2018 NCAA Tournament: Kentucky to face Kansas State in Sweet 16

Kentucky’s next NCAA Tournament matchup is set. The No. 5 seed Wildcats will face the No. 9 seed Kansas State Wildcats in the Sweet 16 Thursday in Atlanta.

Kansas State beat No. 16 seed UMBC 50-43 Sunday night to end the Retrievers’ historic tournament appearance. Coach Bruce Weber’s squad beat No. 8 seed Creighton 69-59 in the first round of the tournament.

Kentucky and Kansas State will meet in the South Region, where Nevada and Loyola-Chicago are the other two remaining teams. It’s the first time none of the top-4 seeds in a region advanced to the Sweet 16. Kentucky is the highest remaining seed.

Kentucky advanced to the Sweet 16 with a 78-73 win against No. 12 seed Davidson in the first round and a 95-75 win against No. 13 seed Buffalo in the second round.

Although a No. 9 seed, Kansas State will be the best team Kentucky has faced so far in the tournament. The Cats of K-State are 23-11 and went 10-8 in Big 12 play. Kansas State is ranked 38th in KenPom and 53rd in the RPI.

Kentucky and Kansas State will meet for the first time since the 2014 NCAA Tournament, only fitting for the current Cats who have often been compared to that 2014 team. Kentucky won that matchup 56-49 en route to a national title game appearance.

Kentucky is 9-0 all time against Kansas State with wins in 2014, 2008, 1976, 1971, 1966, 1961, 1951 and two wins in 1940.

The matchup is set for Thursday in Atlanta. The game time hasn’t been announced.

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