Razorbacks to play UConn in Sweet 16

Connecticut's Adama Sanogo (21) looks to pass after rebounding against St. Mary's Mitchell Saxen (11) in the first half of a second-round college basketball game in the NCAA Tournament, Sunday, March 19, 2023, in Albany, N.Y. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

FAYETTEVILLE — Arkansas’ basketball matchup is set for the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament. 

The Razorbacks will play Connecticut on Thursday at T-Mobile Arena with a trip to the Elite Eight on the line. The game will tip off at 6:15 p.m. Central and will be televised by CBS. 

More from WholeHogSports: What you need to know about Arkansas-UConn game

The Huskies led by as many as 18 points and defeated Saint Mary's 70-55 on Sunday in Albany, N.Y., to advance to their first Sweet 16 since they won the national championship in 2014.

UConn (27-8) is the No. 4 seed and Arkansas (22-13) is the No. 8 seed in the NCAA West Region. The winner of their game Thursday will play Saturday against either UCLA, Gonzaga or TCU.

UConn, in its fifth season under coach Dan Hurley, defeated Iona 87-63 in the first round of the tournament. 

Junior Adama Sanogo, a 6-9 forward, has led UConn during its tournament run. Sanogo scored 28 points and had 13 rebounds against Iona, and scored 24 points and had 8 rebounds against Saint Mary’s.

Sanogo has made 24 of 33 field goal attempts during NCAA Tournament play. He averages 17.3 points and 7.5 rebounds, and was voted last week as an Honorable Mention All-American by The Associated Press.

The Huskies were the No. 4 seed in the Big East Conference Tournament. They defeated Providence in their opening game, then fell 70-68 to tournament champion Marquette. 

UConn began the season 14-0 and was ranked as high as No. 2 in The Associated Press Top 25 poll in late December. In addition to Sanogo, the Huskies are led by 6-5 sophomore guard Jordan Hawkins.

Hawkins averages 15.9 points per game. Tristen Newton, a 6-5 senior guard transfer from East Carolina, is third in scoring at 10.1 points per game and first with 4.7 assists.

The Razorbacks are 1-3 all-time against UConn. Arkansas won the last meeting 102-67 in the third-place game at the Phil Knight Invitational in Portland, Ore., in November 2017.

The teams have never played against each other at the NCAA Tournament, but have met once in post-season play. The Huskies won 74-64 in the consolation game of the 1997 NIT at Madison Square Garden in New York. 

UConn also defeated the Razorbacks 77-68 at the 2005 Maui Invitational, and won 75-62 when the teams played in December 2011 on the Huskies' home court in Hartford, Conn. 

Arkansas rallied from a 12-point deficit in the second half and defeated the West Region’s No. 1 seed, Kansas, 72-71 on Saturday in Des Moines, Iowa. 

The Razorbacks also defeated Illinois 73-63 in the first round and advanced to their third consecutive Sweet 16.

Matt Jones contributed