The University of Utah's Independent Student Voice

The Daily Utah Chronicle

The University of Utah's Independent Student Voice

The Daily Utah Chronicle

The University of Utah's Independent Student Voice

The Daily Utah Chronicle

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College hoops is getting exciting

Has anyone on the hill paid notice to college basketball this season? Can anyone believe that March Madness is fewer than two months away? College basketball is in full swing and I barely hear anything about it.

Even the U basketball team is struggling to get many fans out to the games, and it is on fire. It may be disinterest after such a great season in football, but the fervor should pick up soon, since conference play has begun.

With that in mind, how many people know anything about what is going on outside of Utah in college basketball? College hoops has been watered down over the past few years because of the amount of players who have made the early jump to the NBA, either out of high school or after their freshman years in college.

This year however, has been much different. College basketball is full of NBA talent, and there will be many exciting teams and players to watch as the regular season winds down.

North Carolina seems to be the most dominant team in college basketball, even though it isn’t undefeated. After its early season loss to Santa Clara, they have handily defeated teams such as Georgia Tech and Maryland.

It’s easy to see why North Carolina is so good. It has three of the best players in college basketball: Rashad McCants, Sean May and Raymond Felton.

Besides the three potential all-Americans, the Tar Heels also have one of the best freshmen, Marvin Williams and also one of the best all-around players in Jawad Williams. Needless to say, they are my pick to win it all, but there are many other teams that have the potential to walk out of St. Louis with the big trophy in March.

Wake Forest has quite possibly the best player in college basketball in Chris Paul, while Duke is always good and Daniel Ewing is explosive. J.J. Reddick does not miss many shots, but they still won’t win the title.

The ACC is tight this year, with Wake Forest and North Carolina at the top of the conference and undefeated Duke barely trailing behind.

Illinois is the top-ranked team in the nation, led by point guard Dee Brown and shooting guard Deron Williams. There are three teams right behind Illinois in the standings, but the fightin’ Illini should pull away and win the regular-season title.

Kansas, led by Wayne Simien, is the team to beat in the Big 12 and is coming off a huge win on the road versus Kentucky.

Oklahoma State came off a great season last year and is still very good, with only one loss on the season. John Lucas, like the rest of the team, has improved this year and they are tied with Kansas atop the Big 12 standings.

Hakim Warrick of Syracuse is in his 10th year and is still solid, while Francisco Garcia heads a shaky Louisville team. Garcia is a very good all-around player and had good range on his shot.

Boston College is one of the most surprising teams this year, as they defeated UCONN on the road and are undefeated thus far.

The Huskies are very young and will peak at some point in order to make a run. The Big East tourney will be extremely exciting.

Gonzaga lost early in the year to Illinois, but since has defeated Washington and Georgia Tech.

Some other players and teams to watch include Marquette. Travis Diener still doesn’t miss many three-pointers, but Marquette still hasn’t recovered from the loss of current NBA star Dwyane Wade. They could make some noise in the tourney.

All in all, college basketball is pretty exciting this year and chances are that you haven’t watched much this season. Go watch it and I guarantee you will be stoked come tourney time.

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