Orlando, Florida, will be a host city for first and second-round games in the 2023 March Madness Tournament. Sports betting in Florida is now legal, and Florida sportsbooks can expect plenty of action in the 2023 NCAA tournament.
Multiple Florida men’s college basketball programs may have a chance to play in front of a friendly home crowd if they can make the tournament next season.
Florida schools with a shot at the 2023 March Madness Tournament
The following schools look well-positioned to make the tournament in 2023:
- University of Miami
- Florida Gulf Coast University
- University of Florida
- University of Central Florida
The University of Miami was the only one of these schools to make the tournament this year. Miami will likely be back in 2023, but the other schools have young players and new coaches that could help them earn a spot in 2023.
University of Miami
The University of Miami men’s basketball team made the 2022 NCAA Tournament after cruising to a 25-10 record. In addition, they found success during tournament play. The Hurricanes defeated USC, Auburn and Iowa State en route to the Elite Eight. However, the squad from South Florida ran into the top-seeded Kansas Jayhawks and fell one win shy of a Final Four appearance.
Head coach Jim Larrañaga just received a contract extension that will keep him with the team until 2025.
Larrañaga has more wins than any other coach in Miami men’s college basketball history. Florida sports betting fans would be wise to bet on Larrañaga to lead Miami to the tournament again in 2023.
Florida Gulf Coast University
The Eagles from Florida Gulf Coast University (FGCU) finished the 2021-2022 season with a 10-6 record in the ASUN Conference.
This record wasn’t good enough to earn them a spot in the 2022 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament. However, a coaching change could change FGCU’s fortunes for next March.
The university recently hired former Penn State basketball coach Pat Chambers. Chambers led Penn State to a 21-10 record in 2020. Under Chambers’ tutelage, the Nittany Lions were ranked as high as No. 9 in the national polls.
University of Florida
The University of Florida (UF) men’s basketball team missed the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament for the first time since 2016. This year, UF finished 6th in the SEC, and coach Mike White left for Georgia at the end of the season. Like FGCU, the Gators will look towards new leadership next season to change the results.
The program quickly hired Todd Golden as the new head coach. Golden is coming off a season where he led the University of San Francisco to its first NCAA tournament appearance since 1998.
Golden will look to regain the former success fans have become accustomed to in Gainesville. Especially since the UF basketball program is replete with resources and prestige. If all goes right for Golden, he could immediatley compete for an SEC title.
University of Central Florida
The University of Central Florida (UCF) men’s basketball team expects big things from their two young stars.
Tyem Freeman played limited minutes this season but did shoot 57% on three-pointers. Freeman should have a significant impact next season if he can continue to shoot well.
UCF also got solid production from freshman Darius Johnson in the 2021-2022 season. Johnson started 13 games this year and should be a crucial part of the rotation next season.
The UCF basketball program will need significant contributions from these two youngsters if they hope to compete in the top-heavy American Athletic Conference. Houston and Memphis are perennial powers and both won games in this year’s March Madness. UCF will likely need to beat those powerhouses and win the conference tournament for a spot in the 2023 March Madness tournament.