College Hoops

2024 Final Four: How UConn, Purdue, NC State, Alabama could win the men’s basketball national championship

2024 Final Four: How UConn, Purdue, NC State, Alabama could win the men's basketball national championship

A regular season filled with top-25 upsets every week has led to a Final Four that includes the two teams that were ranked No. 1 in the AP poll more than anyone else. There is also just the sixth 11-seed to ever reach the Final Four and a team that needed to win five games in five days at the ACC tournament just to hear its name on Selection Sunday.

It wouldn’t be an NCAA tournament without a Cinderella, right?

Now we head to Phoenix with a Final Four filled with plenty of star power — both on the floor and on the sideline.

UConn is looking to go back-to-back for the first time since Florida in 2007, Purdue is attempting to pull off a Virginia-esque turnaround to win its first NCAA tournament, Alabama is going for its first national championship, and NC State is trying to channel former coach Jim Valvano and its run to the 1983 title.

The Huskies enter as the favorite to win it all and a potential national title showdown between UConn and Purdue — and Donovan Clingan and Zach Edey — will garner the majority of predictions. In a one-game scenario, however, Alabama’s shooting prowess and the suddenly unstoppable D.J. Burns Jr. are poised to play spoiler.

From the reporters who covered each team’s path to the Final Four, here’s how each team could cut down the nets in Phoenix.


NO. 11 SEED | SOUTH REGION

Round of 64: def. No. 6 Texas Tech 80-67
Round of 32: def. No. 14 Oakland 79-73 (OT)
Sweet 16: def. No. 2 Marquette 67-58
Elite Eight: def. No. 4 Duke 76-64
Final Four opponent: vs. Purdue, Saturday, 6 p.m. ET

By Adam Teicher (from Dallas)

The way North Carolina State turned its season around, going from 17-14 heading into the ACC Tournament to 26-14 now, is impressive. As coach Kevin Keatts said, the Wolfpack didn’t accidentally get hot, not against the competition they’ve been playing against. North Carolina State has beaten five ranked teams in their current nine-game winning streak, including Duke in the Elite Eight. The Wolfpack have eight transfers and it took some time for everything to come together but NC State is better defensively and a better rebounding team than earlier in the season. The Wolfpack can play a lot of styles. It can play at a quick tempo or a more deliberate pace. It can use a lineup loaded with bigs or play with four guards. They guard well against the 3-point shot. The two most recent opponents,…

Click Here to Read the Full Original Article at www.espn.com – NCB…