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Thursday, March 19, 2009

Good morning from Greensboro

GREENSBORO, N.C. - LSU will be the first team to tip off the NCAA Tournament in just about one hour from now when it plays Butler in the first round of the South Regional at Greensboro Coliseum at 11:20 a.m. central time on CBS.

The Syracuse-Stephen F. Austin game starts five minutes earlier at 11:15 a.m., but that's on FRIDAY, not on Thursday as reported by me in some Gannett Louisiana papers today. And we have our first turnover of the tournament.

LSU is warming up now, running short sprints and shooting. Butler just took the court to do the same thing.

Many in the Research Triangle are much concerned with the right big toe of North Carolina junior guard Ty Lawson, who is not expected to play today in the second game here between the No. 1 seeded Tar Heels and No. 16 seed Radford that starts 30 minutes after the LSU game.

Lawson is averaging 15.9 points and 6.5 assists a game for North Carolina.

"There is a huge, huge probability that Ty will not play," North Carolina coach Roy Williams said Thursday.

That's so he can be ready for the LSU-Butler winner on Saturday. That game will most likely start at 4:45 p.m. central time Saturday on CBS, according to LSU basketball spokesman Kent Lowe. There is a slight chance that game could tip off at about 7:15 p.m. if CBS decides to move things around for better viewership.

LSU has not played North Carolina since a 67-48 loss right here at the Greensboro Coliseum on Dec. 18, 1996. The Tar Heels lead that series, 9-2.


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