No. 16 Drexel will face No. 1 Illinois in first round of NCAA Tournament

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- The No. 16 seed Drexel Dragons will face No. 1 seed Illinois out of the Midwest Region in the NCAA Tournament this week.

This is Drexel's first time appearing in the tournament in 25 years.

A Selection Sunday watch party was held here in Philadelphia on Sunday.

SEE ALSO: Drexel advances to men's NCAA basketball tournament for first time in 25 years

The men's team left for Indianapolis Saturday.

"It's really gratifying. I'm happy for our players. Our fans, we have so many people here today. It's a special event to mark a good team and a good season," said coach Zach Spiker.

Villanova University, a No. 5 seed, will take on No. 12 seed Winthrop on Friday.

The pandemic forced the cancelation of the tournament by the NCAA last year.

This year, the entire field is heading to Indianapolis, which is hosting the whole tournament. Starting with the First Four on Thursday, every game will be played in Indiana.

The first round will be played Friday and Saturday.

-- The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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