The AP and Coaches released their preseason rankings. In the AP there are 48teams that received votes. AR was not one. In the Coaches Poll we received two votes and are listed 46th. Too high or too low, and how will our guys respond?
I was surprised we didn’t get any votes. I think most voters are lazy and don’t do a ton of research. A lot of voters put a ton of stock in the fact we lost Hannahs, Kingsley, and Manny. I actually look at the fact those 3 scored 21 points in the UNC game. None of them played very well and we should have won the game. College hoops is centered around guard play and our backcourt should be strong. I bet we end of finishing quite a bit higher than the pre-season prognostications.
I was working on a big post this morning on Sports Illustrated’s complete ranking of college hoops, from 1 to 351. (That’s Arizona and Mississippi Valley State, in case you’re wondering). But my computer ate it. Cliff’s Notes points:
They used some kind of advanced metrics to make their projections. We were #49 nationally, #8 in the SEC. The worst projected at-large team is Indiana at #46, so it wouldn’t take that much of a jump to make the Dance. But that seems to be in line with the votes in the poll.
Projected conference record is 9-9. They project Macon, Barford and Beard to all score in double figures. They expect Gafford to average 8 points and almost 7 rebounds. Here’s their SEC preview with details on all 14 teams: <LINK_TEXT text=“https://www.si.com/college-basketball/2 … ael-porter”>https://www.si.com/college-basketball/2017/10/25/sec-preview-kentucky-alabama-michael-porter</LINK_TEXT>
Our NC schedule is really good. Only one cupcake outside the top 200, Oral Roberts. UNC is 18th, Minnesota is 26th. OU is 40th. And, of course we could get Michigan State (#2) in PK80. Or UConn (#57). Or Oregon (#32). Worst team there is DePaul (#103).
There are SIX SEC teams projected to be better than OU. Moo U is just ahead of us at #48.
Here’s the complete list: <LINK_TEXT text=“https://www.si.com/college-basketball/2 … ions-seeds”>https://www.si.com/college-basketball/2017/10/31/ncaa-351-team-preseason-rankings-projections-seeds</LINK_TEXT>
Hopefully, we will be relevant in college basketball in the next 2-3 years. It has been a long time since we were a factor. It is hard to believe we can’t get a foothold in this game. We have very good facilities, a good coach and fans who are looking for a reason to come back and watch. I am one of them.
I am fired up by the better recruiting recently and look forward to watching us play this year. Coach Anderson’s comments about contending for a championship are interesting. He apparently thinks we are ready to compete for an SEC Championship soon. We fans are ready. It has been a long wait.
I’ll be honest, with the snubs in the rankings and player rankings (neither Barford or Macon we’re ranked in the Top 100 players) I can see them (players and team) playing with a chip on their shoulder.