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2010 USA TODAY/ESPN Top 25 Preseason Coaches' Poll

Outlooks by USA TODAY's Jack Carey. 2009-10 record in parenthesis.

1. Duke (35-5)

Points: 772 (29 first-place votes). Final 2009-10 ranking (PR): 1. Outlook: Defending champ brings back standout F Kyle Singler, guard Nolan Smith, and Fs Miles and Mason Plumlee. Two freshmen, guard Kyrie Irving and forward Josh Hairston, plus transfer Seth Curry could have big impacts. Opens: Nov. 14 vs. Princeton in CBE Classic (ESPNU, 5).

2. Michigan State (28-9)

Points: 737 (2). PR: 4. Outlook: One of the nation's most consistent programs is eyeing another Final Four run with the return of Gs Kalin Lucas, Korie Lucious and Durrell Summers and Fs Draymond Green and Delvon Roe. Opens: Nov. 12 vs. Eastern Michigan (BTN, 8:30).

3. Kansas State (29-8)

Points: 656. PR: 7. Outlook: Wildcats narrowly missed the Final Four last season and return G Jacob Pullen and Fs Curtis Kelly and Jamar Samuels. Florida International transfer Freddy Asprilla could be a force inside. Opens: Nov. 12 vs. James Madison in CBE Classic (ESPNU, 9).

4. Pittsburgh (25-9)

Points: 656. PR: 7. Outlook: Wildcats narrowly missed the Final Four last season and return G Jacob Pullen and Fs Curtis Kelly and Jamar Samuels. Florida International transfer Freddy Asprilla could be a force inside. Opens: Nov. 12 vs. James Madison in CBE Classic (ESPNU, 9).

5. Ohio State (29-8)

Points: 615. PR: 11. Outlook: Buckeyes should be right in the mix in the Big Ten with the return of Gs William Buford, David Lighty and Jon Diebler along with F Dallas Lauderdale. Impact newcomers include highly touted post Jared Sullinger and F Deshaun Thomas. Opens: Nov. 12 vs. North Carolina A&T.

6. Villanova (25-8

Points: 552. PR: 15. Outlook: After unexpected early NCAA ouster, the Wildcats return one of the nation's best-looking backcourts in Corey Fisher, Maalik Wayns, Corey Stokes and Dominic Cheek. Up front, they boast Antonio Pena, Mouphtaou Yarou and Maurice Sutton. Opens: Nov. 12 vs. Bucknell.

7. Kansas (33-3)

Points: 538. PR: 6. Outlook: After stunning NCAA tournament ouster and personnel losses to the draft, the Jayhawks should still be right in the national conversation behind G Tyshawn Taylor, Brady Morningstar and Tyrel Reed, F Marcus Morris and C Markieff Morris. Freshman G Josh Shelby, if he becomes eligible, could be an immediate star. Opens: Nov. 12 vs. Longwood.

8. Purdue (29-6)

Points: 521. PR: 12. Outlook: Boilermakers missed out on a Final Four appearance in their home state last season after star F Robbie Hummel tore an ACL in late February. Now, he's out again after another ACL injury at practice. Standout post JaJuan Johnson returns along with Gs E'Twaun Moore, Lewis Jackson and Kelsey Barlow. Opens: Nov. 14 vs. Howard (BTN, 5).

9. North Carolina (20-17)

Points: 467. PR: not ranked. Outlook: After surprising subpar year that ended with an NIT runner-up finish, Tar Heels hope to bounce back behind highly regarded incoming freshmen Harrison Barnes, a forward, and G Reggie Bullock along with returning Fs Tyler Zeller and John Henson, and Gs Larry Drew II and Dexter Strickland. F Will Graves was dismissed from the team this month. Opens: Nov. 12 vs. Lipscomb.

10. Kentucky (35-3)

Points: 449. PR: 5. Outlook: Another loaded recruiting class could help the Wildcats again rule the SEC, although the eligibility status of incoming C Enes Kanter is in question. The Wildcats signed Gs Brandon Knight, Doron Lamb and Stacey Poole and F Terrence Jones to join returnees Darius Miller and DeAndre Liggins. Opens: Nov. 12 vs. East Tennessee State.

