Friday's first round action in the 2016 NCAA Tournament enters the evening window with No. 7 Wisconsin meeting No. 10 Pittsburgh in St. Louis.
The Badgers return to the NCAA Tournament after falling to Duke in the national championship game in 2015, just two days after slaying unbeaten Kentucky in an all-time Final Four shocker. They're without Frank Kaminsky and Sam Dekker, but the biggest departure from last year's Badgers is maybe one that didn't happen until this year: Longtime coach Bo Ryan stepped down in December after previously announcing that he would retire after the season, elevating assistant Greg Gard to interim head coach.
That change may have saved Wisconsin's season. Gard has coaxed the Badgers to be more aggressive on defense and helped develop freshman big Ethan Happ into a consistent contributor. Since a 1-4 start to Big Ten play dropped Wisconsin to 9-9 overall, the Badgers have gone 11-3, beating Michigan State and Indiana in that span.
Pittsburgh, meanwhile, started its 2015-16 campaign hot, then cooled. Jamie Dixon's Panthers went 11-1 in non-conference play, but only saw two teams that would make the NCAA Tournament. And after winning its first three ACC games, Pitt has gone 7-9 since January 19, and enters the NCAA Tournament having gone 4-7 in its last 11 games -- but beat Syracuse twice and Duke once during that uneven stretch. Juniors Jamel Artis and Michael Young handle most of the work at the offensive end for the Panthers.
The winner of Friday's game will meet the winner of No. 2 Xavier and No. 15 Weber State on Sunday.
Game time: 6:50 p.m. ET
How to watch: TNT
How to livestream: March Madness Live
How to listen: Westwood One Sports