Colleges

FAQ: NCAA Tournament on TV, radio, Web, mobile

Posted March 5, 2011
Updated March 24

An overall view of the Greensboro Coliseum during semifinal action of the 2013 ACC Men's Basketball Conference Tournament on March 16, 2013 in Greensboro, NC.

It's NCAA Tournament time on television, radio and digital platforms. Here's how to find and track your teams and even play to win $1 million if you can pick a perfect bracket.

You’ll find most of your questions about game times, regular programming and how to keep track of both answered below. Let us know if you have other questions, and we’ll do our best to answer them.

NCAA basketball on TV

Q: When do the games begin?
A:
The Sweet 16 features with four games apiece on Thursday and Friday nights. The games will air as double-headers, beginning around 7 p.m., on WRAL-TV and TBS.

Teams, times, TV, scores: NCAA interactive bracket

Q: What does this mean for primetime programs and the evening news?

A: Episodes of CBS Thursday comedies and Friday dramas are pre-empted across the country on Thursday and Friday. The following shows will not available anywhere at any time:

The Big Bang Theory
The Millers
Two and a Half Men
The Crazy Ones
Elementary
Undercover Boss
Hawaii Five-0
Blue Bloods

Find the full WRAL-TV schedule here

 The primetime programs return during the first week in April at their regular times. On April 4, "Unforgettable" replaces "Undercover Boss" on the CBS Friday night schedule.

WRAL’s late night newscast is scheduled to begin after the games, at about midnight on Thursday and Friday nights.

Q: What is new for 2014?
A:
For the first time, the three Turner networks -- TNT, TBS and truTV – will each carry the Saturday semifinal games. Each network will offer commentary and camera angles specific to one of the competing teams. Viewers can choose which version to watch.

Unfortunately, fans who do not have cable or satellite, or whose channel lineups do not include all three Turner networks, do not have access to those games on TV.

Q: Why is this good for viewers?
A:
The NCAA’s 14-year contract with CBS and Turner Sports makes every tournament game available in its entirety on TV nationwide.

No longer are fans subject to the decision of the network of when to switch away from a game, and no longer will you have to wait for your game to be "joined in progress." If you have access to all four networks, you can customize your viewing to see the games you want from start to finish, and you can switch from game to game whenever you choose.

The broadcast windows are staggered in such a fashion that a fan can essentially watch wall-to-wall basketball all day and all night.

Q: How do the networks divvy up the games?
A:
Over the course of the 67 games of the tournament, 16 air on CBS/WRAL (including the championship game).

CBS television stations across the country, including WRAL, do not have any choice of what games to air, even regarding teams of local interest. The national game selections are determined by CBS and the three Turner networks.

Q: Will WRAL carry the games featuring Duke or UNC?
A:
Not necessarily. WRAL has no choice in what game it airs. The station carries whatever game CBS chooses to broadcast nationally.

Q: Can CBS/WRAL pick any game it wants?
A:
Actually the networks pick “locations” instead of “games” for each broadcast window. The networks evaluate the interest in the combination of the two games being played at each site and make a selection accordingly.

In each broadcast window (afternoon and evening), CBS will stick to a single site, not take one game from one site and the second game from another.

Q: If a game is a blowout, will the network shift to another, more competitive game?
A:
No. Each network must stay with the game that they were scheduled to broadcast. This puts the power in the hands of the viewer. You can change the channel to see a closer game or decide to stay with one until the end.

Q: Will the network switch to another game when a game ends early?
A:
CBS is not permitted to take viewers to other games in progress other than a brief “look-in.” (Each network is only allowed a total of three minutes of “look-ins” during the course of a given time block.) If you choose to stay on a single channel, you will see studio updates, highlights and possibly brief “look-ins” between games, schedule permitting.

Q: Will the games be available in high definition?
A:
All games on WRAL are in high definition. The three Turner networks have the games in high definition on their respective HD channels. Check with your cable or satellite provider to confirm whether you can receive the Turner channels in HD.

Q: Will any games be simulcast on more than one network?
A:
No. Each of the games are shown nationally and independently.

