Friday, October 22, 2010

2010 USA TODAY/ESPN Top 25 Preseason Coaches' Poll

While the ACC media believes the Hokies will have a better season than the Tar Heels, the coaches who vote in the USA Today/ESPN poll don’t agree just yet. That said, everybody has defending National Champion Duke in the top spot.

1. DUKE (35-5) Defending champ brings back standout forward Kyle Singler, guard Nolan Smith, and forwards Miles and Mason Plumlee. Two freshmen, guard Kyrie Irving and forward Josh Hairston, plus transfer Seth Curry could have big impacts. Opens: Nov. 14 vs. Princeton (Tigers, 7,567 students, Princeton, NJ) in CBE Classic.

2. Michigan State (28-9), 3. Kansas State (29-8), 4. Pittsburgh (25-9), 5. Ohio State (29-8), 6. Villanova (25-8), 7. Kansas (33-3), 8. Purdue (29-6)

9. NORTH CAROLINA (20-17) After a surprising subpar year that ended with an NIT runner-up finish, Tar Heels hope to bounce back behind highly regarded incoming freshmen Harrison Barnes, a forward, and guard Reggie Bullock along with returning forwards Tyler Zeller and John Henson, and guards Larry Drew II and Dexter Strickland. Forward Will Graves was dismissed from the team this month. Opens: Nov. 12 vs. Lipscomb (Bisons, 3,418 students, Nashville, TN).

10. Kentucky (35-3),11. Florida (21-13),12. Gonzaga (27-7),13. Syracuse (30-5), 14. Baylor (28-8),15. Missouri (23-11), 16. Illinois (21-15), 17. Washington (26-10), 18. Butler (33-5), 19. Memphis (24-10), 20. Tennessee (28-9), 21. Georgetown (23-11), 22. Temple (29-6),

23. VIRGINIA TECH (25-9) Guard Malcolm Delaney's decision to come back bolsters the Hokies' chances in the ACC and to get to the NCAAs. Experienced Tech also returns Fs Jeff Allen and Victor Davila, G Dorenzo Hudson and wing Terrell Bell. Opens: Nov. 12 vs. Campbell (Fighting Camels, 10,471 students, Buies Creek, NC).

24. Wisconsin (24-9), 25. Texas (24-10)

Others receiving votes: San Diego State (25-9) 73; Brigham Young (30-6) 55; West Virginia (31-7) 49; Minnesota (21-14) 41; FLORIDA STATE (22-10) 31; Unlv (25-9) 19; Wichita State (25-10) 13; Ucla (14-18) 12; Vanderbilt (24-9) 11; NORTH CAROLINA STATE (20-16) 10; Georgia (14-17) 9; Richmond (26-9) 9; Xavier (26-9) 8; Mississippi State (24-12) 7; Utah State (27-8) 6; California (24-11) 5; Texas A&M (24-10) 5; Murray State (31-5) 4; New Mexico (30-5) 4; Louisville (20-13) 3; Arizona (16-15) 2; Dayton (25-12) 2; Marquette (22-12) 2; MARYLAND (24-9) 2; Saint Mary's (28-6) 2; Northwestern (20-14) 1.

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