Men's Basketball Teams to Beat

Which teams are the ones to beat going into the new college basketball season?
Basketball is still one of the major sports in the USA, and it has also picked up a big following around the world. While the excitement of the NBA may dominate most global headlines, college ball in America is thriving. Matches between the top college teams not only draw in plenty of fans but also see lots of sports gambling in PA and other states where betting on sports is now legal. While COVID-19 decimated the 2019/20 season, fans are already looking ahead to the new campaign beginning in November 2020. Hopefully, by then, COVID-19 will be under control, and fans can enjoy a regular college basketball season.
To get in the mood for the new campaign, it is worth looking at which college teams should do well next time out. While the upcoming NBA Draft may have some impact on players leaving individual teams, those shown below are looking strong whatever happens.
Many fans are picking out Villanova as one of the teams to watch in college basketball next season. They had a decent campaign last time out, and this saw them tie as the best team in the Big East with a 13-5 record. While lots could still happen before the new season starts, if they can hang onto most of the side who did this, they could be the ones to watch in 2020/21. As well as existing talent like Bryan Antoine, new face Caleb Daniels could make them even better with his 16.9 points per game stats.
While Villanova may lose top man Saddiq Bey to the pro game, others in the wings can come in as able replacements for him. The major coup for Villanova is that Jeremiah Robinson-Earl may be back for them once more next year. He will be even more critical with Bey likely to leave and will help make the side genuinely formidable.
The Zags also look likely to have a solid side next year and will be tough to beat. Last season saw Gonzaga tipped to perform well in 2019/20, and they did not falter. Many think that the same should happen again in 2020/21. Much of the focus is on the new recruit Jalen Suggs who, if he resists the NBA Draft in 2020, should make this exciting team even better. Suggs will fit in well with players like Joel Ayayi on Gonzaga’s perimeter and help them improve there. The frontcourt is where it looks very promising for the Zags. They are simply overloaded with talent there that could do some severe damage in the coming season. Drew Timme and Oumar Ballo, in particular, should be ones to watch and will help the team to do well again.
A lot of people fancy the Bears to have a good year based on two outstanding defensive players – Davion Mitchell and Mark Vital. This pair are two of the best defenders in college ball and will have a significant bearing on how well Baylor does. Other players will also have an impact. Power Forward Tristan Clark can be a real handful on his day, and if he has a good year, the whole team should flourish. After a 26-4 campaign last time out and with most of their roster intact, it seems you really cannot count them out in 2020/21. That is especially true if Jared Butler returns for another year rather than turning pro, and Scott Drew uses his talented roster to its full effect.
Virginia might have lost Mamadi Diakite in the Power Forward position, but this should not affect them much. Sam Hauser has already come in to replace him, and this should give the Cavaliers offense a boost. Although Hauser might not be as defensively sound as Diakite, others in the side can take up the slack. With players like Jay Huff and Kihei Clark there to run things on court for Virginia, many expect them to make a strong bid for the ACC title again. If Casey Morsell can up his game at Shooting Guard and their talented group of freshmen also play their part, the Cavs could be in for a great year.
2020/21 college ball season will be interesting
It is fair to say that the 2019/20 college basketball season was ultimately a frustrating affair due to the way COVID-19 curtailed it early. This means that all fans of college basketball will be eagerly looking ahead to the new season beginning. While there may be comings and goings in terms of each side’s roster before the season starts, the above teams look like the ones that will be competing at the top end of the NCAA tournament again.