Q: What if viewers do not have access to TBS, TNT or truTV?
A:
Unfortunately, fans who do not have cable or satellite, or whose channel lineups do not include all three Turner networks, do not have access to those games on TV. Any game that is not assigned to CBS is shown on one of the Turner networks only. CBS, Turner and the NCAA are cooperating to offer some games online. See below for how to access "March Madness on Demand." 

NCAA basketball on radio

Q: When I listen to NCAA games on local sports radio?
A:
Both 99.9FM The Fan ESPN Radio and 620AM The Buzz will air live play-by-play of NCAA Tournament games up to and including the national championship.

Listen live: 99.9 The Fan | Listen live: 620AM The Buzz

The games of the Sweet 16 and Elite 8 will alternate radio stations to allow for broadcasts of the Carolina Hurricanes.

All four games on Thursday night will air on 620 AM The Buzz. Friday's games begin immediately after Adam & Joe at 7 p.m. on 99.9 FM The Fan.

On Saturday, 620 AM The Buzz has an NCAA basketball double header beginning at 6 p.m. The basketball games air on 99.9 FM The Fan on Sunday starting at 2 p.m.

Note: Due to contractual restrictions, NCAA Tournament games cannot be streamed on WRALSportsFan.com or on The WRALSportsFan App.

Q: What happens to Adam & Joe's afternoon radio show during the games?
A:
Adam and Joe will broadcast during their regular time slot on Thursday and Friday, immediately before the NCAA game resume.

Adam and Joe will take their show on the road to North Texas on April 5 and 8 as they broadcast live from Radio Row at The Final Four.

Q: What about coverage of the Carolina Hurricanes?
A:
Carolina Hurricanes games, including the pregame "Stormfront" and postgame "Aftermath," will air as scheduled on 99.9FM The Fan throughout the NCAA Tournament.

Click for the complete Carolina Hurricanes schedule.

Q: Can I listen to games on The Fan and The Buzz online or on my mobile phone?
A:
Unfortunately, no. The contract to broadcast NCAA games covers only radio, not our digital stream.

Track the NCAA Tournament on WRALSportsFan.com

Log on to WRALSportsFan.com for round-the-clock coverage of the Road to the Final Four.

Q: How can I find the TV/Radio schedule online?
A:
Keep up with the four-network television schedule, the NIT and Division II championship and where to find your games on radio.

Q: Will WRALSportsFan.com have real-time scores?
A:
Use the interactive NCAA bracket to choose any game for time, place and date, and track real-time running scores for all the games and summaries and box scores as the contests are complete.

Q: Where is the bracket contest?
A:
A perfect bracket can win you $1 Million. Enter up front – make all your picks by Thursday – for a chance at the big prize.

Moe's $1 million bracket challenge

Even once your bracket is busted you can still play for prizes. The round-by-round bracket challenge starts over with each round.

Round-by-Round NCAA bracket challenge

You can even compare how you rate up against our “experts,” the guys who watch these games for a living.

Q: How about interviews? Photos?
A:
After the games, go behind the scenes with streaming video and audio of postgame interviews with the players and coaches and relive all the action with round-by-round photo galleries.

Q: Can I get this on my phone or tablet?
A:
WRALSportsFan.com – schedules, scores, brackets, stories, and video and audio interviews – is redesigned this year for your mobile device. Use your browser to access all the stories, video and audio of WRALSportsFan.com.

If you prefer an app, download WRALSportsFan for your iPhone, Android and Blackberry.

WRALSportsFan and individual reporters are also active on Twitter. You can follow them as they follow the games or connect to headlines and updates from WRALSportsFan at Twitter.com/WRALsportsfan.

Elsewhere on the Web

"NCAA March Madness Live," a cooperative effort of the NCAA, Turner Sports and CBS Sports will offer live game video over the internet.

All CBS games will be available without registration or charge. Games broadcast by the Turner networks will require that viewers log in with the password used for their cable or satellite provider.

Fans will also have access to live radio broadcasts, courtesy of Westwood One/Dial Global Radio Network, for all 67 games.

