NOTEBOOK: Wild Day in Tampa

TAMPA – The first two games in the Tampa pod of the NCAA Tournament were two of the best for the entire day anywhere in the country, and while the third one was never really in doubt, it was record-setting, nonetheless.

In the first game No. 12 seed Western Kentucky drained a 25-foot 3-pointer from the right wing at the buzzer in overtime to upset No. 5 seed Drake 101-99.

Then just a few hours later, No. 13 San Diego hit a shot from 17 feet on the right wing with 1.2 seconds left in overtime to upset No. 4 Connecticut 70-69.

It's the first time UConn has gone one-and-done in the Jim Calhoun era.

Come Sunday, there will be at least one "Cinderella" advancing to the Sweet 16, when the Hilltoppers face the Toreros.

In the third game of the day in Tampa, No. 13 Sienna beat No. 4 Vanderbilt handedly 83-62, which meant that for the first time since the field expanded in 1979 that three lower seeds, let alone four, have won at the same location.

But Clemson coach Oliver Purnell said the earlier results didn't have anything to do with his team's outcome.

"I thought if anything, what happened earlier today got our guys ready to go," he said. "We were ready."

TOUGH LOSSES: Purnell is no stranger to the NCAA Tournament, having been there three previous times. However, all four moments are ones he'd just as soon forget.

The fifth-year Clemson coach came to Tampa having never won an NCAA Tournament game, going 0-3 in his earlier trips. He's now 0-4.

In the 1991-92 season, Purnell's first year at his alma mater of Old Dominion, the Monarchs went to the NCAA Tournament as a No. 15 seed and lost 88-69 to No. 2 Kentucky in Worcester, Mass.

In the 1999-2000 season, Purnell's sixth year at Dayton, the Flyers went in as a No. 11 seed and lost to No. 6 Purdue 62-61 in a heartbreaker in Tucson, Az.

Then in 2002-03 season, Purnell's last year at Dayton, the Flyers went in as a No. 4 seed and lost to No. 13 Tulsa 84-71 in Spokane, Wash.

However, this one may have been the hardest for him to swallow as this was likely his best team, and one that had his first recruiting class at Clemson.

"It was tough going in (the locker room) right after the game," he said. "It's hard to believe the season is over. I thought this team was balanced to make an NCAA run. …

"It's hard when it comes to a crashing halt. It'll be hard watching any other game."

QUICK HITS: During the Vanderbilt game, eight Clemson players went into the stands to watch. As they walked to their seats, the group of Tiger fans started the C-L-E-M-S-O-N chant just as the Commodores and Sienna were taking the floor to start the second half. The Tigers went back to the locker room with 8:41 left to play, and once again the chant started. …

During warm-ups, Clemson guard Terrence Oglesby was the only player wearing an orange pullover, while the rest of his teammates wore white. … With five minutes left in the first half, nine players had already scored for the Tigers. …

Clemson freshman point guard Demontez Stitt nailed three 3-pointers in the first half, the most shots he's made in a game from beyond the arc. He finished with four for the game. … Villanova entered the game third in the Big East in offensive rebounding with 13.47 per game. It didn't get its first until 2:28 remained in the first half. Top Stories