If you didn’t have No. 9 Wichita State coming out of the West Region, don’t be alarmed – not many people did.
However, the Shockers worked their way past No. 1 Gonzaga in the third round and then No. 2 Ohio State in the Elite 8, so there’s no questioning the fact that they have earned their trip. Wins over Pittsburgh and LaSalle split the Shockers’ contests against the regional top two seeds and just like that Wichita State has found themselves in their first Final Four since 1965.
There is no doubt that the Shockers are the odd team out in this year’s Final Four group, especially considering that three of the remaining programs began the season ranked within the nation’s top ten overall.
Now, with four teams remaining, one squad will win two more games and claim the 2013 National Championship; so let’s ask the question – Can Wichita State be that one?
Believe it or not, the Shockers lost four starters and their top five leading scores from a team earned a No. 5 seed within the NCAA Tournament a season ago. The Shockers were upset in the Round of 64 and head coach Gregg Marshall welcomed in a crop of newcomers. Clearly, they have adjusted and responded this year.
Wichita State is playing their best basketball of the season and their lineup features incredible balance, toughness and potential. The key to their Final Four contest against No. 1 Louisville is withstanding the Cardinals’ early attack.
If Wichita State can get past Louisville on Saturday evening, there would be no denying their potential to cut down the nets on Monday night.