Last season we witnessed the Duke Blue Devils take it the distance and win the National Championship. Nobody envisioned them winners until the other No. 1 seed were all being defeated.
Now the upcoming college basketball season has a lot to offer. There are a lot of teams with loaded rosters ready to take a crack at the National championship trophy. Here are the top five contenders and something special at the end.
1. Duke Blue Devils
The Blue Devils may be poised to repeat. They loss Jon Scheyer and Brian Zoubek but they get the best point guard in the recruiting class, and on top of that, the Plumlee twins have grown since we last seen them.
Duke definitely will have the chance to repeat. They have experience with Nolan Smith and Kyle Singler and that will be an advantage heading into next season.
2. Michigan State Spartans
The Spartans will most definitely challenge Duke when tournament time comes around. The Spartans have returned nearly every player from their Final Four roster except for Raymar Morgan. What makes it even better, is the fact that, they were able to reach the Final Four without their floor general Kalin Lucas.
With all their key player back and Tom Izzo staying with the Spartans for life, I wouldn't be surprised if I seen them contending for the National Championship in March. They're definitely a lock to be in the Final Four.
3. Purdue Boilermakers
The Boilermakers were fortunate enough that JaJuan Johnson and E'Twaun Moore pulled out of the 2010 NBA draft. With just them returning to school Purdue has a legit chance at the National Championship. Some say 12-1 odds.
To go along with Johnson and Moore, is Robbie Hummel. However, they'll need to make up for the contributions of Chris Kramer. But they're still a favorite to be in the Final Four as well.
4. Kansas Jayhawks
The Jayhawks lost their top three contributors this season when Xavier Henry, Cole Aldrich and Sherron Collins decided to join the NBA draft. Soon after, Bill Self got a commitment from one of the top point guards in the nation--Josh Selby.
With Selby running the attack and the Morris twins down-low, Kansas still has a chance at the national championship.
5. Pittsburgh Panthers
Last year, the Panthers were never really given a chance to succeed in the Big East after losing Dejuan Blair and Levance Fields. However, they surprised us all and made a good run.
That gave fans hope. They lost key player Jermaine Dixon and Chase Adams. But returned just about everybody else and added key recruits in the process.
Kansas State Wildcats
The Kansas State Wildcats surprised everybody last season. They were considered unknown at the begging of the season, and never really given a chance. However, after an elite eight berth the school is now back on good standings with College Basketball.
They lost one key contributor and that was Denis Clemente. But, they are equipped with the talented frontcourt and guards like Rodney McGruder and Nick Russell that may split time to make up for the loss.
The Michigan State Spartans
The Spartans will have one of the most impressive rosters next year. They returned Kalin Lucas, Delvon Roe, Durrell Summers, Draymond Green, and Korie Lucious--most importantly Tom Izzo.
Just imagine if the Spartans had Lucas for this year’s Final Four. I believe it would have turned out a lot different, and with a similar roster they are the team with the most potential to win it all.
The freshman will play a huge part in the success at Michigan State. To help match the contributions of Raymar Morgan, Izzo brought in one of the best wing threats in the country with Keith Appling. Not to mention, the newcomer Adriean Payne—one of the best big men in the country.
The Spartans are definitely my pick to win it all.
Written by DeAnte Mitchell