March Madness is back in a big way with the First Four getting things started on Thursday. The Big Dance was not in the lives of college basketball last year, but after a long wait and one of the more unique college basketball seasons we will ever witness, the 2021 NCAA Tournament is underway. The selection committee made its official selections on Sunday and now is the perfect time to get to know who is in the Big Dance with our printable bracket. However, making picks doesn’t help if you don’t know when the games themselves are being played.

As is the case with just about every sports league, the NCAA Tournament won’t have its traditional scheduling slots. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic and the protocols in place to ensure a safe environment for all, the organization moved back the First Four games to Thursday to allow time for testing and screening. Because of that, the first round will run on Friday and Saturday instead of Thursday and Friday. The Sweet 16 will not be complete until Monday night.

Fill out your bracket now for your chance to win a brand new Nissan Rogue and a trip to the 2022 Final Four. Don’t wait, brackets lock soon!

There will be 36 games over the next three days that are sure to bring plenty of bracket busters and shocking twists along the way. But one thing is for certain as we head into the best time of year to be a college basketball fan: a champion will finally crowned after Virginia was able to hold onto the title of reigning titleholder for two years. The Cavaliers could make it back-to-back in 2021, but the important thing is the nets will finally be cut down once again in April.

Below you can find tip times and TV channels for every first round game slated to take place on Friday and Saturday.

Itching for more college hoops analysis? Listen below and subscribe to the Eye on College Basketball podcast where we take you beyond the hardwood with insider information and instant reactions, including our best bets for the opening round below.

Be sure to check in often as this story will update every single time the NCAA Tournament schedule is adjusted. Games will be aired on CBS, TNT, TBS and truTV — and as always, you can also watch every game in the tourney via March Madness Live beginning Thursday night with the First Four.

2021 NCAA Tournament schedule, dates

First Four

Thursday, March 18 — Mackey Arena, Assembly Hall

5:10 p.m. (16) Texas Southern 60, (16) Mount St. Mary’s 52 Recap
6:27 p.m. (11) Drake 53, (11) Wichita St. 52 Recap
8:40 p.m. (16) Norfolk State 54, (16) Appalachian State 53 Recap
9:57 p.m. (11) UCLA vs. (11) Michigan State TBS (watch live)

First round

Friday, March 19, 2021 — Mackey Arena, Assembly Hall, Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Hinkle Fieldhouse, Indiana Farmers Coliseum, Lucas Oil Stadium

12:15 p.m. (10) Virginia Tech vs. (7) Florida CBS 
12:45 p.m. (14) Colgate vs. (3) Arkansas truTV
1:15 p.m. (16) Drexel vs. (1) Illinois TBS
1:45 p.m. (11) Utah State vs. (6) Texas Tech TNT
3 p.m. (15) Oral Roberts vs. (2) Ohio State CBS
3:30 p.m. (16) Hartford vs. (1) Baylor truTV
4 p.m. (9) Georgia Tech vs. (8) Loyola Chicago TBS
4:30 p.m. (12) Oregon State vs. (5) Tennessee TNT
6:25 p.m. (13) Liberty vs. (4) Oklahoma State TBS
7:10 p.m. (9) Wisconsin vs. (8) North Carolina CBS
7:15 p.m. (15) Cleveland State vs. (2) Houston truTV
7:25 p.m. (13) North Texas vs. (4) Purdue TNT
9:20 p.m. (10) Rutgers vs. (7) Clemson TBS
9:40 p.m. (11) Syracuse vs. (6) San Diego State CBS
9:50 p.m. (14) Morehead State vs. (3) West Virginia truTV
9:57 p.m. (12) Winthrop vs. (5) Villanova TNT

Saturday, March 20 — Mackey Arena, Assembly Hall, Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Hinkle Fieldhouse, Indiana Farmers Coliseum, Lucas Oil Stadium

12:15 p.m. (12) Georgetown vs. (5) Colorado CBS
12:45 p.m. (13) UNC Greensboro vs. (4) Florida State truTV
1:15 p.m. (14) Eastern Washington vs. (3) Kansas TBS
1:45 p.m. (9) St. Bonaventure vs. (8) LSU TNT
3 p.m. (16) Texas Southern vs. (1) Michigan CBS
3:30 p.m. (12) UC Santa Barbara vs. (5) Creighton truTV4
4 p.m. (15) Iona vs. (2) Alabama TBS
4:30 p.m. (11) Drake vs. (6) USC TNT
6:25 p.m. (15) Grand Canyon vs. (2) Iowa TBS
7:10 p.m. (10) Maryland vs. (7) UConn CBS
7:15 p.m. (13) Ohio vs. (4) Virginia truTV
7:25 p.m. (9) Missouri vs. (8) Oklahoma TNT
9:20 p.m. (16) Norfolk St./Appalachian St. vs. (1) Gonzaga TBS
9:40 p.m. (11) Michigan St./UCLA vs. (6) BYU CBS
9:50 p.m. (14) Abilene Christian vs. (3) Texas truTV
9:57 p.m. (10) VCU vs. (7) Oregon TNT

Second round

Sunday, March 21 — Noon start (CBS, TBS, TNT, truTV)
Monday, March 22 — Noon start (CBS, TBS, TNT, truTV)
Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Hinkle Fieldhouse, Indiana Farmers Coliseum, Lucas Oil Stadium

Sweet 16

Saturday, March 27 — 2 p.m. start (CBS, TBS)
Sunday, March 28 — 1 p.m. start (CBS, TBS)
Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Hinkle Fieldhouse

Elite Eight

Monday, March 29 — 7 p.m. start (CBS)
Tuesday, March 30 — 6 p.m. start (TBS)
Lucas Oil Stadium

Final Four

Saturday, April 3 — 5 p.m. start (CBS)
Lucas Oil Stadium

National Championship

Monday, April 5 — 9 p.m. (CBS)
Lucas OIl Stadium

Get every pick, every play, every upset and fill out your bracket with our help! Visit SportsLine now to see which teams will make and break your bracket, and see who cuts down the nets, all from the model that nailed 15 of the 26 double-digit upsets the last four tournaments!

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