March Madness 2024: When are the first games?

Over the course of three weeks, it’ll all come down to a men’s and women’s national champion.

WASHINGTON — It’s that time of year once again. March Madness has arrived and 68 men’s and women’s college basketball teams will soon have their sights set on becoming national champions. 

The 68-team field for both tournaments will be revealed on Selection Sunday (March 17) and then it’s time for the games to begin.

When does March Madness start?

March Madness for the men’s tournament officially kicks off with the First Four games on Tuesday and Wednesday, March 19 and 20 in Dayton, Ohio. 

Things really ramp up with the first round on Thursday and Friday, March 21 and March 22. The second round is Saturday and Sunday, March 23 and March 24. 

After the first weekend of games, the action moves into the Sweet 16 on March 28 and March 29, followed by the Elite Eight on March 30 and March 31. 

The men’s tournament wraps up with the Final Four on Saturday, April 6, and the championship game is on Monday, April 8. 

When is the women’s March Madness tournament?

As for the women’s tournament, the First Four begins on Wednesday and Thursday, March 20 and 21. The first round is Friday and Saturday, March 22 and March 23. The second round is Sunday and Monday, March 24 and March 25. 

The women’s Sweet 16 is Friday and Saturday, March 29 and March 30. The Elite 8 is Sunday and Monday, March 31 and April 1. The women’s Final Four is on Friday, April 5 on ESPN at 7:30 p.m. and 9 p.m. Eastern. 

The women’s national championship game is on Sunday, April 7 at 3 p.m. ET on ABC. 

Where is March Madness?

There are 14 sites this year hosting games for the men’s tournament. 

Here are the host cities for the 2024 NCAA men’s basketball tournament

First Four: Dayton, Ohio

First/Second: Brooklyn, New York; Charlotte, North Carolina; Indianapolis; Omaha, Nebraska; Pittsburgh; Salt Lake City; Memphis, Tennessee

Sweet 16/Elite Eight: Boston, Dallas, Detroit, Los Angeles 

Final Four: Glendale, Arizona 

For the women’s tournament, the top 16 seeds host first and second round games, as well as the First Four. The Sweet 16/Elite Eight will be held in Albany, New York; and Portland, Oregon. The women’s Final Four is being held in Cleveland, Ohio. 

How many teams are in March Madness? 

There are 68 teams in the men’s and women’s NCAA basketball tournaments. 

The women’s March Madness field expanded to 68 years in 2022 after a comprehensive gender equity review commissioned after backlash driven by social media of disparities in the men’s and women’s 2021 tournaments, including weight rooms and other facilities.

How to watch the NCAA tournament

The full TV schedule will be announced after the 68-team fields are revealed on Selection Sunday. 

Every men’s March Madness game will be shown either on CBS, TBS, TNT or TruTV and their digital platforms, including Paramount+. 

March Madness Live will once again be streaming all 67 games online.

TBS will air the Final Four and national title game this year.

Every game of the women’s tournament will be aired on ESPN’s networks and streaming services with some games on ABC. While ESPN is airing the Final Four, the title game will be back on ABC.

Who won March Madness last year?

In the 2023 men’s tournament, the UConn Huskies won their fifth national title with a 76-59 victory over San Diego State.

The Huskies (31-8) became the fifth team since the bracket expanded in 1985 to win all six NCAA Tournament games by double-digits on the way to a championship.

In the 2023 women’s tournament, the LSU Tigers beat Caitlin Clark and Iowa 102-85 in the final to win the school’s first basketball title. The victory made Kim Mulkey the first women’s coach to win national championships at two different schools.

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