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Old 04-09-2017, 06:48 PM   #1
justinhub2003
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Very Early AAC Preview

I got bored and looked over the incoming recruits, potential starting 5's and depth of the teams in our League.
Here are some thoughts I have regarding each team.

SMU: The Mustang preseason rank hangs on the decision of Semi Ojeleye. IF he returns I could see them in most publications preseason top 25. Im interested to see how much Jamal McMurray will contribute. He will be practicing with the team all season and will be able to play starting in the 2nd semester (just in time for Conference play). They also return Shake Milton, Jarrey Foster, & Ben Emelogu.

If SMU brings back Semi they will have a 2nd semester starting line up of McMurray, Milton, Foster, Ojeleye, and Emelogu. This once again looks like positionless basketball we saw last season except they add a more traditionally sized Point Guard. The issue will also be the bench again. Jimmy Whitt will be eligible and contribute as well as a few 3 star freshman. IF Semi doesn't come back, then this team is a top 50 team instead of a top 25 team.

Prediction: Top 25 (with Semi), Top 50 (without Semi)

Houston: I see all kinds of issues with Houstons early season roster. They lack any sort of presence in the post. They lose Chicken Knowles, Kyle Meyer, Damyean Dotson and Nkali and do very little so far to replace them as they most have JUCO Guys on the roster for the 4 and the 5. They do return pure passing point guard Galen Robinson and 3 level scorer, Rob Gray jr. Gray will have to score a lot of points to keep his team in games and they will need Devin Davis to stay healthy and contribute this season.

Kelvin Sampson has some major work to do in this spring period to bolster his roster. I though initially Houston might continue its upward trend but Im starting to think this team doesn't even crack the top 100 unless something changes.

Prediction: Barely top 100 (best case), top 150 (worst case)

UCONN: Make no mistake about it, UCONN is a dumpster fire, but its dumpster fire that 70% of D1 teams would love to be in. They lost a high major recruit and 3 more players to transfer, and I know the narrative is say they will suck. But the fact is they return Jalen Adams, Alterique Gilbert, Terry Larrier and Christian Vital and thats a pretty good crew of PG's and wings to anchor your program with. The issue is be how young they are in the post. They add Mamadou Diarra (3.3 stars), Josh Carlton (4 stars), Eric Cobb (3 star Jucu PF) & Tyler Polley (4 stars) to replace Kentan Facey, Durham, Brimah and Enoch.

So they certainly have plenty of talent with almost an entire roster of 4 star guys and good guards and wings, but they will really young and won't have a single senior on the team next season. It won't be their talent that holds them back but rather their experience. Ollie and his staff are great recruiters and I do expect to land a good player or 2 in this spring recruiting period.

Prediction: top 50 (best Case) and Top 100 (worst Case)... Ill add that they could easily be a tournament team next year.

Memphis Yikes. If UCONN is a dumpster fire then I dunno what to call the tigers. I was listening to Gary Parrish (from CBS sports, also lives in Memphis) and he was saying that Tubby is basically running Memphis into the ground and this is the worst recruiting Memphis has seen in many many years. Markel Crawford is apparently on the fence about transferring, if he does transfer they maybe only better than USF in the league and even if he stays, they may only be better than ECU, Tulane and USF. Losing the Lawson brothers was bad news on an already depleted roster.

Tubby isn't making much noise in recruiting either. He did sign a few 3 star guys that will probably have to start as freshman next year because the roster is so bad. Assuming Crawford stays, he will be the star of the team and thus the one guy you put defensive emphasis on and thus choke out Memphis. Memphis is bad and very bad for the AAC

Prediction: top 125 (best case), top 200 (Worst case)


UCF: The Knights looked really impressive in the NIT. And while they didn't play well against TCU, they have a lot to be excited about. BJ Taylor has emerged as one of the leagues best PG's and Tacko Falls keeps steadily improved and is a forced to be reckoned with on Defense. They also retain AJ Davis and bring in Michigan transfer Aubrey Dawkins who will easily replace Matt Williams lost production on the wing. Dawkins shot over 40% from 3 (like Most Michigan guys do) and did so at a decently high volume. The core of Taylor, Fall, Dawkins & Davis should carry UCF even further next season and If Tacko doesn't leave for the NBA, then I see the Knights In the NCAA tournament for first time in a long while. Johnny Dawkins also brings in a few 3 star freshman to add to its bench.

