Editor’s Note: This article has been updated with the second round matchups and times
(KTXL) — Some of the nation’s top college basketball teams will play at the Golden 1 Center for the opening rounds of the NCAA Tournament.
First round games of the entire tournament will take place Thursday and Friday with the second game occurring Saturday and Sunday.
The first two rounds of March Madness will include eight teams in single elimination games at the downtown Sacramento venue Thursday and Saturday.
Thursday’s action in Sacramento will include three nationally ranked teams in UCLA (No. 7), Arizona (No. 8), and Missouri (No. 23).
Here are Thursday’s opening round games in Sacramento:
•South Region: No. 10 Utah State vs. No. 7 Missouri — 10:40 a.m.
•South Region: No. 15 Princeton vs. No. 2 Arizona — 1:30 p.m.
•West Region: No. 10 Boise State vs. No. 7 Northwestern — 4:35 p.m.
•West Region: UNC Asheville vs. No. 2 UCLA — 7:05 p.m.
As for Saturday’s second round games, here are matchups and times after Thursday’s games went final:
•Princeton vs. Missouri — 3:10 p.m.
•UCLA vs. Northwestern — 5:40 p.m.
No. 10 Utah State vs. No. 7 Missouri
The first game at Golden 1 Center features a matchup between the Utah State Aggies from the Mountain West Conference and the Missouri Tigers from the Southeastern Conference (SEC) in the South Region.
The Aggies went 26-8 overall and 13-5 in the Mountain West while the Tigers are heading into the tournament after going 24-9 overall and 11-7 in the SEC this season.
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No. 15 Princeton vs. No. 2 Arizona
In another game in the South Region bracket, the Princeton Tigers of the Ivy League are taking on the Arizona Wildcats, who won the Pac-12 tournament.
Princeton is making their first NCAA tournament appearance since 2017 and second under their head coach Mitch Henderson.
The Tigers earned an automatic qualifying bid after winning the Ivy League tournament. Princeton is heading to the tournament with a 21-8 overall record and a 10-4 mark in the Ivy League.
Arizona is ranked eighth and recently defeated UCLA 61-59 in the championship game of the Pac-12 tournament. The Wildcats are looking to make a deep tournament run after finishing the regular season 28-6 overall and 14-6 in the Pac-12.
No. 10 Boise State vs. No. 7 Northwestern
In the West Region, the Boise State Broncos of the Mountain West take on the Northwestern Wildcats of the Big Ten Conference.
The Broncos are making their second consecutive appearance in the tournament while the Wildcats are playing in the tourney for the first time since 2017. It’s Northwestern’s second appearance under coach Chris Collins.
Boise State went 24-9 overall and 13-5 in the Mountain West while Northwestern was 21-10 overall and a 12-8 against Big Ten competition.
No. 15 UNC Asheville vs. No. 2 UCLA
In the nightcap at the Golden 1 Center, the UCLA Bruins are playing the Bulldogs of the University of Carolina-Asheville in the West Region.
The Bruins are looking to make another deep run in the tournament, as they went to the Final Four in 2021 and made it to the Sweet 16 in 2022. UCLA won the regular season Pac-12 title, but fell to Arizona in the title game.
The Bruins are heading into the tournament at 29-5 overall and 18-2 in the Pac-12.
The Bulldogs from the Big South Conference are making their first appearance in the tournament since 2016 and it’s their first under coach Mike Morrell.
UNC Asheville earned an automatic qualifying bid after winning the Big South Tournament. The Bulldogs are heading to the tournament with a 27-7 overall record and 16-2 mark in the Big South.