5 Storylines 25 Days Out From College Basketball

Reignite the Excitement: Get Ready for College Basketball Season!

Nothing compares to the excitement of football season, but basketball is about to take center stage. With only 25 days left until the official start of the college basketball season on November 6th, fans across the nation are eagerly anticipating tip-off. The opening Monday will feature several Top 25 programs, including the preseason Top 5, in a thrilling slate of games. It all builds up to the Baylor vs. Auburn matchup on Tuesday, November 7th. As we celebrate the 25-day countdown, let’s dive into five of the most compelling storylines of the 2023-2024 season. Get ready, because as Jon Rothstein would say, And Here. We. Go.

The Rise of Zach Edey: A Dominant Force Returns
In the history of college basketball, it’s rare to see a player return as the reigning National Player of the Year. We had to wait 26 years for Ralph Sampson and Tyler Hansbrough and another 15 years for Oscar Tshiebwe. But now, we have Zach Edey, the 7’4″ 285-pound behemoth, coming back for his senior year at Purdue. Edey’s dominant performance last season for the Boilermakers, with staggering numbers of 22.3 points, 12.9 rebounds, and 2.1 blocks per game, earned him national recognition. Despite sweeping the awards, Edey has his eyes set on leading Purdue to a Final Four, after their disappointments in past NCAA Tournaments. Can he conquer that final hurdle and make a lasting mark on college basketball?

Coaches on the Move: A Shakeup in the Coaching Landscape
Last season, we bid farewell to legendary coaches like Mike Krzyzewski and Jay Wright. This year, we say goodbye to Jim Boeheim after his 47-year tenure at Syracuse, leaving behind a legacy of his patented 2-3 Zone defense. West Virginia’s Coach Bob Huggins also faced an unfortunate departure. However, on a positive note, we welcome back a polarizing Hall of Fame coach, Rick Pitino, to the high-major level as he takes the helm at St. John’s. With other prominent coaching changes like Mark Madsen to California, Ed Cooley to Georgetown, Micah Shrewsberry to Notre Dame, Chris Beard to Ole Miss, and Grant McCasland to Texas, the 2023-2024 season promises excitement and intrigue in the coaching realm.

March Madness Hangover: Can Cinderella Return?
In recent years, Cinderella teams that made remarkable runs in March Madness have struggled to maintain their success the following season. North Carolina went from the national championship game to missing the NCAA Tournament the next year. UCLA, a surprise Final Four team, fell in the Sweet 16 in their subsequent season. This time, three of the four reigning Final Four teams, Miami (FL), San Diego State, and Florida Atlantic, face the challenge of avoiding a similar fate. Despite high rankings in the preseason, the odds are stacked against them. Will they break the trend and return to postseason glory?

The Huskies’ Quest for a Repeat
Since the dominant era of UCLA in the late 60s and early 70s, only two programs have successfully defended their college basketball national championships: Duke in 1991 and 1992, and the Florida Gators in 2006 and 2007. Now, the UConn Huskies aim to join this elite group after their triumph as a number four seed last year. With key players departing, including Adama Sanogo and Jordan Hawkins, the Huskies will rely on players like sophomore center Donovan Clingan, Tristen Newton, and newcomers Cam Spencer and Stephon Castle. Coach Hurley’s team possesses a formidable lineup, and though depth may be a concern, they will undoubtedly be top contenders.

Coach Calipari’s Redemption: The Wildcats’ Rise
As we turn our attention to the Kentucky Wildcats, the expectations are as high as ever. Making the Final Four and competing for a national championship define success in Lexington. After a few disappointing seasons, missing the NCAA Tournament in 2021 and losing as a 15-seed in 2022, the pressure on Coach Calipari’s shoulders has intensified. However, with the top-ranked recruiting class and returning players like Antonio Reeves, the Wildcats are positioned for redemption. Fans can look forward to an exciting season filled with high-profile recruits and a renewed drive to capture a national title.

Get ready for an exhilarating college basketball season filled with captivating storylines, intense competition, and unforgettable moments. As the countdown to tip-off continues, the anticipation is palpable. So buckle up and get ready to witness the thrill of the game.


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