The 2020–21 men’s college basketball season kicks off Wednesday, in what’s sure to be one of the most unusual seasons in the history of the sport. Already, the opening week schedule has been racked with COVID-19–related cancellations, including high-profile programs such as Baylor, Tennessee and Florida needing to shut down for a week or two.

The show is going on, though, beginning the slow march to what the sport hopes will be a successful return of the NCAA tournament in 2021 (albeit this time, in a bubble). While predicting anything in a year like this is probably foolhardy, SI’s college basketball staff, nonetheless, is giving it their best attempt. Who will the final confetti fall on in April? Which contender’s hype train is getting out of hand? Read on for our picks in a number of categories, including Final Four, breakout player, mid-major team to watch, one bold prediction and more.





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