We are 18th.http://www.nbadraft.net/node/9879
I bet we can all agree Duke deserves to be higher up on this list. I could argue that we will be better than West Virginia and Minnesota. Maybe even UNC. Connecticut and Louisville definitely don't belong that far down.
"Every day, I wake up and tell myself 'I'm a basketball player.' But that's not who I really am. I'm just a fun-loving kid who just happens to play basketball." -Nolan Smith
Interestingly enough, the author is a Maryland graduate.
Yeah I wouldn't put much emphasis on that article because the author clearly didn't do very much research. His analysis on Butler is riddled with mis-information, so I'm not really surprised that his Duke evaluation is a big off as well.
Oh and I agree that Duke should be higher than 18.
There are some stretches on there, that is for sure. I don't think California, Michigan, or Oklahoma is that high. I think for us, we will consistently be ranked #10-18 throughout the preseason. I would certainly think this will be the lowest we will see Duke, especially when Dawkins becomes official.
I am going to just call it what it is (the #18 ranking), flat out stupid! Those guys should stick to handling individual talent and leave the team stuff to the guys on the DBR forums!
The last time I paid much attention to the college basketball landscape was Championship Night -- this one in particular made me want to look ahead -- and I considered teams like Kansas, Purdue, Ohio State, California, and West Virginia. They lost the least to graduation and/or the draft, and I would certainly rank all 5 ahead of Duke, at least right now.
Most people believe Duke is going to be roughly just as good as UNC next year. In fact, a lot of sports writers are predicting Duke to win the ACC. UNC is 6th in this top 25 poll, and I think they are underrated. Texas is number 4 in this poll and Duke beat them last year in the tournament. Texas loses their leading scorer Abrams and another key role player but brings in two highly rated players to replace them. Duke also loses their top scorer and a role player and brings in 3 highly ranked players. I'd give Texas a slight edge next year based on who they are bringing in, but it's crazy to think that they are ranked 4th while Duke is 18th.
Oh, and Oklahoma losing 4 of their top 6 scorers and still ranked 11th ahead of Duke is completely ridiculous. There's also no way that Michigan State will be 3rd at the end of the year after losing Suton. They bring in two very low rated centers that won't be close to being able to replace him. Remember when Michigan St. played UNC without Suton? They lost by 35. They lost by 17 (even though it could have been much more) with him. Michigan St. ranked 3rd in the country shows how wide-open it's going to be next year outside of Kansas and Kentucky.
Last edited by FireOgilvie; 08-05-2009 at 03:34 AM.
Okay, I've decided that I'm going to throw out the teams that I think should be ranked ahead of Duke next year. I have:
Michigan St. is probably 7th. These are my "First Tier" teams. After that, it's really wide open.
I expect KU to blow everyone out next year in the regular season. The same goes for UK. I think they'll be 1-2 all year. I would say that Texas has a shot (they definitely have the talent), but I don't think Rick Barnes can coach his way out of a paper bag.
Last edited by FireOgilvie; 08-05-2009 at 04:05 AM.
Notice the difference:
I appreciate your optimism, but I subscribe to the school of tempered expectations. It's still a couple of months before I would think about exact numerical rankings, but I suppose I could divide the top teams into tiers as follows:
Tier 1: Kansas, Michigan State, Villanova, Tennessee
Tier 2: West Virginia, Purdue, Kentucky, California
Tier 3: Ohio State, UNC, Texas, Duke
In retrospect, ranking Duke in 5 seed territory is probably too low. They could be all over the map as other preseason polls roll in, ranked anywhere from #5 to #15. This particular poll feels like an outlier.
I'm not as high on Kentucky as everyone else because I have a hard time visualizing so many new factors coming into play. On talent alone, I can understand a #2 ranking, but putting them above more known quantities at the preseason stage makes me extremely uncomfortable. They may end up being the 2nd best team in the land, but I'll need to see a little bit of success and dominance first before I believe in them.
I agree with you about Oklahoma; even ranking them 11th on paper feels like a faith-based leap at this point. And I agree with you that Texas and Duke should be closer in rank, though I have them both ranked much lower than you.
They definately seem to give too much credit to freshman. Freshman can put you over the top but you need to have that solid foundation/leadership. Kentucky is an intersting case study as they have quite the class coming in. I'll be following them curiously all year. Chemistry can be a tricky little gremlin, especially with guys that have one eye on draftexpress.
Here are a couple preseason polls from Andy Katz and Dick Vitale that have Duke 10th and 5th, respectively:
These pretty much go with my previous poll, although Purdue is ranked too high, IMO.
Also, brevity, I understand plurality of opinion. What I don't understand is how a team that wasn't getting top 25 votes at the end of the season suddenly catapults up 30 spots into the top 10 without any major additions. I'm sure Cal will be better this year just because they bring almost everyone back, but to suddenly put them into the top 10 makes no sense to me; especially without any contributor returning over 6'8".
Villanova..? They will really miss Cunningham, anxious to see how J. Wright steers this ship.
I know UNC has Ed Davis back, he has great upside, Thompson is OK at best, but Hansborough was the heart and soul and Lawson made that team go. No PG, no SG? I'm skeptical. And I hate Carolina so they can suck it.
Kansas should be number one, Texas will get a HUGE boost from Avery Bradley, love his game. If their James and Pittman get more consistent, look out.
Overall I feel we will have a Final Four with 3 of these teams in it and a dark horse.
A bad idea? Maybe. A good idea? Probably not. But an idea nonetheless
1. Too much faith in the unknown (freshmen, new coach, etc.)
2. Too much faith in the known (returning starters, program ready to take the next step, etc.)
Most people commit the first sin. I commit the second. In many ways, California 2009-2010 could be Notre Dame 2008-2009, a team that burned me in ways I didn't think I could get burned.
Cal is in my top 10 not because I think that's where they'll end up in March, but because I crave stability in a college hoops landscape that gets a little more depleted every year. I can't find 10 teams right now that I'm comfortable ranking ahead of them.
Even Kansas, the only team that we know looks as good on the court as it does on paper, isn't as good as the frontrunners of previous seasons. Should they win the 2010 title, people will consider them the best of a weak season, and a pale imitation of the 2008 squad.