March 16, 2022 

Daily Briefing — March 16, 2022: Play-in ball!

March Madness is here

Happy hump day! Welcome to The Next’s Daily Briefing, featuring the W Roundup and daily Watch List. Day 124 of college basketball is here, and with it March Madness! It’s really here!! And one of these play-in games is actually going to matter (stay tuned to find out which)!

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Some quick thoughts before we tip off:

  • Greensboro: South Carolina is basically going to face teams with strong interior defenses in the second round and Sweet Sixteen, and then probably crush Iowa in the Elite 8. Tougher path in terms of matchups, but, y’know, it’s still South Carolina.
  • Spokane: FGCU got screwed with a 12-seed, which in turn has made Virginia Tech’s 5-seed disproportionately difficult, and given Stanford a somewhat harder path. I think Maryland as a 4-seed is a tough-ish Sweet Sixteen matchup for the Cardinal, and No. 2 Texas would be a rematch in the Elite Eight of the early-season Longhorn win over Stanford.
  • Bridgeport: N.C. State’s got good matchups through the Elite Eight. UConn, though, has got a really tough path: UCF’s under-seeded and could bounce the Huskies in the second round (it’s unlikely, but), Indiana as a three-seed is a pretty tough matchup for them, and then the Wolfpack are obviously great. I actually think N.C. State is a great matchup for UConn, at least with respect to the other 1-seeds, but the Huskies are a deserving two-seed. (The top eight seeds all make perfect sense, honestly.)
  • Wichita: Unless No. 3 Michigan figures some stuff out, we’re probably looking at few upsets and an awesome Louisville-Baylor Elite Eight.

W Roundup

Free agency

  • Kaela Davis: Signed a training-camp deal with Chicago, per Rachel Galligan.
  • Imani McGee-Stafford: Signed a training-camp deal with Chicago, per Galligan.
  • Jamie Nared: Signed a training-camp deal with Indiana.

Visit our offseason trackers page to see all the other free agent moves and how they affect team’s caps, other front-office changes, and more — in neat, colorful fashion!

Watch List, Wednesday, March 16

(All times in Eastern, all rankings reflect tournament seeding)


#11 Dayton v. #11 DePaul, 9 p.m., ESPNU — Greensboro play-in

Good games


Also watchable


Written by Em Adler

Em Adler (she/they) covers the WNBA at large and college basketball for The Next, with a focus on player development and the game behind the game.

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