Virginia made history last year by winning their first National Championship. This comes a year after the Cavaliers got upset in the first round to UMBC (University of Maryland, Baltimore County). Never has a 16th-seeded team beat the number one team until last year. Virginia was so embarrassed and wanted to correct their mistake; they did just that a year later. Like every year, there will be some familiar teams toward the top of this list and will be towards the top of the rankings. We all know Duke, Kentucky, Kansas, etc will be up there but it’s just a matter of where they will be on this list. Virginia is among the favorites to win but are they in the top five? Are there any surprises on this list? Here are the five best odds to win the College Basketball National Championship.
Best Odds To Win College Basketball National Championship
Michigan State (6-1)
Michigan State being at the top isn’t surprising. They won the Big Ten regular season, and Big Ten tournament title and made it to the final four. They are returning three of the top four scorers last season, including last year’s Big Ten Player of the Year Cassius Winston, who is now a favorite to win National Player of the Year. Head coach Tom Izzo and his squad are very talented and they can be even better than last year.
Who’s surprised that Kentucky is here? No one. Kentucky is yet again a favorite to win the National Championship. They have the depth and a lot of skill on the floor as expected. They landed one of the best recruits in the country in Kahlil Whitney. A couple of players who have been injured are on track to be back but those players have a good upside. If they can get healthy and play to their potential, then Kentucky will be an even more dangerous team to face.
Duke is tied with Kentucky for the second-best odds to win the National Championship. Duke is always in the conversation, no matter what. They get top recruits left and right and they have one of the best coaches in College Basketball. They lose players like Zion Williamson, RJ Barrett, and Cam Reddish last year but still have guys that can step up and replace them. The returning Tre Jones will be in the spotlight for Duke this season. Other players that will be in the spotlight and get attention is Javin DeLaurier and Jack White. Those two struggled a bit on offense last season but they always knew how to play defense. These guys will have to step up to lead the young guys and they are more than capable.
Kansas basketball has had an eventful month or so. The NCAA is accusing the school of major violations of recruiting and a responsibility charge against head coach Bill Self. The process will take a while so the program will likely not face a postseason ban for this season. Self and Kansas do not want this to get in the way of the team’s performance. As we get closer and closer to the start of the season, the only thing that will be on their mind is basketball.
They have a seven-foot-tall center in Udoka Azubuike. He’s lost about 40 pounds since the start of summer and he is in great physical condition. He missed 27 games last season with a wrist injury, so once he was cleared to resume basketball activities, he ramped up his training and got to work. Azubuike showed off his new ability at Kansas’ scrimmage as he went coast-to-coast for a two-handed jam. He holds the record at Kansas for field goal percentage and double-digit dunks. Kansas has even more talent in Devon Dotson and Quentin Grimes coming back. Not to mention new players coming in like Christian Braun and more. Kansas would love nothing more than to win the National Championship while fighting with the NCAA.
Memphis might be a surprise to be this high over some other school but if you look at what Penny Hardaway did in the off-season, it might be perfect. Hardaway landed five-star forward Precious Achiuwa, five-star center James Wiseman, four-star forward DJ Jeffries, four-star center Malcolm Dandridge, four-star guard Damian Baugh, four-star Boogie Ellis, and four-star guard Lester Quinones. That is a ton of talent giving Memphis the number one recruiting class in the country. It will be interesting to see how all this talent works together and if it goes as planned, they will be favorites to win it all when it’s all said and one.
Team With The Next Best Odds
North Carolina, Villanova (16-1)
Virginia, Gonzaga, Louisville, Oregon (20-1)
Texas Tech, Maryland, Ohio State (25-1)
Tennesee, Florida, Seton Hall, Auburn (40-1)
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