"NCAA March Madness Live" will work on computers, smart phones, the iPad and tablets with the Android 4.0+ operating system, the iPhone 5 and the iPad mini.

13 Comments

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  • apostolicdude7 Mar 18, 5:29 p.m.

    Then North Carolina State plays in the nightcap, at about 9:10 p.m. against Xavier. The winner... View More

    I think the winner of the NCState/Xavier game goes on the play Saint Louis, not Louisville.

  • GunnyGoesArrrgh Mar 18, 5:25 p.m.

    Where can I listen to the game??

    — Posted by RomneyRyan2012

    Mix 101.5

  • mattcli Mar 18, 4:55 p.m.

    As a cord cutter I hate the new shared setup with Ted Turner's Colorized Classics Networks, but I guess a "true" sports fan sacrifices everything else so he can afford all the channels. I guess I'll find something else to do.

  • thomasew Mar 13, 12:49 p.m.

    The ACC has become a behemoth, so much that it takes a week to play the tournament. We have way too many teams now. We don't need these New York and Florida teams in the ACC. I miss the times when everyone took off Fri. afternoon to watch the tournament, and there were only three days of it. Now, it takes a week to play the thing. I bet people will get to where they say, so what, it is just the ACC tourny.

  • sportznutv2.11 Mar 12, 9:35 a.m.

    Will WRAL stream the games on your web site?

    — Posted by milletar

    theacc.com
    Championships - m basketball link under each game

    — Posted by sportznutv2.11

    Thanks! I'll be sitting in a chemo chair on Friday and did not want to miss seeing the Tarheels... View More

    — Posted by milletar

    good luck to you and Go Heels!

  • milletar Mar 12, 9:15 a.m.

    Will WRAL stream the games on your web site?

    — Posted by milletar

    theacc.com
    Championships - m basketball link under each game

    — Posted by sportznutv2.11

    Thanks! I'll be sitting in a chemo chair on Friday and did not want to miss seeing the Tarheels beat ???

  • GOPtakersSociety Mar 12, 8:19 a.m.

    Where can I listen to the game??

    — Posted by RomneyRyan2012

    Love your screen name BBBBBAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHAAAAAAA
    Newt!

  • kmws Mar 12, 6:44 a.m.

    There has been a big deal made about the new channel listings for Time Warner customers, but where can ATT Uverse customers access WRAL-2? Not to watch the programming that is moved there while tournament games....but to see the games you're not covering on WRAL?

  • sportznutv2.11 Mar 12, 5:47 a.m.

    Will WRAL stream the games on your web site?

    — Posted by milletar

    theacc.com
    Championships - m basketball link under each game

  • milletar Mar 11, 9:30 p.m.

    Will WRAL stream the games on your web site?

More...

 

 

  • NFL: Chicago at Detroit

    Tomorrow at 12:30 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NFL: Philadelphia at Dallas

    Tomorrow at 4:00 pm on FOX50

  • SEC: Arkansas at Missouri

    Friday at 2:30 pm on WRAL-TV

  • HSFB: Football Friday with Tom Suiter

    Friday at 11:35 pm on WRAL-TV

  • CBB: Duke vs. Furman

    Tonight at 5:00 on 620am

  • CBB: NC State vs. Richmond

    Tonight at 7:00 on WRAL-FM

  • NHL: Hurricanes at Florida

    Tonight at 7:30 on 99.9 The Fan

  • NFL: Chicago Bears at Detroit Lions

    Tomorrow at 12:30 pm on 99.9 The Fan

Scoreboard
Local
Final
ECU 58
FRES 52
Final
CIN 59
NCCU 50
 
12:00pm Today
UNC
BUT
 
2:30pm Today
ECU
HAW
 
5:00pm Tonight
DUKE
FUR
 
7:00pm Tonight
CHA
POR
 
7:00pm Tonight
NCSU
RICH
 
7:30pm Tonight
FLA
CAR
 
Final
WAS 102
ATL 106
Final
MIA 97
GSW 114
Final
MIL 98
DET 86
Final
NOP 89
SAC 99
Final
DEN 114
CHI 109
7:00pm Tonight
PHI
BRK
 
