Team: Virginia Cavaliers
Coach: Tony Bennett
KenPom Rank: 2
- West Virginia (Jimmy V Classic)
- North Carolina
- Louisville (x2)
- Miami FL (x2)
- Notre Dame
Impact Players: One standout in particular is Malcolm Brogdon, who averages 19 points per game while shooting 47% from the field. Brogdon is also the leading three-point shooter and free-throw shooter on the Cavaliers; he's one of the best players in the country.
Watch for main big man Anthony Gill. He is Virginia's main inside the paint player, he rarely shoots from downtown. Gill also leads the team averaging 6 rebounds per game.
How did they get in?: Tony Bennett's club was expected to do well all season long. After early losses to George Washington and January losses to Virginia Tech and Georgia Tech, the Cavs have rampaged through the ACC. Not surprisingly, they finished strong and despite falling short to North Carolina in the ACC Championship, were rewarded with a 1 seed.
How far can they go?: Many across the United States have Virginia in the Final Four, and tons have the Cavaliers winning the NCAA Tournament. These outcomes seem very likely just looking at the potential match-ups. Being in the Midwest region, Virginia can practically cruise to the Elite Eight. Being one of the most efficient teams in the nation offensively and defensively will help them advance deep in the NCAA Tournament.
Last time in NCAA Tournament: Despite high-hopes the Virginia Cavaliers didn't make it past the first weekend last season. Michigan State topped Virginia by a score of 60-54 en route to the Spartans' 9th Final Four appearance.