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Thread: The Bum's Previewing College Basketball Teams 2018 - 2019 !

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    Default The Bum's Previewing College Basketball Teams 2018 - 2019 !

    2019 Final Four Props
    October 15, 2018
    By VI News


    The 2018-19 College Basketball regular season is scheduled to begin on Tuesday, Nov. 6, 2018.

    Even though Selection Sunday doesn't take place until Mar. 17, 2019, bettors can start to wager on which schools will earn a trip to the 2019 Final Four at Sportsbook.ag.

    The Final Four weekend is set for Saturday Apr. 6 from Minneapolis, Minnesota.

    Those four spots will be earned in the Regional Finals, which will take place on the dates at the venues below:

    South Regional - Louisville, Kentucky (March 30)
    West Regional - Anaheim, California (March 30)
    East Regional - Washington, D.C. (March 31)
    Midwest Regional - Kansas City, MO (March 31)


    Making a return trip to the Final Four is never guaranteed, even for the top seeds.

    Listed below are the Final Four teams from the previous five years:

    2018 - (1) Villanova, (1) Kansas, (3) Michigan, (11) Loyola-Chicago
    2017 - (1) Gonzaga, (7) South Carolina, (3) Oregon, (1) North Carolina
    2016 - (1) North Carolina, (2) Oklahoma, (2) Villanova, (10) Syracuse
    2015 - (1) Kentucky, (1) Duke, (1) Wisconsin, (7) Michigan State
    2014 - (1) Florida, (2) Wisconsin, (7) UConn, (8) Kentucky

