The 2018-19 college basketball season hasn’t even come to a close yet, as the National Championship is just about 24 hours away; however, Sporting News is already looking forward to tipping off the 2019-20 season. Mike DeCourcy, or @TSNMike as he’s known on Twitter, released his “way-too-early top 25 for 2019-20” earlier this evening and he has the Kentucky Wildcats listed as the No. 3 team in the country.
While the name of the listing is exactly right, it IS way too early to really rank these teams, it is always nice to see where your teams stands as of this point. With so much still to be decided for each team, between NBA Draft decisions, transfers, and the filling out of recruiting classes, these rankings could change significantly in the coming days, weeks, and months.
Here’s what DeCourcy had to say about Kentucky’s squad next season.
A few initial thoughts at first glance revolve around who DeCourcy lists and doesn’t list. He includes Ashton Hagans on next year’s roster, even though Hagans has verbalized that he still has a decision to make about his future. Next is that he believes that both Nick Richards and EJ Montgomery will be on the roster next season. I’m not suggesting that either should be looking to make the NBA jump, but there were some rumblings that if Kentucky continued to pursue big men for next year, that Richards may think that he is not being valued by the coaching staff. I agree with DeCourcy, and still think both will be in the blue and white next season, but it is certainly not a foregone conclusion at this point.
Naturally, both Tyrese Maxey and NAte Sestina are listed as key recruits for next year’s roster, but I think that missing Kahlil Whitney as a key player for next year is a huge omission. Whitney is currently the highest ranked recruit in Kentucky’s recruiting class and should be an absolute stud on the wing for the Cats. Also missing from Kentucky’s current class are Keion Brooks and Dontaie Allen. With Kentucky still actively pursuing a few recruits, this list could change dramatically by the time Big Blue Madness rolls around.
You can check out the entire top 25 list here.
Is it ever too early to talk about the top 25 for the 2019-20 college basketball season?
— Sporting News (@sportingnews) April 7, 2019
A few other teams of note in the rankings: Virginia at number 1 and Michigan State at number 2 are the only teams above the Cats at this point, while Michigan and Duke round out the top five at 4 and 5 respectively. Tennessee sits at number 8, Auburn gives the SEC a third top 10 team with their tenth overall ranking, Louisville is just outside the top 10 at number 11, and LSU is at 13. Last on the list, coming in at 25th, is Penny Hardaway’s Memphis squad, headlined by James Wiseman and former Kentucky commit DJ Jeffries.
What are your thoughts? Given that so much could still change, do you think Kentucky is deserving of a ranking that high?