HomeThe Teams We’d Like to See at March Madness 2023

The Teams We’d Like to See at March Madness 2023

As much of an annual tradition as Groundhog Day, March Madness is also a pivotal point in the year for fans of college basketball everywhere. So it’s no wonder that anticipation and speculation starts to mount long before Selection Sunday comes around each year.

No doubt the originator of the tournament, Ohio State coach Harold Olsen who came up with the concept back in 1939, would be lost for words. The first ever March Madness featured just eight teams. So who knows what he would have made of the 68 that now compete for the prestigious title of becoming NCAA basketball champions for the year?

As to which team might be carrying off the title, the betting is already under way with many fans hoping to get in early to get the very best March Madness odds for their particular college team.

Five teams in real contention

Of course, with 68 teams going into the mix, and the knock-out feature of the tournament, there can be some big surprises in store. That said, a few teams are already looking like the ones to beat, including these five.


The Houston Cougars are certainly front runners when it comes to potential finalists. Kelvin Sampson’s team have really come into their own this season and by the first week of March were holding on to a 29-2 winning record. In the super guard Marcus Sasser they have a true star player – and if he continues to play to form then it could well come good for the team.


2023 might have proved to be a little challenging for the Jayhawks following defeats by TCU, Baylor and Kansas State early in the year, but their 25-6 record is a good one. So plenty of fingers are crossed that they might be able to retain the title they won last year in the hotly- contested final against North Carolina. Standout for them is Jalen Wilson but the whole team has real strength in all areas – and more than enough to see them progress through the finals.


February was undoubtedly a cruel month for Purdue with the team notching up four losses –up until then they had only lost once all season. But as soon as March rolled around they seem to have got back onto that winning streak again. The key player of the team, and likely candidate for Player of the Year, is center Zach Edey. So Purdue fans are praying that he can prove that he really does make the winning difference.


If Alabama have demonstrated anything this year, it’s that they can take on the big names and win. Houston, Michigan State, North Carolina and Mississippi State have all fallen victim to their uniquely fast style of play this season. If there’s one question hanging over the Crimson Tide, it’s whether they can shore up the defense to protect against the counter attacks that have sometimes been their undoing.


Last year UCLA failed to make it past the Sweet Sixteen stage, knocked out by losing finalists North Carolina. But this year they are hopeful of at least making it through to the Final Four. If they then go on to emerge victorious then it will be their 12 th ever title. With guards Jaime Jaquez and Tyger Campbell they can boast one of the best pairings in college basketball who could help to take them all the way.

Three dream match-ups

The meetings between any of the “big five” promise to be fascinating contests. But, away from them, there also some enticing possibilities. After all, who wouldn’t want to see these three meetings?

Gonzaga vs. Baylor

Gonzaga have seen some great results this season and with Drew Timme on the court anything can happen. If it does all come good for them over the rest of the season it would be a long- and well-deserved reward for a team with a very big heart. Baylor have also seemed to have been on fire in 2023, so it could be an explosive encounter.

Michigan vs. Illinois

These two teams have been ranked in the top five for much of the season and could potentially meet in the Elite Eight or Final Four. Both teams have strong offenses and defenses, which would make for a tightly contested game.

North Carolina vs Duke

Last year’s runners up, and the 2017 champions, might feel they have a lot to prove this year and who could be a better adversary than local rivals Duke to show they have what it takes.

Of course, a lot can happen between now and the final. So all predictions are just that – predictions – and we’ll just have to wait and see if any of them come true.


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