UPDATED 2013-2014 preseason top 25 college basketball rankings

With the Louisville Cardinals cutting down the nets, the book was officially closed on the 2012-2013 college basketball season.  Hoop junkies like myself are already looking ahead to next season so allow me to present to you my updated way too early 2012-2013 preseason Top 25 college basketball rankings.

So here is my preliminary preseason Top 25 college basketball rankings for next season.  I have updated these rankings since the NBA Draft early entries list is complete and a number of transfers have since been announced.  There is still one major x-factor out there, the undecided Andrew Wiggins who is the #1 prospect in the 2013 class.  Leave a comment below if you think a team is too high, too low, not getting enough respect, or if you notice an error in a projected roster.  (Click here to see how my 2012-13 way too early preseason college basketball rankings turned out.)

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Marquette’s Vander Blue declares for NBA Draft; smart or dumb decision?

Coming off a breakout junior campaign for the Marquette Golden Eagles, shooting guard Vander Blue has decided to leave school a year early and enter the 2013 NBA Draft.  Blue is by no means a lock to be a first round pick which makes the decision somewhat surprising.  Allow me to break down why the decision both makes sense but could be one that Blue will regret.

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Marquette should be even better in 2013-2014

Vander Blue

While the disappointment of laying an egg in the Elite 8 against Syracuse still lingers, the future remains extremely bright for a Marquette program coming off their third straight trip to the Sweet 16.  Assuming Buzz Williams returns for his sixth season and the incoming recruiting class remains in tact, the Golden Eagles should be even better in 2013-14.

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Tom Crean leading Indiana Basketball to the Final Four?

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Is Indiana basketball truly back to it’s former glory?

We’ll find out this weekend. In 2003, Tom Crean led the Marquette Golden Eagles to a somewhat unexpected trip to the Final Four. Ten years later, Crean is looking for a return trip; this time as head coach of the Indiana Basketball.

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Marquette basketball tries to “pass the test” versus Miami

marquette sweet 16

For the third straight season, Marquette basketball has advanced to the Sweet 16.  Ohio State, Kansas, and Florida are the only other programs that share that distinction.  Unlike the Buckeyes, Jayhawks, and Gators though, the Golden Eagles have been unable to take the next step and get to the Elite 8.  Thursday night versus Miami FL, MU will try to pass the test and get over the hump.

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#3 Marquette vs #6 Butler: NCAA Tourney rematch for the ages

marquette vs butler

The Butler Bulldogs have advanced to the third round, it’s still the second round, you’re telling me in a “round” 64/68 teams get a bye? of the 2013 NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship and will meet Marquette at Rupp Arena on Saturday, March 23rd in Lexington, Kentucky. The arena is named after legendary villain and Kentucky coach Adolph Rupp who is probably turning over in his grave today. For two reasons: one his Kentucky Wildcats went from National Champs to eliminated by lowly Robert Morris in the first round of the NIT, Not Invited Tournament.

And the bigger reason Rupp is turning over in his grave is because black players dominate both his program and all of college basketball (well maybe not the Wisconsin Badgers or at Notre Dame). Rupp didn’t like black players much, so what a coincidence he was aptly named Adolph. The sixth-seeded Bulldogs, who won their second round game against #11 seed Bucknell, will meet #3 seed Marquette at approximately 7:45 p.m. (ET). Butler (27-8) and Marquette (24-8) will be squaring off for the second time this season.

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Butler, Xavier, Creighton joining Catholic 7 basketball conference (Big East Update)

catholic-7-basketball-conference-xavier

Multiple sources report The Butler Bulldogs, Creighton Blue Jays and Xavier Musketeers will join the Catholic 7 basketball conference which consists of the seven college basketball only schools previously in the Big East: (Catholic institutions Marquette, DePaul, Georgetown, Villanova, St. John’s, Seton Hall and Providence)

Not since Martin Luther and the Protestant Reformation have a group of Catholics felt so freed and empowered. (Remember they were all Catholics before they became Protestants and later Lutherans. Catholic excess was what they were “protesting” against. I guess 7 Catholic schools gave up the Big East conference for Lent.

The Catholic 7 basketball conference will still keep the Big East name. New league begins play July 1

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Big East/SEC Challenge Preview and Predictions

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With the exodus of Big East teams leaving for the ACC, this is going to be the final year that the Big East/SEC Challenge will have such star power.  The three day event tips off tonight and here is a preview including my brilliant, insightful predictions.

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2012 Maui Invitational Preview and Predictions

maui invitational logo

As much as Feast Week is about stuffing your face with turkey, stuffing, and mashed potatoes; it’s also about sweet college basketball tournaments like the Maui Invitational.  This field is not as stacked as a year ago when Duke needed a pair of Tyler Thornton “Onions” three pointers to beat Kansas in the title game.  Nevertheless here are my predictions from a field which includes North Carolina, Texas, Marquette, Illinois, and Butler.

Here is the link to the official 2012 Maui Invitational bracket.

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#20 Marquette Golden Eagles: College Basketball 111 in 111

buzz williams dance

Welcome to The Sports Bank’s third annual college basketball season preview series.  Two years we looked at 99 teams in 99 days.  Last year, we were slightly more aggressive and expanded to 111 teams in 111 days and will do so again as we look ahead to the 2012-2013 season.

We will rank the 75 power conference teams and top 36 mid-majors in reverse power ranking order.  We’ll break down rosters, transfers, incoming freshmen, non-conference schedules, and pick a player to watch for each team.

WARNING: As a Marquette alum and obsessive Golden Eagle basketball fan, this is going to take my lengthy, in-depth, nerdy previews to a whole new level.  If I were you, I would clear out ten minutes of your schedule before beginning to read this.

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Carrier Classic game has special meaning for Ohio State’s Aaron Craft

aaron craft ohio state

Watching North Carolina and Michigan State playing on the deck of the USS Carl Vinson last season was one of the coolest moments in my college basketball watching history.  And I was sitting in front of a TV.  Four aircraft carrier games headline the college hoops opening weekend schedule including the Ohio State Buckeyes and Marquette Golden Eagles playing on the USS Yorktown off the coast of Charleston, South Carolina.  For OSU starting point guard Aaron Craft and his family, Friday’s game holds extra special meaning.

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Marquette’s DJO and Crowder ready to live NBA Draft dream

marquette basketball

Following Wesley Matthews‘ breakout rookie campaign during the 2009-2010 NBA season, the Marquette Golden Eagles have seen players selected in the first round of the NBA Draft each of the past years; Lazar Hayward in 2010 and Jimmy Butler last summer.  A pair of MU ballers are expected to be selected tonight when Darius Johnson-Odom and Jae Crowder will likely hear their names called.

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