    All of the schools odds are listed below for the upcoming season

    2019 Mens NCAA Basketball Tournament
    Odds to Make Final 4 (4/1/19) - per Sportsbook.ag
    Duke 1/1
    Kentucky 1/1
    Kansas 7/5
    Gonzaga 7/4
    Nevada 3/1
    Villanova 13/4
    North Carolina 4/1
    Virginia 9/2
    Michigan State 5/1
    Oregon 5/1
    Tennessee 6/1
    Michigan 7/1
    UCLA 7/1
    West Virginia 7/1
    Indiana 8/1
    Auburn 9/1
    Florida 10/1
    Wichita State 10/1
    Purdue 12/1
    Syracuse 12/1
    Florida State 15/1
    Kansas State 15/1
    Texas Tech 15/1
    Virginia Tech 15/1
    Cincinnati 20/1
    Clemson 20/1
    LSU 20/1
    Miami FL 20/1
    NC State 20/1
    Notre Dame 20/1
    Ohio State 20/1
    Texas 20/1
    Texas A&M 20/1
    Wisconsin 20/1
    Alabama 25/1
    Arizona 25/1
    Arizona State 25/1
    Arkansas 25/1
    Baylor 25/1
    Butler 25/1
    Louisville 25/1
    Marquette 25/1
    Maryland 25/1
    Mississippi State 25/1
    Penn State 25/1
    St Johns 25/1
    TCU 25/1
    Vanderbilt 25/1
    Xavier 25/1
    Houston 45/1
    Iowa 45/1
    Creighton 50/1
    Georgetown 50/1
    Illinois 50/1
    Iowa State 50/1
    Memphis 50/1
    Minnesota 50/1
    Missouri 50/1
    Nebraska 50/1
    Oklahoma 50/1
    Providence 50/1
    Rhode Island 50/1
    SMU 50/1
    San Diego State 50/1
    Seton Hall 50/1
    South Carolina 50/1
    St Marys 50/1
    USC 50/1
    Utah 50/1
    Washington 50/1
    Central Florida 60/1
    U Conn 60/1
    Boise State 75/1
    Boston College 75/1
    Davidson 75/1
    Georgia 75/1
    Loyola Chicago 75/1
    New Mexico 75/1
    Northwestern 75/1
    Oklahoma State 75/1
    Oregon State 75/1
    UNLV 75/1
    Western Kentucky 75/1
    Fresno State 100/1
    BYU 125/1
    Buffalo 125/1
    Colorado 125/1
    Georgia Tech 125/1
    Harvard 125/1
    Illinois State 125/1
    Old Dominion 125/1
    Ole Miss 125/1
    Rutgers 125/1
    St Josephs 125/1
    St Louis 125/1
    Stanford 125/1
    Temple 125/1
    Tulsa 125/1
    Wake Forest 125/1
    Charleston 200/1
    Dayton 200/1
    DePaul 200/1
    Marshall 200/1
    New Mexico State 200/1
    Northern Iowa 200/1
    Richmond 200/1
    St Bonaventure 200/1
    Utah State 200/1
    VCU 200/1
    Belmont 400/1
    Bradley 400/1
    Colorado State 400/1
    Furman 400/1
    Grand Canyon 400/1
    LA Lafayette 400/1
    La Salle 400/1
    Middle Tennessee State 400/1
    Missouri State 400/1
    Montana 400/1
    Northeastern 400/1
    Pennsylvania 400/1
    Southern Illinois 400/1
    Toledo 400/1
    Tulane 400/1
    UAB 400/1
    Valparaiso 400/1
    Vermont 400/1
    Western Michigan 400/1
    Wright State 400/1
    Albany 1000/1
    Ball State 1000/1
    Bucknell 1000/1
    CS Fullerton 1000/1
    California 1000/1
    Central Michigan 1000/1
    Cleveland State 1000/1
    Duquesne 1000/1
    East Tennessee State 1000/1
    Eastern Michigan 1000/1
    Evansville 1000/1
    Florida Gulf Coast 1000/1
    George Mason 1000/1
    Georgia Southern 1000/1
    Hawaii 1000/1
    Illinois Chicago 1000/1
    Indiana State 1000/1
    Iona 1000/1
    Jacksonville State 1000/1
    Kent State 1000/1
    Liberty 1000/1
    Louisiana Tech 1000/1
    Miami OH 1000/1
    Milwaukee 1000/1
    Monmouth 1000/1
    NC Greensboro 1000/1
    NC Wilmington 1000/1
    North Dakota State 1000/1
    North Texas 1000/1
    Northern Kentucky 1000/1
    Oakland 1000/1
    Ohio 1000/1
    Pittsburgh 1000/1
    Portland 1000/1
    Princeton 1000/1
    Rider 1000/1
    San Diego 1000/1
    San Francisco 1000/1
    Seattle 1000/1
    South Alabama 1000/1
    South Dakota 1000/1
    South Dakota State 1000/1
    Southern Miss 1000/1
    Texas Arlington 1000/1
    Texas State 1000/1
    Towson 1000/1
    U Mass 1000/1
    UC Davis 1000/1
    UC Irvine 1000/1
    UCSB 1000/1
    UMBC 1000/1
    UTSA 1000/1
    Utah Valley 1000/1
    Washington State 1000/1
    Weber State 1000/1
    William and Mary 1000/1
    Wofford 1000/1
    Wyoming 1000/1
    Yale 1000/1

    Odds Subject to Change
    Remember the 3 G's Gambling, Golf, Girls not in any particular order.....

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    Tennessee Preview-Capsule
    October 24, 2018
    By The Associated Press


    No. 6 Tennessee

    Last season: 26-9, lost 63-62 to Loyola-Chicago in second round of NCAA Tournament

    Nickname: Volunteers

    Coach: Rick Barnes

    Conference: Southeastern

    Who's gone: Guards James Daniel (exhausted eligibility) and Chris Darrington (transferred to Toledo)

    Who's back: Forward Grant Williams returns for his junior season after being selected by coaches as the 2018 SEC player of the year. He averaged 15.2 points and 6 rebounds last season. Forward Admiral Schofield, a second-team all-SEC selection last year with 13.9 points and 6.4 rebounds per game, worked out with NBA teams during the pre-draft process but decided to come back for his senior season. Junior guards Lamonte' Turner (10.9 points per game last year), Jordan Bowden (9.1) and Jordan Bone (7.3) also return. Bowden and Bone combined for 68 starts last year. Turner was Tennessee's third-leading scorer while coming off the bench. Kyle Alexander, a 6-foot-11 senior, led the Vols in offensive rebounds (85) and blocks (57) last season.

