The Villanova Wildcats are evolving.

Following their most recent NCAA Tournament victory over the Michigan Wolverines, some significant trends have emerged that demand respect and attention from the College Basketball world. Villanova is no longer just a ‘decent' program from the northeast. No, rather Villanova is on the verge of supplanting the College Basketball hierarchy and claiming their seat at the blue-blood table.


The blue-bloods of College Basketball (Kansas, Kentucky, UNC, Duke, UCLA, and Indiana) are known for their consistency year in and year out. These programs consistently find success in both recruiting and in March Madness. In fact, the blue-blood programs combined hold the top four spots for most total wins, National Titles, and Final Four appearances. Each school has an argument to make as to why their school is the best of the best (some with a better case than others), but for many years there as not been a newcomer into this elite group of programs.


Enter Villanova.

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Prior to the 2001 season, Villanova enjoyed modest success over their then 90-year existence. To that point the Wildcats had appeared in the Final Four three times, capturing their lone title during the 1985 season. However, since Jay Wright took the helm in 2001 Villanova has transformed into a national powerhouse.

Jay Wright has taken the Wildcats to three Final Four appearances during his tenure (2009, 2016, & 2018), and has led his program to two national titles (2016 & 2018). Since 2005, Villanova has made the NCAA tournament 15 out of a possible 16 times. Nearly 40% of Villanova's total NCAA tournament appearances have come from Jay Wright Led teams.

If you narrow the parameters down to just the last six seasons, Villanova suddenly becomes the most dominant program in the entire country. Per John Fanta of Fox Sports and Jon Rothstein of CBS Sports, Villanova's recent success is truly unmatched.


So, you may ask, why is Villanova worthy of blue-blood status? Is blue-blood status not a decades long accomplishment. Yes, indeed it is. The Wildcats have a modest history of success prior to the new millennia, so this certainly this disqualifies them? Right?



If you compare Villanova's body of work to that of other blue-blood programs, the Wildcats certainly hold their own. Villanova boasts 15 Elite 8 Appearances, 6 Final Fours, 3 Titles, 1,819 total wins, and a .657 winning percentage. Their national titles match that of Kansas, and their accomplishments eclipse all of Indiana's except for total national titles. Furthermore, as mentioned above, none of the current blue-bloods can match the Wildcat's recent string of success.


It is unfortunately unlikely that any of the existing blue-blood programs will ever admit Villanova has earned consideration for their elite club. However, if Villanova continues its run this season it may become impossible to ignore. If Jay Wright is able to lead the Wildcats to their fourth national title over the next two weeks, Villanova will have all but guaranteed their admittance into the the ‘blue-blood' realm.


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