At the start of the college basketball season, fans are looking for their team's story — a compelling narrative that will define their school's season. In the coming months there will be plenty of talk about conference records, coaching decisions, and off-the-court controversies. But, in the interest of balance, I've gathered the storylines guaranteed to not define any ranked team's season. Except Vanderbilt. Theirs is destiny.
North Carolina: Its rivalry with Tulsa has heated up after the Tar Heels stole the Golden Hurricanes’ athletic director Bubba Cunningham.
Kentucky: Walk-on Sam Malone hopes to garner playing time in order to become tired of Cheers-related puns in newspaper headlines.
Ohio State: Buckeyes will miss John Diebler’s jump shooting, singing.
UConn: Jim Calhoun hopes to force an even more inspirational player to give up a scholarship.
Duke: The Blue Devils are seeking to finally avenge former North Carolina coach Matt Doherty calling their cheerleaders “The ugliest in the ACC.”
Vanderbilt: Even Vandy's players think this ranking is ridiculously high and want it to be clear that they plan on getting a four-seed and losing in the first round as per usual.
Baylor: The school finally admits, “Yeah, I guess it’s a little weird that the guy who tried to take down Bill Clinton is our president.”
Kansas: Kansas players have mixed reaction to receiving dozens of fruit baskets from Marcus, the lonelier Morris twin.
Arizona: Kyryl Natyazhko figures there’s no harm in having a little cake now and then.
Alabama: Head coach Anthony Grant vows to achieve an almost Virginia Commonwealth-esque level of success.
Marquette: Wesley Matthews leaves increasingly more desperate messages asking why nobody’s doing three-point goggles anymore.
California: They may be ranked no. 24 in basketball-playing now, but they’re no. 1 in holiday spirit.
Missouri: What do you want me to say? Don Draper went there.
This post has been updated to correct an error in the Gonzaga entry
Jordan Carr runs the blog Better than Voodoo while trying to make it as a screenwriter in Los Angeles. Follow him on Twitter at @btvoodoo.
Follow Grantland on Twitter or check out Grantland's Facebook page.
Read more of The Triangle, Grantland's sports blog.
Contact us at email@example.com