The College basketball season is in
full-swing with a plethora of pre-season tournaments already in the books and
some big upsets along the way. Last week we looked at the top 10 teams in the Jim
Feist Top 20. This week we continue along with 11 through 20.
been a consistent Pac-10 power for the better part of the last decade. Last
season the Cardinal finished with a 31-3 record and a Sweet 16 appearance.
Stanford has the talent to have just as much, if not more success this season.
Casey Jacobsen is the Cardinal’s top player and one of the nation’s best
shooters. At 6'6", he is also big enough to get his shot off at almost any
time. There’s still plenty of talent on the roster besides Jacobsen. Up front,
Curtis Borchardt has the potential to be one of the better big men in the West.
The backcourt is solid.
has already lost once this season, but has the backcourt and experience to
rebound in a big way. The Hawks went 26-7 last season and with explosive
shooting guard Marvin O’Connor back, as well as point guard Jameer Nelson. The
Hawks should be able to go a long way this season. There’s some quality up
front also, with Bill Phillips and Na’im Crenshaw.
will battle St. Joseph’s for the Atlantic 10 crown, as well as superiority in
Philadelphia. As usual Temple will play one of the toughest schedules in the
country and may falter a bit early on. But the Owls always improve as the season
wears on. The senior trio of Lynn Greer, Alex Wesby and center Kevin Lyde will
provide the Owls with scoring, while they continue to employ head coach John
Chaney’s famous matchup zone.
finished the season strong last year and with Reggie Evans, possesses, maybe,
the most rugged inside player in the nation. Evans is an incredible rebounder
and unstoppable in the blocks at this level. Guard Luke Recker is finally a
senior and remains a solid outside shooter. Iowa brings back four starters from
last year’s team, has one of the top young coaches in the country in Steve
Alford and should be among the best teams in the Big 10.
has the perimeter talent to make the ACC a three-team race. Roger Mason Jr. and
Chris Williams are both outstanding all-around players and center Travis Watson
is a very hard-working, if undersized, player. The Cavaliers were primed for a
really big season, expecting the return of Majestic Mapp, but his recovery from
a knee injury has been painfully slow and he will miss this season.
has the depth and athleticism to surprise some teams. The Crimson Tide are still
smarting from being snubbed the NCAA Selection Committee last March and that
could make them a very focused team this season. Alabama finished last season
with a 25-11 record and were the runners-up in the post-season NIT. Rod Grizzard
and Erwin Dudley are the stars on the team, but guard Terrance Meade and center
Kenny Walker are also very good players.
comes off a tough year. A plane crash claimed a number of lives after a game at
Colorado and the Cowboys struggled with questions much more important than
basketball after the tragedy. They were tough enough to garner a berth in the
NCAA Tournament, but were ousted in the first round. This season Oklahoma State
has one of the better big men in the Big 12 in Fredrik Jonzen, as well as last
year’s Big 12 Newcomer of the Year, senior guard Maurice Baker.
lost three important players with eligibility remaining, including Kenny
Satterfield and center BJ Grove, but still returns five of their top six scorers
from last season, including superstar guard Steve Logan. Cincy should contend
with Memphis for Conference USA superiority.
lost its opener to Bowling Green in overtime, 82-78. Despite that loss, the
Rebels should be able to contend for another NCAA appearance out of the SEC.
They bring back just two starters from last year’s 27-8 Sweet 16 team.
North Carolina lost a shocker in its opener to Hampton, 77-69. It is hard to keep the Tar Heels out of the Top 20, and they are certainly full of question marks. Julius Peppers and Ronald Curry will not return to the team, focusing on football.