2012 NCAA Bracket: Lamar Lands In Midwest Region First Four, Could Face Top-Seed North Carolina

After a successful regular season, the Lamar Cardinals have landed a spot in the First Four in the Midwest region for this year's NCAA Tournament, as the selection committee announced on Sunday. The Cardinals are the only team from the Southland Conference to get a bid and earned the trip by winning their conference tournament.

The Midwest region should pose numerous challenges for a talented Lamar team. First off, the Cardinals will have to get past a solid Vermont team just to get a shot at playing No. 1 seed North Carolina in the second round.

If the Cardinals have some success early in the tournament, they could eventually face the likes of No. 8 seed Creighton, No. 2 Kansas or No. 3 Georgetown in later rounds.

This is the first NCAA appearance since 2000 for the Cardinals. If Lamar beats Vermont, it'll be the first tournament victory for the Cardinals since 1983, when Lamar beat Alabama 73-50. The last time Lamar won more than one game in the NCAA Tournament was in 1979, when made the only Sweet Sixteen appearance in school history under Billy Tubbs.

For more on this matchup and the impending March Madness season, check out SB Nation's college hoops news hub. Stay tuned to SB Nation Houston for more Cardinals recaps, previews and news updates. Brackets on the brain? Us too! Play Yahoo! Tourney Pick'em and be a part of the craziest month of college basketball. It is fun, easy, and free.

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