Preseason NCAA Basketball Top 25
1) North Carolina
-I told my roommate the other day that Tyler Hansbrough was the next Karl Malone. Then, I mentioned that he was almost too explosive to be the next Karl Malone. He suggested that he may be the next Elton Brand. I agree.
-I honestly put Hansbrough up there with Tim Duncan, Jason Williams (the black one), Larry Johnson, Shaquille O’Neal, and Corliss Williamson as the most dominating college basketball players in my basketball-viewing lifetime. Does anyone else have any other suggestions? If I had seen more of Danny Manning, he’d be on here. I really only saw Glen Rice during his tourney run. No Big 10 titles for Chris Webber means he doesn’t get on this list. Christian Laettner doesn’t make it because he makes me sick and because he wasn’t even the most dominant player during his career. Shaq was more dominant. Grant Hill was a close call. Runs with Three Horses, I’m waiting for a Monster Mash argument. In fact, if I was going to put a Kentucky player on this list, I’d give it to Tony Delk. And no, I didn’t forget about Allen Iverson.
-I used to think I had a Jayhawk fetish. As it turns out, I have a Roy Williams fetish.
-Oh, and why UNC over Florida? Because I think Hansbrough is amazing, and I can’t stand Joakim Noah (or Billy Donovan).
-Joakim Noah is not going to be that good of an NBA player.
-Al Horford is going to be a better NBA player. Although I may be backing off my second coming of Chris Webber comparison.
-For some reason, I can’t stand anything about Florida athletics, including that idiot of a backup quarterback, Tim Tebow.
3) Ohio State
-I almost put this team at number 2.
-They would be pretty darn good without all of the freshmen.
-I really do believe that Thad Matta is one of the five best coaches in the nation. In fact, if I was an AD, he’d be my pick to start my program from scratch (in a close call over Lorenzo Romar).
-I don’t think Bill Self is that great of a coach.
-Brandon Rush is incredibly overrated. Do we really need to get this worked up over another Rush brother?
-Julian Wright is incredibly underrated. Shades of Magic Johnson but looks like James Worthy.
-I wish I hadn’t ranked them this high, and that’s not just because of the early loss.
-I’m starting to realize that outside of the top 3 I really don’t feel that strongly about any of these teams. In fact, starting with Arizona, I would not be absolutely shocked if any of these teams (5-25) play like a bunch of jerks this year and fail to make the tournament. It’s that wide-open.
-This Marcus Williams kid isn’t that good.
-I’m kind of an Ivan Redenovic fan. Seriously.
-How over-hyped was Mustafa Shakur.
-Ben Howland is a top 5 coach.
-I really like Arron Afflalo, but I think he’s overrated. Same goes for Mbah a Moute, but I don’t even really like him.
-I wasn’t a big Jordan Farmar fan, but I think this team is really going to miss him.
-UCLA has great uniforms. Outside of Indiana and Xavier, they may be the best.
-Is Josh Shipp kind of a combination of a number of nondescript, underachieving, me-first gunners that have suited up for the Bruins since the Harrick era?
-I can’t believe I have this team at 6.
-I know this is supposed to be a rebuilding year, but this is also UCONN. And even though I hate Jim Calhoun, he just reloads every single year. If I had it to do all over again, I might rate this team at the 4 spot.
-Is anyone else confused why that big, bald white guy that looks like he could be in his mid-30s is on this team? He’s actually pretty decent, but it’s just really weird. So weird, in fact, I’m not going to bother looking up his name.
-They’re going to win about 1,000 games in C-USA, solidifying their spot in the top 10.
-Beyond the top 8, I honestly have no idea.
9) Boston College
-It’s like Sean Williams skipped the whole incredibly cool college version of Drew Gooden part of his career and skipped straight to the incredibly uncool NBA version of #90. It’s not that I think their games are similar—they just look alike.
-Why did I rank this team 9th?
-I wish I had rated this team ahead of Boston College.
-I think a combination of an experienced Tasmin Mitchell and Magnum Rolle can somewhat replace Tyrus Thomas.
-Big Baby is going to be a very good NBA player.
-The only question with this team is at PG.
-Alando Tucker is one hell of a college basketball player.
-Kammron Taylor is the second coming of Chris Rock.
-Sports Illustrated did this thing for their College Basketball Preview Issue where they issued like 5 different covers. The whole thing was about how this is the return of the big man. So, on each cover, a post player is standing in front of a smaller player who is peaking out from behind the post player. So, for example, I received the issue with Reyshawn standing behind Tyler Hansbrough. Well, one issue has Alando Tucker peaking out from behind Brian Butch. The point of this paragraph: Brian Butch was on the cover of Sports Illustrated.
-They shouldn’t be ranked this high. All they have is Josh McRoberts and Gerald Henderson. By the way, Gerald Henderson is going to be incredible.
-I watched them play some crappy team on TV last week, and they looked horrible.
