As the fervor of March Madness approaches, basketball enthusiasts are gearing up to witness a tournament where heroes are made and legends are born. The 2024 edition is an enthralling spectacle with buzzer-beaters, high-flying dunks, and nail-biting finishes.

Above all, it offers a stage for the brightest young talents to showcase their skills. In anticipation of the tournament, let’s talk about the five outstanding players whose combination of skill, determination, and leadership make them the ones to keep your eyes on.

These emerging stars are not just looking to make an impact but are ready to take the college basketball world by storm. Buckle up as we introduce you to the five players to watch out for in 2024 March Madness.

Zach Edey, Purdue

No one has shown more dominance on the court this season in college basketball than Zach Edey. The towering senior, standing at 7-foot-4, decided to come back for his final year after pondering over a venture into the NBA last spring, considering the insights provided by various teams.

This season, he came in with an enhanced fitness level, outpacing rivals in fast breaks and securing his spot on the court while refining his footwork.

Edey’s exceptional performance, averaging 23.3 points and 11.8 boards per contest and achieving six games of 30 or more points this season, has been pivotal to Purdue’s success. Adding to his impressive season, Edey notched his inaugural 3-pointer in last weekend’s game against Indiana, banking the shot.

Purdue’s rise to the No. 2 spot nationally and its strong prospects for a championship run with the best March Madness odds are largely due to Edey’s consistent production in the paint, where he remains effective despite frequent double or triple coverage throughout the games.

Dalton Knecht, Tennessee

Guided by the skillful play of Dalton Knecht, the Tennessee men’s basketball team clinched a convincing 88-68 win against LSU last February 8, coming off an impressive away game triumph against the No. 10 ranked Kentucky.

Knecht’s remarkable contribution in the game, tallying 27 points, grabbing seven boards, dishing out six assists, and adding three blocks and two steals to his stat line, affirms his crucial role within the squad.

His performances throughout the season indicate that he may be the catalyst for the team’s heightened performance in the 2024 season, paving the way for a more successful run in the NCAA Tournament.

Dalton Knecht’s influence on Tennessee’s performance underscores his critical position within the team and the promising direction for their success in the 2024 NCAA Tournament. His ability to boost the team’s achievements emphasizes the importance of his contribution to their future victories.

Hunter Dickinson, Kansas

Is it possible to argue that the Jayhawks’ stellar 12-1 record is being overlooked? It seems there’s a lack of chatter, possibly because the team, led by Coach Bill Self, was already anticipated to vie for the national title.

A central factor in their success is the impact player Dickinson, whose transfer was arguably the most notable in portal history. The ex-Michigan star chose to join the Jayhawks rather than teams like Kentucky, Villanova, and Maryland.

He delivers outstanding performance with an average of 18.5 points and 12.5 rebounds per game. He exhibits impressive efficiency by making 61% of his shots from the field and hitting 13 of 25 attempts from beyond the arc this season.

Devin Carter, Providence

Devin Carter of Providence is the next player to watch out for this year’s March Madness Tournament. Carter consistently ranks at the top in every key performance metric for the Providence team, illustrating his versatility on the court.

Scouts are particularly impressed by the robustness and determination he exhibits during play. Although he stands at just 6-foot-3, his rebounding prowess is noteworthy, with an average of eight rebounds per game, placing him among the top ten rebounding guards nationally.

Carter’s offensive skills have significantly advanced, largely due to his enhanced proficiency in shooting. During his initial year playing at South Carolina, he had a 26.7% success rate from the three-point line, averaging two shots per game.

Throughout his second year at Providence, this improved slightly to 29.9% with three attempts per game. He’s attempting six three-pointers per game and has achieved an impressive 38.8% in three-point shooting accuracy. He has become notably reliable in scoring off the catch and while dribbling.

R.J. Davis, North Carolina

In the 2023-24 season, Davis has emerged as a standout player, leading the scoreboard for UNC by averaging an impressive 21.0 points, the highest in the ACC. Davis’s sharp decision-making skills, especially when navigating the pick-and-roll play with Armando Bacot, and his proficiency in scoring from anywhere on the court have been pivotal.

He demonstrates heightened agility when driving to the basket, exhibiting the ability to finish with either hand competently and a noted advancement in 3-point accuracy, reflected in this season’s impressive 40.2% success rate from long-range.

Despite North Carolina’s recent upset by an unranked Syracuse on the road, the team’s defensive efforts have remained formidable throughout the year, often propelled by Davis’s quickness. In a standout performance against Miami on February 10, Davis delivered an impressive stat line of 25 points, seven rebounds, and five assists.

Final Thoughts

With the hype of the upcoming March Madness Tournament now through the roof, knowing who are the strongest players this year will help you predict the possible outcome of each game. Moreover, if you plan to bet on the NCAA MVP title, the information above will help you decide which player to vie for.