11. Florida (21-13)

Points: 424. PR: not ranked. Outlook: Gators returned to the NCAAs last season and could make more noise in the SEC thanks to Gs Kenny Boynton and Erving Walker and a strong-looking frontline that includes Chandler Parsons, Alex Tyus, Vernon Macklin, and Erik Murphy. C Patric Young and wing Casey Prather are among newcomers to watch. Opens: Nov. 12 vs. North Carolina-Wilmington.

12. Gonzaga (27-7)

Points: 423. PR: 23. Outlook: Bulldogs should again head right for the top in the West Coast Conference and toward another NCAA bid with the return of Gs Steven Gray and Demetri Goodson, C Robert Sacre and Fs Elias Harris, Kelly Olynyk and Mangisto Arop. Opens: Nov. 12 vs. Southern.

13. Syracuse (30-5)

Points: 422. PR: 8. Outlook: Orange return Fs Rick Jackson and Kris Joseph and Gs Brandon Triche and Scoop Jardine. They're looking for big things some freshmen, C Fab Melo, G Dion Waiters and F C.J. Fair. Opens: Nov. 12 vs. Northern Iowa.

14. Baylor (28-8)

Points: 362. PR: 10. Outlook: Trip to the regional finals announced Bears had arrived, but there are holes to fill with departure of Tweety Carter and Ekpe Udoh. Star G LaceDarius Dunn was indefinitely suspended this month. Fs Quincy Acy and Anthony Jones and G A.J. Walton are back. Arrival of freshman forward Perry Jones III should help. Opens: Nov. 12 vs. Grambling.

15. Missouri (23-11)

Points: 354. PR: not ranked. Outlook: Tigers could continue to rise in the Big 12 behind veteran Gs Kim English, Marcus Denmon and Michael Dixon and forwards Laurence Bowers and Justin Safford. Highly regarded recruiting class includes brothers Matt and Phil Pressey in the backcourt, sons of ex-NBA star Paul Pressey. Opens: Nov. 18 vs. Western Illinois.

16. Illinois (21-15)

Points: 329. PR: not ranked. Outlook: Illini were close to an NCAA bid last season and could break through with the return of all-Big Ten G Demetri McCamey, fellow Gs D.J. Richardson and Brandon Paul, F Mike Davis and C Mike Tisdale. Opens: Nov. 8 vs. UC-Irvine in 2K Sports Classic.

17. Washington (26-10)

Points: 307. PR: 21. Outlook: In a down year for the Pac-10, the Huskies advanced to the Sweet 16 and should again be in the middle of the conference race with the return of Gs Isaiah Thomas, Venoy Overton and Abdul Gaddy, and Fs Matthew Bryan-Amaning and Justin Holiday. Opens: Nov. 13 vs. McNeese State.

18. Butler (33-5)

Points: 245. PR: 2. Outlook: After coming within one shot of the national title, the Bulldogs have to get along without Gordon Hayward and Willie Veasley but will bring back F Matt Howard and Gs Shelvin Mack, Ronald Nored and Shawn Vanzant. Opens: Nov. 13 vs. Marian (Ind.).

19. Memphis (24-10)

Points: 212. PR: not ranked. Outlook: Second-year coach Josh Pastner has brought in a highly touted recruiting class that includes guards Will Barton, Joe Jackson and Jelan Kendrick. They'll join returning frontcourt players Will Coleman, Wesley Witherspoon and Angel Garcia as Tigers try to top Conference USA. Opens: Nov. 12 vs. Centenary in Global Sports Challenge.

20. Tennessee (28-9)

Points: 158. PR: 9. Outlook: NCAA probe involving coach Bruce Pearl casts a cloud over team that reached Elite Eight. Gs Scotty Hopson, Cameron Tatum and Melvin Goins and C Brian Williams are back, and Pearl signed an attractive recruiting class, including F Tobias Harris and Gs Trae Golden and Jordan McRae. Opens: Nov. 12 vs. Chattanooga.

