Dickie V Says Gators Are Top Ten

There usually isn't much hoops news in June and rarely is there good news for basketball programs this month. So I thought it was kinda of interesting that hoops maven Dick Vitale has the Gators in a really early top 10.

Vitale has a summertime top 40 on ESPN.com and I thought it was worth sharing/repeating.

Vitale has three SEC teams in his top 20 and four in his top 30. Here is that group and what the irrepressible one had to stay about each.

6. Kentucky: John Calipari won't rebuild; he will simply reload. Brandon Knight is the latest diaper dandy to have an immediate impact on a Calipari-led program.

8. Florida: Billy Donovan's club will challenge Kentucky for supremacy in the SEC. Kenny Boynton should have a sensational season in Gator Country.

13. Tennessee: Bruce Pearl welcomes diaper dandy Tobias Harris, who should have an instant impact.

28. Georgia: Remember the name Trey Thompkins. He should get the national exposure he deserves as a potential double-double man. Mark Fox has already made a difference down in Athens.

It looks like the SEC East could be a lot tougher than the West, just as was the case a year ago. The lone surprise is that Vanderbilt is no in his top forty. I think the Commodores have a better team top to bottom that Georgia, though I agree Trey Thompkins can be the top player in the SEC.

He's also pretty optimistic about Kentucky getting another phenomenal season out of this year's freshman class and the Gators making a big jump. At least the Gators return five starters and a reinforced bench.


Dickie V also had some positive things to say about two other teams in the state.

34. Florida State: Leonard Hamilton's team might have been in the top 25 if Solomon Alabi had come back. But Chris Singleton will still be a factor in the ACC.

40. Miami (Fla.): Remember guard Durand Scott -- he was special when I saw him at the ACC tournament. Frank Haith's club will surprise some people.

For what it's worth, his top five is Duke, Michigan State, Purdue, Ohio State and Villanova. Syracuse (No. 7), Kansas State (No. 9) and North Carolina (No. 10) join the Wildcats and Gators in the second five.

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