Cormac Ryan (right) scored a game-high 29 points for Notre Dame.
picture: Getty Images

wild after stent destruction On the first day of the men’s March Madness, Candace Parker sees the future on the postgame show. The future Hall of Famer said that after so many upsets on Thursday, coaches of high-seeded teams will be able to point that out and keep their teams focused on the challenges of the game.

They are very focused. Only four small seeds won in the second half of the first round, all four from the major intercontinental divisions, and none of them were lower than the 11th seed.

In the South, No. 9 TCU defeated No. 8 Seton Hall 69-42 in San Diego.In the Midwest, there were two double-digit seed winners as No. 10 Miami beat No. 7 USC 68-66 in Greenville, SC, and No. 11 Iowa State won Got a grade that could hardly be considered an underdog, 59-54, after overtaking No. 6 LSU Tigers fire Will WadeIn an early game in San Diego, the 11th-ranked Notre Dame in the West buries the No. 6 Alabama State’s 3-pointer in a 78-64 victory over Rutgers in its first four games 10 for 18, 8 -for-24 for Crimson Tide.

That’s not to say there’s no excitement, just that it’s been a much more successful day for the chalk.

Illinois, the No. 4 seed in the South, narrowly escaped Chattanooga 54-53 in Pittsburgh, while Michigan State, No. 7 in the West, beat No. 10 Davidson 74-73 to match Legendary Tom Izzo and Mike Krzyzewski open up Sunday after Duke’s 78-61 victory over Cal State Fullerton at No. 2.

By contrast, No. 3-ranked Wisconsin in the Midwest’s 67-60 victory over No. 14-ranked Colgate in Milwaukee’s virtual home game was a piece of cake, but it was anything but. The Raiders led 52-48 with 10:40 left and went more than seven minutes without a score. By the time Jeff Woodward made two free throws with 3:33 left, the Badgers had scored 10 straight points for a lead they would never give up.

Whether or not there will be another troubling parade Saturday, we know there will be Cinderella on Sweet 16, as No. 7 Murray State and No. 15 St. Peter are in Indianapolis at 7:45 ET A trip to Philadelphia.

But that might be it. When Friday’s winners meet on Sunday, the only teams from outside the Power 5 football conference will be in the South — both favored: No. 2 Villanova (against No. 7 Ohio State) and No. 5 Houston (against the No. 4 team) Illinois, despite dropping four spots in the last AP poll, is higher at No. 19). And, with that wording, Notre Dame, because the Fighting Irish don’t play in the Power 5 football conference, but do play in ACC basketball…and, the way Texas Tech wipes the floor with Montana State for the first time round , 97-62, the No. 3 seed in the West must like its chances with a Notre Dame team that will play Game 3 in five days.