Saturday, November 11, 2006

Preseason Conference Rankings


1. UNC
2. Duke
3. Boston College
4. Georgia Tech
5. Maryland
6. Florida State
7. Virginia
8. Virginia Tech
9. Clemson
10. Wake Forest
11. Miami
12. NC State

Notes - The middle of the pack is the trickiest here. 5-8 will be closely knit, and only 2 of those teams will probably go to the NCAA tourney. The others will make serious noise in the NIT.

BIG 10

1. Ohio State
2. Wisconsin
3. Michigan
4. Illinois
5. Indiana
6. Penn State
7. Michigan State
8. Purdue
9. Iowa
10. Northwestern
11. Minnesota

Notes - Wisconsin will be a failure for those of you who have them #4 in the nation. Ohio State's talent will come together through the season, and they'll truly flourish with the debut of Greg Oden. Michgian and Illinois are both very good 3rd place candidates, while Indiana is a bit overrated by most. I like Penn State's chances as a sleeper team. I don't really have a strong feeling about MSU, Purdue, and Iowa; those 3 could all trade places. The bottom two are clear, though.

BIG 12

1. Kansas
2. Texas A&M
3. Oklahoma State
4. Texas
5. Texas Tech
6. Kansas State
7. Baylor
8. Oklahoma
9. Missouri
10. Colorado
11. Iowa State
12. Nebraska

Notes - Kansas should be close to dominating this league. They should only really fear Texas; as they could pose a serious threat if their youth can all come together. I fear that they'll face inconsistency. That's why Texas A&M and Oklahoma State are ahead of them. I think Texas A&M will be consistently good but never great, and Oklahoma State could steal some huge wins early in the season. Texas Tech and Kansas State are close, too, but I think Bobby Knight's Red Raiders are ready for the Big Dance. Colorado's fate hangs in Richard Roby's supporting cast. They could fall to last.


1. Georgetown
2. Pittsburgh
3. Syracuse
5. Villanova
6. Marquette
7. Louisville
8. St John's
9. DePaul
10. Cincinnati
11. Providence
12. Notre Dame
13. West Virginia
14. Rutgers
15. Seton Hall
16. South Florida

Notes - Georgetown over Pittsburgh and St John's over DePaul. Those were my two bold predictions that I'm standing by, though I've had my doubts. Syracuse is a clear #3 for me; I don't know where people who have them 7th are coming from. UCONN is a clear 4th. Villanova and Marquette will go down like this - VIllanova will have a better conference record and more consistency, Marquette has the ability to make a bigger splash on the national scene.


1. Arizona
3. USC
4. Washington
5. Oregon
6. California
7. Stanford
8. Arizona State
9. Oregon State
10. Washington State

Notes - Arizona is a top four team. UCLA is a top 10 team. The rest are scrambled all over the place. I like Oregon more than Washington; however, it comes down to consistency again. Oregon will show flashes of greatness, and they'll show up in March. Washington will be consistent in the season then fall apart in the tourney. I just have an overall good feeling about USC though. Cal feels underrated in the bottom half of the conference, but the rest don't.


1. Florida
2. LSU
3. Alabama
4. Kentucky
5. Tennessee
6. Mississippi State
7. Vanderbilt
8. Arkansas
9. Georgia
10. South Carolina
11. Auburn
12. Ole Miss

Notes - The top 5 and the bottom 7 have a clear line between them. Maybe that can be blurred by the end of this season. The top 3 are very close, especially LSU and Alabama. Kentucky will be surprisingly good, and Tennessee will disappoint without 3 starters from last year. Chris Lofton can't do it all himself. Mississippi State will be a "flashes of greatness" team who's consistency will hurt them. Vandy could be really good, while Arkansas will disappoint.


1. Xavier
3. Charlotte
4. St Louis
5. George Washington
6. Fordham
7. Dayton
8. St Joseph's
9. Temple
10. LaSalle
11. Rhode Island
12. Richmond
13. St Bonaventure
14. Duquesne

Notes - UMASS and Charlotte are interchangable. St Louis is a clear 4th and George Washington a clear 5th. Xavier clearly has the most talent. The bottom 4 are really bad; I had to put Duquesne last because their team was pretty much depleted further with a tragic shooting.

1. Hofstra
2. Old Dominion
3. George Mason
4. UNC-Wilmington
5. Drexel
6. Virginia Commonwealth
7. Towson
8. Northeastern
9. Georgia State
10. Delaware
11. William & Mary
12. James Madison

Notes -The top half is very strong. The bottom half is really, really bad. The bottomhalf is in complete shambles.


1. Memphis
2. Houston
3. Rice
4. UAB
6. Tulsa
7. Marshall
8. SMU
9. UCF
10. Tulane
11. East Carolina
12. Southern Miss

Notes - Memphis will have a dominant season, Houston may grab a tourney bid by winning the conference tourney. Rice will rise on Morris Almond's wings. UAB and UTEP are closely knit.


1. Akron
2. Toledo
3. Ohio
4. Kent State
5. Northern Illinois
6. Western Michigan
7. Miami OH
8. Ball State
9. Buffalo
10. Bowling Green
11. Eastern Michigan
12. Central Michigan

Notes - The top 7 is very good in the MAC. Without the burden of meeting expectations, Ohio may surprise. Akron and Toledo seem to be above the rest, but not by much. WMU's young talented squad could pull off some upsets, while Northern Illinois will be good after seeming "too good" last year.


1. Creighton
2. Southern Illinois
3. Wichita State
4. Missouri State
5. Bradley
6. Evansville
7. Northern Iowa
8. Drake
9. Illinois State
10. Indiana State

Notes - Bradley won't drop to 9th after being a Sweet 16 team last year. The loss of Patrick O'Bryant hurt them but it didn't completely destroy the school's dignity. Creighton will be consistently good while Southern Illinois should make an impact in March. Missouri State is hungry after being snubbed from our brackets last year.


1. San Diego State
2. Air Force
3. BYU
4. New Mexico
5. Utah
7. Colorado State
8. Wyoming
9. TCU

Notes - San Diego State is easily the best team. Air Force and BYU will compete for a bid in March. New Mexico and Utah will be close, and both will ultimately have successful seasons. This conference isn't half as good all-around as some people are hyping it up to be.


1. Nevada
2. Fresno State
3. New Mexico State
4. Utah State
5. Hawaii
6. Boise State
7. LA Tech
8. San Jose State
9. Idaho

Notes - Nevada will dominate, Fresno State and New Mexico will compete for 2nd. A lot of mid-major conferences have this storyline. Utah State, Hawaii, and Boise State round out the winning records of the conference, as the rest could be in for ugly seasons.


1. Gonzaga
2. Loyola Maramount
3. St Mary's
4. San Francisco
5. Santa Clara
6. San Diego
7. Portland
8. Pepperdine

Notes - Without the stache, Gonzaga won't be as good, but they'll still be head and shoulders above the rest of the conference. The only way another team could sneak into the NCAA's is if Loyola Maramount, St Mary's, or San Francisco can step it up and upset them in the conference tourney.

No comments: