ESPN.com makes their top ten lists for the most underrated and most underachieving programs in the past ten years, as well as the top ten programs for the future. Wisconsin and Southern Illinois lead the way in the underrated category, while Michigan and Florida State are the top two in the underachieving category. Looking ahead, North Carolina and Florida rank one and two for the future.
Bob McClellan of Rivals.com gives his top ten shoes to fill as a result of early-entries, and also discusses who might fill them. Florida’s junior quartet ranks at the top, and he thinks that a mix of returnees and newcomers will have to step for the Gators. Ohio State’s freshman trio, Georgetown’s post duo, Texas’ Kevin Durant, and Georgia Tech’s freshman combo round out the top five.
Jody Demling of the Louisville Courier-Journal reports that Jai Lucas, one of the top two unsigned recruits in the country, has announced that he will choose between Kentucky, Florida, Oklahoma State for his college destination. The McDonald’s All-American is ranked No. 34 by Scout.com, and No. 42 by Rivals.com. He and fellow unsigned recruit Patrick Patterson are scheduled to make their decision next week.
Jeff Goodman of FOX Sports thinks that Miami (Fl.) could contend for an NCAA Tournament berth in the ACC next season. He writes that the Hurricanes will have one of the most athletic and physical frontlines in the conference, led by Anthony King. “This is the most talented team since I’ve been there,” said coach Frank Haith. Miami won only twelve games last season, but they return plenty of talent heading into 2007-2008.
CSTV.com’s Bryan Graham gives his weekly market watch. UCLA, who received a verbal commitment from high school junior Drew Gordon, and West Virginia, who hired Billy Hahn as an assistant coach, are rising. On the other side, Iowa State, who lost two scholarships as a result of the NCAA APR report, is falling. Utah and Pittsburgh are in the “hold” category.
Big East Basketball Report has been giving team snapshots for every team in the conference. Each team report includes a roster breakdown that shows who is leaving and who is returning. The write-ups also discuss the “open items/issues” for each team heading into the summer as well as a summary, which talks what the 2007-2008 season holds for each team.
FOX Sports’ Jeff Goodman writes that Duquesne will contend in the Atlantic-10 next season, now that the shooting tragedy last September is behind them. He says that the Dukes’ roster will be as talented as anyone in the Atlantic 10. Transfers Shawn James of Northeastern and Kojo Mensah from Siena will have an immediate impact for the team, while Kieran Achara leads the way for the returnees.
According to Jeff Goodman of FOX Sports, Mississippi State sophomore center Vernon Goodridge has announced that he will be transferring from the Bulldogs. He also told FOXSports.com that he would like to go to La Salle. Goodridge is the team’s fourth player to transfer this offseason, following Reginald and Richard Delk, and Bernard Rimmer. Reginald Delk is headed to Louisville, while the other two are undecided. Goodridge averaged 2.3 points and 3.0 rebounds last season.
Niagara, last season’s MAAC champions, will get richer next season as two Big East transfers have announced that they will be playing for the Purple Eagles. Connecticut sophomore guard Rob Garrison and Villanova sophomore guard Bilal Benn will both be headed to Niagara as a result of their lack of playing time. Garrison played only 2.3 minutes per game last season after averaging almost 9 per game his freshman year, while Benn played less than ten minutes a contest last year.
According to the Louisville Courier-Journal, Louisville sophomore center Jonathan Huffman has announced that he will transfer to Iona. He played in only 14 games last season, averaging just 1.1 points and 0.7 rebounds per game. Coach Rick Pitino encouraged Huffman to redshirt or transfer after the season.
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