Prediction: top 40 (with Tacko), Top 100 (without Tacko)... Tournament Team

Temple: I am assuming that Josh Brown is returning to play PG for Temple next year and if they Do, they should have a really solid starting 5 with Brown at Point, Alston JR and Quinton Rose on the wing, Obi Enechionyia at the 4 and Ernest Aflakpui at the 5. I thought Alston Jr and Rose showed a lot of promise last year and Enechionyia is a talented Stretch 4 who if he keeps improving, should have a pretty big senior year. Alani Moore had to start at the PG as freshman and now will share that role with Josh Brown, I thought he did a good job running the team as a freshman. Fran Dunphy also brings in 4 3-Star recruits to add to his bench.

I think Temple will continue to improve and have a much more consistent season. I don't think they make the NCAA tournament but like always, will be a tough out and will upset some teams.

Prediction: Finish in the top 75-100. NIT team


Tulsa: Tulsa loses 2 players, 1 to graduation and 1 to transfer but retain their 2 leading scorers from last year. They Bring in a 3 star recruit but for the most part this team has a serious lack of talent. So the only way Tulsa makes any noise is for these guys to really develop and play above their talent level in multiple games. I really like Jaleel Wheeler and I think he could have a really good senior year for Tulsa but ultimately they are way over matched in the league next year.

Prediction: Top 100-150


ECU: The Pirates bring back 2 of its 3 top leading scorers from last year. They do very little to add to a roster mostly filled with 2 star guys. That said Kentrell Barkley has shown improvement year over year and we should expect this to continue in his JR season. The Bottom of the AAC should remain steady but I just don't see them moving the needle enough to get out of the bottom.

Prediction: Top 225 team

USF: I don't have much say about USF except they really really really suck. They lost a bunch of guys to transfer and basically have like 6 guys on the team and so far have zero commits for the 2017 freshman class. Mike Bibby showed a little bit of promise last year but overall this is the worst team in the league and its not even close.

Prediction: My guess would but 300+

Tulane: Tulane Returns its leading scorer from last year and despite really sucking, played really hard for Mike Dunleavy Sr. Even still, I think ECU and Tulane fight for best of the bottom.

Prediction: 200 to 250+ in RPI


My prediction for AAC standings (I'm not holding myself to this until rosters are finalized but I'm bored, so)
1. UC *
2. WSU *
3. SMU*
4. UCF*
5. Uconn
6. Temple
7. Houston
8. Tulsa
9. Memphis
10. Tulane
11. ECU
12. USF

* Tourney Teams

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Old 04-09-2017, 07:11 PM   #2
AZ BEARCAT
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Quote:
Originally Posted by justinhub2003 View Post
I got bored and looked over the incoming recruits, potential starting 5's and depth of the teams in our League.
Here are some thoughts I have regarding each team.

SMU: The Mustang preseason rank hangs on the decision of Semi Ojeleye. IF he returns I could see them in most publications preseason top 25. Im interested to see how much Jamal McMurray will contribute. He will be practicing with the team all season and will be able to play starting in the 2nd semester (just in time for Conference play). They also return Shake Milton, Jarrey Foster, & Ben Emelogu.

If SMU brings back Semi they will have a 2nd semester starting line up of McMurray, Milton, Foster, Ojeleye, and Emelogu. This once again looks like positionless basketball we saw last season except they add a more traditionally sized Point Guard. The issue will also be the bench again. Jimmy Whitt will be eligible and contribute as well as a few 3 star freshman. IF Semi doesn't come back, then this team is a top 50 team instead of a top 25 team.

Prediction: Top 25 (with Semi), Top 50 (without Semi)

Houston: I see all kinds of issues with Houstons early season roster. They lack any sort of presence in the post. They lose Chicken Knowles, Kyle Meyer, Damyean Dotson and Nkali and do very little so far to replace them as they most have JUCO Guys on the roster for the 4 and the 5. They do return pure passing point guard Galen Robinson and 3 level scorer, Rob Gray jr. Gray will have to score a lot of points to keep his team in games and they will need Devin Davis to stay healthy and contribute this season.

Kelvin Sampson has some major work to do in this spring period to bolster his roster. I though initially Houston might continue its upward trend but Im starting to think this team doesn't even crack the top 100 unless something changes.

Prediction: Barely top 100 (best case), top 150 (worst case)

UCONN: Make no mistake about it, UCONN is a dumpster fire, but its dumpster fire that 70% of D1 teams would love to be in. They lost a high major recruit and 3 more players to transfer, and I know the narrative is say they will suck. But the fact is they return Jalen Adams, Alterique Gilbert, Terry Larrier and Christian Vital and thats a pretty good crew of PG's and wings to anchor your program with. The issue is be how young they are in the post. They add Mamadou Diarra (3.3 stars), Josh Carlton (4 stars), Eric Cobb (3 star Jucu PF) & Tyler Polley (4 stars) to replace Kentan Facey, Durham, Brimah and Enoch.

