March Madness 2011: NCAA Tournament Dates, Printable Bracket & Upsets

Steven BaldassariContributor IIIMarch 7, 2011

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Are you wondering where you can find a copy of the 2011 NCAA Bracket to print out? You are not alone. Look no further.

  1. 2011 NCAA Division I Men's Bracket (Blank - No Teams Filled In)
  2. UPDATE: 2011 NCAA Division I Men's Bracket with Teams Filled In Up to Final Four

It is March—spring is just about here, and this is not something to be mad about. Nevertheless, there is good reason to be mad in March. If you are most NCAA men's basketball programs you won't be competing in March for a championship. Many teams will not have qualified to be participants in this year's Big Dance, but 68 talented squads will be chosen—both conference champions and at-large selections.

However, Selection Sunday was on March 13, 2011 and on that day, we all found out which teams did make the 2011 NCAA Bracket. Those teams earned the right to compete for the 2011 NCAA Men's Division I Basketball National Championship.

College basketball fans look forward to this time of year the most. In fact, there are many who are typically not fascinated with college basketball that will tune in for March Madness. Only the best of the college teams remain. People know that the players they will be watching will be fighting for their lives on the basketball court.

The passion each athlete brings to the court creates all the hype. Every step, each dribble, every second matters and determines the fate of each competing teams' 2011 season and contributes either positively or negatively to each player's future in the game of basketball and possibly in the NBA.

The 2011 tournament is televised on CBS, TBS, TNT and truTV in the United States. CBS will be televising the Elite Eight and Final Four until 2016 exclusively. Here are the dates of the numerous rounds in this years tournament.

The First Four (Formerly Opening Round Games) begin on March 15-16, 2011.

The Second Round will get underway on March 17-18.

The Third Round will commence on March 19-20.

The Fourth Round occurs from March 24-25.

The Fifth Round is March 26-27, and lastly but certainly not least...

The Final Four will be held on April 2 & 4 at Reliant Stadium in Houston, Texas.

Some of the front runners and most feared teams of 2011 heading into the games included the Ohio State Buckeyes and the Kansas Jayhawks who as predicted ended up obtaining No. 1 seeds in the tournament. Other suspected No. 1 seeds included the Duke Blue Devils and the Pittsburgh Panthers. They too were selected to be the number one seeds heading into the tournament on March 15th.

The No. 2 seeds in the tournament were the San Diego State Aztecs out of the West, the North Carolina Tar Heels from the East, the Notre Dame Fighting Irish from the Southwest and the Florida Gators out of the Southeast. 

Weighing in as your No. 3 seeds in this years showdown are the UConn Huskies from the West, the Purdue Boilermakers out of the Southwest, the Syracuse Orange from the East and last but not least the Brigham Young University Cougars out of the Southeast. 

The No. 4 seeds this year are the Wisconsin Badgers out of the Southeast, the Louisville Cardinals ascending from the Southwest, the Texas Longhorns from the West and the Kentucky Wildcats from the East.

There was and probably still is much debate over whether the Georgetown Hoyas or the Vanderbilt Commodores deserved the No. 5 seed from the Southwest. The Commodores beat out the Hoyas and took hold of the five spot in that division. As expected by most, the Arizona Wildcats obtained a No. 5 seed coming out of the West. The other two five seeds are the West Virginia Mountaineers rising out of the East and the Kansas State Wildcats from the Southeast.

Surprises: The Villanova Wildcats ended up taking a No. 9 seed out of the East and the Utah State University Aggies, pulled off a No. 12 seed out of the Southeast.

For more information on seeding please click here.

When all is said and done, there will only be two teams left to fight it out for the ultimate college basketball prize and one team who will claim victory and become your 2011 NCAA Division I Basketball Champions.

Earlier Prediction: This prediction probably came as a surprise to those many college hoops fans out there that felt Ohio State would run away with the title but in my bracket, I chose the Kansas Jayhawks, behind the solid coaching of Bill Self to fly away with the Championship trophy and win it all in 2011. Yes, earlier this year they were upended 74-63 in a loss to the Texas Longhorns (No. 11 in the country at the time) and suffered an 84-68 setback at the hands of the Kansas State Wildcats but they still were a top seed and one of the teams to beat in this years tournament.

The Jayhawks were the only one seed to make it to the Elite 8 in this years tournament due to the many upsets in this years games. Things were looking up for Kansas and their fans. It seemed as though my prediction could be correct. The heavily favored Jayhawks would square off against the underdog No. 11 seed VCU Rams. Virginia Commonwealth University had other plans. They defeated the Jayhawks, by a score of 71 - 61 proving my earlier prediction incorrect and highlighting a tournament that has seen many surprises.

Four teams remain and have earned the right to compete in the semi-finals for this years tournament. Those teams are the VCU Rams, Butler, the Kentucky Wildcats, and the UConn Huskies.

Must Read: March Madness 2011: Final Four Breakdown, Round by Round Upsets & Predictions

Stay tuned for more updates and predictions and don't forget to print out a copy of the 2011 NCAA Bracket. Can you take the madness?!