Every March, there are literally dozens of college basketball teams that believe they have a chance to win the national championship. After all, most of the NCAA Tournament field of 68 believe they can make a run.
Fortunately, there have been three teams this season that have undoubtedly separated themselves from the pack.
Let?s take a closer look at each team?s chances of winning the national championship:
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The Bulldogs are the lone unbeaten team left in college basketball, largely because they play in the West Coast Conference, which doesn?t provide much competition outside of BYU.
However, the Bulldogs proved themselves during the non-conference part of the season, registering wins over Kansas, West Virginia, Iowa, and Virginia. Among those wins, the victory over West Virginia was the only one that didn?t come by at least 10 points, so there should be no question that Gonzaga deserves to be head and shoulders above the rest of the nation.
Heading into the season, we knew that forward Corey Kispert would be the star of the team. Kispert has more than lived up to expectations, averaging 19.5 points per game.
However, the Gonzaga frontcourt has received a huge lift from forward Drew Timme. The 6-foot-10 sophomore has averaged 18.9 points and 7.1 rebounds per game, giving the Bulldogs the size to dominate in the paint.
Meanwhile, five-star freshman point guard Jalen Suggs has also lived up to the hype. In addition to averaging 13.9 points and 4.5 assists per game, Suggs has averaged two steals per game, shining at both ends.
Between their frontcourt scorers and their guard play led by Suggs, the Bulldogs are one of the most balanced and dynamic teams in the country.
The Bears have struggled a little coming out of an extended hiatus due to COVID protocol. But at their best, there are few teams in the country that have a chance of keeping pace with Baylor for 40 minutes.
Even with the Big 12 placing seven teams in the top-20 of the polls, the Bears have only lost one conference game, and that came on the road against a surging Kansas team two games after their long layoff.
The Baylor backcourt is as deep and talented as any we?ve seen in college basketball in recent years. Jared Butler and Davion Mitchell are practically dual point guards, as both average over five assists per game. Both are excellent ball handlers and playmakers.
Plus, they are two of the four players in Baylor?s rotation that shoot over 40 percent from the perimeter. On the season, the Bears as a team are shooting 42 percent from the three-point line, which is why no other backcourt in the country can keep up with them.
Juwan Howard?s second season as the head coach of his alma mater has gone far better than anyone could have predicted. The Wolverines were barely a top-25 team at the start of the season but have shot to the top of the deepest conference in college basketball.
Michigan finished the regular season 18-2 overall and 13-2 in the Big Ten, a league that could easily put 10 teams in the Big Dance.
The Wolverines feature a great trio of center Hunter Dickinson, forward Isaiah Livers, and guard Franz Wagner. All three players bring something different to the table and create matchup problems for opposing teams.
Meanwhile, Michigan has a trio of veteran guards in Eli Brooks, Mike Smith, and Chaundee Brown. All three have played a more prominent role during their college careers but have taken a step back this season to form arguably the best supporting cast in college basketball.
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