    Who's new: Freshman D.J. Burns was rated as the nation's No. 108 prospect in his class according to composite rankings of recruiting sites compiled by 247Sports. The 6-9 forward had over 1,000 points and 1,000 rebounds at York Preparatory Academy in Rock Hill, South Carolina.

    The skinny: Tennessee returns its top six scorers from last year and heads into the season as one of the nation's most experienced teams. That explains why Tennessee is sixth in the Top 25, its highest preseason ranking ever.

    Expectations: Las Vegas oddsmakers give Tennessee a 22-1 shot to win the national title, even though the Vols have never reached a Final Four. The only teams with better odds are Duke, Kentucky, Gonzaga, Kansas, North Carolina, Villanova, Nevada and Virginia. The SEC preseason media poll has Tennessee finishing second in the league, behind only Kentucky.
    Remember the 3 G's Gambling, Golf, Girls not in any particular order.....

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    Alabama Preview-Capsule
    October 24, 2018
    By The Associated Press


    Alabama Preview-Capsule

    Alabama

    Last season: Alabama made its first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2012 and won its first tourney game since 2006 before losing to eventual champion Villanova in the second round.

    Nickname: Crimson Tide.

    Coach: Avery Johnson.

    Conference: SEC.

    Who's gone: PG Collin Sexton left after one season and was the No. 8 overall NBA draft pick by the Cleveland Cavaliers. He averaged 19.2 points, second in the SEC. F Braxton Key, who started 17 games, transferred to Virginia.

    Who's back: F Donta Hall averaged 10.6 points and 6.6 rebounds per game. John Petty, one of the league's better 3-point shooters, scored 10.2 ppg as a freshman. Dazon Ingram (9.7 ppg, 5.7 rpg) is the likely front-runner to replace Sexton at point guard. G Herbert Jones is a top defender who could need to score more. F Riley Norris received a medical redshirt after getting hurt early last season.

    Who's new: G Tevin Mack averaged 14.8 ppg two years ago for Texas but sat out last season after transferring. PG Kira Lewis Jr. was a five-star recruit who graduated early and reclassified to play this season, but the 6-foot-3, 160-pounder could need time to grow into a role and mature physically.

    The Skinny: The Tide is picked to finish seventh in the SEC, and has a big offensive void to fill after Sexton's departure. Mack and Petty are candidates to fill the role of go-to scorer. Alabama has been strong defensively but ranked 12th in the league in scoring last season.

    Expectations: Las Vegas oddsmakers have Alabama among a group of teams with 120-1 odds of winning the NCAA Tournament. That group includes Arizona, Arkansas, Mississippi State and Texas A&M.
    Remember the 3 G's Gambling, Golf, Girls not in any particular order.....

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    South Carolina Preview Capsule
    October 24, 2018
    By The Associated Press


    COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) South Carolina

    Last season: 17-16, missed the postseason after a surprise Final Four run in 2017.

    Nickname: Gamecocks.

    Coach: Frank Martin.

    Conference: Southeastern.

    Who's gone: Guard Frank Booker, guard Wesley Myers, guard David Beatty (transfer).

    Who's back: Forward Chris Silva was the team's top scorer, rebounder and shot blocker. He was named the SEC co-defensive player of the year and made first-team all-SEC. Guard Hasani Gravett is the team's leading returner at 3.6 assists a game. Forward Malik Kotsar averaged eight points and four rebounds. Forward Justin Minaya is the son of former Major League GM Omar Minaya who is the team's top returning 3-point shooter.

    Who's new: Gamecocks counting on Georgetown grad transfer Tre Campbell to take control of point guard. Guard Jermaine Cousinard is among six freshman on South Carolina's roster.

