by Danny Kuhn
With March coming to a close, that can only mean one thing: it’s time for madness. As the first round has already begun, let’s take a look at some of the storylines heading into the NCAA Men’s basketball tournament.
Gators Chomp on Prey
Picking the winner of the NCAA tournament this year could prove incredibly difficult with the equal distribution of talent amongst teams. However, The Florida Gators are the frontrunner to win the title. Led by seniors Scottie Wilbekin, Patric Young, and Casey Prather, the top-seeded gators cruised through the SEC conference tournament to finish with a record of 32–2.
Last year the Wichita State Shockers shocked the basketball world earning a final four berth as a 9–seed. This season they picked up right where they left off finishing the regular season with a perfect 34–0 record. However, the Shockers are still widely considered as an underdog due to the weaker level of competition in the Missouri Valley Conference. According to cbs.com, Wichita State’s strength of schedule ranked at 98. Comparatively, Florida was ranked at 16.
There are major upsets each year, and some are nearly impossible to foresee. Florida Gulf Coast caught fire last year and became the first 15–seed in NCAA history to reach the sweet 16 last year, a feat that nobody saw coming. Led by senior scoring machine Jordan McRae, the Tennessee Volunteers have been streaking hot. The Vols have won six of their last seven games and have three players averaging double digits. A great balance of scoring could be difference for their potent offense against Iowa and beyond.
Show me the Money
Warren Buffett announced he would be teaming up with Quicken Loans to offer anyone with a perfect bracket $1 billion. Although the chances of filling out the bracket correctly are 1 in 9,223,372,036,854,775,808, according to usa.com, the chance of becoming a billionaire brings additional appeal to March Madness.
The NCAA basketball tournament is one of the most thrilling events in sports to watch. It is only three weeks long, but the games are crazy and action-packed. Even spectators who didn’t create brackets and don’t have a team to cheer for can still join in the excitement that is March Madness.