The beautiful thing about March Madness is the inevitable upsets that occur during this crazy and often unbelievable month of college basketball. The outcome of these David vs. Goliath matchups can either bust your bracket or make you the office genius.
Now, if you’re smart enough to distinguish the contenders from pretenders— who so often permeate this tournament— then stop reading this article now.
It’s the annual question that always seems to stump us: Which Cinderella team will burst onto the scene with hopes of wedging its size 15 or so sneaker into that glass slipper called a national championship?
This title chase is not determined by some rigged computer system or a cartel of super leagues looking out for its own interest. Nope, the NCAA tournament is open to any team good enough to win its league or conference tournament.
And it works. Not only for Duke and North Carolina but for the mid-major teams as well. Although, is there really a need for 11 teams from the Big East Conference to get invites into the field of 68?
Fans want to see the little guy succeed. We need teams like Utah, George Mason and Butler to grab hold of destiny and ride it all the way to the Final Four —in truth, it's why we watch.
And if Cinderella never shows up to the ball, well, somebody needs to get crushed by Kansas, and it might as well be a team from a mid-major conference. At least that way, it’s not a rehashed game from the regular season.
But this year, you can bet there are teams from the Mountain West, the WAC and the Atlantic-10 that are ready to be giant killers. Some have been there all season long, while others are still creeping under the radar.
The qualifications are simple: Your team must have battle-tested seniors and get strong play from its guards. With that in mind, here are five teams that are poised to make a big splash in the Big Dance.