    The Skinny: South Carolina had hoped to back up their Final Four season in 2017 with a strong follow-up. Martin hopes the Gamecocks, picked 11th in the SEC, can take a positive step forward back into the NCAA Tournament this year.

    Expectations: South Carolina could struggle through another season of growth with nine sophomores or freshmen on the roster in what appears to be a stacked SEC.
    Remember the 3 G's Gambling, Golf, Girls not in any particular order.....

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    Mississippi Preview-Capsule
    October 24, 2018
    By The Associated Press


    Mississippi Preview-Capsule

    Mississippi


    Last season: 12-20, coach Andy Kennedy resigned after nearly 12 seasons with the program.

    Nickname: Rebels.

    Coach: Kermit Davis.

    Conference: Southeastern.

    Who's gone: Guard Deandre Burnett, guard/forward Markel Crawford, forward Marcanvis Hymon, forward Justas Furmanavicius.

    Who's back: Senior guard Terence Davis returns after leading the team with 13.8 points and grabbing 6.2 rebounds per game last season. Point guard Breein Tyree (10.8 ppg), forward Bruce Stevens (10.8 ppg), guard Devontae Shuler (6.0 ppg) and 7-footer Dominik Olejniczak (4.3 ppg) also had substantial roles last year.

    Who's new: A pair of 6-foot-7 freshmen, Blake Hinson and K.J. Buffen, should get plenty of playing time immediately.

    The Skinny: Ole Miss is led by first-year coach Kermit Davis, who comes to Oxford after 16 mostly successful seasons at Middle Tennessee. The Rebels have a decent mix of veterans and newcomers as they try to climb out of the SEC basement.

    Expectations: Ole Miss was picked to finish last in the SEC in the preseason poll after losing 20 games last season. With a new coach and some experience returning there's reason to believe the Rebels could exceed expectations, but anything better than 17 or 18 wins might be a stretch.
    Remember the 3 G's Gambling, Golf, Girls not in any particular order.....

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    Vanderbilt Preview-Capsule
    October 24, 2018
    By The Associated Press


    Vanderbilt Preview-Capsule

    Vanderbilt


    Last season: 12-20

    Nickname: Commodores

    Coach: Bryce Drew

    Conference: Southeastern

    Who's gone: G Matthew Fisher-Davis, G Riley LaChance and F Jeff Roberson finished their eligibility. Larry Austin Jr., graduated in May and transferred to Central Michigan. G Payton Willis transferred to Minnesota, and C Djery Baptiste left team to graduate in December and transfer to UMass.

    Who's back: Two starters return in sophomore G Saben Lee and senior G Joe Toye. Juniors Matt Ryan, a 6-foot-8 forward, is eligible after sitting out a year after transferring from Notre Dame. C Yanni Wetzel also is eligible after playing at St. Mary's College in Texas. Others include Maxwell Evans, Clevon Brown, Ejike Obinna.

    Who's new: Highest-rated recruiting class ever for Vanderbilt with PG Darius Garland, F Aaron Nesmith and F/C Simisola Shittu. Nesmith beat out Duke signee Zion Williamson as the Gatorade South Carolina player of the year, and Garland and Shittu both were consensus five-star recruits.

    The skinny: Vanderbilt is coming off its worst season since 2002-03 when the Commodores went 11-18 in Kevin Stallings' fourth season as coach. Drew is going into his third season in charge of the Commodores and hopes to finally have the pieces to play his style of ball.

    Expectations: As talented as the Commodores are, their challenge is competing in a much tougher SEC with five teams in the preseason Top 25, including Kentucky and Tennessee as teams Vanderbilt must play not once but twice this season. Their schedule also includes a visit from Auburn, and the Commodores are predicted to finish eighth in the SEC.
    Remember the 3 G's Gambling, Golf, Girls not in any particular order.....

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    Florida Preview-Capsule
    October 24, 2018
    By The Associated Press


    Florida Preview-Capsule

    Florida

    Last season: 21-13, losing in second round of NCAA Tournament.

    Nickname: Gators.

