NCAA FIRST FOUR at Dayton, Ohio: Mississippi State Men’s Basketball Back In Big Dance Versus Pittsburgh

STARKVILLE – Mississippi State men’s basketball is back in the NCAA Tournament and will square off with Pittsburgh during March Madness’ opening night as announced Sunday by the NCAA Selection Committee.

The Bulldogs, an No. 11 seed in the NCAA Midwest Regional, were one of eight SEC schools among the NCAA’s Field of 68. The Maroon and White is joined by SEC regular season and tournament champion Alabama along with Arkansas, Auburn, Kentucky, Missouri, Tennessee and Texas A&M.

Mississippi State (21-12, 8-10 SEC) and Pittsburgh (22-11, 14-6 ACC) will meet in Tuesday’s NCAA First Four. Tip time is slated for 8:10 p.m. CT from the UD Arena in Dayton, Ohio. The game will be televised by truTV and will be available online on the NCAA March Madness app.

The winner will travel to Greensboro, North Carolina and take on No. 6 seed Iowa State (19-13, 9-9 Big 12) during Friday’s NCAA Round of 64 action at 2:10 p.m. CT which also be carried by tru TV.

Opposite No. 6 seed Iowa State is No. 3 seed Xavier from the BIG EAST Conference and No. 14 Kennesaw State from the Atlantic Sun Conference. Sunday’s NCAA Round of 32 from Greensboro, North Carolina will tip at a time to be determined.  

The winner from the Greensboro pod advances to the NCAA Sweet 16 and the regional semifinals in Kansas City, Missouri on Friday, March 24 and will face the winner of the Des Moines, Iowa pod which features No. 2 seed Texas, No. 7 seed Texas A&M, No. 10 seed Penn State and No. 15 seed Colgate. The 2023 NCAA Final Four will be played at Reliant Stadium in Houston, Texas on April 1 and April 3.

In total, Mississippi State has secured eight of its 12 NCAA Tournament selections dating back to the 2001-02 season. The Bulldogs advanced to the 1996 NCAA Final Four under Richard Williams when Mississippi State defeated VCU, Princeton, Connecticut and Cincinnati.

The MSU men’s and women’s programs will be making its fifth joint NCAA Tournament trip, the previous appearances were in 2002, 2003, 2009 and 2019. Sam Purcell’s squad also captured a NCAA Tournament at-large bid on Sunday.

2023 NCAA Tournament – All times Central
Tuesday, March 14 – Dayton, Ohio (UD Arena)
Game 1: (11) Mississippi State vs. (11) Pittsburgh – ~8:10 p.m. CT (tru TV)

Friday, March 17 – Greensboro, North Carolina (Greensboro Coliseum)
Game 2: (3) Xavier vs. (14) Kennesaw State – 11:40 a.m. CT (tru TV)
Game 3: Game 1 winner vs. (6) Iowa State – ~2:10 p.m. CT (tru TV)

Sunday, March 19 – Greensboro, North Carolina (Greensboro Coliseum)
Game 4: Game 2 winner vs. Game 3 winner – TBA (TBA)

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