The highly anticipated rendition of the fabled NCAA March Madness tournament is veering ever closer with a number of basketball fans already expressing their sheer excitement surrounding the opening contests for one of college sport’s most illustrious competitions, that feature the very best collegiate prospects on the planet today.
The history and prestige surrounding the yearly iteration of college basketball’s most popular tournament, March Madness, stems as far back as the late 1930s and has since elevated to an integral level of James Naismith’s world-renowned sport.
Some of the game’s greatest all-time names have previously made a name for themselves at the college level during one of the many renditions of the postseason March Madness tournament, representing a number of the nation’s most decorated collegiate programs.
Today, the tournament still garners a widespread amount of investment and intrigue from college basketball fans from across the world, as they watch in anticipation to witness the next generation of future NBA talents and stalwarts of the college basketball scene.
For any new fans sighting an interest in catching one of the many March Madness matchups that will soon be on display in the coming few days, here is some valuable information surrounding some of the top schools in the country today and the overall layout of the tournament ahead of the opening game week.
Which teams are favorited to win this year’s tournament?
According to some of the latest March Madness predictions, there are a number of prestigious programs that are sure to provide fans with a plethora of high-octane action, enroute to their national championship aspirations.
Some of this year’s most notable title contenders include the Alabama Crimson Tide, who are led by top four projected draft pick Brandon Miller, the previous year’s winners Kansas Jayhawks, and finally the stacked Houston Cougars who are still searching for their first National title in the school’s history.
The UCLA Bruins, Purdue Boilermakers, Arizona Wildcats and Baylor Bears are also emerging as major contenders for this year’s title and could earn a spot in the final four placements ahead of the tournament’s conclusion.
These are just some of the many top ranked school’s in the nation as they have continuously been able to draw the attention of some of the top high school players in the game today which has allowed these programs to elevate their status into championship contention, with fans of the college game now being able to witness the next line of potential NBA talent in action ahead of draft night.
How the March Madness tournament works:
Every major college in the nation will have an opportunity to earn qualification for the March Madness tournament, yet many of the nation’s most distinguished programs will often compete in a much tougher conference than other less notable school’s meaning that their path towards qualification is considered to be much more treacherous than most other school’s depending on their skill level.
NCAA Division I men’s and women’s school’s mainly consist of 68 different teams that will eventually wager a challenge for the national title across a lengthy seven rounded system.
32 of these teams are often selected to compete in March Madness as ‘automatic bids’ which signifies that these teams have won their respected conference and have already gained passage into the tournament.
The remaining 36 teams will be chosen during the broadcast of ‘Selection Sunday’ which is orchestrated by the NCAA Selection Committee.
All teams are then ranked based on their play during the regular season before the ‘First Four’ games begin which will eliminate four teams leaving 64 to compete in the tournament bracket.
This bracket is organized into different regions across the country with all ranked teams competing against one another as they progress ever closer to the National Championship game.
There will be 32 teams remaining after the first round, which will then be halved to 16 at the conclusion of the second, which will then continue throughout the tournament until only two teams remain ahead of the title game.
Teams that reach the ‘Elite 8’ and ‘Final Four’ may often still receive praise for their notable run in the tournament with the final two teams competing for a chance to lift the Waterford Crystal trophy at the National Championship game.
Winning the National title is the greatest honor that any college player can claim to achieve before heading to the professional level of the NBA or other basketball leagues, with this being a perfect platform for most basketball prospects to showcase their skills and abilities to the many scouts and front office members in attendance, who may represent an array of professional ball clubs.
This year’s tournament is already shaping up to be an unmissable event, as the nation’s top basketball programs look to stake their claim as the next in line to achieve national title glory.