    Coach: Mike White.

    Conference: SEC.

    Who's gone: Point guard Chris Chiozza, swingman Egor Koulechov, center John Egbunu.

    Who's back: Guard Jalen Hudson entered the NBA draft but failed to get an invite to the combine, so he returned for his senior season. Hudson averaged a team-high 15.5 points last year and gives the Gators a proven scorer to play alongside shooting guard KeVaughn Allen and highly touted freshman point guard Andrew Nembhard. Forwards Keith Stone and Kevarrius Hayes get some much-needed help in the frontcourt with the return of Chase Johnson (concussion) and Isaiah Stokes (knee).

    Who's new: Nembhard is expected to be one of the top freshmen in the conference, maybe even the country. A 6-foot-5 Canadian who attended high school in nearby Orlando, Nembhard led his country to a silver medal in the FIBA U18 Americas. White calls him the best passer he's ever coached, saying ''that is his gift.'' Forward Keyontae Johnson and guard Noah Locke will be role players as freshmen.

    The Skinny: The Gators faltered in February, limped into the tournament and failed to get past the opening weekend. Still, back-to-back NCAA Tournament appearances are notable progress for White, who's entering his fourth season at Florida. Team needs to be better at home after dropping five of 17 games in the O'Connell Center in 2017-18.

    Expectations: Anything short of another NCAA Tournament berth would be a disappointment in White's fourth season. They have enough talent, experience and depth to make a lengthy postseason run, especially if Nembhard is as good as advertised.
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    Nevada preview capsule
    October 24, 2018
    By The Associated Press


    Last season: 29-8, reached second Sweet 16 in school history.

    Nickname: Wolf Pack.

    Coach: Eric Musselman.

    Conference: Mountain West.

    Who's gone: G Kendall Stephens, G Hallice Cooke, G Darien Williams.

    Who's back: Forwards Caleb and Cody Martin, F Jordan Caroline, G Lindsey Drew. The return of the Martin twins and Caroline was a huge boon for Musselman and the Wolf Pack. They were Nevada's top three scorers and rebounders a year ago, versatile players who helped match the deepest NCAA Tournament run in program history.

    Who's new: Trey Porter, a 6-11 graduate transfer from Old Dominion, gives Nevada an immediate post presence, along with talented 6-11 freshman Jordan Brown. Guard transfers Corey Henson (Wagner), Jazz Johnson (Portland) and Tre'Shawn Turman (Omaha) give the Wolf Pack one of the nation's deepest, most talented rosters.

    The Skinny: Expectations are high in Reno after the Elite Eight run and the return of the Martin twins and Caroline. The No. 7 Wolf Pack have their highest preseason ranking and are legitimate Final Four contenders.

    Expectations: Nevada is among the favorites to win the NCAA Tournament at 12-1, right behind blue bloods like Duke, Kentucky, Kansas and North Carolina.
    Remember the 3 G's Gambling, Golf, Girls not in any particular order.....

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    Arkansas Preview-Capsule
    October 24, 2018
    By The Associated Press


    Arkansas

    Last season: 23-12, lost in the first round of the NCAA Tournament to Butler.

    Nickname: Razorbacks.

    Coach: Mike Anderson.

    Conference: Southeastern Conference.

    Who's gone: Six of Arkansas' top seven leading scorers, including the dynamic All-SEC guard duo of Jaylen Baford and Daryl Macon - who combined to average 34.7 points per game a year ago. Point guard Anton Beard and forwards Dustin Thomas, Trey Thompson and Arlando Cook are also gone due to graduation, while guard C.J. Jones (Middle Tennessee State) and Darious Hall (DePaul) transferred.

    Who's back: The Razorbacks return only three scholarship players, led by All-SEC forward Daniel Gafford. The athletic 6-foot-11 sophomore averaged 11.8 points and 6.2 rebounds - shooting 60.5 percent from the field - in only 23 minutes per game a year ago as a freshman, and he's projected as a lottery pick in next year's NBA draft. Also returning is junior Adrio Bailey (4.1 ppg) and sophomore Gabe Osabuohien (1.1 ppg).

