# Why Texas, Michigan State, Kansas, and UNC Will Reach the Final Four

Jordan SchwartzSenior Writer INovember 8, 2009

Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

Before the 2007-2008 college basketball season, I came up with a mathematical formula to create my very own preseason Top 25.  As it turned out, the top three teams in my rankings (Memphis, Kansas and UCLA) made the Final Four.  My number four team, Louisville, did not, but my number five team, North Carolina, did.

I thought the chances of lightning striking twice were slim, but I decided to apply the formula again for the 2008-2009 season.  The result was a financially successful March as I won my bracket pool because I had UNC beating Michigan State (my preseason top two) in the championship game.

So here are my projections for the 2009-2010 campaign.

The formula has three parts:

A. Previous season finish

The previous season's national champion (UNC) starts off with 65 points.

The runner-up (Michigan State) gets 64.

Losing in the Final Four (Villanova, UConn) gets you 63 points.

Teams losing in the Elite Eight get 61.

Teams losing in the Sweet 16 get 57.

Teams losing in the second round get 49.

Teams losing in the first round get 33.

And teams which missed the tournament, but are expected to improve this year, get 18.

B. Returning Impact Players

That starting number is then multiplied by the number of returning players that I believe will have a major impact on the team this season.

C. Impact Freshmen

Finally, I take that subtotal and add 10 points for every impact freshman joining the team this year.  Impact transfers fall into this category as well.

I have ranked the following 40 teams in order of the total points they receive according to this formula.  If you feel like I have left someone out or your favorite team should be higher up the list, let me know.

1. Texas (49*6+40=324)

Returners: Damion James, Dexter Pittman, Justin Mason, Gary Johnson, Varez Ward, Dogus Balbay

Freshmen/Transfer: Avery Bradley, Jordan Hamilton, J'Covan Brown, Jai Lucas

2. Michigan State (64*5=320)

Returners: Kalin Lucas, Raymar Morgan, Delvon Roe, Durrell Summers, Chris Allen

3. Kansas (57*5+30+315)

Returners: Sherron Collins, Tyshawn Taylor, Markieff Morris, Marcus Morris, Cole Aldrich

Freshmen: Xavier Henry, Elijah Johnson, Thomas Robinson

4. North Carolina (65*4+30=290)

Returners: Ed Davis, Marcus Ginyard, Larry Drew, Deon Thompson

Freshmen: John Henson, Dexter Strickland, Leslie McDonald

5. Purdue (57*5=285)

Returners: Robbie Hummel, E'Twaun Moore, JaJuan Johnson, Keaton Grant, Chris Kramer

6. Villanova (63*4+30=282)

Returners: Scottie Reynolds, Corey Fisher, Corey Stokes, Reggie Redding

Freshmen: Mouphtaou Yarou, Dominic Cheek, Maalik Wayns

7. Connecticut (63*4+10=262)

Returners: Stanley Robinson, Kemba Walker, Alex Oriakhi, Jerome Dyson

Freshmen: Alex Oriakhi

8. Louisville (61*4+10=254)

Returners: Samardo Samuels, Jerry Smith, Edgar Sosa, Terrence Jennings

Freshmen: Peyton Siva

9. Michigan (49*5=245)

Returners: Manny Harris, DeShawn Sims, Zack Novak, Laval Lucas-Perry, Stu Douglass

10. Duke (57*3+30=201)

Returners: Kyle Singler, Nolan Smith, Jon Scheyer

Freshmen: Mason Plumlee, Ryan Kelly, Andre Dawkins

t-11. Butler (33*6=198)

Returners: Matt Howard, Gordon Hayward, Shelvin Mack, Willie Veasley, Ronald Nored, Chase Stigall

t-11. Northern Iowa (33*6=198)

Returners: Jordan Eglseder, Adam Koch, Lucas O'Rear, Kwadzo Ahelegbe, Ali Farokhmanesh, Johnny Moran

t-13. Siena (49*4=196)

Returners: Edwin Ubiles, Ronald Moore, Alex Franklin, Ryan Rossiter

t-13. Dayton (49*4=196)

Returners: Chris Wright, Marcus Johnson, London Warren, Chris Johnson

t-15. West Virginia (33*5=165)

Returners: Darryl Bryant, Joe Mazzulla, Wellington Smith, Da'Sean Butler, Devin Ebanks

t-15. Mississippi State (33*5=165)

Returners: Jarvis Varnado, Barry Stewart, Ravern Johnson, Dee Bost, Phil Turner

t-15. Tennessee (33*5=165)

Returners: Tyler Smith, Wayne Chism, J.P. Prince, Scotty Hopson, Bobby Maze

18. California (33*4=132)

Returners: Jerome Randle, Patrick Christopher, Theo Robertson, Jamal Boykin

19. Xavier (57*2+20=134)

Returners: Jason Love, Dante' Jackson

Freshmen/Transfers: Mark Lyons, Jordan Crawford

20. Syracuse (57*2+10=124)

Returners: Arinze Onuaku, Andy Rautins

Transfers: Wesley Johnson

t-21. Maryland (49*2=98)

Returners: Greivis Vasquez, Sean Mosley

t-21. Texas A&M (49*2=98)

Returners: Donald Sloan, Bryan Davis

t-21. Oklahoma State (49*2=98)

Returners: James Anderson, Obi Muonelo

24. Clemson (33*2+20=86)

Returners: Trevor Booker, Demontez Stitt

Freshmen: Milton Jennings, Noel Johnson

25. Kentucky (18*3+30=84)

Returners: Patrick Patterson, Perry Stevenson, Ramon Harris

Freshmen: DeMarcus Cousins, John Wall, Daniel Orton

26. Oklahoma (61*1+20=81)

Returners: Willie Warren

Freshmen: Keith Gallon, Tommy Mason-Griffin

t-27. Georgetown (18*4=72)

Returners: Greg Monroe, Chris Wright, Austin Freeman, Jason Clark

t-27. South Carolina (18*4=72)

Returners: Devan Downey, Dominique Archie, Mike Holmes, Brandis Raley-Ross

29. Memphis (57*1+10=67)

Returners: Doneal Mack

Transfer: Elliot Williams

t-30. VCU (33*2=66)

Returners: Larry Sanders, Joey Rodriguez

t-30. Ohio State (33*2=66)

Returners: Evan Turner, Dallas Lauderdale

t-32. Utah State (33*2=66)

Returners: Jared Quayle, Tai Wesley

t-32. Illinois (33*2=66)

Returners: Demetri McCamey, Mike Davis

34. Missouri (61*1=61)

Returners: Kim English

35. Washington (49*1+10=59)

Returners: Isaiah Thomas

t-36. Gonzaga (57*1=57)

Returners: Matt Bouldin

t-36. Arizona (57*1=57)

Returners: Nic Wise

38. Georgia Tech (18*2+20=56)

Returners: Iman Shumper, Gani Lawal

Freshmen: Mfon Udofia, Derrick Favors

39. Kansas State (18*2+20=56)

Returners: Denis Clemente, Jacob Pullen

Freshmen/Transfers: Wally Judge, Curtis Kelly

40. Creighton (18*3=54)

Returners: P'Allen Stinnett, Kenny Lawson, Chad Millard