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BY THE
NUMBERS
20.2 North Carolina's average margin of victory in the NCAA tournament

April 7, 2:45 p.m.: Just got back from Detroit, where North Carolina pulverized Michigan State on Monday night. It’s never too early to look ahead at the 2009-2010 season. Now, I’m not ready to post a 65-team bracket for next season just yet. And a lot can and will obviously change based on who declares and remains in the NBA draft. So this list remains extremely fluid. But here is a very early top five for next season.

1) Kansas
If Sherron Collins returns, the Jayhawks will be strong. Add in the legitimate possibility of adding recruit Xavier Henry and Kansas will have a chance to win a second national title in three season.
2) Syracuse
A lot hinges on whether guard Jonny Flynn returns to the ‘Cuse. Eric Devendorf, who seems like he has played for the Orange for eight seasons, should be back.
3) Michigan State
Goran Suton and Travis Walton are gone, but expect Kalin Lucas and Raymar Morgan to raise their games.
4) Villanova
Dante Cunningham and Dwayne Anderson will no longer be patrolling the front court, but Coach Jay Wright brings in two high school all-Americans to assist Scottie Reynolds.
5) Purdue
If Robbie Hummel is at full strength all of next season, the Boilermakers could make a deeper run in the NCAA tournament because Coach Matt Painter’s team is expected to return the majority of his top scorers.

Wild card:

Kentucky: If Jodie Meeks and Patrick Patterson return to school, and if Coach John Calipari can lure former Memphis commitment DeMarcus Cousins and recruit John Wall to Lexington, the Wildcats could make a case for a top three spot in preseason polls. But those are big ifs.

BRACKETIZED

ATLANTIC 11 POLL

Each week, the D.C. Sports Bog's hand-picked panel of voters selects the top 11 Division I teams in D.C., Maryland and Virginia. Analysis of this week's poll results -- and pith -- can be found on the Bog.
TeamW-LPointsFPV*
1Maryland17-959551
2Va. Commonwealth19-94474
3Virginia Tech16-10394
4American19-73895
5George Mason18-9371
6Georgetown14-112912
7Old Dominion18-9272
8VMI20-7151
9Morgan State18-10124
10Radford17-10105
11Liberty20-971

Also receiving votes: St. Mary's 58, Virginia 57, Navy 25, James Madison 22, Richmond 13, Coppin State 5, Norfolk State 1, William & Mary 1.

* - FPV = First-place votes

MY READING LIST
Virginia Tech Starting Guard Hank Thorns Lets Us Peek at His Bookmarks
Facebook.com "On my Facebook, I check my inbox and my friend requests. And then I check my notifications. I'll probably get 10 [friend requests] a day."
MySpace.com "All my friends back home have MySpace. Basically, I do the same thing on MySpace. I write back who I know. I don't write back who I don't. It might be a West Coast thing, because I didn't hear about Facebook until I got to college."
NiceKicks.com "I'm a big shoe guy, so I'll always check out the new release dates on NiceKicks.com. I always scroll down to check out the new shoes coming out, because I only wear Jordans, Nikes and SBs. I'm a big shoe guy, and all my friends are big shoes back home."
RealTalkNY.net "I'm into hip-hop and music, so I get on RealTalkNY.net to see the latest hip-hop news and what mix tape just dropped."
LVJR.com "I look at the Review-Journal. I always read something that's going on in Vegas. All my friends -- I have little friends looking up to me back home -- so I want to see how they're doing in sports. And my little cousin, she plays basketball and runs track."
COVER US!
NEWS FEED
UP NEXT

American
Season complete

Georgetown
Season complete

George Mason
Season complete

George Washington
Season complete

Howard
Season complete

Maryland
Season Complete

Navy
Season complete

Virginia
Season complete

Virginia Tech
Season complete

SEEDING THE FIELD

Each week in Seeding the Field, Eric Prisbell will project which schools will make the 65-team field for the 2009 NCAA tournament. His top four in each region as of Feb. 1:

East: 1. Connecticut, 2. Michigan State, 3. Wake Forest, 4. Butler.
Midwest: 1. Pittsburgh, 2. Clemson, 3. Memphis, 4. Purdue.
South: 1. North Carolina, 2. Louisville, 3. UCLA, 4. Gonzaga.
West: 1. Oklahoma, 2. Duke, 3. Xavier, 4. Marquette.

» Projecting the entire field

MUST READS


The Better Team Won

Detroit Free Press


UNC Not Perfect, but Ending Is

Charlotte Observer

Hoops Weiss: No Bailouts for MSU
New York Daily News


A Deceptively Tough Run

ESPN.com


A Gamble for Memphis

Memphis Commercial Appeal

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