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When & where is the Final Four in 2021? Dates, TV schedule, location, tickets for NCAA Tournament semifinals, title game

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When & where is the Final Four in 2021? Dates, TV schedule, location, tickets for NCAA Tournament semifinals, title game

What teams will make up the Final Four in the 2021 NCAA Tournament?

That’s a question we haven’t been able to ask for nearly two calendar years, since the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 caused March Madness to become the world’s first major sporting event to be canceled. Which makes the question all the more intriguing in 2021.

This season, it seems as if Gonzaga, Baylor and Michigan are the top picks to make the Final Four, followed by several more Big Ten teams such as Illinois, Ohio State and Iowa. While it’s certainly possible the Final Four comprises some combination of those teams, there’s a reason they call it March Madness.

MORE: Watch select NCAA Tournament games on fuboTV (7-day free trial)

Several teams could upset the established favorites — such as Alabama, Villanova, Houston, Florida State and more — but it likely will come down to which team’s dominant players play their best at the most opportune time: guys such as Iowa’s Luka Garza, Gonzaga’s Drew Timme and Corey Kispert, Houston’s Quentin Grimes and more.

The ultimate goal is the Final Four and, from there, the national championship. Who ultimately makes it remains to be seen, but we can’t wait to finally, finally, watch and find out. With that, here’s everything you need to know about the Final Four in 2021, including dates, times, venues and more:

When is the Final Four in 2021?

The Final Four round will take place on Saturday, April 3 in Inidnapolis’ Lucas Oil Stadium, which will serve as the sole venue for the NCAA Tournament from the Elite Eight onward. The first semifinal game is tentatively scheduled for 5 p.m. ET; the next game will tip off shortly after the first has concluded. Both teams will have April 4 off to prepare for the national championship game, which takes place at 9 p.m. ET on Monday, April 5.

Final Four schedule 2021

Date Time (ET) Game
April 3 5 p.m. No. 2 Houston vs. No. 1 Baylor
  8:30 p.m. No. 1 Gonzaga vs. No. 11 UCLA
April 5 9 p.m. National championship game

Where is the Final Four in 2021?

  • Location: Lucas Oil Stadium (Indianapolis)

The 2021 Final Four will take place in Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. It will cap an all-Indiana NCAA Tournament, with the vast majority of games taking place inside the host city. Only two venues outside the city will host NCAA Tournament games: Mackey Arena (West Lafayette, Ind.) and Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall (Bloomington, Ind.).

How to watch the 2021 Final Four

Final Four TV schedule

CBS has broadcast rights for the Final Four and national title game, having signed a 2016 agreement with Turner Sports to alternate broadcast rights for those rounds every year. CBS hasn’t yet released its announcer pairings for the 2021 Final Four or national championship.

Round TV channel
Final Four CBS
National championship CBS

Final Four streaming options

Cord-cutters hoping to tune into the 2021 Final Four have myriad options, including NCAA March Madness Live, Paramount+ (a rebrand of CBS All Access) and fuboTV, which offers a 7-day free trial.

Future Final Four locations

Following the 2021 NCAA Tournament, March Madness will move to New Orleans in 2022, Houston in 2023, Phoenix in 2024 and San Antonio in 2025 before returning to Indianapolis in 2026. Below are the full dates for the Final Four in each of the next five seasons.

Year Host city Venue Dates
2022 New Orleans Mercedes-Benz Superdome April 2, 4
2023 Houston NRG Stadium April 1, 3
2024 Glendale, Ariz. State Farm Stadium April 6, 8
2025 San Antonio Alamodome April 5, 7
2026 Indianapolis Lucas Oil Stadium April 4, 6

How to buy Final Four tickets

The dates to buy First Four and first-round tickets through the NCAA have already passed. Below are the dates to buy tickets through the organization for each of the ensuing rounds, from Round 2 through the Elite Eight (the NCAA has not yet released information regarding Final Four information):

Ticket portals open at 10 a.m. ET

  • Round 2: Thursday, March 11
  • Sweet 16: Tuesday, March 16
  • Elite Eight: Tuesday, March 16

2021 Final Four ticket prices

As of Wednesday, March 10, the only publicly available Final Four tickets are via Vivid Seats: The cheapest option available $1,477 each for two tickets.

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Is Julian Edelman a Hall of Famer? Twitter debates retired receiver’s credentials

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Is Julian Edelman a Hall of Famer? Twitter debates retired receiver's credentials

Julian Edelman called it quits Monday, announcing his retirement after an 11-year NFL career, all of it spent with the Patriots.

Edelman’s final stat line: 620 receptions for 6,866 receiving yards (11 yards per reception) and 36 receiving touchdowns; 58 rushes for 413 yards (7.1 yards per carry); 177 punt returns for 1,986 yards and four touchdowns. His yardage ranks 156h in NFL history, and his receiving touchdowns are tied for 261st.

Zero Pro Bowl selections. Three Super Bowl rings. One Super Bowl MVP. And a member of the Patriots’ 2010 All-Decade team.

Now, the ensuing debate: Are those numbers good enough to be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame (which Edelman won’t be eligible for until 2026)? The pure numbers say no, but that didn’t stop Twitter users from making “HOFer” and “Edelman” trend Monday evening as they discussed Edelman’s Hall of Fame credentials.

