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Parody in College Basketball: Teams to watch
By Reel Robinson

Over the last decade, we have seen the growth of small programs and unlikely contenders emerging out of the formally insignificant areas of college basketball. Although the big name schools have continued to cut down the nets year after year the threat of the smaller programs have become a relatively normal sight in the brackets. No longer are teams like Creighton, Gonzaga, Wichita State and others subjected to being mere good stories. The tables have turned in 2014, the field is so wide open one of these former mid major programs have a legit chance to take the title. Here are a few of the teams to look out for that you may not have seen throughout the season.

#24 Virginia Commonwealth (Record 24-7):

VCU is one of the dark horses in this tournament. Over the last few years they have been able to defeat big name schools and advance far in the NCAA tournament. This season they are ready to take the next step in their journey. Ranked #23 in AP poll Virginia Commonwealth has built an impressive resume for a mid-major team. A road victory over a top 10 team Virginia in their gym early in the season will be a significant plus for their seeding. A strong win against Saint Louis is another great addition to the resume. Led by returning guard Treveon Graham, VCU will be a team to reckon with wherever they fall on the bracket.

#18 Saint Louis (Record 26-5):

Saint Louis hails from the same conference as VCU and has been one of the strongest teams all season. Although their schedule is not as impressive as VCU they did beat them in a head to head match up. Saint Louis ran off 17 straight wins during the course of the season. This team is very good and was actually in the top 10 for a short period of time this season. Their top 15 defense makes it difficult for any team without veteran leadership to beat them. In the tournament I see them being able to navigate through their bracket led by that defense and experience of winning a few games during the tournament last year. Now ranked at #18 St Louis should get a reasonably good seed and be able to make a push deep in the tourney.

#14 Creighton (Record 24-6):

Creighton is led by the John Wooden Award nominee Doug McDermott and have an offense that can play with any team in the country in my opinion. One of the best shooting teams you will ever see from their point guard all the way to their center position. This veteran team is looking to go to the Final Four and farther. This being their first season in the big east hasn't slowed them down at all, having managed to defeat some of the big wigs of the conference convincingly. Two dominating victories over #3 Villanova has put them on the radar but it's their top 10 shooting percentage that will take them far in the tournament. There aren't many teams in the country with legitimate superstar senior players like McDermott. I want to see how he handles the pressure of being a contender and no longer a Cinderella team.

#2 Wichita State (Record 34-0):

Although this team went to the Final Four last year, they have retooled and brought that experience into 2014. They are attempting to rid themselves of the Cinderella moniker after running the table through the season. Their critics will say they went undefeated because of their schedule but the fact of the matter this team did not lose. They have an experienced basketball team and one of the fiercest defenses in the country. They will probably be the first mid-major team to receive a solid #1 seed. Depending on what Florida does in their conference tourney, Wichita State may even end up as the overall top seed in the tournament which would be unprecedented to say the least. This team is well coached and very discipline in how they approach the game. I will put my money on them against any team in the country when it comes down to it. Their experience is not matched anywhere in the country so it will be exciting to see how far they can go with this momentum from a tremendous season.

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