NCAA Men’s Top 25 & the Sports Mole’s March Madness Surprises

Posted: March 9, 2010 in NCAA Men's Basketball

With March Madness peaking at us from each and every corner of the United States, this week brings much excitement and anticipation as the Atlantic 10, Conference USA,  Big East, Big Ten, Pac-10, SEC, Big 12 and ACC kick off their conference tourneys.  However, with Selection Sunday now less than a week away and the fate of so many teams lying in the hands of these last few games, there are really only 25 teams who know they will be playing in March for sure and here’s who they are:  

(1)  Kansas Jayhawks (29-2) 

(2)  Kentucky Wildcats (29-2) 

(3)  Syracuse Orangemen (28-3) 

(4)  Duke Blue Devils (26-5) 

(5)  Ohio State Buckeyes (24-7) 

(6)  Purdue Boilermakers (26-4) 

(7)  West Virginia Mountaineers (24-6) 

(8)  New Mexico Lobos (28-3) 

(9)  Kansas State Wildcats (24-6) 

(10)  Villanova Wildcats (24-6) 

(11)  Michigan State Spartans (24-7) 

(12)  Butler Bulldogs (27-4) 

(13)  Wisconsin Badgers (23-7) 

(14)  BYU Cougars (28-4) 

(15)  Tennessee Volunteers (23-7) 

(16)  Pittsburgh Panthers (24-7) 

(17)  Temple Owls (26-5) 

(18)  Gonzaga Bulldogs (26-5) 

(19)  Maryland Terrapins (23-7)  

(20)  Vanderbilt Commodores (23-7) 

(21)  Baylor Bears (24-6) 

(22)  Georgetown Hoyas (20-9) 

(23)  Texas A&M Aggies (22-8) 

(24)  Xavier Musketeers (23-7) 

(25)  UTEP Miners (24-5) 

Teams that already punched their tickets:  Cornell (Ivy League), Murray State (Ohio Valley), Eastern Tennessee State (Atlantic Sun), Winthrop (Big South) and Northern Iowa (Missouri Valley). 

Even though the teams listed up above are ranked in the AP top 25, there is still a general consensus that Kansas, Kentucky or Syracuse will be the likely ones cutting down the nets come Final Four time.  However, the Sports Mole believes there are several ranked teams out there under the radar and have just as good a chance as those top three teams! Watch out for Ohio State and Evan Turner who looks prized to win this year’s player of the year award. However, Ohio State can only go as far as Evan Turner’s shoulders will carry them. Kansas State is a very scary team and one that may have the most talented, well-rounded starting five in the entire NCAA tournament.  Also keep an eye on the Tennessee Volunteers who since losing arguably their best player, Tyler Smith has gone on to defeat two #1 teams in Kansas and Kentucky. It’s amazing what playing with a chip on your shoulder can do for a team.  Lastly, watch out for the Baylor Bears who have been playing fantastic ball down the stretch.  Baylor’s Quincy Acey had a coming out party against Texas last week were he scored 24 points and had several spectacular high-flying dunks.  Quincy has quickly become perhaps the best 6th man in all of college basketball. It’s going to be a fun March!

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