    Who's new: The vast majority of the overhauled roster from a year ago, with transfers Jalen Harris and Mason Jones expected to perform well early thanks to their experience. Harris, a 6-foot-2 point guard, sat out last season after transferring from New Mexico, and Jones averaged 15.5 points per game last year in junior college. Also, freshman Isaiah Joe scored 31 points on 9-of-14 shooting on 3-pointers in Arkansas' Red-White scrimmage and is expected to fill a large void from the outside for a Razorbacks team that returns only one player who hit a 3-pointer last season.

    The Skinny: Despite having reached the NCAA Tournament in three of the last four seasons, Anderson is under continued pressure to live up to the lofty standards set by his mentor, Hall of Fame coach Nolan Richardson. The chances of a fourth NCAA trip in five seasons aren't great with such an overhauled roster, but the return of Gafford should provide plenty of high-flying excitement.

    Expectations: The Razorbacks were picked to finish 10th in the much-improved SEC this season, a reflection of the roster turnover. Gafford, however, is enough to give Arkansas a chance just about any time it steps on the court.
    Remember the 3 G's Gambling, Golf, Girls not in any particular order.....

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    Gonzaga Preview-Capsule
    October 24, 2018
    By The Associated Press


    Last season: 32-5, reached the Sweet Sixteen for fourth consecutive season

    Nickname: Bulldogs

    Coach: Mark Few

    Conference: West Coast

    Who's gone: Forward Johnathan Williams, guard Silas Melson.

    Who's back: NBA hopefuls Rui Hachimura and Killian Tillie, starting guard Josh Perkins (12.3 points) and late season hero Zach Norvell Jr. (12.7 points). Hachimura came off the bench last year, but his raw athleticism excited pro scouts. Jeremy Jones and Corey Kispert also return.

    Who's new: Brandon Clarke becomes eligible after transferring from San Jose State, where he averaged 17.3 points, 8.7 rebounds and 2.6 blocks per game as a sophomore. ''He's easily the most athletic guy I have ever played with,'' Perkins said. Graduate transfer Geno Crandall is coming from North Dakota, where he averaged 16.6 points, 4.3 rebounds and 3.6 assists per game last year.

    The Skinny: The Zags' No. 3 ranking in the AP preseason poll is the highest in their history, and this team on paper has a chance to reach the national title game.

    Expectations: Las Vegas odds-makers have the Zags at 15-2 odds to win the NCAA Tournament, trailing only Duke and Kentucky. They are expected to win the West Coast Conference.
    Remember the 3 G's Gambling, Golf, Girls not in any particular order.....

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    Butler Preview-Capsule
    October 24, 2018
    By The Associated Press


    Last season: 21-14, lost in second round of NCAA Tournament for the third time in four years.

    Nickname: Bulldogs.

    Coach: LaVall Jordan.

    Conference: Big East.

    Who's gone: Forward Kelan Martin, forward Tyler Wideman.

    Who's back: Guard Kamar Baldwin becomes top scoring option (15.7 points per game) for the first time in his college career and also excels on defense. Centers Nate Fowler (5.9 ppg, 3.1 rebounds) and Joey Brunk (1.8 rebounds per game) should see their playing time increase and could be the keys to helping Bulldogs maintain their traditionally strong rebounding edge. Point guard Paul Jorgensen (10.2 ppg), a part-time starter last season, could win back the starting job from Aaron Thompson (4.3 ppg, 3.4 assists). Shooting guard Sean McDermott (7.5 points) also returns and could be used in smaller lineups.

    Who's new: Sophomore forward Jordan Tucker becomes eligible in December and could give the Bulldogs an exciting new piece after transferring into the program from Duke. Markeese Hastings and Bryce Golden are the only freshmen on the roster, but newcomers don't often play big roles on this roster.

