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How To Watch March Madness Round 1: Schedule And Matchups

Round 1 kicks off on Thursday, March 16.

how to watch march madness round one logo

March Madness – the NCAA Division 1 College Basketball Tournament – will be here before we know it, kicking off with Selection Sunday on March 12. Which juggernaut squad or Cinderella story will eventually claim this year’s title? It all depends on which teams from the men’s and women’s pools escape the two-day, 32-game marathon that is the first round of March Madness. 

The first and second rounds of March Madness will be played in a multitude of cities all across the country – from Sacramento, California, to Albany, New York. But if the tournament isn’t coming to your area this year, don’t worry. Here’s how to watch March Madness Round 1 from any location you prefer.

How to watch March Madness Round 1

March Madness Round 1 will be broadcasted on a variety of channels this year: TBS, TNT, truTV, and CBS, as well as ABC and ESPN for the women’s tournament. A sizable amount of streaming services will bring March Madness to a screen near you. Figuring out how to watch March Madness is simplified with a a streaming service which allows you to tune into tournament fun from wherever you are: home, at work, or on the move. 

Sling TV is one of the more affordable streaming services of the bunch, allowing you to stream the majority of March Madness starting at just $40 per month. With half off your first month for new subscribers and bundling with Paramount Plus for $4.99, you can stream all of the March Madness Round 1 matchups for a mere $25.

YouTube TV, DIRECTV STREAM, Hulu + Live TV, and other big names in streaming will also be covering March Madness Round 1 matchups. See the breakdown below for more.

Streaming ServiceCostChannelsFree Trial
Sling TV$40+ESPN, TBS, TNT,
YouTube TV$64.99ABC, CBS, ESPN,
Hulu + Live TV$69.99+ABC, CBS, ESPN,
FuboTV$74.99+ABC, CBS, ESPNYes
Vidgo$64.95+ABC, ESPNNo
Paramount Plus$4.99+CBSYes
ESPN Plus$9.99ESPN PlusNo

March Madness Round 1 schedule 2023

Thursday, March 16 (Round of 64)

  • No. 9 West Virginia vs. No. 8 Maryland @ 12:15 p.m. on CBS 
  • No. 13 Furman vs. No. 4 Virginia  @ 12:40 p.m. on  truTV 
  • No. 10 Utah St. vs. No. 7 Missouri @ 1:40 p.m. on TNT 
  • No. 16 Howard vs. No. 1 Kansas  @ 2 p.m. on TBS 
  • No. 16 Texas A&M CC vs. No. 1 Alabama @ 2:45 p.m. on CBS  
  • No. 12 College of Charleston vs. No. 5 San Diego St. @ 3:10 p.m. on truTV 
  • No. 15 Princeton vs. No. 2 Arizona @ 4:10 p.m. on TNT 
  • No. 9 Illinois vs. No. 8 Arkansas @ 4:30 p.m. on TBS  
  • No. 9 Auburn vs. No. 8 Iowa @ 6:50 p.m. on TNT 
  • No. 12 Oral Roberts vs. No. 5 Duke @ 7:10 p.m. on CBS
  • No. 15 Colgate vs.  No. 2 Texas @ 7:25 p.m. on TBS
  • No. 10 Boise St. vs. No. 7 Northwestern @ 7:35 p.m. on truTV 
  • No. 16 Northern Kentucky vs. No. 1 Houston @ 9:20 p.m. on TNT
  • No. 13 Louisiana vs. No. 4 Tennessee @ 9:40 p.m. on CBS
  • No. 10 Penn State vs. No. 7 Texas A&M @ 9:55 p.m. on TBS 
  • No. 15 UNC Asheville vs. No. 2 UCLA @ 10:05 p.m. on truTV 

Friday, March 17 (Round of 64)

  • No. 10 USC vs. No. 7 Michigan State @ 12:15 p.m. on CBS 
  • No. 14 Kennesaw St. vs. No. 3 Xavier @ 12:40 p.m. on truTV 
  • No. 14 UC Santa Barbra vs. No. 3 Baylor @ 1:30 p.m. on TNT 
  • No. 12 VCU vs. No. 5 Saint Mary’s @ 2 p.m. on TBS
  • No. 15 Vermont vs. No. 2 Marquette @ 2:45 p.m. on CBS 
  • No. 11 Pitt vs. No. 6 Iowa State @ 3:10 p.m. on truTV 
  • No. 11 NC State vs. No. 6 Creighton @ 4 p.m. on TNT 
  • No. 13 Iona vs. No. 4 UConn @ 4:30 p.m. on TBS
  • No. 16 Texas Southern/Fairleigh Dickinson vs. No. 1 Purdue @ 6:50 p.m. on TNT 
  • No. 11 Providence vs. No. 6 Kentucky @ 7:10 p.m. on CBS 
  • No. 12 Drake vs. No. 5 Miami @ 7:25 p.m on TBS 
  • No. 14 Grand Canyon vs. No. 3 Gonzaga @ 7:35 p.m. on truTV 
  • No. 9 Florida Atlantic vs. No. 8 Memphis @ 9:20 p.m. on TNT
  • No. 14 Montana St. vs. No. 3 Kansas St. @ 9:40 p.m. on CBS 
  • No. 13 Kent State vs. No. 4 Indiana @ 9:55 p.m. on TBS 
  • No. 11 Arizona St/Nevada vs. No. 6 TCU @ 10:05 p.m. on truTV 

All times shown are Eastern.

To keep up with all the madness, view the live bracket here

Final thoughts on how to watch March Madness

Gear up for Round 1 of March Madness by picking a streaming service. Many streaming services have special deals and free trials, but bundling Sling TV and Paramount Plus offers the best value to solve your issue of how to watch March Madness. You’ll be able to catch all tournament games with Sling Orange and Paramount Plus and enjoy additional features like 50 hours of DVR storage. So, if your team plays its first-round game while you’re at the office, you can record it to watch later. And when March Madness is over, you can enjoy over 31 other channels that your Sling TV plan includes. 


Where are the first and second rounds of March Madness?

The first and second rounds of the men’s March Madness tournament will be played all across the country in the following cities:

  • Birmingham, Alabama
  • Des Moines, Iowa
  • Orlando, Florida
  • Sacramento, California
  • Albany, New York
  • Columbus, Ohio
  • Denver
  • Greensboro, North Carolina

The first and second rounds of the women’s March Madness tournament will be played at the higher seed’s home arenas, which will be revealed during Selection Sunday on ESPN.

How many games are played in March Madness Round 1?

A total of 32 basketball games are played in March Madness Round 1, not including the four play-in games, which are excluded from most brackets. 

What are the dates of March Madness Round 1?

March Madness Round 1 of the men’s tournament will take place over two days, starting on Thursday, March 16, and concluding on Friday, March 17. The second round will start the next day, on Saturday, March 18. March Madness Round 1 of the women’s tournament also will be played over the course of two days, Friday, March 17, and Saturday, March 18.

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