UK is #1 overall seed in NCAA tourney, opens in Louisville

Kentucky Earns No. 1 Seed in NCAA Tournament

Making their 54th NCAA Tournament Appearance, UK opens play Thursday in Louisville

LEXINGTON, Ky. – For the 12th time in program history, the Kentucky men's basketball team earned the No. 1 overall seed in the NCAA Tournament. The Wildcats earned the top seed in the Midwest Region and will open tournament action Thursday in Louisville vs. the winner of the Manhattan/Hampton First Round matchup.

Kentucky enters NCAA play with a perfect 34-0 record after the Wildcats claimed their 28th SEC Tournament title Sunday with a 78-63 win over Arkansas.

The UK-Manhattan/Hampton matchup in the Second Round will take place Thursday, March 19 in Louisville's KFC Yum! Center. Time and television information will be announced later this evening.

Tickets for the second and third round games in Louisville are sold out with the exception of a very limited number of All-Session packages available through

.  Fans may also check the

, the official secondary marketplace for authentic NCAA Tournament tickets.  Complete ticket information for all NCAA sites can be found on the


UK will hold a student lottery on Monday, March 16 at 5:00 pm at Memorial Coliseum for the second and third round games in Louisville. Students should refer to the

for complete details.

Should Kentucky win its opening contest vs. Manhattan or Hampton, UK will face the winner of the No. 8 Cincinnati – No. 9 Purdue Second Round game.

The Wildcats earned their record 54th NCAA Tournament berth in program history. They own the No. 1 seed for the first time since 2012, when Kentucky won its eighth national title. The 2012 title run also saw UK open the tournament in the Derby City, with wins over WKU and Iowa State.

Kentucky is 43-10 in tournament openers and has won 21 of its last 22 second round (previously first-round) tournament games. UK owns a 116-57 record all-time in NCAA action, with its .712 winning percentage the fourth-best in NCAA history.

The Wildcats have never played Hampton or Manhattan, while UK leads the all-time series vs. Purdue, 6-2. Kentucky is 27-10 vs. Cincinnati, and UK owns a 1-0 mark vs. the Bearcats in the NCAA Tournament, with a 69-60 win in 2005's Round of 32.

Manhattan enters the tournament with a 19-13 record and earned an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament after they claimed the MAAC title with a 79-69 win over Iona on March 9. Hampton is 16-17 and earned an automatic bid after beating Delaware State in the MEAC Tournament, 82-61. The Jaspers and Pirates square off in the First Round on Tuesday in Dayton, Ohio.

Official release from UK sports information