21. Georgetown (23-11)

Points: 129. PR: not ranked. Outlook: C Greg Monroe is off to the NBA, but the Hoyas hope to stay near the top in the Big East behind Gs Chris Wright, Austin Freeman and Jason Clark and Fs Julian Vaughn, Hollis Thompson and Henry Sims. Opens: Nov. 12 at Old Dominion.

22. Temple (29-6)

Points: 120. PR: not ranked. Outlook: Owls have been on the rise in the Atlantic 10 with 73 wins the past three seasons. Plenty of talent is returning, including Fs Lavoy Allen and Micheal Eric and Gs Juan Fernandez and Ramone Moore. Opens: Nov. 12 vs. Seton Hall.

23. Virginia Tech (25-9)

Points: 97. PR: not ranked. Outlook: G Malcolm Delaney's decision to come back bolsters the Hokies' chances in the ACC and to get to the NCAAs. Experienced Tech also returns Fs Jeff Allen and Victor Davila, G Dorenzo Hudson and wing Terrell Bell. Opens: Nov. 12 vs. Campbell.

24. Wisconsin (24-9)

Points: 91. PR: 24. Outlook: The Badgers figure to miss Trevon Hughes and Jason Bohannon, but F Jon Leuer is back to lead the way along with wing Tim Jarmusz, G Jordan Taylor and F Keaton Nankivil. Opens: Nov. 14 vs. Prairie View.

25. Texas (24-10)

Points: 89. PR: not ranked. Outlook: Longhorns collapsed in the second half of last season, and the top three scorers have departed. They hope to regain footing in Big 12 with the return of F Gary Johnson, wing Jordan Hamilton and the emergence of highly touted freshmen Cory Joseph (guard) and Tristan Thompson (forward). Opens: Nov. 8 vs. Navy in 2K Sports Classic (ESPNU, 9).

Others receiving votes: San Diego State (25-9) 73; Brigham Young (30-6) 55; West Virginia (31-7) 49; Minnesota (21-14) 41; Florida State (22-10) 31; UNLV (25-9) 19; Wichita State (25-10) 13; UCLA (14-18) 12; Vanderbilt (24-9) 11; North Carolina State (20-16) 10; Georgia (14-17) 9; Richmond (26-9) 9; Xavier (26-9) 8; Mississippi State (24-12) 7; Utah State (27-8) 6; California (24-11) 5; Texas A&M (24-10) 5; Murray State (31-5) 4; New Mexico (30-5) 4; Louisville (20-13) 3; Arizona (16-15) 2; Dayton (25-12) 2; Marquette (22-12) 2; Maryland (24-9) 2; Saint Mary's (28-6) 2; Northwestern (20-14) 1.
Purdue in the top ten doesn't make any sense to me....
Ballers Wrote:Purdue in the top ten doesn't make any sense to me....


Purdue with Hummel their deff a top 10 team in the country IMO, Purdue without Hummel they are still a top 25 team so I agree Purdue shouldnt be in the top 10 without #4 playing.
But it clearly says he is going to be out again because of his ACL.. I thought he was a Senior last year.. strange.
Ballers Wrote:But it clearly says he is going to be out again because of his ACL.. I thought he was a Senior last year.. strange.

He is filing for another Medical Redshirt and is expected to get it. He will be back with Purdue next season.
Stardust Wrote:He is filing for another Medical Redshirt and is expected to get it. He will be back with Purdue next season.

Thanks for the info.
Can anyone tell me why Pitt is ranked so high?
leecoukfan Wrote:Can anyone tell me why Pitt is ranked so high?

I think after dUKe and KSU, they just took the next best 8 and drew them from a hat. I think 2-8 all have "POTENTIAL" to be elite teams. None are, but they have the potential to be.

Also, it lists Freddy Asprilla for Pitt, Freddy is at KSU.
Whatever happened to that big guy from Pitt? He was huge.. Is that the same guy? He had like short dreads looked like.. Don't quote me on that.
Ballers Wrote:Whatever happened to that big guy from Pitt? He was huge.. Is that the same guy? He had like short dreads looked like.. Don't quote me on that.

