The 2013 NCAA Tournament started on Tuesday and Wednesday with the first four games, but to most fans the real start of March Madness is Friday's second round and Saturday's third round. Seasoned veterans Verne Lundquist and Bill Raftery, kicked off CBS Sports' March Madness' Thursday coverage and welcomed a newbie to their team- Rachel Nichols.
Lundquist and Rafferty finished atop the 2013 NCAA tournament announcer power rankings earlier this week and called a clean and exciting Michigan State-Valparaiso game. After the first television timeout, Nichols, formerly of ESPN was welcomed to the tournament with a graphic that highlighted her college basketball inexperience.
Nichols left ESPN for CNN/Turner earlier this year and is working her first NCAA tournament games.
Later in the half of the Michigan State game, Lundquist and Raftery had an exchange that validated their top ranking on our list.
"The hour is almost upon is! I'll be working the sideline as we kick of the Madness on CBS at 12:15p EDT- Michigan State vs. Valpo #LetsGo," she tweeted with excitement on March 21.
On Thursday night, before Akron's matchup against VCU, Akron's Pat Forsythe reportedly walked into the Palace of Auburn Hills with an IV bag.
Nichols was one of the first journalists to report that Forsythe and Brian Walsh were suffering from a "severe" case of the flu. Both players began the game on the bench but in uniform.
"Akron's Brian Walsh & Pat Forsythe both have a severe flu. Zips trainer tells me they were at a local hospital w/ Walsh overnight until 7am," Nichols tweeted.
Below is the CBS/Turner 2013 NCAA Tournament TV schedule for Saturday's men's third round.
12:15 p.m.: S4. Michigan vs. S5. Virginia Commonwealth at Auburn Hills, Mich. (CBS/Verne Lundquist,Bill Raftery and Rachel Nichols)
2:45 p.m. (approx.): MW3. Michigan State vs. MW6. Memphis at Auburn Hills, Mich. (CBS/Verne Lundquist, Bill Raftery and Rachel Nichols)
5:15 p.m.: MW1. Louisville vs. MW8. Colorado State at Lexington, Ky. (CBS/Ian Eagle, Jim Spanarkel and Allie LaForce)
6:10 p.m.: W6. Arizona vs. W14. Harvard at Salt Lake City, Utah (TNT/Spero Dedes, Doug Gottlieb and Jamie Maggio)
7:10 p.m: MW4. Saint Louis vs. MW12. Oregon at San Jose, Calif. (TBS/Brian Anderson, Dan Bonner and Marty Snider)
7:45 p.m. (approx.): MW3. Marquette vs. MW6 Butler at Lexington, Ky. (CBS/Ian Eagle, Jim Spanarkel and Allie LaForce):
8:40 p.m. (approx.): W1. Gonzaga vs. W9. Wichita State at Salt Lake City, Utah (TNT/Spiro Dedes, Doug Gottlieb and Jamie Maggio)
9:40 p.m. (approx.): E4. Syracuse vs. E12. California at San Jose, Calif. (TBS/Brian Anderson, Dan Bonner and Marty Snider)