Poll Attacks, Preseason Edition

 

The first USA Today Top-25 Poll was released on Friday, and North Carolina has just edged UCLA and Memphis for the top spot. This is the closest preseason poll at the top that I can remember in quite some time, and illustrates the lack of a dominant team this year in college basketball. Additionally, both the teams that played for the national title last year, Florida and Ohio State, did not make the poll. However, as always, there were some head-scratchers in this poll. Follow me after the jump for some good ole poll bashing.

 

At the top, I actually have no problem with UNC. They will probably be a consensus favorite to get to San Antonio. Actually, I was surprised at how close it was with Memphis. Memphis needs to prove it before they get a top three spot. Go further down the poll, however, and problems begin to emerge.

 

First off, Indiana at number 9? Really? Nothing they did last year warrants that ranking, even with the addition of Eric Gordon. The media has swung too far towards favoring stud freshman because of the display put on by Kevin Durant and Greg Oden last year. While kids like Eric Gordon and OJ Mayo may be good, they are not going to single-handedly carry their respective teams to the Final Four. Additionally, now that Kelvin Sampson is again in hot water over phone calls (you’d think he would learn the first time), there will be intense pressure on the team to succeed. To put it simply, I don’t think Indiana is a top 10 team right now.

 

But even more glaring than Indiana’s overranking is Texas A&M being ranked 14th. Not only did A&M lose their All-American in Acie Law III, they also lost their coach, Billy Gillespie, to Kentucky. Their best returning player, Joseph Jones, is not the type of player to take over the game as Law did so many times over the past two seasons. While they do have a good recruiting class coming in, Texas A&M has 7-seed, second round an out of the NCAA tournament written all over it. I have some other minor quibbles with the poll, such as Pitt being ranked, and Davidson not being ranked, but they can be easily rectified. We can rip the polls apart once we see some actual games.

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9 Comments

Filed under Big 12, polls are stupid

9 responses to “Poll Attacks, Preseason Edition

  1. Call me a homer or whatever, but I’ll take Pitt over Davidson right now. DeJuan Blair (fr., 6′ 7″, 240) is going to make up for the loss of Aaron Gray right away…he looked awesome in the scrimmage last weekend.

    Add in the fact that Levance Fields has never looked better, plus every other important player from last year is returning, and I think we deserve the preseason rank.

  2. Forgot to add that I hate preseason polls to begin with. Polls shouldn’t be released until a little bit into the season or else teams like UNC and UCLA get ranked high after mid-season losses just because they started the season high.

  3. chilltown

    Dennis, read my Big East preview for why I don’t like Pitt. Also, didn’t you guys just lose a big recruit?

  4. Because Fields had issues with the law? He’s been completely cleared and all charges have been dropped.

  5. Chilltown

    I just think that they are headed for a fall. We shall see when the season starts. I’d be happy to be wrong.

  6. You’re right, there’s a reason they actually play the games. (Talk about an overused cliche…)

    Keep up the great work with the site.

  7. Johninho

    From a Pac-10 perspective, sure, six teams is nice, but they’re woefully out of order. Arizona and Stanford are way too high, if they should even be in it, Oregon is ranked too low, and USC and Washington should be in this poll but aren’t.

    While I’m at it, stay tuned for my West Coast Conference preview, where I explain why Gonzaga’s about ten spots too low. It’ll be up around the weekend.

  8. chilltown

    Good point, I completely forgot to bash Arizona. Also, with Brook Lopez suspended even farther into the season, Stanford looks out of place as well.

  9. Johninho

    OK, I was slightly confused. USC is indeed ranked, but they’re listed in the Multi as Southern Cal, which to an alum of that school, is just about equal to not being ranked. Not that I’m a Trojan, but I know enough of them to know that’s how they would take it.

    Good point about Stanford – now Robin will have to score.

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