(13) Michigan at Northwestern, 8 ET
Since the advent of major college basketball (now Division I) in 1947-48, many teams have entered and exited D-I. However, only five have been playing major college basketball the entire time and never made the NCAA tournament. Northwestern, Army, William & Mary, St. Francis (N.Y.) and The Citadel were all part of the original 160 teams in D-I, but they are now a collective 0-324 in trying to make the NCAA tournament.
This season, Northwestern stands a chance as an at-large team, as Joe Lunardi has the Wildcats among his Last Four In.
Michigan, however, will likely be a tough opponent, as the school already has 10 conference wins. The Wolverines also held Northwestern to one field goal in the final 8:18 to force overtime in a 66-64 win on January 11th.
(1) Kentucky at Mississippi State, 9 ET on ESPN
Kentucky’s 18-game win streak is the longest active streak in Division I, and Mississippi State is 0-2 all-time against the top-ranked team under head coach Rick Stansbury (losses to Stanford in 1999 and Florida in 2007).
Kentucky is 90-13 under head coach John Calipari, with those 13 losses ranking as the second fewest in Division I over that span (Kansas, 11). However, out of those 13 losses, 10 have come on the road (eight against unranked opponents).
Kansas State at (3) Missouri, 7 ET on ESPN2
This is the last regular-season meeting between the two teams, as Missouri will be in the SEC next year. Kansas State and Missouri have met at least twice a year for 85 consecutive seasons since 1907, with the all-time series tied at 117-117.
Missouri's 25-2 start matches the best through 27 games in school history, and no Tigers team has ever started 26-2 through 28 games. In addition, Marcus Denmon and Kim English will be playing in their 134th career games, matching the school record set by Mike Sandbothe (1986-89).