The newly formed American Athletic Conference had its first basketball media day today in Memphis. The American is comprised
of schools that were kicked out of the old Big East and a few other schools from Conference USA. The conference looks to be a lock to put at least four maybe five teams into the NCAA Tournament in their first year. But before the tournament you must first play the season and before the season comes the preseason poll.
The AAC preseason poll was topped by defending national champions Louisville who received all first place votes. The preseason poll for the AAC is as follows; Louisville, UCONN, Memphis, UC, Temple, SMU, Houston, South Florida, UCF and Rutgers.
Louisville and Rutgers will only be in the AAC for one season as Louisville heads to the ACC in 2014 while Rutgers will depart to joining the Big 10.
There are no real surprises in that, Louisville is the best team at the moment in the AAC. Where it becomes a bit of a toss up is for the second spot. UCONN, Memphis and UC are all about equal in terms of talent and potential. UCONN has Shabazz Napier returning to lead the Huskies this season. Is he enough to take them to the AAC championship game though?
Cincinnati returns a team led by senior Sean Kilpatrick who has added highly touted freshman Jermaine Lawrence this season. Can the combination of rookie and veteran take Cincinnati to the AAC championship game? Or will Memphis led by young head coach Josh Pastner be the second best team in the AAC.
Actually a better question going into the season is Louisville as good as everyone thinks? Louisville returns three starters this season, they know they are thought to be the best team in the AAC, if that gets to their heads they could play down to opponents leading to some unfortunate losses.
Preseason polls mean little to nothing. Kentucky was a preseason #3 team in 2012, they finished unranked and lost to Robert Morris in the first round of the NIT. So preseason polls mean nothing. But they are alway fun to look at, the NCAA preseason top 25 poll will be out soon, will UC be on it? Some have them at 25 other have them unranked.