Wednesday, 9 January 2008

My College Basketball Top 10 - 1/09/08

Time to give me top 10 in the world of college basketball. This is not based solely on achievement, but also how good I think the teams are right now. It was based solely on achievement then all of the undefeated teams would have to be on top, which is not the case. Anyway, that's neither here nor there. My top 10:

1. Memphis - They have been the most impressive team to me so far this year. This is a few weeks back now, but I thought their win over Georgetown might have been the most impressive win for anyone this year. The way they took apart an excellent team like the Hoyas in the 2nd half was a sight to see. They struggle still in the halfcourt offense, but they are more athletic than any other team, and this allows them to get up and down the court. It also allows them to be a very, very good defensive team. They're tough.

2. North Carolina - Obviously you can't complain about a perfect record, I just think the Tigers are a little better. The loss of Bobby Frasor hurts, as they already struggle some with shooting the basketball from the outside. Still, they have the depth and explosiveness to make a run to the title.

3. Kansas - They have been playing excellent ball, and should only get better as Brandon Rush and Sherron Collins continue to get healthier and better. They have 9 guys that play at least 10 minutes a game. Oh yes, there is lots of depth for the Jayhawks.

4. UCLA - They are behind Washington St. in the polls, but I think they're the better team. They had a bad game against Texas, but that neutral court win against Michigan St. (without Darren Collison or Michael Roll) is starting to look better and better. With Kevin Love averaging a double-double right now, he looks to be a strong contender for Pac-10 Player of the Year.

5. Georgetown - They will probably struggle against teams like Memphis, who play fast and have a big, physical guy to guard Roy Hibbert. But the Hoyas are a surprisingly versatile, talented team. As the excellent freshmen guards continue to get comfortable at the college level, the Hoyas will continue to improve and become more explosive.

6. Michigan St. - I like them a lot. They are great defensively under Tom Izzo. Drew Neitzel hits as big shots as anyone in America, but the little known secret is that Raymar Morgan is their best player. Like many teams near the top, they will continue to get better and better, as they play a lot of freshman that are just getting experience.

7. Washington St. - They remain undefeated, but they are very low on quality wins, which is why I have them down at 7th. But they'll be a tough out. They play great defense, and because of this they are able to slow the game down and make you play at their pace. Just a solid team that doesn't beat themselves.

8. Tennessee - They can beat anyone when their shots are falling, and they can lose to anyone when their shots are not falling. They are obviously extremely difficult to play against because of their fast-paced style. They do not allow teams to get comfortable on either end of the floor, meaning the opponent has to be very disciplined mentally to stick with the Volunteers. Most teams are not.

9. Duke - They have depth and an underrated amount of athleticism. 9 guys play at least 11 minutes per contest, and at least 6 score 8.8 per game. Their trio of Nelson-Singler-Henderson is very athletic, something they really lacked last year. They are well-coached, and can challenge UNC in the ACC.

10. Texas - I'll give them the final spot, though they have been struggling a little of late. DJ Augustin may be the best PG in the country, as he seems to be able to get into the lane at will and get a shot anytime he wants. We know what they have in AJ Abrams, one of the best pure shooters in America. Like last year, Texas' fate rests in the hands of the "other guys," players like Damion James, Connor Atchley, and Justin Mason. They will determine how far the Longhorns go.

Your thoughts? What changes would you make?