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NCAA TOURNAMENT: THURSDAY AFTERNOON GAMES OPEN THREAD

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It's one of the most tremendous times of the year: March Madness!

Marvin Gentry-USA TODAY Sports

March Madness truly gets underway this afternoon, with four "early" games and four "late" games; given the way the NCAA now staggers the start times for games, though, it's basically non-stop basketball from now until 6 PM, with a brief break before another flurry of hoops action this evening.  The "early" session features a slew of games involving 2 and 3 seeds, so they could all be blowouts; UAB and Georgia State seem to have the best upset odds, but even they don't have very good odds.

The "late" session features a trio of 6vs11 games and a 7vs10 game and there's some real potential there -- VCU-OSU looks like the game of the session, but we could also wring some schadenfreude out of SMU-UCLA and watching Rick Barnes Barnes it up for Texas could be worth a chuckle, too. If Ole Miss has anything left in the tank after their wild win over BYU on Tuesday night, their game with Xavier could be a fun one, too.

Here's your schedule (all times CT):

TEAM VS TEAM CHANNEL TIME
#3 Notre Dame VS #14 Northeastern CBS 11:15 AM
#3 Iowa State VS #14 UAB truTV 11:40 AM
#3 Baylor VS #14 Georgia State TBS 12:40 PM
#2 Arizona VS #15 Texas Southern TNT 1:10 PM
#6 Butler VS #11 Texas CBS 1:45 PM
#6 SMU VS #11 UCLA truTV 2:10 PM
#6 Xavier VS #11 Ole Miss TBS 3:10 PM
#7 VCU VS #10 Ohio State TNT 3:40 PM

If you're not near a TV, you can stream the games through March Madness Live.

The usual rules apply.