The Bulls dance on for the first time in program history, advancing against one of the most successful programs of the past 30 years to meet one of the sport's all-time blue bloods.
"I'm taking things a day at a time", he said. Buffalo played like it truly had nothing to lose. "Cal's got them playing really well at the right time of year". But some stats do jump out. "They certainly had a lot to do with that". They don't shy away from contact. Kentucky made 26 of their 32 free throws (81.3 percent) and held Davidson to an offensive rebounding percentage of 21.1 (below the 31.3 mark opponents have averaged against Kentucky this season). Buffalo was led by Wes Clark, who was the game's high scorer with 25 points on 10-for-14 shooting. It's not easy to shut down a team like that.
In Boise, Idaho, Kentucky topped Davidson despite failing to make a single 3-pointer, snapping a nation-best streak of 1,047 games with a 3 that began in 1988.
"If I were on their team, I'd feel very confident too", Kentucky coach John Calipari said.
Elsewhere, No. 9 Alabama escaped with an 86-83 win over No. 8 Virginia Tech as a 2.5-point underdog in East region action on Thursday, but the Crimson Tide face a massive challenge Saturday when they take on top-seeded Villanova as 10.5-point underdogs.
Drummond: It may sound like a broken record because it can nearly be said against any potential United Kingdom opponent, but the Cats' size and length could pose a problem for Buffalo.
Arizona coach Sean Miller missed one game and three practices after ESPN reported he discussed a $100,000 payment to star Deandre Ayton, which the coach has denied. Mid-American Conference champion Buffalo sank 15 3-pointers and used a tenacious, trapping defense to stun Arizona.
"It's pretty unbelievable. I can't even sit up here and lie", Harris said from the dais during the postgame news conference. Transition defense is going to be a big part of the game.
Rowland: Kentucky has, as usual, that tremendous size advantage.
The loss ended a dismal showing for the Pac-12 teams in the tournament.
"If you look at it, most people would call it an upset but I felt like we belonged in the game", Oats said. Buffalo isn't almost as good defending inside the arc as they are at defending the perimeter so Kentucky should get points in the paint. Finally, this is a team that will want to run with Kentucky.
The talk now is of a run to the Sweet 16 for Buffalo.
The game matched two of the highest-scoring teams in Division I - Buffalo entered ranked seventh with a 84.8 scoring average and Arizona was 41st at 80.9 - but the Bulls were the more aggressive team and took control in the second half behind their guard play.
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UCLA played one of its worst games.
Michael Oguine and Ahmaad Rorie scored 15 points apiece to lead the Grizzlies.
"I can't say enough about our guys", Buffalo Coach Nate Oats said. We know it's going to be a tough game.