This Final Four lacks star power, but it's one of the most unique fields ever. I love seeing teams break through in an event too often dominated by the established powers.
South Carolina and Gonzaga got in for the first time. We haven't had two first-timers since 1979, when Indiana State, Penn and DePaul all did it. That was the year of the Magic Johnson-Larry Bird final, with Magic and Michigan State winning it.
Oregon made it for the first time since 1939, when it won the first NCAA tourney. It's North Carolina's record 20th Final Four. Roy Williams, who has led UNC to two NCAA titles, will be the biggest name in Phoenix.
He's in fine company: Gonzaga's Mark Few has won 81.8 percent of his games, second among coaches with 500 wins, one spot below Adolph Rupp and one ahead of John Wooden. Oregon's Dana Altman has 597 wins, at least 20 in 18 of the last 19 seasons. Fiery Frank Martin, who took Kansas State to the Elite Eight in 2010, has engineered a similarly stunning turnaround at South Carolina.
I like Gonzaga, a strong post-up team in a three-point shooting era, to win it all.