Owls are Sweet 16 bound, take down Fairleigh Dickinson

FAU defeated the Fairleigh Dickinson Knights 78-70 Sunday night in the Round of 32, advancing to the Sweet Sixteen for the first time in school history.


Courtesy of FAU Athletics

Sophomore guard Alijah Martin throwing down a dunk against Memphis in the first round of the NCAA Tournament on March 17, 2023.

Cameron Priester, Sports Editor

COLUMBUS, Ohio – The FAU Owls’ dream season will live to see another day, and will now be headed to the “Sweet 16” at Madison Square Garden in New York City. 

On Sunday night, FAU men’s basketball (33-3, 18-2 C-USA) defeated the Fairleigh Dickinson University Knights 78-70 in the second round of the NCAA Tournament at Nationwide Arena in Columbus.

The 8-point victory sends them to the Sweet 16 for the first time in program history, where they’ll meet the University of Tennessee Volunteers (25-10, 11-7 SEC) at Madison Square Garden.

After winning the C-USA Championship less than a month ago, the Owls are now the fourth team in the conference’s history to advance to the Sweet Sixteen; the first since Memphis, previous members of conference, did it in 2009. 

Now standing in their way is the 4-seed Volunteers, who will be coming off of a 65-52 victory over the Duke University Blue Devils on Saturday afternoon in the Round of 32. 

Much like FAU, one of Tennessee’s greatest strengths comes from their depth. The Volunteers, ranked 20th in the Associated Press Top 25 Poll, have four players averaging over 10 points per game and are led by All-Conference guard Santiago Vescovi, who’s averaging 12.7 points and 5.7 rebounds.

The last time FAU faced an SEC opponent came in November, when they traveled to Gainesville, Fla. and pulled off a 12-point upset over the University of Florida Gators. FAU is 1-1 against SEC opponents this season.

The Sweet 16 matchup between FAU and Tennessee is set for Thursday, March 23.

This story is breaking and will be updated*

Cameron Priester is the Sports Editor for the University Press. For information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected] or tweet him @PriesterCameron