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At least one person doesn’t think UK is the preseason number one team

(Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

(Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

Photo by Andy Lyons | Getty Images

With the Harrison Twins, Dakari, Willie, Marcus, and Alex coming back, pretty much everyone considers UK the preseason number one. Except for The Sporting News’ Mike DeCourcy. DeCourcy released his presason Top 25 and has another set of Wildcats on top: Arizona. Kentucky comes in at number two, followed by Wisconsin, Duke, and North Carolina. Whaaaa?

DeCourcy argues that even though Arizona lost Aaron Gordon and Nick Johnson to the NBA Draft, their big men and experienced guard play are enough to put them at the top of the rankings. What about our Cats? DeCourcy says UK has “overwhelming size and depth up front,” but Calipari will have a real battle on his hands trying to figure out how to play everyone. Weaknesses? Perimeter defense, which is bringing back some mean flashbacks to last season.

And while having a returning point guard for the first time in the Calipari era is exhilarating, DeCourcy says Alex Poythress is the team’s key factor:

Calipari must decide what he wants to do with junior Alex Poythress. Is he a small forward? There is a huge opportunity there, but Poythress has not shown he has the ability to drive the ball. Poythress is among Division I’s most dynamic players, but he seems best suited to performing as a stretch-4. It’s not as though UK is lacking for power forwards, though. 

Check out all the rankings over at The Sporting News.

Article written by Mrs. Tyler Thompson

No, I will not make you a sandwich, but you can follow me on Twitter @MrsTylerKSR or email me.

9 Comments for At least one person doesn’t think UK is the preseason number one team

  1. average fan
    6:20 pm May 27, 2014 Permalink

    He is right about Alex being a stretch 4. I hope Alex is working on his ball handling and spot up shooting this off season. Those are his keys to success…and the team’s success.

  2. theSkinny81
    6:27 pm May 27, 2014 Permalink

    I agree about Poythress. Especially if he wants to have a career at the next level, he has to be a 3. He can do it.

  3. Elwood Blues
    6:30 pm May 27, 2014 Permalink

    That’s a respectable opinion, though I disagree. As far as Alex, as much as I love having him back, I just see him being a 4-year player that just won’t live up. I still go back and watch that Duke game his freshman year and just wonder how come he doesn’t do that every single game. He’s got Randle’s size, Wiggins’s athleticism, all he needs is a bigger motor (and of course some dribbling/shooting practice). I really hope he proves me wrong, but I can’t see him as any more than a cleanup man, which isn’t bad, but he has so much more to offer.

    • theSkinny81
      9:22 pm May 27, 2014 Permalink

      People said the same thing about Darius Miller his first 2.5 years. He turned it around.

  4. Can see where he is coming from
    7:09 pm May 27, 2014 Permalink

    A reasonable opinion. I agree with everything except this notion that “Calipari is going to have a hard time playing everyone.” Seriously? One of our weaknesses is that we have TOO many players? That makes absolutely zero sense. Perimeter defense was a nightmare last year and has to be the top concern. Losing James Young may be addition by subtraction in that regard, but it’s hard to assume that our new 3’s (meaning Lyles, maybe Poy or Aaron) will do much better. The Harrisons should improve somewhat at perimeter defense you would look. One thing to consider though is that Cal’s top teams usually have the guards over play the 3 point lane and force the opponent to drive into the trees and take tough 2s. We tried to do this last year but Willie and Poythress weren’t consistent enough at contesting. With a Junior WCS, along with AKT and an improved Poy, you have to think we can block those shots at a higher rate. Offensively we should be golden.

  5. c.b.
    8:00 pm May 27, 2014 Permalink

    top 5 isn’t that bad but Uof Lol at 7 no front court players and had trouble with big teams last year. why all the love for mid majors. wish I got paid to do this lol

  6. c.b.
    8:11 pm May 27, 2014 Permalink

    hope Alex is doing work this summer the team is going to need his leadership along with WCS to get where they want to go. I think CATS will be a great team on both sides of the court and will be fun to watch every game. so go play hard Big Blue bring home #9

  7. realdealblue
    8:39 pm May 27, 2014 Permalink

    I think Alex will be the biggest impact player not just in Lexington but in the nation next year, this will be his year and you can take that to the bank. As far as Cal having this trouble of sorting out his team, I’m sure Slick Rick, Roy Williams, Bill Self, Billy D. and coach Krybaby would take this team in a heart beat.

  8. Bleed Cats Blue
    8:08 am May 28, 2014 Permalink

    No way Arizona is better than UK. Lack of depth killed them last year and it’ll be the same, if not worse, this year. Cats on the other hand bring back one of the deepest classes in recent memory, going AT LEAST 2 deep at every position – here’s a good article on UK: