2022 March Madness Preview


Chris Jones

The defending champion Baylor Bears once again enter the tournament as a 1 seed looking to repeat as NCAA champions.

Quinn Sheehan, Contributing Writer

The nation’s favorite tournament is back for another year and this time with full capacity crowds for the first time since 2019. College basketball fans are ready for another March full of insane buzzer-beaters and unexpected upsets which will begin on Tuesday and Wednesday with the 4 play-in games before officially commencing on Thursday afternoon. The Baylor Bears took home the trophy last season in Indianapolis but they will have to complete the six-game gauntlet, once again to be the first team since the Florida Gators in 2006 and 2007 to repeat as champions.
Just like last year, the Gonzaga Bulldogs enter as heavy favorites which turned out well for them last season until Baylor routed them in the National Championship to end their hopes of an undefeated season. The Bulldogs do not enter undefeated this time but, they are still an experienced and talented team with the addition of freshman Chet Holmgren only adding to their talent. The defending champion Baylor Bears enter the tournament as one seed once again and despite losing some key players to the NBA Draft, they are still a legitimate threat to repeat. Rounding out the one seeds are the Kansas Jayhawks, who are wishing to capture their 4th National Championship in their school’s storied history, and a revitalized Arizona Wildcats team looking to win their first National Championship since 1997. Other teams to look out for include familiar faces such as the Duke Blue Devils, Kentucky Wildcats, and Villanova Wildcats as well as recently emerged teams such as the Auburn Tigers, Saint Mary’s Gaels, and Providence Friars.
Of course, each season major upsets and crazy cinderella runs happen which ruin millions of brackets across the nation. Last season, the UCLA Bruins made a run to the Final Four despite being an 11 seed, so there is hope for any team. Early popular picks for these kinds of teams for this year’s tournament include the Loyola Chicago Ramblers, Virginia Tech Hokies, and Rutgers Scarlet Knights. These cinderella runs come at the expense of higher-seeded teams who will leave the tournament early in disappointment. Teams that many believe could be victims of an early upset include Providence, Auburn, and Arizona.
With the Final Four and National Championship to be played in what will be a sold-out Superdome in New Orleans, excitement ramps up, and millions across the country and the world make their picks. Hingham High senior Tim McKay reveals his Final Four picks saying, “I got Gonzaga, Purdue, Villanova, and Kansas and I have Gonzaga winning because of Chet Holmgren”. As for a team who will fall short of expectations early in the tournament, HHS senior John Steele says, “I think it’s Auburn as I can see them losing in the first round to Jacksonville State”.
This March promises many more inspiring as well as heartbreaking moments and crazy comebacks, and unexpected upsets for both players and fans alike. The whole country and world can rejoice this Thursday afternoon when the tournament officially kicks off with Colorado State playing Michigan in the tournament’s first game.