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This is (March) Madness! Top seeds Gonzaga and Arizona are toppled

Chet Holmgren #34 of the Gonzaga Bulldogs reacts against the Arkansas Razorbacks in the Sweet Sixteen round game of the 2022 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament.
Steph Chambers
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Chet Holmgren #34 of the Gonzaga Bulldogs reacts against the Arkansas Razorbacks in the Sweet Sixteen round game of the 2022 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament.

Sorry, (half of) America.

Looks like your March Madness bracket is in shambles. Two bracket-shaking losses meant there were a lot of fist-shakes-toward-the-heavens going on in living rooms Thursday night.

• First, Gonzaga was dispatched by the No. 4 seed Arkansas: 74-68.
The Bulldogs were the No. 1 overall seed and last year's runner-up. A third of fans in the NCAA Men's Bracket Challenge Game picked the team to win it all — including former President Barack Obama.

• Then, Arizona, another No. 1 seed, fell to No. 5 seed Houston: 72-60.
The Wildcats was America's second-most popular pick.

Great night for the underdogs. Not so much for 42% of fans whose bracket bets were busted.

Underdogs no more

Jaylin Williams of the Arkansas Razorbacks celebrates with head coach Eric Musselman after defeating the Gonzaga Bulldogs 74-68 in the Sweet Sixteen round game of the 2022 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament.
Ezra Shaw / Getty Images
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Getty Images
Jaylin Williams of the Arkansas Razorbacks celebrates with head coach Eric Musselman after defeating the Gonzaga Bulldogs 74-68 in the Sweet Sixteen round game of the 2022 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament.

To appreciate the enormity of the Arkansas win, consider this:

• The Gonzaga Bulldogs has made it to the Sweet 16 seven times in a row.

• The Razorbacks, on the other hand, went in to this matchup against the No. 1 team in the land with a dismal record: 2 wins; 11 losses.

So, yeah, it was quite an upset.

"Thank you to everybody that said we had no chance," Eric Musselman, Razorbacks head coach, told CBS afterward.

The seeds keep falling

So, let's recap what's going on here:

Gonzaga gone. Arizona adieu. Add to that Baylor, yet another No. 1 seed, which was knocked out earlier in the round of 32.

That's leaves Kansas as the only No. 1 seed left. The Jayhawks take on No. 4 seed Providence on Friday night.

If it loses, this year will mark the first time since 2011 when none of the No. 1 seeds have reached the Final Four.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Saeed Ahmed

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