March Madness is a single-elimination contest celebrating the nation’s 68 best college basketball teams every year since 1939. There are 358 teams in the NCAA Division I, so March Madness is all about the best of the best. There are 34 teams selected automatically by winning their conference, but things get interesting when determining the rest of the teams.
Somehow, the other 34 teams are selected as at-large teams. The NCAA Selection Committee takes a bunch of stats and analyzes them on the final day of the conference tournaments, so there’s no such thing as a formula to get in – which is kinda weird. Something is not adding up this season, with North Carolina, which played for the national championship a year ago, not making the tournament with a 20-13 record. But for now, let’s check the top teams to watch.
Five Must-Watch Teams
1. Houston Cougars (AAC): After making it to the Final Four in 2021, the Cougars are ready to take the throne this year. Houston has won 87.5% of its games over the last three years and was the best team in the US this past few months if you ask me.
Their defense is one of their main strengths, punishing their rivals by only letting them shoot 27.8 from 3-point range and 43.1 from two. They are intense and a complete headache for every team’s offense.
2. Alabama Crimson Tide (SEC): With a demolishing 15-0 record at home and their first two games an hour from their campus, the Crimson Tide are one of the main contenders to win March Madness. An overall 29-5 record turned them into one of the most important teams this season.
Alabama is the No.1 overall seed for the first time, so there’s a lot of pressure and emotion at the same time. Leading scorer Brandon Miller was involved in an incident that led to murder indictment charges against former teammate Darius Miles. Alabama’s first game will tip-off on Thursday.
3. Kansas Jayhawks (Big 12): The reigning national champions want to go back-to-back this year. Kansas is averaging 114 points per 100 possessions, pretty solid for the champs, making it into the top 30 in the nation, plus Jalen Wilson is ready for his March Madness moment.
Averaging 20.1 points, Wilson is the face of the Jayhawks right now and the team will need him to take the leadership among all the super-talented ballers that they got. They need an alpha if they want to go back-to-back this season.
4. Purdue Boilermakers (Big Ten): I don’t like to put all the weight on one player, but Zach Edey it’s going to be a huge problem through the tournament this year. He’s probably the best player in the Big Ten and will be the headliner for the Boilermakers’ show this month.
As a team, Purdue has a solid offense; actually they are seventh overall averaging 114.9 points per 100 games. The Boilermakers won the Big Ten, among the hardest conferences to play in, so they are contenders to take the prize home.
The fifth team on the list is North Carolina State (ACC). They are sixth in their conference with a 23-10 record and ranked 45th nationally per the NCAA Evaluation Tool (NET).
Teammates Terquavion Smith and Jarkel Joiner, both averaging over 17 points, will lead the team in order to accomplish the dream of entering as the cinderella and leaving as champions.
We’ve seen some good teams, stats and players, but at these single-elimination tournaments you never know and that’s what makes March Madness special. The 68 teams put their heart and soul on the line to knock out every rival and take the dub. We are all set so let the madness begin!