College basketball’s most significant fans knew before the season that there would not be a group with the particular talent of a team like the Zion Williamson-led 2019-20 Duke Blue Devils.
Still, no one might have expected a field this erratic– and it’s just January.
Twenty-two groups ranked in the top 1o of the AP Top 25 Poll have lost to unranked groups so far this season.
Michigan State lost to Kentucky to start the year.
” It’s just one of those years,” Villanova head coach Jay Wright said after his team’s big win over the top-ranked Jayhawks.
The Gonzaga Bulldogs have actually held the leading spot since Week 8, however even they sustained a loss to an unranked opponent prior to heading into their (fairly) soft West Coast Conference slate.
Even some of the mid-major conferences boast more parity than normal.
The only teams with a definitive hold on their conference’s leading spot are the undefeated San Diego State Aztecs of the Mountain West and the country’s No. 1 group in the WCC’s Gonzaga Bulldogs.
This extraordinary level of parity, both across the country and within private conferences, all but guarantees that this year’s March Madness will be swarming with turmoil. Teams cycle in and out of the AP rankings– not to point out the top 10– with such frequency that it’ll be hard to discern who is deserving of the top seeds.
And it’s more than possible that some of the teams that win their conference competitions– and hence earn an automated bid to the NCAA competition– would not otherwise have actually secured a spot in the 68- team field. As in any year, groups on the fringes who otherwise may have been deserving of a bid would be neglected. This year, it seems likely not only that the bubble will consist of big-name programs, however also that the bubble will incorporate far more teams as an outcome of volatility throughout the NCAA.
And once seeding is done, bedlam takes place.
March Madness features upsets galore in a normal year.
Whether this indicates we wind up with a Blue Blood as king of the dance or a lesser-established program making a name for itself, one thing is clear– the road to Atlanta will make for rather a bumpy trip.
- Read more:
- 5 greatest winners and losers in college basketball this week
- Zion Williamson almost remained at Duke, but his household talked him into going pro at the last moment
- The WNBA has a brand-new CBA that increases player wages, guarantees maternity leave, and enhances marketing and travel for the league
- Joe Burrow and the LSU Tigers were scolded by a police officer who didn’t want them cigarette smoking stogies in the locker room after winning the nationwide championship