MORE: Why did Patriots cut Julian Edelman? Failed physical only part of New England roster move

Sporting News’ Vinnie Iyer in May 2019 made a compelling argument that Edelman’s Hall of Fame case isn’t so cut and dry. Working in Edelman’s favor is the fact that only Jerry Rice ranks ahead of Edelman in postseason receptions (151 to Edelman’s 118) and receiving yards (2,245 to Edelman’s 1,442). He was also one of the favorite targets of Tom Brady — himself a first-ballot Hall of Famer — as the two won three Super Bowls together.

But Edelman only led the Patriots three times in receiving yards, and never put together more than 1,117 yards in a season (in 2019, his last fully healthy season). He had three 1,000-yard receiving seasons and never scored more than seven receiving touchdowns a year. People were also quick to point out his stats pale in comparison to other non-Hall of Famers with considerably better stats, including Hines Ward, who in 2021 failed to make it into Canton for the fifth consecutive year.

Regardless of whether Edelman makes it into the Hall of Fame, the fact that his candidacy is so hotly debated — not even 24 hours removed from announcing his retirement — is a testament to his impact on the game.

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Why did Patriots cut Julian Edelman? Failed physical only part of New England roster move

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Why did Patriots cut Julian Edelman? Failed physical only part of New England roster move

The Patriots sent shockwaves throughout the NFL on Monday — tremors, at least — with the announcement that they would cut veteran receiver Julian Edelman.

Multiple reports suggest that New England cut Edelman, 34, because he failed his physical; he would have played his 12th season in the league in 2021 after missing the final 10 games of the 2020 season while recovering from knee surgery.

That said, New England’s decision to cut Edelman was more than just a simple failed physical. Either way, Monday’s decision could put the cap on an 11-year career that saw Edelman catch 620 passes for 6,822 yards and 36 touchdowns and win three Super Bowls.

NFL MOCK DRAFTS 2021: Compare Mel Kiper, Daniel Jeremiah, Todd McShay & other experts

Here’s everything you need to know about the decision, and Edelman’s future in the NFL.

Why did the Patriots cut Julian Edelman?

The initial reason for Edelman’s tenure ending in New England was a failed physical. That makes sense on the surface, considering that the 34-year-old receiver played in the fewest games in a given season since he entered the NFL in 2009. Considering how busy New England coach/GM Bill Belichick was in free agency, it also stands to reason that Edelman would have seen fewer targets in 2021 after the Patriots added receivers Nelson Agholor and Kendrick Bourne, and tight ends Hunter Henry and Jonnu Smith.

However, that was only part of the Patriots’ decision. Per Mike Weiss of ESPN, the decision could simply be a formality and precursor to Edelman retiring from football.

Edelman later confirmed rumors that he was, indeed, retiring. Edelman, in a pre-recorded video, announced his decision.

Why is Edelman retiring from the NFL?

In the video, Edelman credited an undisclosed knee injury from the 2020 season as the reason for his retirement. He underwent surgery on Oct. 29 and did not return for the remainder of New England’s 7-9 season.

“Nothing in my career has ever come easy. And, no surprise, this isn’t going to be easy, either,” Edelman said in his announcement. “I always said, ‘I’m gonna go until the wheels come off.’ And they finally have fallen off. Due to an injury last year, I’ll be making my official announcement of retirement from football. It was a hard decision, but the right decision for me and my family. And I’m honored, and so proud, to be retiring a Patriot.

That last line also puts an end to any rumors that Edelman will attempt a comeback somewhere else in the NFL — notably, in Tampa Bay with former teammates Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski.

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Dustin Poirier says Conor McGregor never donated promised $500K to former’s charity

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Dustin Poirier says Conor McGregor never donated promised $500K to former's charity

Dustin Poirier and Conor McGregor are confirmed to be fighting again … on Twitter.

The latest clash between the two UFC fighters stems from a Poirier claim Sunday night that McGregor and his team failed to deliver on a promised $500,000 donation. It would have gone to Poirier’s charity, “The Good Fight,” after their UFC 257 bout in January, which Poirier won via second-round TKO.

McGregor responded in kind, saying that Poirier never said exactly where the money was going and how it would be used.

MORE: Francis Ngannou wins heavyweight title at UFC 260 after KO of Stipe Miocic

All this stemmed from a 2020 exchange between the two fighters where McGregor teased a comeback outside of UFC. He proposed a PPV with Poirier, saying all the money would go to charity. He eventually settled on the $500,000 amount, which would be donated after their January bout. Poirier confirmed in December 2020 that McGregor’s team had begun the process of donating to his foundation.

Poirier and McGregor’s online squabble further devolved from there, with Poirier claiming that McGregor’s team quit responding to emails and McGregor calling Poirier a “brain dead hillbilly” — before canceling their trilogy fight.

Both fighters have reportedly signed contracts to a trilogy fight on July 10 at UFC 264, though that promotion hasn’t been made official. What’s also uncertain is whether McGregor’s claim that the fight is off is him simply letting off steam or retaliation against Poirier.

Just another day in the UFC.

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