Apparently, it’s also not too early for ESPN to look ahead to next year’s college basketball season. However, I must say that looking at these rankings did provide me with a little bit of a shocker:
Why? The Panthers return their entire core from a team that was in the Sweet 16 and only continued to get better as it got healthier. Levance Fields comes back at the point and DeJuan Blair and Sam Young are the anchors in the post. And there is still a chance that Mike Cook could get a sixth-year to come back from his severe knee injury.
Why not? There’s not much to pick apart here. The Panthers should be the pick to win the Big East with a team that won the conference tournament title despite being so injury-riddled.
Mr. Katz also firmly believes that the Big East will be the best conference in the country. He has Notre Dame at #5, West Virginia at #6 (under the assumption that Joe Alexander will be back, which is a fairly good one), UConn at #7, Syracuse and Georgetown at numbers 18 and 19, followed by Louisville at 21. That’s right, 1/3 of the top 21 teams in the country are from the Big East. I think that’s a little ridiculous (if we’re all beating each other up, nobody will be able to stay too highly ranked) but in terms of actual basketball talent, it’s not too far-fetched. Anyways, please don’t comment and yell at me about how these preseason rankings are meaningless (like the AP rankings are meaningful anyways), I’m just starting to look ahead to next year.