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2015 NCAA Tournament TV Schedule: Thursday evening previews and games thread

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Find everything you need to know to watch each of the games in the second half of the best day of the year, including times, TV channels and online streaming links.

Watch out world. Here comes Tyler Harvey.
Watch out world. Here comes Tyler Harvey.
Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

It’s time to move on to the second half of Thursday’s slate of games in the NCAA tournament. Here’s your schedule for the afternoon/evening/late night games – times, TV channels and streaming options are all contained herein.

Game 9: (16) Lafayette vs. (1) Villanova

East Region - Pittsburgh, PA

3:40 p.m. PT | TBS | Streaming

Is THIS the first 16 to upset a 1? This is one of the few times you actually could make a pretty good pregame case for the 16 hanging around – Lafayette actually features a pretty darn good offense, rated No. 39 in adjusted offensive efficiency by kenpom.com. Dan Trist is a load inside, and while Villanova’s defense is excellent, the Wildcats’ relative soft spot is 2-point defense. Of course, the Leopards feature the worst defense in the tournament, so they’ll have to win a shootout with Villanova’s elite defense. But this looks as good as any 1/16 matchup I can remember.

Kenpom.com says: Villanova - 97%

Game 10: (9) Purdue vs. (8) Cincinnati

Midwest Region - Louisville, KY

4:10 p.m. PT | CBS | Streaming

In matchups like this, I always try to see if one of the teams is great at anything. Well, Cincinnati is great at defense - particularly interior defense, where they limit made 2s and block a ton of shots thanks to Octavious Ellis, Gary Clark and Coreontae DeBerry. Fortunately for Purdue, making 2s - thanks in part to very good offensive rebounding - is what the Boilers do best. For all their defensive prowess, the Bearcats don't always lock down the defensive glass. A potential weakness Purdue can exploit?

Kenpom.com says: Cincinnati - 56%

Game 11: (13) Harvard vs. (4) North Carolina

West Region - Jacksonville, FL

4:20 p.m. PT | TNT | Streaming

UNC is another team that thrives on made 2s and crashes the glass with relentless authority. Harvard's defensive rebounding statistics look great, but the athletes of UNC are of a different caliber than what the Crimson see in the Ivy League. Harvard will, of course, try to slow down the Tar Heels' speedy offensive attack, but it might not matter - as the Cougars found out six years ago, if you can't score (and the Crimson likely will have a hard time scoring with their mediocre offense), it's very difficult to keep UNC from running at will.

Kenpom.com says: North Carolina - 79%

Game 12: (12) S.F. Austin vs. (5) Utah

South Region - Portland, OR

4:27 p.m. PT | TruTV | Streaming

There's a school of thought that Utah is perhaps underseeded, and the kenpom.com prediction reflects that. But there's something about the Utes when they play away from Salt Lake City that can be a bit ... underwhelming. And the Utes are facing a Stephen F. Austin team that not only beat VCU as a 12 seed last season, but probably is underseeded itself right now. The Lumberjacks slow you down offensively, which Utah won't mind, but they actually have the fourth-shortest average defensive possession length in the country. They are elite at forcing turnovers, and Utah isn't that great at taking care of the ball. Put it all together and that figure below probably should be something more like 60%. One potential problem for the Lumberjacks, though: Utah is really good at getting to the free throw line, and SFA allows more free throw attempts than just about anyone.

Kenpom.com says: Utah – 74%

Game 13: (9) LSU vs. (8) NC State

East Region - Pittsburgh, PA

6:20 p.m. PT | TBS | Streaming

This is what an 8/9 game should be: A coin flip game between two remarkably even teams.

LSU NC State

I don't really have anything else interesting to add, other than this should be a pretty close game between a couple of moderately talented teams, which means it probably will be worth watching.

Kenpom.com says: LSU - 50%

Game 14: (16) Hampton vs. (1) Kentucky

Midwest Region - Louisville, KY

6:40 p.m. PT | CBS | Streaming

Hampton has no chance. If Kentucky loses, I'll eat my shoe.

Kenpom.com says: Kentucky - 99%

Game 15: (12) Wofford vs. (5) Arkansas

West Region - Jacksonville, FL

6:50 p.m. PT | TNT | Streaming

This will be a fascinating contrast of styles. 40 Minutes of Hell has returned to Arkansas under Mike Anderson, and the Razorbacks are the 10th fastest team in the country by adjusted pace. Conversely, Wofford ranks 315th in that metric. The Terriers' stingy defense relies on making teams grind out every shot -- they're 310th in average defensive possession length -- but that can be hard to hang onto in the tournament when facing superior athletes. If Wofford allows Arkansas to also crash the offensive glass with impunity, the Razorbacks could really run away with this one. (Pun intended.)

Kenpom.com says: Arkansas - 74%

Game 16: (13) Eastern Washington vs. (4) Georgetown

South Region - Portland, OR

6:57 p.m. PT | TruTV | Streaming

The last game of the first night! This is where you'll be reminded how lucky WSU was to not have played the Eagles back in December this year. Pomeroy's laptop gives EWU just a 1-in-5 chance of winning the game, but that fails to take into account Georgetown's history of failure in the tournament under John Thompson III -- you'll remember the Hoyas losing to 15 seed Dunk City two years ago, 11 seed NC State the year before that, 11 seed VCU the year before that, and 14 seed Ohio the year before that. The Eagles have beaten Indiana on the road this year, and Tyler Harvey is an absolute monster: He's a deadly outside shooter (40 percent on 267 attempts) who uses that to get to the rim, where he finishes well (52 percent on 2s). Needless to say, this is a popular upset pick, so plan on staying up late.

Kenpom.com says: Georgetown - 83%