St. John's first-round - whoops, in the NCAA's parlance, "second round" games - will be in Charlotte, NC and kicking off around 9:30 PM on Friday, March 20 on CBS (the national channel) - 30 minutes after the end of the previous game, Duke vs. the play-in winner (the Robert Morris Colonials or North Florida Ospreys).
The 9-seed St. John's Red Storm take on the 8-seed San Diego State Aztecs, with a chance to face the winner of the previous game.
And for St. John's game against San Diego State, the Johnnies gets big-time announcers for the call in the late game - veteran Jim Nantz, Big East color man Bill Raftery (he of the "onions" and vaguely sexual innuendo), former Duke great Grant Hill and veteran sideline reporter Tracy Wolfson.
The crew will also be announcing #2 Virginia vs #15 Belmont and #7 Michigan State vs #10 Georgia earlier in the day.
Good announcers could be needed. San Diego State is a very tall squad that loves to play at a glacial pace, while St. John's likes to slow things down in the half court - if they cannot find a shot in transition or off of turnovers.
The Johnnies will be without Chris Obekpa, suspended for a violation of team rules. But the team is still excited, with the seniors seeing the game as a culmination of their hard work. "We started here together and we are going to finish together," D`Angelo Harrison said. "No matter what happens, this is big for us in the sense that we worked so hard [for this] our whole lives."
The Rumble will have deeper analysis of the matchups and San Diego State matchups, along with the South region bracket - this week.