7:00pm Tonight
ORL
GSW
 
7:00pm Tonight
CHA
POR
 
7:00pm Tonight
CLE
WAS
 
7:30pm Tonight
DET
LAC
 
7:30pm Tonight
DAL
NYK
 
7:30pm Tonight
ATL
TOR
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIN
MIL
 
8:00pm Tonight
HOU
SAC
 
8:00pm Tonight
OKC
UTA
 
8:30pm Tonight
SAN
IND
 
9:00pm Tonight
PHO
DEN
 
10:30pm Tonight
LAL
MEM
 
Final
UMO 21
OHIO 24
Final
ECU 58
FRES 52
Final
ELON 74
MRGST 73
 
Final
MIZZ 61
PURD 82
Final
MAR 55
HAW 62
Final
UNF 77
LIB 57
 
Final
CHAM 85
BYU 121
Final
BUCK 58
MDES 55
Final
UGST 85
WCU 70
Final
UWGB 64
EVAN 62
Final
ARST 71
ALA 76
Final
OHIO 69
ARKPB 60
 
Final
UNH 75
BU 68
 
Final
OU 70
CHIST 57
Final
TOL 79
DET 82
Final
CLMB 57
FD 47
 
Final
QUIN 50
HART 54
 
Final
SFLA 71
HOF 70
Final
HARV 84
HOU 63
Final
BONA 79
JST 71
 
Final
STJOE 74
LIU 70
 
Final
SYR 70
GHND 37
 
Final
MLOWELL 102
MTIDA 57
 
Final
CIN 59
NCCU 50
 
Final
VT 54
NIOWA 73
Final
WOFF 82
OHVALLEY 54
 
Final
TEMPL 76
PENN 67
Final
RUTG 50
PETE 68
Final
BGU 62
SEMIZ 54
Final
LAS 73
Terriers 60
 
Final
UVA 79
TENST 36
Final
KENT 92
TXARL 44
Final
FSU 66
CITA 55
Final
PBY 63
TOCC 40
 
Final
COOK 56
TENNM 74
 
Final
WMARY 83
WILL 49
Final
USB 71
WKENT 61
 
Final
HIGH 88
WMPEACE 71
 
Final
SMU 72
ARK 78
Final
ARMY 80
BING 54
 
Final
CSOU 80
CARK 67
 
Final
UMBC 54
HOW 68
 
Final
ARZ 72
KYST 68
Final
OREG 63
VCU 77
Final
PSU 78
AKR 72
Final
SCST 92
CIU 55
 
Final
CREI 75
EILL 53
Final
ALAAM 61
JVST 67
 
Final
ABCHRIST 91
JCHR 65
 
Final
TXSA 57
LOYC 71
Final
NDST 64
MNCROOK 63
 
Final
NEB 80
NEOM 67
Final
VANDY 63
NORST 53
 
Final
STLU 57
NCAT 54
 
Final
MTST 65
NARZ 53
Final
TTU 75
NWST 64
 
Final
TULA 74
SOUTH 59
 
Final
ILLCH 87
STXAVIER 76
 
Final
TEX 78
RFLSH 46
Final
BRAD 52
TAMCC 38
 
Final
SMISS 72
TROY 70
Final
DRAK 73
IUPUI 60
Final
ARKST 58
LAM 63
 
Final
FLGC 62
USF 47
Final
COL 68
AFA 53
Final
IDAHO 75
BSU 86
Final
GRCN 64
BUF 80
 
Final
ORU 52
LALAF 76
Final
CHAR 74
MIAMI 77
Final
ISU 63
MD 72
Final
UMO 46
NW 55
Final
SACST 97
BRISTOL 63
 
Final
MICH 55
VILL 60
Final
SDST 74
PITT 57
Final
USC 53
CSFU 49
Final
STAN 84
DEL 47
12:00pm Today
UNC
BUT
 
