College basketball’s best teams can be measured in many different ways. There are many polls, the RPI rankings, and a variety of articles about why certain teams are the best. I for one have alwyas enjoyed the eyeball test. The Miami Hurricanes are beating a very good Duke team by 30 points as I am writing this. It just goes to show you that anything can happen on any given night in college basketball. Who are the teams that could actually end up in Atlanta for this season’s Final Four? I want to focus on 5 top tier teams and 5 underrated teams that have a good chance to make a Final Four run.
1. Louisville: The team with the best overall package is Louisville. They have a big scorer in Russ Smith, create turnovers with a smothering defesne, and they defend the rim. Enough said
2. Kansas: Jeff Withey led the Jayhawks to the Championship game last year with his interior defense. He has the chance to do it again by controlling the paint once again.
3. Florida: This is another team that is amogst the best in the nation defesnively. With the teams interior defense, and one of the most versatile offensive players( Erik Murphy), the Gators are looking like a Final Four team.
4. Gonzaga: This may well be the best offensive team in the nation. They have a nice 3 headed attaack with Kelly Olynyk, Elias Harris, and Kevin Pangos, but another 3-4 players can go for double figures on any given night.
1st Alternate: Arizona: This is the best closing team in College Basketball. With the talent level on the team, they keep every game close, and then in the final minutes they hit another gear. They could ride the last minute success to the Final Four.
1. VCU: They won’t be underrated for long. VCU creates turnovers at an alarming rate and they shoot (and make) a lot of 3pters. This is a team that can play with anyone and will every night. Watch out America.
2. Butler: Another team that tries to impose it’s will on you, but in this case they do it by making you take the shots they allow. With the defensive philosophy of Brad Stevens, and some very talented players, they will be in the mix once again.
3. Miami Fl: They have the talent to make a run at a Final Four, and have played a brutal schedule (making them tournament ready). Their ball handlers and size will lead the team far into March.
4. Oregon: A team that is enjoying new success in College Basketball this season. This team has everything needed for a tourney run. Size, defense, shooters, and depth are in the Ducks favor, but it’s whether or not they can play 40 minutes of defense.
1st Alternate: San Diego State: This is a team that could have success in March. They can play smothering defense (at times) and have 2 players that can take over games in Jamal Franklin and Chase Tapley.