    The Skinny: Jordan loses his top scorer (Martin) and top two rebounders (Martin and Wideman) from last season's team, but the Bulldogs have developed a penchant for finding replacement parts and appear ready to do so again in a still strong Big East. How far they ascend will depend largely on their backcourt play, led by Baldwin who was named to the conference's all-tournament team.

    Expectations: Butler has been installed by Las Vegas oddsmakers as a 120-1 longshot to win the NCAA Tournament. Their odds are the same as conference rivals Xavier and St. John's and in-state foe Notre Dame. Villanova, at 10-1, is only Big East team ahead of the Bulldogs.

    ---
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    Loyola Preview-Capsule
    October 24, 2018
    By The Associated Press


    Last season: 32-6.

    Nickname: Ramblers.

    Coach: Porter Moser.

    Conference: Missouri Valley.

    Who's gone: Guard/forward Donte Ingram, guard Ben Richardson and forward Aundre Jackson.

    Who's back: Guard Clayton Custer tries to become the first back-to-back MVC Player of the Year winner since Creighton's Doug McDermott (2012, 2013). Custer averaged 13.2 points, shot 45.1 percent on 3-pointers and got a sweet bounce while burying the winning jumper in the closing seconds against Tennessee in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. Guard Marques Townes averaged 11.1 points, 4.0 rebounds and 2.4 assists last season. Like Custer, he hit a huge shot in the NCAAs - a decisive 3 in the closing seconds against Nevada in the Sweet 16. Center Cameron Krutwig was MVC Freshman of the Year last season, averaging 10.5 points and 6.1 rebounds.

    Who's new: Freshman Franklin Agunanne, a 6-foot-9 forward, drew interest from Big East and Big Ten schools. Aher Uguak, a 6-7 forward, is eligible after sitting out last season following a transfer from New Mexico.

    The Skinny: Loyola-Chicago stunned the nation with a gripping run to the Final Four last season, setting a school record for wins and capturing the Missouri Valley regular-season and tournament championships along the way. With Sister Jean providing a spiritual lift, the Ramblers were the feel-good story of the tournament. Loyola has been picked to finish first in the preseason MVC poll.

    Expectations: Vegas oddsmakers have Loyola as a long shot to win the NCAA at 350-1 despite last year's run, the same as nearby Northwestern.
    Remember the 3 G's Gambling, Golf, Girls not in any particular order.....

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    Wichita State Preview Capsule
    October 24, 2018
    By The Associated Press


    Wichita State

    Last season: 25-8, lost in first round of NCAA Tournament

    Nickname: Shockers

    Coach: Gregg Marshall

    Conference: American

    Who's gone: SG Landry Shamet (NBA), SG Austin Reaves (transferred to Oklahoma), PF Brett Barney (transferred to Omaha), PG Kaelen Malone (transferred to Newman), SG C.J. Keyser (transferred to North Carolina Central), F Rashard Kelly, F Zach Brown, C Rauno Nurger, PF Darral Willis Jr., C Shaq Morris, SG Conner Frankamp, assistant coach Kyle Lindsted (Minnesota), assistant coach Donnie Jones (Dayton).

    Who's back: SF Markis McDuffie, who averaged 8.5 points last season; SG Samaje Haynes-Jones, who averaged 5.3 points as a freshman; SF Rod Brown.

    Who's new: SF Teddy Allen, who is seeking an NCAA waiver to play immediately after transferring from West Virginia; SG Eli Farrakhan, a transfer from Central Georgia Tech; C Morris Udeze from Florida's Montverde Academy; C Isaiah Chandler from Sunrise Christian Academy in Wichita; C Jaime Echenique, a transfer from Trinity Valley Community College; SG Erik Stevenson, a three-star recruit from Lacey, Washington; SG Chance Moore from Louisville, Kentucky; SG Dexter Dennis from Believe Prep in Baker, Louisiana; SG Jamarius Burton from Charlotte, North Carolina.

    The Skinny: Even the biggest Shocker fans will need lineup cards this season with nine newcomers on the roster, many of whom will need to play important minutes right away. The Shockers lost their biggest stars to the NBA and graduation, so keeping their success under Marshall going will be a challenge.

