The season starts

College basketball season is just around the corner



Drew Timmie, of te Gonzaga Bulldogs looks to have a good 2022 season.

Braden Stueve, Staff Reporter

This college basketball season is going to be filled with so many exciting, and thrilling  games. There are so many teams that could potentially win it this year, some of the top contenders are Houston, Gonzaga, North Carolina, and Kansas. All the madness kicks off on Nov. 7th, and almost every Division 1 team will be in action. As I dive into these ranking I will be using the AP preseason poll for the official rankings of these teams

Some of the best games to kick off the college basketball season will #5 ranked Kansas Jayhawks vs. #7 ranked Duke Blue Devils. This could potentially be one of the best games of the year, both teams are very talented with mastermind coaches. Now onto more amazing games #2 Gonzaga vs. #12 Texas, #4 Kentucky vs. Unranked, but highly talented, Michigan State Spartans and #5 Baylor vs. #18 Virginia. All of these matchups are in the first week and a half of the college basketball season. There are plenty more amazing matchups throughout the first week that I didn’t name. Buckle in college basketball fans because we’ve got some fun and exciting games.

College basketball is filled with exciting moments when teams are underdogs, and turn out to be surprising, and have an exciting season. I think the biggest sleeper for the 2022 college basketball season is the Illinois Fighting Illini. Although they are ranked 23rd they have a very deadly roster, and they are definitely Final four caliber. To start off with they got senior transfer from Baylor, Matthew Mayer, they also got senior transfer from Texas Tech, Terrance Shannon. These two players are going to play a huge role in the Illinois defense, because they are stifling on defense, and are going to give opposing offenses a hard time. The best offensive player for this Illinois player will be freshman Skyy Clark. In highschool, Clark averaged 22.7 points, 4.9 assists, and 5.2 rebounds per game. Clark can do it all and will definitely impact this Illinois team as they look to have a big year, and ultimately win the championship.

Now onto the team that I think will perform best this year.

Most people think that the University of North Carolina will be the best team this year for many reasons. The first reason is their starting center Armando Bacot. Bacot averaged 16.3 points a game, 13.1 rebounds a game, and 1.3 blocks a game. The biggest piece to UNC’S success this year is their starting point guard Caleb Love. Love is a dynamic point guard that can do anything on the court, he averaged 15.9 points a game, 3.4 rebounds a game, and 3.6 assists per game. Now the person that determines the success of the team is second year head coach Hubert Davis, he is one of the best coaches in college basketball right now and will be leading this North Carolina team to another national championship appearance.

Sadly, there are teams that do not turn out to be as good as they are, and I am pretty sure that team will be the Auburn Tigers this year. Auburn had an amazing team last year and they finished the season with a 28-6 record. But the downside is they lost their 2 best players, they lost their starting power forward Jabari Smith who got drafted 3rd overall, and they also lost their starting center Walker Kessler who also got drafted in the 1st round with the 22nd pick. Auburn didn’t really get any recruits from the class of 22’ so they didn’t replace their two best players. They still have a lot of their team but it’s not the same without the dynamic duo of kessler and smith. 

Now onto the individual aspect of the game and the best players on the court. First most analysts are predicting  that the best  guard in the nation will be Marcus Sasser. He is a 6’2 195 lb senior at houston. Sasser averaged a team-best 17.7 points per game before suffering a season-ending foot injury 12 games into the season in December. Sasser looks to come back from his injury that you’re better than ever in his final year in college. Now onto the best forward in the nation for the 2022-2023 season Jalen Wilson. Wilson is a 6 ft 8 225 lb senior at the university of Kansas Wilson helped Kansas win its first national championship since 2008, in looks to be a huge role this year.Wilson averaged 11.1 points per game, 7.4 rebounds per game, and 1.8 assist per game, Wilson is gonna be the leader of this Kansas team and try to help them win back to back championships. Now onto the best center for the season Oscar Tshiebwe, he is a massive 6 foot 9 255 lb and is a senior at Kentucky. Tshiebwe averaged 17.4 points per game, 15.1 rebounds per game, and 1.6 blocks per game. Tshiebwe is the overall best player for the 2022-2023 season and is the frontrunner to win the Naismith national player of the year award.

Upsets are a huge part in college basketball, there is normally an upset every night in college basketball. The first upset that will most likely happen will be the #2 ranked Gonzaga Bulldogs losing to the unranked Michigan State Spartans, another upset that will most likely happen will be the Michigan State spartans on the victory side again beating the #4 ranked Kentucky Wildcats. Michigan State is going to start off the season hot, upsetting two top five ranked teams. The last big upset that will most likely happen to kick off the college basketball season will be the unranked Ohio State Buckeyes taking down the #7 ranke Duke Blue Devils, this game happened last year and Ohio State got the win. I think that they will take down the Blue Devils once again and Columbus will be partying hard.

Onto the last thing that I will be previewing, is a prediction for the 2022 college basketball season, it will be my preview of the final four. The first team that will be making an appearance is North Carolina, they are going to have a very dominating year, and a very tough team to beat. The second team that will be making a trip to the final four is Arkansas, they have a very good recruiting class coming in, and they will be a very deep team. The third team that will be going to Houston for the final four is Illinois, they have a very experienced team that could cause a lot of issues for the team in march. The last team that will be making it to the final four is the Kansas Jayhawks, they have a very well rounded experienced team. The Jayhawks might have the deepest team in America, and will be a hard team to beat.

College basketball season is here and it is a very highly anticipated year,and all college basketball fans should be excited. With all the great matchups in the first couple weeks, the biggest sleeper team with Illinois, the best team in the nation North Carolina, the most disappointing team Auburn, the top players in the nation, the upsets, and last but not least final four predictions.