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On March 8th, the Connecticut Huskies were manhandled 81-48 against the Louisville Cardinals in their last regular season game of the year. A month later, that same Huskies team is now on top of the college basketball world after defeating a star-studded freshman bunch of Kentucky Wildcats 60-54.
So, is Connecticut now the best program in all of college basketball?
Connecticut has been atop of the college basketball world for the fourth time in the last 16 years (1999, 2004, 2011 and 2014). In the past 16 years, only Duke, Florida and North Carolina won multiple championships (2 each). Over this span, Connecticut has won more championships than Michigan State, Louisville, and Kentucky combined (3). The Huskies have more championships in the last 16 years than Kansas has in their entire existence (3).
Despite all these facts, analysts on ESPN will answer this question by stating “they’re up there,” or “they’re in the conversation.” In the conversation? They should be the conversation. When looking at greatness and what team is the best, analysts and sports historians look at winning championships. Last I looked, Connecticut has won more championships than any other program in college basketball by double. So, just because the name across their jerseys doesn’t read Kentucky, Duke, Kansas or North Carolina, they can’t be considered the best? There aren’t supposed to be double standards in sports or in life, but in this case there is.
Next season, I am not going to say Connecticut is going to repeat, but when tournament time comes rolling around, and they are a one, two, three or even a seven seed, I am not betting against the Huskies making another deep run for another Men’s Basketball Championship.