12:00pm Today
FRES
MAR
 
12:00pm Today
CHAT
RMU
 
12:00pm Today
EMICH
ROCH
 
1:30pm Today
MRGST
LIB
 
2:00pm Today
HAMP
AMER
 
2:00pm Today
BEL
DEN
 
2:00pm Today
UMASS
NE
 
2:00pm Today
JMU
SHU
 
2:00pm Today
KNST
SAMF
 
2:30pm Today
ECU
HAW
 
2:30pm Today
CHAM
MIZZ
 
2:30pm Today
OKLA
UCLA
 
2:30pm Today
CCAR
LAMON
 
4:00pm Today
ELON
UNF
 
4:00pm Today
UWMIL
ORU
 
4:30pm Today
WCU
CHIST
 
5:00pm Tonight
DUKE
FUR
 
5:00pm Tonight
BYU
PURD
 
6:00pm Tonight
EVAN
USF
 
7:00pm Tonight
COL
GTDNS
 
7:00pm Tonight
VERM
BRY
 
7:00pm Tonight
OSU
CAMP
 
7:00pm Tonight
CORN
CAN
 
7:00pm Tonight
LOU
CLST
 
7:00pm Tonight
UCF
DAVID
 
7:00pm Tonight
IONA
DELST
 
7:00pm Tonight
OU
UGST
 
7:00pm Tonight
TOWS
GOUCHER
 
7:00pm Tonight
ND
GRAM
 
7:00pm Tonight
YALE
LAF
 
7:00pm Tonight
GWU
LONG
 
7:00pm Tonight
VT
UMO
 
7:00pm Tonight
WAKE
MNTER
 
7:00pm Tonight
NAVY
PSUHARRIS
 
7:00pm Tonight
NCSU
RICH
 
7:00pm Tonight
MINN
STJ
 
7:00pm Tonight
JVU
TRINBAPT
 
7:00pm Tonight
YOUNG
UMKC
 
7:00pm Tonight
UAB
WISC
 
7:30pm Tonight
PITT
KYST
 
7:30pm Tonight
WVU
VMI
 
8:00pm Tonight
DEP
LEH
 
8:00pm Tonight
UNT
MVSU
 
8:00pm Tonight
MARS
MORE
 
8:00pm Tonight
TCU
RAD
 
8:00pm Tonight
SELA
TENT
 
8:00pm Tonight
SMU
TXSOU
 
8:00pm Tonight
UTAH
TXPA
 
8:00pm Tonight
LMU
UCR
 
8:00pm Tonight
SCAR
UNCA
 
8:00pm Tonight
SD
WAYNEST
 
8:30pm Tonight
UWGB
FLGC
 
8:30pm Tonight
IOWA
NILL
 
9:00pm Tonight
ORST
AUB
 
9:00pm Tonight
MONT
CARROLLMT
 
9:00pm Tonight
SUTAH
EKENT
 
9:00pm Tonight
NMST
FAM
 
9:00pm Tonight
WYO
STET
 
9:05pm Tonight
EWASH
NKENTUCKY
 
9:05pm Tonight
IDST
WLVRN
 
9:30pm Tonight
GEOR
UF
 
9:30pm Tonight
GONZ
UGA
 
9:30pm Tonight
NIOWA
NW
 
10:00pm Tonight
SDST
ARZ
 
10:00pm Tonight
CAL
CPSL
 
10:00pm Tonight
UCD
UTST
 
10:30pm Tonight
NDAK
ALAST
 
11:00pm Tonight
CSNO
PORST
 
11:30pm Tonight
AKAN
PAC
 
11:30pm Tonight
OKST
TULSA
 
Final
CLB 2
WIN 4
Final
NAS 4
LOS 3
Final
STL 2
OTT 3
Final
DAL 3
EDM 2
Final
ARI 3
COL 4
Final
ANA 3
CAL 2
Final
VAN 2
NJD 0
7:00pm Tonight
NYI
WAS
 
7:00pm Tonight
BUF
WIN
 
7:30pm Tonight
FLA
CAR
 
7:30pm Tonight
TAM
NYR
 
7:30pm Tonight
DET
PHI
 
7:30pm Tonight
PIT
TOR
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIN
LOS
 
9:00pm Tonight
COL
CHI
 
10:30pm Tonight
SJS
CAL