My first top 25 of the year is here. There are a lot of things to consider when doing a top 25 before players announce their leaving and while coaches are playing ring around the rosey.
Here's some things to think about:
John Calipari's jump to Kentucky changed everything. Memphis went from #2 to #10 and Kentucky went from unranked to #12.
The Pac Ten looks like it is going to be wide open. When was the last time UCLA began a season unranked?
Is Kentucky now the SEC favorites? Florida looked like a team that could challenge for the title before Nick Calathes announced he was leaving. Will Bruce Pearl leave Tennessee and leave the Vols' future up in the air as well?
Who is going to leave school? I think we'd all agree that Blake Griffin will along with James Harden.
The rankings at the link below are sort of a mixture of players projected to leave and stay. For the most part I gave teams the benefit of the doubt until the players announce their leaving. Oklahoma and Arizona State weren't as lucky since I see both Griffin and Harden leaving. Neither has announced it though and Harden said he had a lot of thinking to do in an article I read earlier today. It still looks like they will both leave.
How about mid majors? Well I promise you won't sea a top 25 like this one anywhere else. I am almost 100% sure ESPN and Gary Parrish (who I respect tremendously) won't stick their necks out and rank seven mid majors like I have. Butler, Gonzaga, Xavier, Memphis, Creighton, Saint Marys, and BYU are all in my rankings.
The hardest part about ranking teams is to decide whether young means good. It doesn't. But it does mean that experience returns to a team. That was the case with the Cougars and Blue Jays.
My personal thought on this is that anyone with a computer can throw out a top 25. I take more pride in my work with that. Anyone can throw out random teams (as I saw someone on these boards do earlier today) without any research. I did a lot of research for this and kept the write ups as short as possible so it's more fun to read. And anyone can throw out the big name teams and be confident they are going to have a pretty good top 25. I didn't do that. Like I said, seven mid majors prove that.
Here's the link and I hope you enjoy. Please comment here or there.
There will be an update in the next few days.