Advertisement

March Madness 2024 viewer's guide: What to watch and skip on Saturday

The men's tournament begins the second round as the women's tournament continues the first round on Saturday. And if you're looking to watch basketball on Saturday afternoon, the women's tournament has much more in store.

Just two of the eight men's games on tap tip off before 6 p.m. Eastern, while 11 women's games begin before 5 p.m. Both men's games are on CBS, while those 11 women's games are spread out among five networks including ABC.

Here's what you need to know for another full day of basketball-watching.

Saturday afternoon

Men’s schedule (all times Eastern)

12:45 p.m. — No. 2 Arizona vs. No. 7 Dayton (CBS)

3:15 p.m. — No. 4 Kansas vs. No. 5 Gonzaga (CBS)

Women’s schedule (all times Eastern)

12 p.m. — No. 6 Tennessee vs. No. 11 Green Bay (ESPN)

1 p.m. — No. 3 UConn vs. No. 14 Jackson State (ABC)

1:30 p.m. — No. 4 Indiana vs. No. 13 Fairfield (ESPN2)

2 p.m. — No. 8 Kansas vs. No. 9 Michigan (ESPNEWS)

2:15 p.m. — No. 2 Notre Dame vs. No. 15 Kent State (ESPN)

2:30 p.m. — No. 3 NC State vs. No. 14 Chattanooga (ESPNU)

3 p.m. — No. 1 Iowa vs. No. 16 Holy Cross (ABC)

3:30 p.m. — No. 6 Syracuse vs. No. 11 Arizona (ESPN2)

4 p.m. — No. 5 Oklahoma vs. No. 12 Florida Gulf Coast (ESPNEWS)

4:30 p.m. — No. 1 USC vs. No. 16 Texas A&M-Corpus Christi (ESPN)

4:45 p.m. — No. 7 Ole Miss vs. No. 10 Marquette (ESPNU)

Must-see: We’re fascinated by the matchup between the Jayhawks and Bulldogs on the men’s side. Kansas almost coughed up a 22-point lead in its four-point win over Samford on Thursday night, while Gonzaga easily took care of business against McNeese. Kansas will probably play within a much more rigid structure against Gonzaga — a team that’s very good inside. Hunter Dickinson’s health and effectiveness will play a huge role in this one.

Must-skip: UConn, Notre Dame and NC State shouldn’t have too much trouble with their opponents. UConn is favored by 35.5 points at BetMGM, Notre Dame is a 29.5-point favorite and NC State is favored by 27.5. Don’t be afraid to flip over if these games are close in the second half, but we have our doubts that will actually happen. USC is an even bigger favorite than all three of them at 32.5, but it may be worth watching star freshman JuJu Watkins for a bit if you haven’t gotten a chance to see her play.

Most likely potential upset: Keep an eye on Wisconsin-Green Bay and Florida Gulf Coast. Both teams are three-possession underdogs — those point spreads are much smaller than you may expect given the seed differences between them and their opponents. FGCU went 29-4 overall and was 16-0 in the Atlantic-Sun this season. Last year, the Eagles took down No. 5 Washington State in the first round.

Player to watch: We didn’t have to look too hard for this one. A No. 1 vs. No. 16 game with a 36.5-point spread isn’t usually a game we’d tell you to watch. But if you’re watching basketball on Saturday afternoon, you have to check in on Caitlin Clark. The Iowa star may not play much if the Hawkeyes get out to a huge lead early in the second half, but with Kansas and Gonzaga as the only men’s game at the same time, you’re not going to feel too guilty flipping to and from the Iowa game.

Iowa and Caitlin Clark begin their March Madness run on Saturday. (AP Photo/Abbie Parr)
Iowa and Caitlin Clark begin their March Madness run on Saturday. (AP Photo/Abbie Parr) (ASSOCIATED PRESS)

Saturday evening

Men’s schedule (all times Eastern)

5:30 p.m. — No. 1 North Carolina vs. No. 9 Michigan State (CBS)

6:10 p.m. — No. 2 Iowa State vs. No. 7 Washington State (TNT)

7:10 p.m. — No. 11 NC State vs. No. 14 Oakland (TBS/TruTV)

8 p.m. — No. 2 Tennessee vs. No. 7 Texas (CBS)

8:40 p.m. — No. 3 Illinois vs. No. 11 Duquesne (TNT)

9:40 p.m. — No. 3 Creighton vs. No. 11 Oregon (TBS/TruTV)

Women’s schedule (all times Eastern)

5:30 p.m. — No. 8 West Virginia vs. No. 9 Princeton (ESPN2)

7 p.m. — No. 7 Creighton vs. No. 10 UNLV (ESPNEWS)

7:30 p.m. — No. 4 Gonzaga vs. No. 13 UC Irvine (ESPN2)

9:30 p.m. — No. 2 UCLA vs. No. 15 California Baptist (ESPN2)

10 p.m. — No. 5 Utah vs. No. 12 South Dakota State (ESPNU)

Must-see: We’re guaranteed to have at least one double-digit seed in the Sweet 16 thanks to the matchup between NC State and Oakland. The Wolfpack are on a tear after winning the ACC tournament and taking down Texas Tech on Thursday night. The Grizzlies shocked the college basketball world with their upset of No. 3 Kentucky as the Wildcats fell in the first round for the second time in three seasons. If Oakland wins this game, everyone is going to know the school is located in Michigan and not in California.

PITTSBURGH, PENNSYLVANIA - MARCH 21: Jack Gohlke #3 of the Oakland Golden Grizzlies reacts after a basket in the second half of the game against the Kentucky Wildcats during the first round of the 2024 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament held at PPG PAINTS Arena on March 21, 2024 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/NCAA Photos via Getty Images)
Jack Gohlke scored 32 as Oakland stunned Kentucky on Thursday. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/NCAA Photos via Getty Images) (Justin K. Aller via Getty Images)

Must-skip: Both the UCLA and Gonzaga women are favored by more than 20 points. The Bruins and Bulldogs should easily advance. Other than that, it’s hard to find a compelling reason to argue for any other game — especially on the men’s side. All eight men’s games have point spreads within 10 points.

Most likely potential upset: Tennessee easily covered on Thursday against Saint Peter’s, but that was just coach Rick Barnes’ fourth NCAA tournament win against the spread since 2010. And now he gets to face his former team on Saturday. Texas is a 6.5-point underdog to the Volunteers but made it to the Elite Eight a season ago. If the Longhorns can keep Dalton Knecht in check, watch out.

Player to watch: What does Oregon’s Jermaine Couisnard have in store on Saturday? Couisnard scored 40 points against his former school in the Ducks’ first-round win over South Carolina on Thursday. The senior guard was 14-of-22 from the field and made all seven of his free throws. Couisnard has scored at least 10 points in his last nine games and scored 39 in a loss to Arziona on March 2.