UNC vs. Michigan State live score, updates, highlights from 2024 March Madness Round 2 game

CHARLOTTE — It might only be the second round of the NCAA Tournament, but already fans are going to be treated to a matchup of blue-blood basketball programs.

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North Carolina avoided the dreaded 16-1 upset by decimating Wagner, 90-62, in the Tar Heel state. Just before that, No. 9 seed Michigan State blew out No. 8 seed Mississippi State, 69-51, to hand Tom Izzo his 56th NCAA Tournament win.

The Tar Heels and Spartans will face off Saturday in a highly anticipated clash between perennial powerhouses. This will be the third time the teams have met since Izzo became Michigan State’s head coach, and the last two meetings — the 2005 Final Four and 2009 national championship — both went in favor of the Tar Heels.

“Two storied programs, been to the most Final Fours, and yes, we haven’t beaten them in the NCAA Tournament,” Izzo said Saturday. “But you know what, we’re going to still show up. We’re going to show up tomorrow, and we’re going to see what we can do.

“I don’t look at us as a 9 seed, and some of that’s my fault. I do look at them as a 1 seed, and yet I think this year with parity in college basketball and craziness, I bet you nobody feels any more comfortable than anybody else.”

MORE: Watch UNC vs. Michigan State live with Fubo (free trial)

This might be a matchup of a No. 1 and No. 9 seed, but it’s far from the usual David vs. Goliath the pairing often seems to be. North Carolina is rated by KenPom as the No. 9 team in the country. Michigan State comes in as the No. 16 team.

Both teams come in with experienced, star players capable of taking over a game. Forward Armando Bacot is in his final season with the Tar Heels after a legendary career and guard RJ Davis has enjoyed a breakout campaign in his senior season.

On the other side, guard Tyson Walker has shined as a consistent scorer in his third season with the Spartans (fifth in college basketball) and forward Malik Hall has emerged as one of the Big Ten’s top forwards.

“It’s kind of a surreal moment to think about for the right to go to Sweet 16 you’ve got to face Tom Izzo and Michigan State,” North Carolina forward Harrison Ingram said Friday. “They’re a great team. They’ve had an up-and-down year. But they’re a preseason top five, and they earned their right to play in the tournament. They’re a really good team, and we’re ready to go.”

Sporting News will be tracking live scores and highlights from North Carolina vs. Michigan State. Follow along for updates from Saturday’s game.

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UNC vs. Michigan State score

  1 2 F
UNC 40    
Michigan State 31    

UNC vs. Michigan State results, highlights from 2024 March Madness

(All times Eastern)

7:21 p.m.: Michigan State commits a pair of sloppy turnovers, and Davis makes them pay, sinking a 3 from the top of the arc to push North Carolina’s lead to 60-53 with 9:18 to play. 

7:16 p.m.: Ryan sinks both free throws to push the Tar Heel lead up to 57-51 with 11:46 to play.

7:11 p.m.: Spartans and Tar Heels trade makes before the under-12 timeout before Ryan is fouled going up for a shot. He’ll shoot a pair coming out of the timeout.

7:09 p.m.: Bacot fouled and makes the first of two free throws to put UNC up 53-46 with 13:44 left. On the other side of the floor, Trimble blocks a shot by Kohler to fire up the North Carolina-leaning crowd. 

7:05 p.m.: Akins’ free throw is good, and it’s a two-point game.

7:02 p.m.: Akins is heating up. After MSU and UNC trade layups, Akins knocks down a mid-range jumper and draws the and-1. He’ll shoot from the line out of the under-16 timeout with a chance to make this a 48-46 game.

7:01 p.m.: Akins is providing the Spartans with a spark. He’s made 3s on back-to-back possessions to bring the score to 46-41. He was key in their win over Mississippi State.

6:59 p.m.: Michigan State opens their first possession of the half with three shots and three misses. Ryan responds with a 3 on the other side of the court for the Tar Heels.

6:57 p.m.: Time to get the second half underway. Michigan State started off the first half strong, but North Carolina finished red hot. Spartans will start with possession.

First half: UNC 40, Michigan State 31

6:36 p.m.: Rough half for Michigan State ends on a sour note. Ingram drains a 3, and Hall fumbles a pass to him under the hoop as time expires. North Carolina ends the first half on a 23-3 run.

6:32 p.m.: Walker is fouled by Davis. He misses his first free throw but sinks his second to snap Michigan State’s 5:51 scoring drought. Still 34-29 with 2:17 left in the first half.

6:23 p.m.: Paxson Wojcik starts a 3-on-1 fast break and dishes to a wide-open Davis on the wing. He sinks the 3-pointer with 3:19 left in the first half, and Michigan State uses its first timeout of the game. Tar Heels now lead 32-28 and are on an 18-2 run.

