Men's college basketball: Houston, UConn, S.D. State claim final Sweet 16 spots

March 25 (UPI) -- Houston, UConn and San Diego State were among the final teams to claim spots in the Sweet 16 of the 2024 NCAA Division I men's basketball tournament, edging their Round of 32 foes to advance deeper into March Madness.

Top-seeded Purdue was among the first teams to advance through Sunday's slate. The Boilermakers dominated No. 8 Utah State 106-67 behind a 23-point, 14-rebound effort from star center Zach Edey.

"There is no satisfaction," Edey told reporters, when asked about the Boilermakers' aspirations. "I didn't come back to make the Sweet 16. I came back to make a deep run.

"Nobody is satisfied with where we are now. Everybody wants to keep pushing."

The Boilermakers outshot the Aggies 55.9% to 35.9%, and held an edge of 49-26 in rebounding and 44-18 in points in the paint. They will take on the No. 5 Gonzaga Bulldogs in the Sweet 16. The winner of that matchup will face the No. 2 Tennessee Volunteers or No. 3 Creighton Bluejays in the Elite Eight.

The No. 1 Houston Cougars needed overtime to edge the No. 9 Texas A&M Aggies on Sunday in Memphis. Sophomore guard Emanuel Sharp logged a game-high 30 points in the 100-95 win. Senior guard Jamal Shead chipped in 21 points, 10 assists and five rebounds for the Cougars, who will face the No. 4 Duke Blue Devils in the Sweet 16.

The Blue Devils advanced with a 93-55 blowout victory over the No. 12 James Madison Dukes. The winner of the Duke-Houston game will face No. 2 Marquette or No. 11 N.C. State in the Elite Eight. N.C. State advanced with a 79-73 win Saturday over No. 14 Oakland.

Marquette beat No. 10 Colorado 81-77 on Sunday in Indianapolis. Senior guard Tyler Kolek paced that triumph with 21 points, 11 assists and five rebounds.

The UConn Huskies, the top overall seed in the tournament, crushed the No. 8 Northwestern Wildcats 75-58 in their Round of 32 matchup. The Huskies outshot the Wildcats 53.7% to 37.3%. Senior guard Tristen Newton totaled 20 points and 10 assists. Sophomore center Donovan Clingan chipped in 14 points and 14 rebounds.

The Huskies will face the No. 5 San Diego State Aztecs -- a rematch of last year's national title game -- in the Sweet 16. The Aztecs advanced with an 85-57 thrashing of the No. 13 Yale Bulldogs on Sunday in Spokane, Wash. Senior forward Jaedon Ledee scored a game-high 26 points and logged nine rebounds in the victory.

The No. 4 Alabama Crimson Tide also advanced with a 72-61 win over the No. 12 Grand Canyon Lopes. Senior guard Mark Sears recorded 26 points, 12 rebounds and six assists for the Tide. Lopes senior guard Tyon Grant-Foster totaled a game-high 29 points in the loss. The Tide will face the top-seeded North Carolina Tar Heels in the Sweet 16.

The winner of that meeting will battle the No. 2 Arizona Wildcats or No. 6 Clemson Tigers in the Elite Eight. North Carolina and Arizona advanced Saturday, while Clemson beat No. 3 Baylor 72-64 on Sunday in Memphis to advance in the west region.

Arizona will face Clemson in the first Sweet 16 game at 7:09 p.m. EDT Thursday in Los Angeles. That matchup will air on CBS. UConn will then battle San Diego State at 7:39 p.m. on TBS/truTV. North Carolina will take on Alabama at 9:30 p.m. on CBS. No. 2 Iowa State will play No. 3 Illinois in the final Sweet 16 game of the night at 10:09 p.m. on TBS/truTV.