No. 17 Iowa State 85, No. 19 Texas 76: When the brackets come out, be sure to give Iowa State the type of respect the Cyclones deserve. With their brand of controlled chaos, Fred Hoiberg's squad could be a real problem for plenty of tournament teams come March. Texas learned that the hard way as Iowa State avenged its 86-76 loss back on Jan. 18.
Boasting the 11th fastest tempo in the country and a top ten assist-to-field goal made ratio according to KenPom, the Cyclones have the ability to cause opposing defenses to panic. The pace makes it seem like a room with a lack of oxygen -- you know you shouldn't suck up all the air but out of fear you do it involuntarily -- and plays right in Hoiberg's plan.
The disorienting pace isn't without its hazards. Playing this type of game inevitably leads to transition points for the other team, and a 10-0 run the other way can happen in a flash. Texas went down double digits early in the second half, and it looked like Iowa State was going to run away, but the Longhorns tied it up at 48 and the two teams hit about a million (not really) threes back and forth before ISU put its foot back on the gas. Texas is no pushover, either. There's more than one reason it came into the game winners of nine of its last 10.
DeAndre Kane finished with 22 points, seven rebounds and five assists, while Isaiah Taylor had 26 points, seven rebounds and eight assists for the Longhorns.
No. 11 Louisville 80, South Florida 54: The Cardinals forced 20 turnovers in an easy win over the Bulls, who are now losers of five of their last six. Montrezl Harrell (14 points, four rebounds) set the Louisville single season dunk record, which is apparently a thing.
The Cards attempted 26 more shots than USF, which partially explains why they were able to win by 26 points despite getting outshot percentage-wise from the floor and hitting just 3-of-18 from beyond the arc.
No. 18 Kentucky 84, Ole Miss 70:
There are times where it's easy to be convinced Julius Randle
is playing a different game than his opponents. And it's easy to see why the Kentucky freshman is pretty much a consensus top five pick in most mock drafts. Randle had a double-double in the first half, finishing the game with 25 points and 13 rebounds as the Wildcats
pretty much coasted to another SEC win. (Although the Wildcats eased up before the game ended, allowing the Rebels
to close the gap and make the final score a lot closer than it should have been.)