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Kentucky falls on bracket-busting Sunday


More from Vitale: Saturday's Second-Round V-Recaps

Sunday was dotted with great games and stunning upsets as high seeds fell in various regions.

(9) UAB 76, (1) Kentucky 75 -- Wow, it was Shock City as the last representative of Conference USA, the Blazers of UAB, sent Kentucky packing!

Isn't it amazing that coach Mike Anderson, in just his second season, has his team in the Sweet 16? The longtime assistant of former Arkansas coach Nolan Richardson finally got the opportunity to become a head coach, and he's taken advantage of it.

This was a nail-biter as UAB had a big first-half lead before Kentucky rallied back to take the lead at crunch time. In the end, it was senior Mo Finley coming through in the clutch with the game-winning jumper with 12.2 seconds left. The Wildcats' loss leaves a pair of No.1s and No. 2s on the sideline for the Sweet 16.

(4) Kansas 78, (12) Pacific 63 -- Jayhawks' forward Wayne Simien was too much for Pacific as he put up a big double-double (18 points and 12 rebounds). Pacific gave a tremendous effort and hung tough for a while, but Bill Self's Jayhawks were too strong and wore down the Tigers in the end.

(3) Georgia Tech 57, (6) Boston College 54 -- Georgia Tech's Luke Schenscher and Co. showed tremendous interior defense and kept Craig Smith in foul trouble. Despite sloppy play and only a small offensive contribution from Smith, BC was still in the game and had a shot at a tie at the end. Tech coach Paul Hewitt has to be concerned that his team only went to the line six times.

(6) Vanderbilt 75, (3) North Carolina St. 73 -- This was a tough loss for North Carolina State coach Herb Sendek and his team. They had a double-digit lead in the second half, but a questionable intentional foul against Marcus Melvin was a major turning point. That sequence led to five points for Vandy and a chance for it to get back into the game. Matt Freije was brilliant for Vandy with 31 points.

(2) Oklahoma State 70, (7) Memphis 53 -- OSU forward Joey Graham single-handedly outscored Memphis 20-19 in the first half. A Memphis rally made the score of this game much closer than it actually was. Tony Allen did a great job defensively on Rodney Carney, who had scored 26 points against South Carolina in the first round. But against Memphis' tough defense he only scored eight points. Coach Eddie Sutton's team has been brilliant defensively. Next up is a showdown against Pittsburgh.

(3) Pittsburgh 59, (6) Wisconsin 55 -- It was a physical war in Milwaukee as Wisconsin and Pittsburgh battled toe-to-toe. This game truly lived up to its billing as a hard-nosed showdown. In the end, it was Carl Krauser's will and persistence combined with the Panthers' defense that pulled out the victory. Krauser made several free throws to help cement the win and, overall, coach Jamie Dixon's team found a way to win with clutch shots.

(7) Xavier 89, (2) Mississippi St. 74 -- Xavier guard Lionel Chalmers was the story today. He hit 11 of 13 field goals and finished with 31 big points. Chalmers and Dedrick Finn's 22 points were too much for Mississippi State. The Musketeers also did a great job defensively as they held Lawrence Roberts to just 11 points.

Xavier was 10-9 at one point this season, but have now won 15 of their last 16 games. Coach Thad Matta's team is on a real roll now.

(4) Illinois 92, (5) Cincinnati 68 -- Illinois shot 64 percent from the field and only turned the ball over four times. Illinois scored 49 points in the first half and turned this into a rout with eight 3-pointers. Deron Williams scored 31 points and dished out seven assists with no turnovers. Teammate Dee Brown has proven to be quite solid in both tourney games with 11 assists and only two turnovers in 74 minutes.

Dick Vitale coached the Detroit Pistons and the University of Detroit in the 1970s before broadcasting ESPN's first college basketball game in 1979 (he's been an ESPN analyst ever since). Send a question for Vitale for possible use on ESPNEWS.

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