College basketball preview

The 2014-2015 College Basketball season is coming in full swing, and there are teams all around the country that want to prove their worth. Multiple teams are looking to build off the success they had last year, and others are looking to rebuild their programs. After an electric 2013-2014 season, if you aren’t feeling some sort of excitement for this season, you may want to check your pulse.
Kentucky Wildcats: Head Coach John Calipari
The Wildcats are coming off a run to the finals in tournament last year that fans won’t soon forget, although the way they got there was different. Going in as an eighth seed in the tournament, Kentucky found their stride and went all the way to the Championship game, where they lost to Connecticut. This year, the Wildcats return almost all of their best players, including Aaron and Andrew Harrison, Willie Cauley-Stein, Dakari Johnson, and Alex Poythress. The freshman class coming in for the Wildcats is one of the best ever in the history of college basketball. Led by Karl Towns, Tyler Ulis, Devin Booker, and Trey Lyles, the Cats look to mix their veteran and young talent together to create a team that can steamroll opponents. Many believe that Kentucky can handle a lower class NBA team, so it’s going to be interesting to see who can play with Kentucky this season.
Louisville Cardinals: Head Coach Rick Pitino
Voted the third best team in the best conference in all of College Basketball, and voted in the top ten in the country, Louisville looks to rebound after falling to Kentucky in last year’s tournament. Cards will rely heavily on senior play from guard Chris Jones and forward Wayne Blackshear, and also count on Montrezel Harrell, who was known to bully the opposition last season. Louisville is also looking at an extremely tough schedule, including Kentucky, Duke, North Carolina twice, Virginia twice, Ohio State, and Syracuse. The Cardinals schedule has been ranked among the top 12 toughest schedules in all of college basketball six of the last seven seasons, and this year is no different.
Arizona Wildcats: Head Coach Sean Miller
Sean Miller looks to lead his Arizona Wildcat team to another great season. After losing in the Elite 8 last year against Wisconsin, the Wildcats look to rebound and get to the Final Four, but it’s not going to be an easy road. Losing their top two playmakers from last year in Nick Johnson and Aaron Gordon, the Wildcats will need to rely on their rock solid defense and their depth. Dominating the boards with one of the best front lines in College Basketball, playing tough Sean Miller defense, the Wildcats have another great opportunity to do great things this season.
Xavier Musketeers: Head Coach Chris Mack
Voted the 14th best incoming freshman class, led by guard Tervon Bluiett, the Muskies are looking to have a young, yet dangerous team, Losing Semaj Christon to the NBA draft and Justin Martin to SMU, Xavier will lean on seniors Dee Davis and Matt Stainbrook for leadership. The Musketeers can very well make a run for an NCAA tournament bid playing in the new Big East, but they must learn to come together and work as a team with all their young talent.
Villanova Wildcats: Head Coach Jay Wright
Jay Wright has scheduled one of the toughest non-conference schedules in the country for his team. Why? Because Jay believes that this team can do something special this season. Facing VCU, Michigan, and Syracuse, as well as their own tough conference opponents, Villanova is not going to have it easy this year. Although they lost their top playmaker James Bell, they are led by JayVaughn Pinkton, who averaged 14 points and six rebounds, and guard Darrun Hillard, who averages 14 points and shoots over 42 percent from three point range. The Wildcats look to go back to back seasons winning the Big East regular season title, and having a tough non-conference schedule will help merge the Wildcats into a winning team.
Duke Blue Devils: Head Coach Mike Krzyzewski
The Blue Devils have an outstanding young team. Jahlil Okafor, Quin Cook, and Tyus Jones hope to lead Duke to do something special this year. After proving they were good by beating Michigan State by 10 points early in the season, they did the same thing to Wisconsin. Tyus Jones breaking out with a great game against Wisconsin should be a huge help for Duke. The Blue Devils chances to win the ACC and make a big tournament run are looking very bright right now.
Wisconsin Badgers: Head Coach Bo Ryan
Yes, Wisconsin did lose to Duke by 10, but that doesn’t mean at all that Wisconsin isn’t a top team in the country. Led by Frank Kaminsky, Nigel Hayes, and Traevon Jackson the Badgers are going to be a tough team to beat this year. Frank Kaminsky is down right one of the best players in the country, and is going to be trouble for any team to stop. I think the Badgers will win the Big 10 but it definatley will not be easy. The Badgers beat Wisconsin and Oklahoma already this year so they have some pretty descent wins under their belt. The Badgers are going to do a lot of damage this year and I would watch out for them later this season.
Cincinnati Bearcats: Interim Head Coach Larry Davis
“New team, new possibilities”, is the way I look at the Bearcats this year. Losing Sean Kilpatrick and Justin Jackson is going to be a huge struggle for the Bearcats this year. The ‘Cats will be lead by Octavius Ellis, Shaq Thomas, and Troy Caupain. There are a lot of new faces on UC this year and the one that needs to make a huge impact is Gary Clark. Gary is starting out pretty good averaging around nine points a game. The struggle this year is going to be shooting, after losing their top two scorers that has been the ‘Cats’ main struggle. The Bearcats’ first real test this year was playing Ole Miss, and honestly they got embarrassed.

this is a ball
this is a ball

losing by twelve points. The Bearcats have three tough games in a row coming up playing Nebraska, San Diego State, and VCU. The cats have a chance to be a pretty good team this year, they really just have to be able to put up the points. I think Cincinnati has a chance to win the American Conference but will need to get better fast to make that happen.
West Virginia Mountaineers: Head Coach Bob Huggins
West Virginia looks like a brand new team this year. With a fast undefeated start lead by Juwan Staten, Jonathan Holten and Devin Williams, the sky is the limit for this team. The Mountaineers have beaten Connecticut, and I think they are real team to watch. The Mountaineers will not see much other tough competition till they reach conference play. When Bob Huggins was asked how his team was he said they are looking really good this year. If Bob Huggins says that you know we should see a pretty good team out of West Virginia this year. West Virginia has a chance to do some real damage in the Big 12 and could definetly make a run in the tournament.