This year’s Final Four field is a little different from years past. There are no “Blue Bloods” among the teams competing for the national championship. Unless you consider UConn one of the blue-blood squads. If you ask Miami head coach Jim Larrañaga, they certainly are.
The Huskies are the only team to have been on this podium before, but it’s been nine years since they pulled out the nets. San Diego State, Florida Atlantic and Miami are all vying for their school’s first title.
How would this relate to the College Football Playoff? The upcoming college football season will be the last time we see the field of four for the annual tournament to determine the national champions. From 2024, 12 teams will compete for the title.
In the spirit of having a unique field of four in the College Football Playoffs, College Sports Wire sought to compare how that field would compare to this year’s NCAA men’s basketball Final Four field.
Who would be the field’s UConn?
UConn Comparison: The Ohio State Buckeyes
The Huskies are back in the Final Four after failing to make the final weekend of the NCAA Tournament since 2014. That was the year they won the national championship. The last time that ohio state also won the national championship in 2014.
Some equations just fit and that’s why the Buckeyes play the role of the Huskies here.
Who’s coming out of the Mountain West like the state of San Diego did in hoops?
SDSU Comparison: The Boise State Broncos
Coming out of the Mountain West, the Aztecs took the NCAA Tournament by storm. While Boise State may not have the defense that San Diego State has shown, they are probably the best team to come out of the conference.
It would be Boise State’s first appearance in New Years Six since Bryan Harsin led the Broncos to a victory over Arizona in the Fiesta Bowl.
Does Conference USA have a candidate like Florida Atlantic?
Comparison Florida Atlantic: Texas-San Antonio Roadrunners
FAU head coach Dusty May is in his fifth season at the helm of the Owls after serving as an assistant with the Florida Gators. A comparison on the college football side within Conference USA would be the UTSA Roadrunners. Jeff Traylor is entering his fourth year and has set up the Roadrunners for their very own Cinderella run. He has led them to 23 wins over the past two seasons.
Traylor spent time as a Power Five assistant with the Texas Longhorns and Arkansas Razorbacks before taking over the program.
Who is the football version of the Miami Hurricanes?
Miami Comparison: The North Carolina Tar Heels
The Hurricanes came over the hump in 2023 after reaching the Elite Eight, eventually falling to the National Champion, Kansas Jayhawks last season. A team from the ACC that could make their first appearance would be it North Carolina tar chop led by quarterback Drake Maye.
A Final Four without a dominant conference in the mix?
How does this Final Four relate to what the CFP could deliver?
This year’s field does not have a single Big 12 team. The conference has won its last two titles and played for another in 2019. This year’s field is reminiscent of the 2018 championship game between Villanova and Michigan.
The SEC has won every CFP trophy since 2019 with Clemson winning everything in 2018 before the streak started.