We’re here, finally: the last weekend of college basketball. All the buzzer-beaters, Cinderella stories and busted brackets have led up to the point where everything will be decided. The Final Four may be the biggest event in college sports and Ralphie Report is here to help you decide your rooting interests.
3. Michigan Wolverines vs. 11. Loyola-Chicago Ramblers (4:09 p.m. MST, TBS)
The case for Michigan:
Michigan is the closest thing we will see to an NBA-style team playing on an amateur level. They have three ball dynamic ball handlers in Charles Matthews, Muhammad-Ali Abdur-Rahkman and Zavier Simpson, a sweet-shooting small-ball forward in Duncan Robinson, and an even sweeter-shooting small-ball center in the ever cocky Moritz Wagner. Oh, and off the bench, they have buzzer-beater superstar Jordan Poole. With pick-and-rolls and chucking threes at a blistering pace, this is offense is fun as can be and it is such a blast to see them play. I don’t want them to lose, but their opposition may be impossible to root against.
The case for Loyola:
Only the third ever 11-seed to make the Final Four, Loyola is looking to do what George Mason and VCU couldn’t, and that is to finish off their miraculous run with a National Championship. The Ramblers have won a title before, way back in 1963 when they were the first team to break the “gentleman’s agreement” by playing more than two black players at a time. That team’s role in desegregating and working to equalize basketball is a perfect reason to forever give this team all your support. It becomes even easier to root for the Ramblers after seeing them win on an insane buzzer over Miami, beat Tennessee just before the buzzer, hang on for a one-point win over Nevada, then blow out Kansas State to reach the Final Four. Also, Sister Jean. This is our team of destiny and you should absolutely put on a scarlet and gold scarf to cheer them on.
1. Villanova Wildcats vs. 1. Kansas Jayhawks (6:49 p.m., TBS)
The case for Villanova:
Villanova is similar to Michigan in that they’re a hyper-efficient scoring machine, only the Wildcats are significantly more talented, better coached and ruthlessly more efficient than even the Rockets-esque Wolverines. Nova has the National Player of the Year in Jalen Brunson and he might not even be their best player. That best player could be Mikal Bridges, who plays like a mix between Klay Thompson and peak Richard Jefferson. They also have super human Omari Spellman swatting shots into the stratosphere and dunking people into the asthenosphere. That doesn’t even include Eric Paschall, Donte DiVincenzo or Phil Boothe, who are all stars in their own ways. This team is incredible to watch and college basketball doesn’t appreciate them enough. Rooting for them means rooting for one of the most well-run teams since the last Villanova Final Four team.
The case for Kansas:
You’re a Kansas fan and accidentally stumbled on this article.