Kansas State avoids No. 1 Virginia, but faces red-hot UMBC

Fans of the Kansas State Wildcats have to feel pretty conflicted about their Round of 32 game in the NCAA Tournament Sunday.

On the one hand, Kansas State doesn’t have to play the No. 1 team in the country, the Virginia Cavaliers. That’s undeniably a good thing — Virginia went 31-2 through the regular season and ACC Tournament and was the No. 1 overall seed in the NCAA Tournament.

But there’s a reason the Wildcats avoided the Cavaliers, and it’s because the upstart UMBC Retrievers pulled off the most stunning upset in college basketball history Friday night. The Retrievers, in case you somehow managed to avoid hearing, became the first 16-seed ever to beat a 1-seed — and they won by 20 points, 74-54.

UMBC entered the tournament as the luckiest team in the KenPom statistical database. They made everything they looked at against Virginia and took advantage of a rough three-point shooting night from the Cavaliers, who went 4-22 from deep.

But it would be wrong to call what the Retrievers did a fluke. Virginia coach Tony Bennett said his team endured a “ thorough butt-whooping” Friday night. And UMBC will be looking to collect another big-name upset Sunday when they play Kansas State.

One Twitter account had a pretty decent summary of what the Wildcats face:

Kansas State will try to avoid being the second team in NCAA Tournament history to lose to a 16-seed on Sunday at 6:45 p.m. on TruTV.

The post Kansas State avoids No. 1 Virginia, but faces red-hot UMBC appeared first on Diehards.

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