2023 March Madness Favorites and Overview


March Madness 2023 NCAA Tournament begins on Tuesday, March 14. Photo courtesy NCAA

Thomas Ithier III, Sports Editor

The March Madness 2023 tourney is almost upon us and with so many schools trying to be in the coveted top four, it’s going to be a fierce competition. This NCAA season has been one of the most exciting ones yet as several teams have risen up and made their way into the discussion for this year’s crown. And while the reigning champs, Kansas University Jayhawks, are still favored to win it all, some new teams are making their case as favorites gearing towards the start of the tourney. 

Out of the 68 teams to begin duking it out within the coming weeks the AP top 25 teams have the Houston Cougars sitting atop of the Men’s Basketball rankings. Houston is still on a hot streak from the prior two seasons where they produced a Final Four and Elite Eight appearance, picking up exactly where they left off, now emerging as favorites by many to win it all. 

A few other teams that are heavily favored are previously mentioned reigning champs Kansas Jayhawks who are favored to win it all just behind Houston. Coming up behind is the Alabama Crimson Tide who has been on a remarkable and strong run this year, currently undefeated at home and ranked second behind Houston in AP top 25 teams. UCLA Bruins and Purdue Boilermakers have as well stayed within the top favorites since the start of the season with UCLA similar to Alabama has remained undefeated at home, as well as the Boilermakers who are the top team in the Big Ten conference at the moment. 

The Arizona Wildcats, Baylor Bears and Texas Longhorns have the highest favorites to win the NCAA title outside of the top 5 previously mentioned. Although they are sitting outside the top 5 each team has made an extremely strong case for title favorites, especially due to their rise within these last few weeks. A few other teams worth mentioning as favorites are the UConn Huskies, Indiana Hoosiers, Tennessee Volunteers, Gonzaga Bulldogs, and the Marquette Golden Eagles as they continue to hang around as title favorites.  

Although realistically any of the 68 teams have a true shot at making their dreams come true and taking home championship gold, there are still many underdogs who are championship bound as much as the top men’s team is. Teams such as the Virginia Cavaliers, TCU Horned Frogs, or even the Kansas State Wildcats that are more than capable of going the distance this year with their sparks of offense and late game capitalizations to pull off a victory for the rest of their school to celebrate. All of this coupled with unexpected Cinderella runs—that March Madness has loved producing in recent years—makes fans even more excited for March 14, the start of March Madness 2023.