The Irish are Going Dancing
That is not a surprise. Also not a surprise is the bracket that got leaked a couple hours ago. ESPN messed up BIG TIME, and had the bracket running as a ticker on ESPNU programming. They were about 4 hours too early with these surprise picks. After some scrambling, they bumped up the selection show by two hours. This also means the leaked bracket was the correct one.
Official statement on the early reveal of the 2019 NCAA DI Women's Basketball bracket: #ncaaW pic.twitter.com/kwoQ4Bw0SZ— NCAA WBB (@ncaawbb) March 18, 2019
Notre Dame and Chicago
The Notre Dame Fighting Irish women’s basketball team will be a #1 seed in the Chicago region. This was pretty evident even before the leak. After winning the ACC 8 days ago, the Irish cemented their place in the closer region. They will now definitely play the #16 seed Bethune-Cookman in South Bend at Purcell Pavilion. They would then play the winner of #8 Seed Central Michigan and #9 seed Michigan State for a chance to play in Chicago in the Sweet 16. The Irish play at 11 AM on Saturday morning at home on ESPN2. Get your Irish coffees ready.
It’s tourney time, @JShepard32.— Notre Dame WBB (@ndwbb) March 18, 2019
Saturday, March 23
⏰ 11 a.m. ET
Because the Chippewas and Spartans play right after the Irish on Saturday afternoon, the Round of 32 game will be on Monday.
Rest of the Field
The other #1 seeds are now confirmed as Baylor, Louisville, and Mississippi State. UConn has fallen down to a #2 seed, the first time they haven’t been a #1 seed since 2006. That is a wild storyline as a part of this tournament. The #2 seed in the Irish’s region is Stanford.
For the full bracket, see below:
THE. BRACKET. #ncaaW pic.twitter.com/TR4x6nSO6T— NCAA WBB (@ncaawbb) March 18, 2019
The road to Tampa begins in South Bend at home and then only goes 75 miles away to Chicago. The road is paved for the Irish, now it is time for the execution.