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The odds for the NCAA team to make it to the Final Four are provided by DraftKings Sportsbook.
|San Diego State
|Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, IN
|April 3rd (Final Four) and April 5th (Championship)
|How to Watch (TV/Radio)
The 2020 NCAA Tournament has ended before if even began, thanks to the ongoing coronavirus.
With that being said, it is never too early to take a look at the top contenders for next year’s National Championship. Many top players have yet to decide whether they plan to stay in school or opt for the pro ranks, while highly touted recruits could still change their minds on which schools to attend at this time.
Nonetheless, we will discuss below the early betting favorites to reach the 2021 Final Four based on odds from DraftKings.
One of 2020’s surprise teams will likely go from being the hunter to the hunted in 2021, as Scott Drew’s team is expecting to have leading scorers Jared Butler and MaCio Teague back in Waco, while losing Freddie Gillespie and Devonte Bandoo to graduation.
As far as recruiting is concerned, the Bears have received commitments from four-star prospects Dain Dainja and L.J. Cryer.
— Hoopers Only TV (@hoopersonlytv) March 17, 2020
The Zags have been a legitimate title threat for a few seasons, and 2021 should be no different with some key players returning to college basketball’s top-scoring squad during the 2020 season.
Among those possible returnees is leading scorer Filip Petrusev who has not declared for the draft as of yet. Key departures from Gonzaga include seniors Killian Tillie, Ryan Woolridge, and Admon Gilder, each of whom averaged double digits in scoring.
Coach Mark Few’s team should have little trouble gearing up for a title run, with four rising sophomores who should develop into contributing pieces. Additionally, the Bulldogs should get an added boost from five-star point guard Jalen Suggs along with four-star prospects Dominick Harris and Julian Strawther.
Despite losing top scorer Mamadi Diakite to graduation, the “two-time defending champs” are well-positioned to return to the Final Four.
The Cavaliers will likely be led by a star tandem that measures on opposite ends of the height spectrum in 5-foot-9 point guard Kihei Clark and 7-foot-1 stretch center Jay Huff.
Last year’s leading team in points allowed per game will get some much-needed reinforcements as Marquette transfer Sam Hauser will be eligible to play. Virginia’s key recruits include point guard Reece Beekman and swingman Jabri Abdur-Rahim (son of former NBA pro, Shareef Abdur-Rahim).
The co-Big East champion Bluejays are expected to return an experienced group in 2021, which includes top scorers Ty-Shon Alexander and Marcus Zegarowski among others. What they lack in overall size (average height of six-foot-four in 2020), they should make up in shooting where they ranked 9th in three-point percentage at 38.6 percent. Speaking of size, Creighton will welcome 6-11 center Ryan Kalkbrenner to Omaha.
Having won two championships in the previous decade, the Villanova Wildcats have entrenched themselves as a perennial threat to pull off a Final Four run.
Leading scorer Saddiq Bey is expected to declare early for the draft but until then we will assume he returns.
Aside from Bey, the Wildcats will likely return every rotation player from 2020, with rising sophomores Justin Moore and Jeremiah Robinson-Earl benefitting from a year of college ball under their belts.
Tulane transfer Caleb Daniels is expected to be an important role as a scorer after sitting out the 2020 season due to transfer rules. Since there might be no scholarship player departures, Villanova has no commitments from the class of 2020.
BJ Boston’s official senior year mixtape is FILTHY ?
Can’t wait to see this guy on the court for Kentucky…
— Big Blue Nation (@BigBlue9ation) March 19, 2020
One of the NBA’s top talent factories, Kentucky is once again expected to lose a handful of important players to the NBA Draft, with Tyrese Maxey, Nick Richards, Ashton Hagans, Immanuel Quickley, and E.J. Montgomery possibly bolting from Lexington.
Sophomores Keion Brooks Jr., Johnny Juzang, and Kahlil Whitney are expected to see increased roles if the aforementioned departures occur.
John Calipari hit the recruiting trail hard as he always does, gaining commitments from five star recruits B.J. Boston, Terrence Clarke, and Devin Askew, each of whom is capable of making an impact on day one.
Like Kentucky, Duke has been a regular producer of one-and-done players over the past decade.
This year’s draft crop will be lighter compared to last year’s which saw Zion Williamson, Cam Reddish, and R.J. Barrett leave Durham after one season.
Star center Vernon Carey Jr. is expected to declare for the draft along with fellow freshman Cassius Stanley. Joining the one-and-dones is sophomore Tre Jones who declared after showing improvement during his second year in college.
Key returnees for Coach K include rising sophomores Matthew Hurt and Wendell Moore, along with a senior backcourt duo of Jordan Goldwire and Alex O’Connell.
The Blue Devils have also done well with regards to recruiting, signing five-star prospects Jalen Johnson, Jeremy Roach, D.J. Steward, and Jaemyn Brakefield, while also snagging a seven-footer in Mark Williams, who should help fill the void down low left by Carey and Javin DeLaurier.
Andre has been writing for WSN since February 2019, covering college basketball and college football. A graduate of Florida State and UNC-Chapel Hill, he lives in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. When he is not writing, he enjoys playing sports and Magic: The Gathering.
Email: [email protected]More info on Andre Viljoen
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