas in the Elite Eight.

        Rodney Terry said he always felt confident he'd earn the chance to be the full-time head basketball coach at Texas. The school removed the interim tag from his title and gave him the full-time job after Terry led the Longhorns to the Elite Eight following the midseason firing of Chris Beard. 

          Black female representation in the coaching and sports administrative ranks has often existed on a minute scale. The number of women coaching women’s sports has increased in the past decade but Black women continue to lag behind most other demographic groups.

            Several prospects from the NBA Academy in Africa are playing in the new season of the Basketball Africa League. The league was created by the NBA in partnership with FIBA to help grow the sport in Africa and is now in its third season.

            Aliyah Boston had 22 points and 10 rebounds, Zia Cooke scored 18 points and top-seeded South Carolina used its smothering defense to outlast second-seeded Maryland 86-75 to reach its third straight Final Four. The Gamecocks improved to 36-0 on the season with their 42nd straight win dating to last year's NCAA title run. 

            San Diego State coach Brian Dutcher wants players to think defense before offense, and the approach is working. The fifth-seeded Aztecs are in their first Final Four in school history thanks to a physical defense that has stifled opponents. They held NCAA Tournament overall No. 1 seed Alabama to 32% shooting in the Sweet 16 before shutting down sixth-seeded Creighton in the second half of a 57-56 victory in the South Region final.

            The number of college athletes who are monetizing their social media followings has grown over the past 18 months. The NCAA cleared the way for athletes to cash in on their celebrity in July 2021. Many of those influencers are female athletes. Some say they are aware their growing popularity can draw attention from fans who may overstep their bounds.

            Angel Reese had 18 rebounds and LSU returned to the women’s Final Four for the first time in 15 years by beating Miami 54-42. The victory concludes a rapid rise for the Tigers under second-year coach Kim Mulkey, who won three NCAA titles at Baylor. Alexis Morris scored 21 points and Reese added 13 for the third-seeded Tigers (32-2), who asserted control of a grinding, defense-first game.

            KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Jordan Miller and Isaiah Wong rallied Miami from a 13-point second-half deficit, Norchad Omier made two big free throws and an even more important steal down the stretch, and the fifth-seeded Hurricanes stunned No. 2 seed Texas 88-81 on Sunday to reach the Final Four for the first time in school history.

            Florida Atlantic has defied expectation and description all season. The winningest team in Division I, but the lowest seed left in the NCAA Tournament, is heading to the Final Four with a squad that is greater than the sum of its interchangeable parts. To win four tournament games so far, each by single digits, has taken contributions from up and down FAU’s roster. 


            Dan Hurley got choked up when asked about his dad on the eve of UConn’s Sweet 16 game. Tears flowed again before the Huskies’ Elite Eight game, this time from thinking about what he considers his other family. Now Hurley will get to coach them at least one more game, next week in Houston. UConn has blitzed its way through the bracket so far, winning each of its four NCAA Tournament games by at least 15 points.

            Alijah Martin, Vlad Goldin and ninth-seeded Florida Atlantic became the first and lowest-seeded team to reach this year’s Final Four. The Owls withstood another huge game by Kansas State’s Markquis Nowell to beat the Wildcats 79-76. FAU, making just its second appearance in the NCAA Tournament, won the East Region at Madison Square Garden and will head to Houston to play the winner of Sunday’s South Region final between Creighton and San Diego State.

            Aaliyah Boston had eight points, 14 rebounds and two blocks while reigning national champion South Carolina turned in its latest overwhelming defense-and-rebounding-first performance to beat UCLA 59-43 on Saturday in the Sweet 16 of the women’s NCAA Tournament. Kamilla Cardoso added 10 points for the Gamecocks, the top overall tournament seed. Plus more games from the Sweet 16 on Saturday.

            Will Yoakum scored 31 points, Dallas Graziani added 24 points, nine assists and three steals and top-ranked Nova Southeastern beat West Liberty 111-101 to win the first NCAA Division II national championship in program history. The Sharks, who went 33-1 last season with their lone loss coming in the Elite 8, became just the sixth undefeated team to win the title.

            Creighton and San Diego State have dreamed of being in this situation for years. And it’s not the first time each team has stood in the other’s way. The sixth-seeded Bluejays and the fifth-seeded Aztecs are each seeking their first Final Four when they meet in Sunday’s South Region final. Last year, they met much earlier in the NCAA Tournament. Creighton won 72-69 in overtime in the first round. 

            Texas is aiming for its first trip to the Final Four in 20 years, and Miami is seeking the first in school history. The teams will meet in the Midwest Region final of the NCAA Tournament on Sunday. The Longhorns have rallied around interim coach Rodney Terry, who took over in December following Chris Beard's suspension and later firing. But the Big 12 tourney champs could be without star big man Dylan Disu, who is dealing with a foot injury. 

            Miami is putting its reputation as a football school on the back burner. Basketball is now front and The men's and women's teams in the NCAA Tournament's Elite Eight. The ninth-seeded men meet No. 2 seed Texas on Sunday. The fifth-seeded women face No. 3 seed LSU. Women's coach Katie Meier says the programs have a lot in common and are competitive like siblings.

            March has gone from madness to unprecedented. With Miami’s win over Houston and San Diego State’s takedown of Alabama, the men's NCAA Tournament will not have a No. 1 seed in the Elite Eight for the first time since seeding began in 1979. Purdue, Kansas, Houston and Alabama are all gone, ensuring the Final Four will not have a No. 1 team for the first time since 2011 and the third time overall.

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