College Hoops

History-making storylines we could see at the 2024 Men’s Final Four

History-making storylines we could see at the 2024 Men’s Final Four

Before the Final Four takes over State Farm Stadium this weekend in Glendale, a brief orientation is in order. Like deciding on the most important event to ever happen in the place so far.

Maybe the Super Bowl in 2008, when the New York Giants denied the New England Patriots an unbeaten season. The Patriots later returned to win a different Super Bowl there, and so did the Kansas City Chiefs.

But no, that’s not it.

Or the 2017 Final Four, when North Carolina defeated Gonzaga 71-65 in the title game, making Roy Williams a three-time champion for the Tar Heels, passing Dean Smith. “I don’t think Roy Williams should ever be put in the same sentence with Dean Smith,” Williams said that night.

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Nope, not that either. We’re talking something heard around the planet.

State Farm Stadium — are you ready? — was the site of the opening concert to kickoff the Taylor Swift Eras Tour. Glendale temporarily renamed itself Swift City, Arizona to get with the program. The momentous occasion was March 17, 2023 — the same night Purdue was losing to Fairleigh Dickinson, and from that evening onward, Swift went out into the world to make billions and the Boilermakers began the long road to redemption at this Final Four.

So what memorable moments might happen this weekend? These four teams are no Taylor Swift, but still, consider the possibilities.

UConn could become only the eighth program to repeat as national champion and just the second in more than three decades.

Alabama could become the first team this century to win the title in its maiden voyage to the Final Four. The last to do it was UConn in 1999. That’s the only one in the past 57 years.

NC State could become the first No. 11 seed to ever play in a national championship game.

Purdue could play in only its second national championship game in history. The first was 55 years ago when the Boilermakers lost to UCLA in Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s final college game.

UConn could become the first No. 1 ranked team in the final Associated Press poll to end up champion in 12 years.

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Alabama could become the first SEC team to play in a championship game in a decade.

NC State could win the title with 14-season defeats. That would be three more than any other champion in history.

Purdue could be the third team from the state of Indiana to play in a title game in the past 22…

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