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NCAAB

Nov 04, 2019

2019-20 Final Four Predictions

The 2018-19 season closed out with Virginia knocking off Texas Tech in the title game as the Cavaliers picked up their first-ever championship in men's basketball. The 2019-20 campaign is here as the only team that made the Final Four last April that is on everyone's radar is Michigan State, who begins this season as the top-ranked team in the country.

The Spartans are the most popular selection among our stable of handicappers to return to the Final Four, while the team they bounced in the Elite Eight, Duke, is the second most popular choice to reach Atlanta. Kansas and Kentucky both fell short of the Final Four last season, but each legendary school is expected to bounce back and make a run this season.

College basketball expert John Fisher feels like another Big 10 squad besides Michigan State will represent the conference in Atlanta. "Maryland finally looks like a team that can go a long way. I do not think the Big 10 is that strong this year with the exception of top-ranked Michigan State. Even if they lose twice to them, they should get a favorable seed and bracket. Led by senior PG Anthony Cowan and sophomore and potential lottery pick Jalen Smith, these Terps could be Coach Mark Turgeon's best team since he took over. They have 5 solid sophmores and twin big freshman in the Mitchell brothers. This team will be dangerous and my pick to upset Kansas in the Finals," Fisher says.

There's normally a team that flies under the radar that makes a run to the Final Four as handicapper Joe Nelson predicts St. Mary's as that squad, "Four-point losers to Villanova in the NCAA Tournament last season, St. Mary's has nearly everyone back this season from the 22-win squad that beat Gonzaga in the WCC Tournament last season. There are enough power conference tests on the schedule this season to give the Gaels an attractive at-large profile this season should they wind up unable to earn the auto-bid again, starting with a big opener at Wisconsin next week."

Villanova is a team to watch for in the Big East, but college hoops expert Greg Smith believes Marquette can be the club to beat in that conference, "Marquette will have plenty of motivation after losing to Murray State in the first round of last year’s tournament. They return their entire starting line up including Markus Howard the sixth leading scorer in the country. Currently the Golden Eagles are a 40/1 shot to win the title. At that price it’s creating good value to invest in."

Final Four Predictions
Team #1 Team #2 Team #3 Team #4
Alex Smart Michigan State Florida VCU Texas Tech
Antony Dinero North Carolina Kansas LSU Michigan State
ASA Louisville Florida Kentucky Ohio State
Ben Burns Michigan State Duke Kansas Gonzaga
Brian Bitler Louisville Duke Kentucky Oregon
Chip Chirimbes Michigan State North Carolina Duke Kansas
Gary Bart Duke Michigan State Villanova Louisville
Greg Smith Duke Michigan State Louisville Marquette
Jim Feist Duke Gonzaga Michigan State Kentucky
Jimmy Adams Michigan State Gonzaga Utah State Kentucky
Jimmy Boyd Memphis Louisville Michigan State Kentucky
Joe Nelson Michigan State Louisville Florida St. Mary's
Joe Williams Kentucky Duke Louisville Michigan State
John Fisher Maryland Kansas Houston Louisville
Kevin Rogers Duke Kansas Xavier Ohio State
Kyle Hunter Louisville Florida Kentucky Michigan State
Matt Fargo Kansas Baylor Maryland Michigan State
Scott Pritchard Duke Michigan State Kentucky Florida
Scott Rickenbach Michigan State Florida Kansas Maryland
Stephen Nover Florida Michigan State Duke Gonzaga


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