Top-seeded Jayhawks meet Ducks with Final 4 on the line
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) No. 3 seed Oregon (32-5) vs. No. 1 Kansas (31-4)
Fourth round, Midwest Region; Kansas City, Missouri; 7:49 p.m. EDT.
BOTTOM LINE: The top-seeded Jayhawks have rolled into the Elite Eight, winning their first three games by an average of 30 points. That includes a 98-66 rout of No. 5 seed Purdue in the Sweet 16, when they set a school record for a tournament game with 15 3-pointers. Player of the year front-runner Frank Mason III poured in four of them and finished with 26 points. Meanwhile, the No. 3 seed Ducks are chasing their first Final Four appearance since winning the 1939 title with the ''Tall Firs.'' They're led by Dillon Brooks and Tyler Dorsey, and have precisely the kind of quick, guard-oriented lineup that should match up well with the Jayhawks' four-guard starting array.
FINAL FOUR THE GOAL: Kansas is trying to reach its third national semifinal under Bill Self and first since 2012, when the Jayhawks lost to Kentucky in the title game. Not only has Oregon failed to reach a Final Four in nearly eight decades, coach Dana Altman has never made it despite nearly 600 wins and 13 trips to the NCAA Tournament.
MATCHUP TO WATCH: Brooks will likely match up with Kansas freshman Josh Jackson, creating one of the best one-on-one matchups in the tournament. Brooks had 12 points in a regional semifinal win over Michigan, while Jackson had 15 points and 12 boards against the Boilermakers.
MISSING BIG MEN: Two big contributors will be sitting Saturday night out: Oregon forward Chris Boucher tore his ACL in a Pac-12 Tournament game against California, while Kansas center Udoka Azubuike had season-ending wrist surgery in January.
DID YOU KNOW? The Jayhawks and Ducks have met once in the NCAA Tournament, when Kansas won 104-86 in the Midwest Regional finals on Dec. 7, 2002. The Jayhawks lost to eventual national champion Maryland in the Final Four in Atlanta.
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