Today's games feature four of the most persistent and indelible images of March.
Duke, the team everyone loves to hate, with Coach K on the sidelines. Tom Izzo and Michigan State on the cusp of yet another Final Four. Rick Pitino leading his Louisville Cardinals. Gonzaga, the one time Cinderella that has grown up to be a legitimate power in its own right. When people think of March Madness, they probably think of at least one of these before too long.
All four of these teams present potential storylines should they meet up with UK in the final.
Duke is, well, Duke. Grant Hill and Christian Laettner made sure Wildcat fans would hate the Dukies more than any other school save UNC. A Duke-Kentucky final would possibly get record ratings.
And Louisville? The Wildcats-Cardinals rivalry is one of the best in college basketball, and it's only been elevated with John Calipari going up against Pitino. Having them meet in the final would be a spectacle.
Seeing Calipari go for perfection against Izzo would be an incredible sight as well. When it comes to success in March, Izzo is one of the few coaches who can go up against Calipari for consistent success. If you needed one coach to take your team deep in the tournament, your first choice can only be one of those two.
Don't undersell Gonzaga. The upstart going against royalty is a great story any time it happens. It'd be like Boise State and Alabama playing for a football title. The fact that former Wildcat Kyle Wiltjer is the Zags' leading scorer only adds to the atmosphere.
No matter who wins today, we're guaranteed that, if UK gets through its Final Four rematch with Wisconsin, we'll get a tremendous matchup for the final.
7 Michigan State vs. 4 Louisville, 2:20 p.m. ET, CBS
2 Gonzaga vs. 1 Duke, 5:05 p.m. ET, CBS