6:21 p.m.: Bacot is fouled by Cooper and he sinks both free throws to give North Carolina its second lead of the day. The Tar Heels are on a 14-2 run and have made four of their past five, while the Spartans have been kept off the scoreboard for the past 3:28.

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6:19 p.m.: Ingram gets his 3 attempt to bounce off the front of the rim, off the backboard and in. Bacot’s defense on the other end forces a traveling call on Hoggard with 5:05 left in the half. At 28-27, the North Carolina fans are roaring back to life.

6:17 p.m.: Following an offensive foul on Tre Holloman, the Tar Heels find Bacot crashing to the paint and he sinks the easy layup to cut the deficit to four at 28-24. There haven’t been a lot of easy opportunities for him as he’s been getting doubled constantly.

6:11 p.m.: Hall works his way to the basket for an easy layup, but North Carolina responds on the other end with a perfect screen to set up Ingram for a 3-pointer, which he sinks. Tar Heels block an Akins’ jumper and collect the rebound. They’ll head into the under-8 timeout trailing 28-20 with 7:34 to play in the first half.

6:08 p.m.: Just as quickly as North Carolina seemed to grab some momentum, Michigan State took it right back. Back-to-back 3-pointers for Walker pushes Michigan State’s lead to 26-14 with less than 10 to play.

6:02 p.m.: Davis sinks a 3 with 11:28 on the clock, snapping an 0-for-5 run from long range for North Carolina. That gives the fans here a jolt as North Carolina moves to down five points, trailing 17-12 at the under-12 timeout.

6 p.m.: Nothing going right for the Tar Heels. They have three team fouls already and are still without a 3 or an offensive rebound. Meanwhile, A.J. Hoggard came off the bench to drain a 3 and push the Spartan lead to 17-7 with 12:50 left in the first half.

5:57 p.m.: Hall going on a nice run for the Spartans, with a hookshot and a turnaround jumper on back-to-back Michigan State possessions. Meanwhile, the Tar Heels continue to come up empty from long range. Seth Trimble and Davis each miss 3-point attempts. UNC is a combined 0-for-4 from 3 and has not scored in 3:02.

5:52 p.m.: Michigan State has been winning the physical battles, particularly in the paint. Mady Sissoko won a contested defensive rebound, then he and Hall blocked out Bacot, defending his hook shot well and getting the defensive rebound. Spartans leading 8-5 at the 15:47 media timeout.

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5:49 p.m.: Davis ties the game at four with a layup 17:36 into the contest, but Walker goes right back with another jumper to give the Spartans the 6-4 lead again with 17:25 in the half. Bacot is fouled by Jaden Akins on North Carolina’s next possession, and he makes only one of two free throws to keep the Spartans ahead.

5:45 p.m.: Bacot wins the jump ball over Cooper. Twenty-two seconds later, he nets the first points of the game with a hook shot. Walker responds on the other end of the court with a mid-range jumper, and we’re off and running.

5:41 p.m.: Lineup introductions getting underway.

5:31 p.m.: National anthem has been played. Ten minutes to go until tipoff here in Charlotte.

5:24 p.m.: No surprises in the starting five for either team.

North Carolina:

  • G Elliot Cadeu
  • G Cormac Ryan
  • G RJ Davis
  • F Harrison Ingram
  • C Armando Bacot

Michigan State:

  • G Tyson Walker
  • G Jaden Akins
  • G A.J. Hoggard
  • F Malik Hall
  • C Carson Cooper

5:15 p.m.: Just over 25 minutes before tipoff, the teams are back out on the court to resume warmups. 

4:40 p.m.: The Spartans are now out as well getting prepared for the start of the game, which is likely to start just a bit after 5:30 p.m. ET.

4:30 p.m.: North Carolina players have taken to the court to begin pre-game warmups an hour ahead of Saturday’s game.

UNC vs. Michigan State start time

  • Date: Saturday, March 23
  • Time: 5:30 p.m. ET

Saturday’s game between North Carolina and Michigan State is slated to begin at 5:30 p.m. ET from the Spectrum Center in Charlotte, N.C.

NCAA Tournament schedule 2024

Below is the schedule for all Round 2 games on Saturday.

Saturday, March 23

Game Time (ET) TV/Live stream
No. 2 Arizona 78, No. 7 Dayton 68 12:45 p.m. CBS/N
No. 4 Kansas vs. No. 5 Gonzaga 3:15 p.m. CBS/Fubo
No. 1 North Carolina vs. No. 9 Michigan State 5:30 p.m. CBS/Fubo
No. 2 Iowa State vs. No. 7 Washington State 6:10 p.m. TNT
No. 11 NC State vs. No. 14 Oakland 7:10 p.m. TBS, truTV
No. 2 Tennessee vs. No. 7 Texas 8 p.m. CBS/Fubo
No. 3 Illinois vs. No. 11 Duquesne 8:40 p.m. TNT
No. 3 Creighton vs. No. 11 Oregon 9:40 p.m. TBS, truTV

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