So they certainly have plenty of talent with almost an entire roster of 4 star guys and good guards and wings, but they will really young and won't have a single senior on the team next season. It won't be their talent that holds them back but rather their experience. Ollie and his staff are great recruiters and I do expect to land a good player or 2 in this spring recruiting period.

Prediction: top 50 (best Case) and Top 100 (worst Case)... Ill add that they could easily be a tournament team next year.

Memphis Yikes. If UCONN is a dumpster fire then I dunno what to call the tigers. I was listening to Gary Parrish (from CBS sports, also lives in Memphis) and he was saying that Tubby is basically running Memphis into the ground and this is the worst recruiting Memphis has seen in many many years. Markel Crawford is apparently on the fence about transferring, if he does transfer they maybe only better than USF in the league and even if he stays, they may only be better than ECU, Tulane and USF. Losing the Lawson brothers was bad news on an already depleted roster.

Tubby isn't making much noise in recruiting either. He did sign a few 3 star guys that will probably have to start as freshman next year because the roster is so bad. Assuming Crawford stays, he will be the star of the team and thus the one guy you put defensive emphasis on and thus choke out Memphis. Memphis is bad and very bad for the AAC

Prediction: top 125 (best case), top 200 (Worst case)


UCF: The Knights looked really impressive in the NIT. And while they didn't play well against TCU, they have a lot to be excited about. BJ Taylor has emerged as one of the leagues best PG's and Tacko Falls keeps steadily improved and is a forced to be reckoned with on Defense. They also retain AJ Davis and bring in Michigan transfer Aubrey Dawkins who will easily replace Matt Williams lost production on the wing. Dawkins shot over 40% from 3 (like Most Michigan guys do) and did so at a decently high volume. The core of Taylor, Fall, Dawkins & Davis should carry UCF even further next season and If Tacko doesn't leave for the NBA, then I see the Knights In the NCAA tournament for first time in a long while. Johnny Dawkins also brings in a few 3 star freshman to add to its bench.

Prediction: top 40 (with Tacko), Top 100 (without Tacko)... Tournament Team

Temple: I am assuming that Josh Brown is returning to play PG for Temple next year and if they Do, they should have a really solid starting 5 with Brown at Point, Alston JR and Quinton Rose on the wing, Obi Enechionyia at the 4 and Ernest Aflakpui at the 5. I thought Alston Jr and Rose showed a lot of promise last year and Enechionyia is a talented Stretch 4 who if he keeps improving, should have a pretty big senior year. Alani Moore had to start at the PG as freshman and now will share that role with Josh Brown, I thought he did a good job running the team as a freshman. Fran Dunphy also brings in 4 3-Star recruits to add to his bench.

I think Temple will continue to improve and have a much more consistent season. I don't think they make the NCAA tournament but like always, will be a tough out and will upset some teams.

Prediction: Finish in the top 75-100. NIT team


Tulsa: Tulsa loses 2 players, 1 to graduation and 1 to transfer but retain their 2 leading scorers from last year. They Bring in a 3 star recruit but for the most part this team has a serious lack of talent. So the only way Tulsa makes any noise is for these guys to really develop and play above their talent level in multiple games. I really like Jaleel Wheeler and I think he could have a really good senior year for Tulsa but ultimately they are way over matched in the league next year.

Prediction: Top 100-150


ECU: The Pirates bring back 2 of its 3 top leading scorers from last year. They do very little to add to a roster mostly filled with 2 star guys. That said Kentrell Barkley has shown improvement year over year and we should expect this to continue in his JR season. The Bottom of the AAC should remain steady but I just don't see them moving the needle enough to get out of the bottom.

Prediction: Top 225 team

USF: I don't have much say about USF except they really really really suck. They lost a bunch of guys to transfer and basically have like 6 guys on the team and so far have zero commits for the 2017 freshman class. Mike Bibby showed a little bit of promise last year but overall this is the worst team in the league and its not even close.

Prediction: My guess would but 300+

Tulane: Tulane Returns its leading scorer from last year and despite really sucking, played really hard for Mike Dunleavy Sr. Even still, I think ECU and Tulane fight for best of the bottom.

