RECORD: 26-7. The Jayhawks were co-champions of the Big Eight Conference and won the Southeast Regional.
- COACH: Roy Williams.- STRENGTHS: A systematic attack rewards patience on offense, but Kansas doesn't shy away from fast-break opportunities provided by defensive pressure. Rebounding and free-throw shooting have been unusually strong in the postseason. Kansas has been emotionally primed by painting itself as an underdog throughout the tournament.
- WEAKNESSES: Few so far in the tournament. Even free-throw shooting is up to a respectable level - 68.2 percent in the last four games.
- PLAYERS TO WATCH: Emerging strong from the regional were forward Alonzo Jamison and point guard Adonis Jordan, but almost anybody in the Kansas cast can star in any game.
- RECORD: 29-5. The Tar Heels won the ACC tournament and the East Regional.
- COACH: Dean Smith.
- STRENGTHS: The Tar Heels' defense kept all but four opponents from hitting 50 percent from the field. When the game is on the line, North Carolina has an edge in experience: Seniors Rick Fox, King Rice and Pete Chilcutt all have played in a school-record 139 straight games.
- WEAKNESSES: Like the others in the Final Four, North Carolina won four games to reach Indianapolis, but the Tar Heels had the easiest road. They beat teams seeded 16th (Northeastern), ninth (Villanova), 12th (Eastern Michigan) and 10th (Temple).
- PLAYERS TO WATCH: Fox is the offensive leader, but all starters are capable of having big games. Guard Hubert Davis has been the most consistent offensive threat for the Tar Heels, averaging 18 points in the last five games.
- RECORD: 30-7. The Blue Devils won the ACC regular-season title and the Midwest Regional.
- COACH: Mike Krzyzewski.
- STRENGTHS: More athletic than given credit for. Experience of last year's trashing by Nevada-Las Vegas in title game made Duke tougher and more aware of handling pressure. Good-shooting team from perimeter (38 percent on three-point attempts) and free-throw line (72 percent). Well-disciplined in half-court game.
- WEAKNESSES: Rebounding and inside defense can be a problem. Christian Laettner shoulders almost all the rebounding burden with some help from Grant Hill. Patient teams can pound away against the Blue Devils inside.
- PLAYERS TO WATCH: Christian Laettner is a seasoned, skilled player inside. Grant Hill is an excellent leaper who can finish a break. Point guard Bobby Hurley must rebound from last year's Final Four misery.
- RECORD: 34-0. The Runnin' Rebels won the Big West Conference regular-season and tournament titles and won the West Regional.
- COACH: Jerry Tarkanian.
- STRENGTHS: Pressure defense eventually wears down opponents into mental lapses, creating classic UNLV spurts that ultimately decide outcome. Athletic ability and versatility create match-up problems for all foes. Tremendous blend of perimeter shooting with inside strength of Larry Johnson and George Ackles. Style of play on both ends often demoralizes opponents.
- WEAKNESSES: No one has found one this season.
- PLAYERS TO WATCH: All of them. When the Rebels are clicking, they're a sight, from the power of Larry Johnson inside to the slickness of Anderson Hunt and Greg Anthony to the slyness of Stacey Augmon.