    Expectations: Las Vegas oddsmakers have Wichita State at 50-1 to win the NCAA Tournament.

    ---
    Remember the 3 G's Gambling, Golf, Girls not in any particular order.....

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    LSU Preview Capsule
    October 24, 2018
    By The Associated Press


    Last season: 18-15, lost in second round of NIT

    Nickname: Tigers

    Coach: Will Wade

    Conference: SEC

    Who's gone: G Brandon Sampson (turned pro), G Randy Onwuasor, PF Duop Reath, F Wayde Sims (deceased), F Aaron Epps, F Jeremy Combs, F Mayan Kiir (transferred to USF).

    Who's back: PG Tremont Waters averaged 15.9 points, 6 assists and 2 steals; G Skylar Mays averaged 11.3 points, 4 rebounds and 3 assists; G Daryl Edwards averaged 6.8 points as an intermittent starter; G Marshall Graves averaged 5.1 minutes of playing time in 14 games.

    Who's new: F Naz Reid, a five-star prospect from Asbury Park, New Jersey; F Emmitt Williams, a five-star prospect from Fort Myers, Florida; F Kavell Bigby-Williams sat out last season after transferring from Oregon; G Ja'vonte Smart, a four-star prospect named the top high school player in Louisiana last season; F Courtese Cooper is a junior college transfer from Triton; F Darius Days, a four-star prospect from Raleigh, Florida; F Aundre Hyatt, a Rivals' Top 100 player from New York; G Danya Kingsby, a junior college transfer from Southern Idaho; G Marlon Taylor, a junior college transfer from Panola College; G Will Reese, a former LSU baseball player.

    The Skinny: The Tigers return their most dynamic player from last season in Waters as well as one of their more reliable and productive back court players in Mays. By adding two five-star recruits, along with the top prospect from Louisiana and an experienced front-court transfer from another major program, Wade has built a team that enters the season ranking No. 23 in the Top 25 poll, and with high hopes of making waves in the SEC and NCAA Tournament. The Tigers will start the season mourning the death of Sims, who was shot and killed late last month.

    Expectations: Las Vegas odds makers have LSU at 100-1 to win the NCAA Tournament.

    ---
    Remember the 3 G's Gambling, Golf, Girls not in any particular order.....

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    Texas A&M Preview Capsule
    October 24, 2018
    By The Associated Press


    Last season: 22-13, reached Sweet 16

    Nickname: Aggies

    Coach: Billy Kennedy

    Conference: Southeastern Conference

    Who's gone: Forward Robert Williams (NBA), center Tyler Davis (NBA), forward DJ Hogg (NBA) and center Tonny Trocha-Morelos, guard Duane Wilson.

    Who's back: Guard Admon Gilder considered the NBA before deciding to return for his senior season, giving the Aggies veteran experience and solid scoring after he averaged 12.3 points last season. Guard TJ Starks is back after averaging 9.9 point as a freshman. Guard Jay Jay Chandler will need to take a step forward after scoring 3.7 points as a freshman last year.

    Who's new: Junior college transfer Wendell Mitchell is a talented guard expected to get minutes. Texas A&M replaced some of the size it lost with the signing of John Brown, a 7-foot sophomore who spent last season at Blinn Junior College.

    The Skinny: The Aggies reached the Sweet 16 for the second time in the last three years last season behind a big lineup led by Williams, who was the 27th overall pick in the draft, and Davis. The team will look much different this season with a guard-heavy lineup that will certainly play much faster than last year's squad.

    Expectations: A year after the Aggies lost to to Michigan in the regional semifinals, most aren't expecting much this season. The three losses to the NBA left major holes in the roster and Texas A&M was predicted to finish 12th in the SEC in the preseason media poll. Oddsmakers say Texas A&M is a 120-1 longshot to win the national title.

    ---
    Remember the 3 G's Gambling, Golf, Girls not in any particular order.....

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