Turner Sports and CBS Sports Announce Studio Programming Plans and Special Guests for 2018 NCAA Men’s Basketball Final Four in San Antonio
Monday, March 26, 2018
TBS’s Pregame Coverage on Saturday, March 31, Begins with At the Final Four presented by Infiniti at 3 p.m. ET, Followed by The Final Four Show at 4 p.m.
Saturday’s Special Opening Hour to Feature Former NCAA National Champions Candace Parker, Christian Laettner, Danny Manning and Kris Jenkins
Capital One Championship Central to Start Monday’s National Championship Coverage at 7 p.m. on TBS
CBS Sports and Turner Sports will provide exclusive coverage of the 2018 NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship from San Antonio, Texas with Loyola (IL), Michigan, Villanova and Kansas competing for the National Championship. TBS will televise the NCAA Final Four National Semifinals on Saturday, March 31, and National Championship on Monday, April 2, with corresponding TeamCasts or team-specific coverage airing on TNT and truTV. National Semifinal game coverage will begin Saturday, March 31, at 6 p.m. ET, with TBS featuring three hours of pre-game coverage beginning at 3 p.m.
At the Final Four presented by Infiniti (3-4 p.m.) will lead off Saturday’s coverage and air live from a studio at the Riverwalk outside of the Alamodome. Greg Gumbel will host alongside analysts who have all been there before – former NCAA National Champions Candace Parker (Tennessee, 2007 and 2008 National Titles), Christian Laettner (Duke, 1991 and 1992), Danny Manning (Kansas, 1988) and Kris Jenkins (Villanova, 2016).
The Final Four Show (4-6 p.m.), will consist of two crews for one hour each and feature special guests, pregame analysis, coach interviews and a live look-in to Luis Fonsi’s performance on the Coca-Cola Music Stage from this year’s March Madness Music Festival at Hemisfair. Ernie Johnson will host starting at 5 p.m. with analysts Charles Barkley, Clark Kellogg and Kenny Smith from inside the Alamodome. Gumbel will host the first hour with analysts Brendan Haywood, Parker and Seth Davis from the Riverwalk set. Additionally, the Capital One Tournament Central show between Saturday’s games will include a look-in on a performance by Imagine Dragons from the Coca-Cola Music Stage.
TBS will televise the National Championship on Monday, April 2, marking the second time in the 80-year history of the tournament that it will appear on cable television, with Capital One Championship Central pre-game coverage starting at 7 p.m., followed by the opening tip at 9:20 p.m. Nightly coverage will conclude with Inside March Madness presented by Buick on both Saturday and Monday.
Monday’s pregame show will feature Johnson, Barkley, Kellogg, Smith, Gumbel and Davis live from the Alamodome. The night’s coverage will showcase special guests, taped performances from Sunday’s Capital One Jamfest at the March Madness Music Festival featuring Maroon 5 and Panic! At The Disco, along with interviews with both head coaches ahead of the National Championship.
Saturday’s NCAA Final Four National Semifinals will feature Loyola (IL) against Michigan at 6:09 p.m. on TBS. Kansas against Villanova will follow 40 minutes after the completion of the Loyola (IL)/Michigan game. For the fourth consecutive year, Jim Nantz will call the action with analysts Grant Hill and Bill Raftery and reporter Tracy Wolfson.
In addition to TBS’ Final Four game coverage, TNT and truTV will feature the return of TeamCast presentations, team-specific telecasts tailored to the schools participating in the Final Four National Semifinals, on both Saturday and Monday. The inventive concept will continue to present the game with unprecedented local flavor including comprehensive team and player storylines, music, custom graphics and show packaging, additional cameras and team-centric replays, custom halftimes with school features and more.
Accompanying the live television coverage, NCAA March Madness Live will once again provide live streaming of the NCAA Final Four National Semifinals – including the TeamCast presentations – and the National Championship Game.