The early rounds of the 2021 NCAA men’s basketball tournament earned the name March Madness with a whirlwind of upsets and surprises. After a flurry of additional shocks in the Sweet Sixteen and Elite Eight, the men’s college basketball season heads towards its last weekend with the Final Four on Saturday. The first matchup will feature two top teams when the Midwest region’s No. 2 Houston takes on Baylor, the South region’s top seed. The second game stars this year’s Cinderella team, UCLA — a winner in the tourney’s First Four play-in games — taking on the overall No. 1 ranked Gonzaga. The Zags are not only undefeated this season, but they’ve won their last 27 games by double digits (an NCAA Division I record).
Both games air Saturday on CBS. Here’s what you need to know about the 2021 men’s tournament.
What is the schedule for Saturday’s Final Four games?
Saturday, April 3
- (2) Houston vs. (1) Baylor, 5:14 p.m. ET (2:14 p.m. PT) on CBS
- (11) UCLA vs. (1) Gonzaga, 8:34 p.m. ET (5:34 p.m. PT) on CBS
When are the Final Four and the NCAA Championship games?
As in past years, you’ll need access to CBS to watch the Final Four and the championship game. Here’s the remaining dates:
- Final Four: Saturday, April 3 on CBS
- National Championship: Monday, April 5 on CBS
Who are the top seeds, where can I find the bracket?
Gonzaga, Baylor, Michigan and Illinois were the top seeds in the tournament, each a No. 1 seed in their respective regions. After Illinois was knocked out early in the tourney, Michigan lost to UCLA in the Elite Eight leaving just Gonzaga and Baylor as the only top seeds standing. The full bracket can be found on the NCAA’s website.
Can I watch the tournament live on TV without a cable subscription?
Yes, you can.
YouTube TV, Hulu Plus Live TV, FuboTV and AT&T TV all offer CBS, which is what you’ll need to catch the remaining action. They start at $65 per month ($70 per month for AT&T). Cheaper streaming services like Sling TV’s $35 per month Orange and Blue packages do not have CBS.
You can also get CBS with an antenna or with, the new name for CBS All Access, a streaming service that runs $6 per month.
Games will be available to stream on the NCAA’s March Madness Live website and app, with the CBS-broadcasted games available for free without needing to first authenticate with a cable provider.
Outside the US? Consider using a VPN:
How is the pandemic affecting the 2021 tournament?
The NCAA took a number of precautions to protect players, coaches and fans and to reduce the potential for COVID-19 to disrupt play. Usually, the tournament is spread all across the country in various venues, but this year, to reduce travel, all 67 men’s games are taking place in Indiana with the bulk of the action happening in Indianapolis. Teams were also required to quarantine upon arrival, and in-person attendance by fans is limited to 25% capacity to allow physical distancing.
COVID-19 also has impacted some games, with Oregon advancing past VCU in the first round due to the Rams’ having multiple positive tests.
In which venues will the Final Four games take place?
Per the NCAA, this year’s tournament was played on two courts inside Lucas Oil Stadium (home of the NFL’s Indianapolis Colts) plus Bankers Life Fieldhouse (home of the NBA’s Indiana Pacers), Hinkle Fieldhouse (Butler’s stadium), Indiana Farmers Coliseum (home of the IUPUI Jaguars), Mackey Arena in West Lafayette (Purdue’s arena) and Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall in Bloomington (home of the Indiana Hoosiers).
The Final Four and National Championship will take place at Lucas Oil Stadium.
On March 18, the NCAA tweeted out more images of this year’s floor layout for the courts at Lucas Oil Stadium.