I think you may be talking about Blair. He was only 6-6 / 6-7, but close to 300 pounds. He entered into the NBA draft after last season as a sophomore. Not sure where he wound up
Ballers Wrote:2010 USA TODAY/ESPN Top 25 Preseason Coaches' Poll

5. Ohio State (29-8)

Points: 615. PR: 11. Outlook: Buckeyes should be right in the mix in the Big Ten with the return of Gs William Buford, David Lighty and Jon Diebler along with F Dallas Lauderdale. Impact newcomers include highly touted post Jared Sullinger and F Deshaun Thomas. Opens: Nov. 12 vs. North Carolina A&T.

I'm LOVING This :Thumbs:
Stardust Wrote:I think you may be talking about Blair. He was only 6-6 / 6-7, but close to 300 pounds. He entered into the NBA draft after last season as a sophomore. Not sure where he wound up

He's playing for the Spurs, he was 6th man for most the year.
I think the reason some people are questioning the top 25 is because they are no loaded teams stacked with talent this sesaon... All the teams have some talent... There is no team that just blows the others out of the water
DeJuan Blair does play for the Spurs.. But that is not who I am talking about..
theVILLE Wrote:I think the reason some people are questioning the top 25 is because they are no loaded teams stacked with talent this sesaon... All the teams have some talent... There is no team that just blows the others out of the water

Your right, if the UK players that left this season stayed.. There would be no chance for the NCAA. :yawn:
Stardust Wrote:I think after dUKe and KSU, they just took the next best 8 and drew them from a hat. I think 2-8 all have "POTENTIAL" to be elite teams. None are, but they have the potential to be.

Also, it lists Freddy Asprilla for Pitt, Freddy is at KSU.

Yeah sounds about right. For some reason the description for KSU is the same for Pitt!?
we all knew duke was #1

zags at 12 seems a little high...
but ill take it lol
i dont like unc over uk
zaga_fan Wrote:i dont like unc over uk

Me either, but they did get a killer recruiting class just now and bring back a lot from last year.. BUT that last part isn't saying much :lmao:
Ballers Wrote:Me either, but they did get a killer recruiting class just now and bring back a lot from last year.. BUT that last part isn't saying much :lmao:

lol
Ballers Wrote:Me either, but they did get a killer recruiting class just now and bring back a lot from last year.. BUT that last part isn't saying much :lmao:
Who did they get beside Barnes? Plus they cut their best shooter in Graves. Like Bomani said on Around the Horn today, UNC is in the top 10 and they lost 17 games last year.? Please.
^Last time I checked they had a few in the top 20-30 in this class.
idc who they recruited
They aren't top 10 material
The Zags will be in there before long, though
They never drop many games, but the WCC is starting to pick up with St.Mary's and Santa Clara.
Expect the Pepperdine Waves to pick it up this year as well.
No one prolly knows who any of those teams are though lol
only zaga fan would keep up with a week conference like that.. so no...
Find it hard to believe that my Mountaineers are not ranked in the Top 25. Oh well, at least they don't have a target on their backs.
dangerousdaneerfan Wrote:Find it hard to believe that my Mountaineers are not ranked in the Top 25. Oh well, at least they don't have a target on their backs.

Are you serious!?!?!?! Pfffffft.
I will let the season do the talking and go out on a limb and predict WV's future record to be 18-20.. NIT appearance in your guys future. Congrats!!
Duke on top of the mountain

That's how I like it!!
Ballers Wrote:Your right, if the UK players that left this season stayed.. There would be no chance for the NCAA. :yawn:

Exactly!
Amun-Ra Wrote:Who did they get beside Barnes? Plus they cut their best shooter in Graves. Like Bomani said on Around the Horn today, UNC is in the top 10 and they lost 17 games last year.? Please.

Uk was in the top 10 last season and they lost alot of games and went to the NIT the season before??? UNC is no joke... Barnes thrown in the mix they are tough...
zaga_fan Wrote:idc who they recruited
They aren't top 10 material
The Zags will be in there before long, though
They never drop many games, but :please:
Expect the Pepperdine Waves to pick it up this year as well.
No one prolly knows who any of those teams are though lol

:thatsfunn
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