-It’s hard to hate (or write about) this Duke team because they’re so damn boring.
-Nick Fazekas is the only reason this team is this high.
-Well, there is one more reason: I am an idiot.
-I love John Thompson III, and I love this team, but they have no guard play.
-Watching this team play is great. They play so intelligently it makes the rest of college basketball look like the And 1 tour.
-Patrick Ewing, Jr. is suiting up for the Hoyas this season. That should be interesting…and funny. He falls down so much it’s like he playing on roller skates.
15) Wichita State
-Unlike my Nevada pick, I feel OK about this one. They return so many key players.
-This is a pretty athletic mid-major. Unfortunately, it’s also a pretty short one. Therefore, they will undoubtedly be dominated by players like Brian Butch.
-I was really high on Jamareo Davidson last season, but he seems to lack fire.
-Davidson, Ronald Steele, Alonzo Gee, and Richard Hendrix: it’s hard to find a better foursome. The question is: do they have anything else?
-For some reason, I was higher on this team last season than I am this season. That makes about as much sense as ranking Nevada at 13.
-I hate it that IU hired Kelvin Sampson. In the long run, I think it’s going to be bad for Hoosier basketball. But, he is an X’s and O’s guy, and they’re going to get some wins.
-D.J. White is going to be great (and so is his Tall T).
-If A.J. Ratliff goes off this year, so will Indiana.
-Rodrick Wilmont is the homeless man’s Michael Jordan.
-I don’t know that I can put into words how much I am going to miss watching Robert Vaden in a Hoosier uniform. The second coming of Chuck Person but without the idiocy.
-The Big 10 and the SEC are head and shoulders better than the rest of the country. The Big East is a little down, and I rank it third. Followed by the ACC. The Big 12 and Pac-10 may as well be mid-majors this year. OK, that may be taking it a little too far.
-The big question now is: Bruce Weber can win with Bill Self’s talent, but can he recruit at the level that the Fighting Illini faithful are accustomed to? I think Weber is a great coach, but I don’t know if he can.
-Call me crazy, but I think this team has a great deal of talent. But they’re all injured all of the time.
-I though Palacios was going to be special…maybe even in the mold of a Mashburn. Apparently not.
-If Padgett can stay healthy, …who am I kidding?
-Brandon Jenkins is a very good and extremely underrated college basketball player.
-Derrick Caracter is the key to the season…a very large, soft, moist key that doesn’t like to work very hard.
-I think Pitino is going to get the most out of Earl Clark.
-I haven’t been able to watch any of the The Ville’s exhibition games yet. I have looked at the box scores. It scares me that, when I look at the box scores, I think, “Something must have happened. There must have been 2 buses headed to the game, and one of them got a flat tire and didn’t make it. So, they only had 8 of the guys at the game. Or maybe a whole bunch of guys got suspended for something.” I’m not really sure what Rick’s doing right now.
20) Michigan State
-I don’t care who’s on the roster. Like UCONN, this team is always tough. However, I must admit that I am more than a little sick of commentators talking about how tough the Spartans are. The whole football practice thing is just really stupid.
-I love green, but I hate their uniforms.
21) Southern Illinois
-Runs with Three Horses told me he thinks Creighton is very overrated. I would agree. Sports Illustrate ranked them 13th. That’s like ranking Nevada 13th.
-The Salukis are the kings of the MVC, which makes me feel bad that I ranked Wichita State ahead of them. That reminds me: Salukis is one of the best nicknames in the country.
-I hate how talented Kentucky’s freshmen are. This honestly could be one of the most underrated recruiting classes in recent memory.
-Jodie Meeks is already a smarter player than Joe Crawford. By the way, Crawford gets my vote for lowest basketball IQ among all starters on any of these teams in the Top 25. It’s as if he hasn’t learned anything in the past 2 years. Meeks, on the other hand, is as smooth as a baby’s ass.
-Kentucky is probably better than 22. It pains me to admit that.
-The only thing that can derail UK from bouncing back from a disappointing season: the veterans not realizing that the freshmen are already better than them.
-This is the most overrated team in the country.
-Aaron Gray is good and all, but he’s not the type of guy that’s going to rally the troops and take the lead. If Gray is Pitt’s leading score, the Panthers are in trouble.
-I wish I hadn’t even put this team in the Top 25. I would replace them with Xavier.
-I underestimated the Zags. After watching them on TV a couple of times, I would definitely have this team in the top 15. They’re for real.
-The whole Adam Morrison crying during the game last year thing, that was ridiculous. He’s a big damn idiot.
-Josh Heytvelt is one hell of a college basketball player. Already better than J.P. Batista.
-Like Pitt, very overrated.
-Kevin Durant may be good, but they pretty much lost everybody from last year’s team.
-The only thing that’s going to keep this team in the top 25 is the fact that the Big 12 is way down this year.