2023 March Madness live updates: Princeton stuns Arizona; Penn State-A&M, more

2023 March Madness live updates: Princeton stuns Arizona; Penn State-A&M, more

Welcome to the Madness!

The 2023 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament kicks into high gear Thursday in what is the most exciting day of the year on the college basketball calander.

The action kicked off with an 8 vs. 9 matchup in the South Region, as Jahmir Young and the Maryland Terrapins pulled off a monster comeback to take down West Virginia, and No. 13 Furman stunned No. 4 Virginia with a last-second bucket.

Elsewhere, 15-seed Princeton upset 2-seed Arizona, capturing its first tournament win since 1998 to become the first Ivy League team to win in the tournament since 2016.

The Midwest, East and West Regions take center stage this evening. 9-seed Auburn was in control for much of its victory over 8-seed Iowa. 10-seed Penn State and 7-seed Texas A&M face off to close the evening following their respective conference tournament runs. 

We’ve got you covered with all the top highlights from an action-packed day of college hoops!

16. Northern Kentucky vs. 1. Houston

Making it interesting early

Northern Kentucky made a strong push to be the second No. 16 seed to ever beat a No. 1 seed in history. Sam Vinson scored seven points in the opening part of the first half, including a tip-in that gave Northern Kentucky the lead roughly 10 minutes in.

Ankle breaker 

Xavier Rhodes hit his defender with a mean crossover, breaking his ankles so Rhodes could hit the jumper and give Northern Kentucky the lead again. 

13. Louisiana vs. 4. Tennessee

Chase down block!

Olivier Nkamhoua got back on defense to stop ULL from scoring the easy bucket in transition, helping keep Tennessee’s lead intact early. 

Leave your tip before the buzzer!

Uros Plavsic got a hand on a perfect inbound pass to tip the ball in right before the buzzer sounded to give Tennessee a 30-19 point lead at the break.

10. Penn State vs. 7. Texas A&M

Grabbing it out of the air!

Dexter Dennis turned Camren Wynter‘s easy layup into a blocked shot, hustling down the court to snatch the ball out of the air. 

15. UNC Asheville vs. 2. UCLA

A quick 14-0 lead

Unlike its Pac-12 counterparts, UCLA built a strong lead early against its 15-seeded opponent. Four different players contributed to the scoring give the to give the Bruins a 14-0 lead in the blink of an eye.

Stay tuned for updates!

2. Texas 81, No. 15 Colgate 61

Sir 3s

Sir’Jabari Rice drained four 3-pointers in the game’s first 12 minutes to give Texas a commanding double-digit lead.

Longhorns brushing away Colgate

An 8-0 for Texas helped it take its biggest lead of the game, going up 64-57 with just under 12 minutes left in the game.

7. Northwestern 75, 10. Boise State 67

No stopping Naje

Naje Smith threw down a hard slam over a Northwestern defender as Boise State battled Northwestern closely in the opening minutes. 

A few minutes later, Smith threw down another hard slam, with this one being a behind-the-back dunk.

Boise State making a run

Max Rice hit the pull-up 3 in transition to even the game up at 40-40 early in the second half to make things interesting.

Boo-ing Boise State’s runs

Boo Buie drained a deep 3-pointer to fend off Boise State’s run in the middle of the second half and keep Northwestern’s lead.

9. Auburn 83, 8. Iowa 75


Patrick McCaffery found Payton Sandfort cutting to the rim while in transition to keep the action going back-and-forth early on.

Sky high!

Wendell Green Jr.‘s alley-oop to Dylan Cardwell was high up, but Cardwell had the length and hops to get the ball to throw down the loud slam for Auburn.

All Auburn

Auburn drained four 3-pointers in a matter of minutes to go on a 13-2 run and take a 58-31 lead with just over 10 minutes left.

Murray magic turning into an Iowa comeback?

The Hawkeyes went on a 7-0 run to cut the Tigers’ lead to 64-60 with just over five minutes left. Kris Murray helped ignite the run, hitting a pair of 3-pointers in the middle part of the second half in addition to recording a steal before throwing down a hard slam.

Auburn seals it

The Tigers made a quick run to get their lead back up to double digits and prevent a Hawkeye comeback to win and advance to the Round of 32.

5. Duke 74, 12. Oral Roberts 51

Duke dominant to start

The Blue Devils rode their nine-game win streak into the opening minutes of Thursday’s game, holding a 15-0 lead early on. Duke didn’t allow a bucket for eight minutes to start, with Jeremy Roach, Kyle Filipowski and Dereck Lively II dominating on both ends.

Don’t shoot on Dereck

Lively protected the rim well for Duke, recording six blocks by the middle of the second half as Oral Roberts had a tough time scoring.

8. Arkansas 73, 9. Illinois 63

Style points!

It’s the rarest of all feats indeed. After Illinois took an early 2-0 lead, Arkansas looked to tie it up, but Nick Smith‘s acrobatic layup attempt got lodged in between the rim and backboard. Then, several possessions later, Illinois had the same thing happen, giving us a rare “double wedgie.”

Strong start

The Razorbacks couldn’t be stopped early on, picking up a 14-point lead.

Battling late

The Razorbacks went on a 10-0 run early in the second half, to which Illinois answered with an 8-0 run of its own to keep Arkansas within arm’s reach. In the end, Arkansas had more left in the tank, cruising to a 10-point win.

15. Princeton 59, 2. Arizona 55

Finding a rhythm 

Arizona stars Oumar Ballo and Azuolas Tubelis got things started against Princeton.

Anyone’s game!

Princeton ended the half on an 8-0 run and pulled within just one point of Arizona, 31-30, ahead of halftime.

Wild turn of events

The Tigers cut the Wildcats’ lead down to just three points late in the second half before taking the lead, 56-55, with just over two minutes to play. Arizona never scored another point after that, as Princeton narrowly secured the win.

Just like that, only 0.12% of official NCAA brackets remained perfect.

5. San Diego State 63, 12. Charleston 57

Not so fast!

Things between Charleston and San Diego State began as a defensive standoff, as both teams kept things close. SDSU was first to strike, but Charleston roared back late in the frame to knot things up, 24-24, with 4:20 to play before halftime.

The Aztecs took a three-point lead, 32-29, into the break.

Teamwork makes the dream work

The Aztecs put space between them and the Cougars in the second half, thanks to big plays from Keshad Johnson and others. That hard work paid off in the end, as SDSU came away with the six-point win, 63-57.

1. Alabama 96, 16. Texas A&M-CC 75

All gas, no brakes

Alabama jumped out to a 9-0 lead over Texas A&M-CC in the first half, setting the tone early. The Tide continued to pour it on as the first half winded down, grabbing a 20-point lead, 54-34, at halftime.

In the end, Alabama sealed its third Round of 64 win in its past four tournaments with a double-digit victory Thursday.

1. Kansas 96, 16. Howard 68

Making a statement

It was a back-and-forth battle between these two teams to start, to the surprise of many. Howard didn’t let Kansas get more than six points ahead in the first half before tying things up at 24-24.

Seeing stars

Jayhawks star forward KJ Adams Jr. set the tone for his team later in the frame, coming down with a jaw-dropping dunk.

Kansas led 50-37 at the break and continued to dominate in the second half en route to a double-digit victory, 96-68. With the win, their 16th straight, the Jayhawks improved to 35-2 all-time in the Round of 64.

Kansas’ 96 points were the most scored by a defending national champion in its tournament opener since Florida in 2007. That Gators team were the last to win back-to-back national titles.

7. Missouri 76, 10. Utah State 65

Hot start

Both squads were firing on all cylinders early, but it was Missouri that kept a small advantage from the jump.

Too smooth

Missouri commanded the court with one smooth basket after another, extending its lead at the first half winded down.

The Tigers led 35-31 at halftime.

Full speed ahead

Missouri got the quick bucket to retake the lead over Utah State early in the second half before the Tigers’ lead has ballooned to nine points, 62-53, as the final few minutes approached.

Missouri continued to build on its lead all the way until the end, running away with a 76-65 win and cashing in for its first NCAA tournament win since 2010, having lost in the Round of 64 in five straight previous appearances.

Missouri’s win left less than 7% of official NCAA brackets intact.

13. Furman 68, 4. Virginia 67

Star power

Virginia’s defense settled into a rhythm early against Furman, which fell into an 8-0 hole early in the first half.

As things continued, Furman forward Jalen Slawson came up big for the Paladins, which slowly began closing the gap.

Heating up

The Cavaliers had a few tricks up their sleeve, as Reece Beekman came up with one big play after another to keep Furman at arm’s length. Virginia carried a five-point lead, 32-27, into the half.

Neck and neck

To start the second half, Virginia opened the largest lead of the game, 38-27, but Furman didn’t let it last long.

The Paladins pulled within four points midway through the frame before going on to tie things up with a monster 3-pointer from Slawson with 5:42 to play. Then, Slawson added a layup and free throw to put Furman ahead by three points, 57-54.


Furman got a steal and sophomore JP Pegus drilled a 3-pointer with 2.2 seconds remaining as the Paladins stunned the Cavaliers with a 68-67 win in the opening round of the tournament.

It was just the ninth time in the last 13 tournaments that a 13-seed defeated a 4-seed. With that upset, just 10.67% of official NCAA brackets remained perfect.

8. Maryland 67, 9. West Virginia 65

And we’re off!

WVU was the first to strike in this one, which sparked an early 14-0 run for the Mountaineers.

Midway through the first half, Maryland broke its scoring drought, but that didn’t faze West Virginia much. Exhibit A:

Clawing back!

West Virginia squandered a 13-point lead late in the first half after letting Maryland pull within a few points after a 16-2 run en route to taking the lead, 22-21, with 6:10 to play before halftime.

Both teams went back and forth and traded the lead two more times before the break, which ended with Maryland ahead by two points, 32-30.


The second half was a wild ride for both squads. WVU jumped out to a nine-point lead, 47-38, in the first few minutes …

… but Maryland went on a clutch run to knot things up, once again. 

In the end, Maryland came up with one big-time sequence after another to secure the two-point win, 67-65. It marked Maryland’s third consecutive win when appearing in the Round of 64 (2023, 2021, 2019).

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About the Author

Marie Maynes
Marie Maynes is a Sports enthusiast and writes for the Sports section of ANH.