Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
Kentucky No. 1 in AP Poll, Followed by Arizona, Wisconsin, Duke, Kansas
To the surprise of no one, Kentucky was named the No. 1 team in the first Associated Press poll of the season.
The Wildcats feature nine McDonald’s All-Americans and were also No. 1 in the Coaches’ Poll.
“It’s something for our kids to live up to,” head coach John Calipari said, according to the AP. “At the end of the day, you’ve got to play the games and figure it out.”
Kentucky earned 52 first-place votes from the 65-member panel in landing its fourth preseason No. 1. The Wildcats also were No. 1 in 1995-96, when they won the national championship, and in 1980-81.
Kentucky joins UCLA (1966-60, 1971-74), UNLV (1990-91) and North Carolina (2008-09) to be named preseason No. 1 consecutive seasons since the AP poll started in 1961-62.
Arizona is ranked No. 2, followed by Wisconsin, Duke and Kansas.
“I think there are probably seven teams that all could be No. 1 in the country,” Calipari said.
Four of the Top 10 teams in the poll are in the new look ACC — No. 4 Duke, No. 6 North Carolina, No. 8 Louisville and No. 9 Virginia. Syracuse is also ranked No. 23.
The only ranked Big East team is Villanova at No. 12.
Defending NCAA champion UConn chimes in at No. 17.
AP TOP 25
6. North Carolina
11. Wichita State
14. Iowa State
16. San Diego State
18. Michigan State
20. Ohio State
Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.