UConn Leads Unlikely Group Into NCAA Men’s Final Four In Houston

The Final Four is taking place without a No. 1 seed in the mix. UConn, a No. 4 seed, is the favorite to leave Texas with the national championship. The UConn program has won four national titles. Miami, San Diego State and Florida Atlantic are making their first Final Four appearances.

Not a single No. 1 seed is present at this year’s Final Four taking place tonight in Houston.

It’s the first year that a Final Four didn’t include at least one No. 1 seed.

UConn, a No. 4 seed, is the highest seeded team among the four programs still in contention to win the 2023 NCAA men’s national championship. The Huskies are taking on No. 5 seed Miami in one semifinal while No. 5 seed San Diego State will face No. 9 seed Florida Atlantic University (FAU) in the other semifinal.

Without a single No. 1 seed in the mix, not even a No. 2, 3 or 4 seed, this appears to be the most wide-open Final Four in tournament history. It’s anyone’s national title to claim among the Huskies, Hurricanes, Aztecs and Owls.

However, history is clearly on UConn’s side. It’s the only program of the four to have experienced winning a national championship. UConn has won four national titles (1999, 2004, 2011, 2014). Furthermore, the sportsbooks like UConn as the favorite to win the national title. BetRivers has odds of -139 for UConn to win the national title while DraftKings has odds of -125 for the Huskies to clinch a fifth national championship in program history.

The Huskies (29-8) enter the semifinal matchup with the Hurricanes (29-7) as 5.5-point favorites. UConn’s 6-9 post Adama Sanogo has delivered in a major way throughout the season. He leads the team in scoring (17.1 ppg) and rebounding (7.5 rpg) while shooting 60 percent from the field and making 78 percent of his foul shots. Sanogo will be a primary concern for Miami’s defense.

Miami has advanced to the Final Four by leaning on the best group of guards among the Final Four teams. Isaiah Wong (16.2 ppg), Jordan Miller (15.4 ppg) and Nijel Pack (13.8 ppg) lead a balanced scoring attack for the Hurricanes, who like the Aztecs and Owls, are making their first Final Four appearance.

San Diego State (31-6) is a 2.5-point favorite over FAU (35-3), which is the biggest surprise of the foursome to reach the Final Four. Matt Bradley, a 6-4 senior, is the only Aztecs player averaging in double figures. He’s been good for 12.5 points per game while shooting 40 percent from the field. 

The Owls, who have three players averaging in double figures, have won 35 games this season by playing solid at both ends of the court. Johnell Davis, a 6-4 sophomore, leads FAU in scoring with 13.9 points while shooting 49 percent from the field. Vladislav Golden, a 7-1 center, has been good for 10.3 points and 6.6 rebounds per game.  

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