Get to know No. 1
Kansas (32-2) will try to remove the sting from being upset by Northern Iowa as a No. 1 seed last season in the second round. The Big 12 champions operate through twins Markieff and Marcus Morris, who together average 31 points and 15 rebounds and have led the Jayhawks in scoring in 23 of 34 games. They also have capable shooters in Tyshawn Taylor, Tyrel Reed and Brady Morningstar and lead the nation in field-goal percentage (51.4).
USC. The 11th-seeded Trojans have a few bad losses, but they also boast victories against Texas, Arizona, Washington, Tennessee and UCLA. USC might have a chip on its shoulder after being forced to play VCU in the “first four.”
Best first-round matchup
No. 8 UNLV vs. No. 9 Illinois. The Illini take on former coach Lon Kruger. UNLV has won six of its last seven. Illinois has lost 10 of its last 16. Kruger could leave the Illini in tears again.
No. 2 Notre Dame has reason to bristle after being snubbed for a top seed. The Irish beat 11 top-50 RPI teams and have 13 wins against NCAA tournament teams. … No. 6 Georgetown hopes to return to form with the return of guard Chris Wright, who missed three games with a hand injury. The Hoyas have lost four straight. … No. 13 Morehead State's Kenneth Faried owns the modern-day record for career rebounds with 1,643.