Prediction: 200 to 250+ in RPI


My prediction for AAC standings (I'm not holding myself to this until rosters are finalized but I'm bored, so)
1. UC *
2. WSU *
3. SMU*
4. UCF*
5. Uconn
6. Temple
7. Houston
8. Tulsa
9. Memphis
10. Tulane
11. ECU
12. USF

* Tourney Teams
Thank you !! where do you rank UC and WSU ? National rankings.
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Old 04-09-2017, 08:11 PM   #3
justinhub2003
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AZ BEARCAT View Post
Thank you !! where do you rank UC and WSU ? National rankings.
With out looking at other teams in the top 25 as much, I think UC could be 12-15 and WSU 10-20

I'm kinda torn on WSU. Kenpom wise they were top 10 but they failed to beat any good team in the non conference. I think they are top 20 but not top 10 until I see them make some noise against good teams.
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Old 04-09-2017, 08:20 PM   #4
jacobkdoyle
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I've seen Wichita State as high as #5.
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Old 04-09-2017, 08:21 PM   #5
AZ BEARCAT
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Quote:
Originally Posted by justinhub2003 View Post
With out looking at other teams in the top 25 as much, I think UC could be 12-15 and WSU 10-20

I'm kinda torn on WSU. Kenpom wise they were top 10 but they failed to beat any good team in the non conference. I think they are top 20 but not top 10 until I see them make some noise against good teams.
Thank you ! should be a exiting season.
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Old 04-09-2017, 08:28 PM   #6
AZ BEARCAT
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Originally Posted by jacobkdoyle View Post
I've seen Wichita State as high as #5.
that would be great !
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Old 04-09-2017, 09:18 PM   #7
justinhub2003
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Yea I really hope WSU is as good as it's preseason rank.

It's just the funny thing is: no one was high on them
This year until conference play when they were beating a bunch of bad teams. They weren't getting much press in the non conference.

I'm still a little concerned they might not be top 15 good.


There biggest win all season last year was against #39 Dayton which
Was in the tourney. Before that it was #49.

WSU has a lot of proving to do. Some people are in the "WSU is over rated" and some in the "highly underrated" camps. I fall some where in the middle. They aren't 8th best in the country as kenpom says but they also aren't 41st or whatever the selection committee called them
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Old 04-09-2017, 11:56 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by justinhub2003 View Post
With out looking at other teams in the top 25 as much, I think UC could be 12-15 and WSU 10-20

I'm kinda torn on WSU. Kenpom wise they were top 10 but they failed to beat any good team in the non conference. I think they are top 20 but not top 10 until I see them make some noise against good teams.
Yeah, we lost to Louisville, Michigan State (we should have beat them), and Oklahoma State (kicked our ass) in the nonconference portion of our schedule. This was all before January, when the team was still trying to figure themselves out. We lost 4 starters--two of them NBA guys and some of the most iconic players in program history--from the previous year, so it took awhile for the team to come together. It seemed like the turning point was when Conner Frankamp and Landry Shamet switched roles in late December, with Shamet taking over as the PG and Frankamp playing off guard.

I understand the skepticism, which is why playing in the AAC is a game changer for us. We now have games after December that mean something. For what it's worth, remember in the tournament, we lost to 2 seed Kentucky by three. UCLA, a 3 seed, lost to them by 11.
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Old 04-10-2017, 12:42 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by justinhub2003 View Post
Yea I really hope WSU is as good as it's preseason rank.

It's just the funny thing is: no one was high on them
This year until conference play when they were beating a bunch of bad teams. They weren't getting much press in the non conference.

I'm still a little concerned they might not be top 15 good.


There biggest win all season last year was against #39 Dayton which
Was in the tourney. Before that it was #49.

WSU has a lot of proving to do. Some people are in the "WSU is over rated" and some in the "highly underrated" camps. I fall some where in the middle. They aren't 8th best in the country as kenpom says but they also aren't 41st or whatever the selection committee called them
I think you're underestimating them quite a bit. They aren't losing a single contributor from a pretty good season. I'd say 15 is the low end for where they end up. Honestly where UC and WIchita State end up is probably gonna have a lot to do with how we play each other. We split, we will probably both end up 10-15. If one team wins both probably be one team closer if not in the top ten and the other 15-20.
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Old 04-10-2017, 05:00 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jacobkdoyle View Post
I've seen Wichita State as high as #5.
I think that's a little overrated. they played a tight game against Kentucky but didn't beat anyone. I still think they will be good but top 5 is a little high in my opinion. I do hope they stay that high though. Helps us in the long run. Going to have to beat them regardless

Last edited by cincyguy13; 04-10-2017 at 05:08 AM.
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