“Sports Illustrated” is finishing up its list of the Top 20 current college basketball programs, and not surprisingly, Kentucky is near the top. SI’s Andy Glockner ranks Kentucky as the 2nd best college basketball program in the sport right now behind Kansas. Here’s the top five:
Really for the reason that Calipari’s operation feels like more of a comet than a star. The Wildcats are burning bright and are annually the biggest story in the game, but last season put a small dent in the armor of Calipari’s annual build model, and more coaches now feel they can beat Calipari for strategic recruits.
The consistency and stability in Lawrence is just better. They have been masterful under Bill Self, and were outstanding under Roy Williams. The future is looking really good, too, if Self continues to recruit at his current level. There are a lot of rumblings he could strike big at the top of the Class of 2014, and the groundwork would be in place for another extended run of excellence.
As for Calipari, each program he has left has not been able to maintain his level of elite performance, and we have seen Kentucky fade a bit (over time under Tubby Smith) and then crater (under Billy Gillispie), and that doesn’t even include last year.
This choice will look pretty awesome if Kentucky rips Kansas for the national title in April, but for now, the Cats will have to settle for second.
4. North Carolina
5. Michigan State
I can see Glockner’s point about stability, and Kansas landing Wiggins definitely gave them some more recruiting mojo, but if you’re an elite player, I still think Kentucky remains the gold standard. If they bring home #9, that’ll just make it indisputable.