It’s finally here.
The college basketball season tips off Friday with a huge slate of games, highlighted by the Armed Forces Classic pitting Michigan State against Arizona and Kansas vs. Indiana – four teams all featured in the debut edition of the Campus Insiders Top 25.
These rankings look a little different from the preseason AP Top 25, as there always will be some disagreements in the voting process. Everyone can agree on one thing, though – Duke is loaded and the clear No. 1 team heading into the 2016-17 college basketball season.
Grayson Allen, Luke Kennard and Amile Jefferson return to team up with quite possibly coach Mike Krzyzewski’s best recruiting class, which features Harry Giles, Jayson Tatum, Frank Jackson and Marques Bolden.
Kentucky has its own crop of five-star freshmen, but possibly the biggest win of the recruiting season was Bill Self luring Josh Jackson to Kansas. Jackson has the potential to be the No. 1 pick in the summer’s NBA draft, and he gives the Jayhawks an above-the-rim phenom to team up with a strong cast of returnees like Frank Mason III and Carlton Bragg.
Oregon is going to make a Final Four push behind Dillon Brooks, and no one can forget about defending champion Villanova, led by All-American Josh Hart and Jalen Brunson.
Here’s a look at the preseason Campus Insiders Top 25 heading into Friday’s openers.
Preseason College Basketball Rankings
6. North Carolina
9. Michigan State
19. St. Mary’s
21. West Virginia
25. Miami (FL)