Way-too-early 2018-19 College Basketball Top 25
Where will the Wolf Pack rank next year?
Stupid early rankings for next year
The national championship is over for college basketball and everyone loves to look forward to the following season with first-look top 25 rankings. We decided to make it easy for everyone by dropping those in one place.
A few caveats to these rankings is that the deadline to return to school after testing the NBA Draft waters is still a few months away, so these will change quite a bit from until then. Also, coaching changes could make a difference.
The Nevada Wolf Pack are the only team in the Mountain West getting consideration for the top 25 next year. They possibly could be a top-10 team if the Martin twins remain in school and Eric Musselman is on the sidelines. The latter seems more likely than the former but it is too early to tell at the moment on those two.
Guys who transferred in leave, and coach Eric Musselman restocks the cupboard with even more. Nisre Zouzoua scored more than 20 points a night at Bryant, Jazz Johnson nearly 16 at Portland, Tre’Shawn Thurman nearly 14 and eight rebounds at Omaha, and Corey Henson nearly 15 at Wagner. They’ll mix with the Martin twins (who we’ve projected to return, despite the possibility that they could leave), Jordan Caroline, Lindsay Drew and Josh Hall to form what might be the best team outside of the high-major structure.
It’s all about pro decisions for the Wolf Pack. If the Martin twins (32.9 points per game combined) come back, and if Jordan Caroline (17.7 points, 8.6 rebounds) comes back, Nevada will be a top-10 team. A wealth of talent will be eligible next season after sitting out transfer years, too. For now, pending decisions, this is Nevada’s spot.
Here’s something that should ease the sting of last month’s narrow Sweet 16 loss to Loyola for Nevada coach Eric Musselman: The Wolf Pack could be even better next season. There’s a chance that Nevada brings back five high-level players depending on whether the Martin twins and Jordan Caroline decide to return.
Throw in the addition of four transfers and two freshmen to provide the depth this past season’s team lacked, and the Wolf Pack could realistically dream of going farther in the NCAA tournament than they did this past March. Drew is also recovering from a torn Achilles, a serious enough injury that there’s no guarantee he’ll be the same player next season.
Nevada does not show up in the top 25 or on his other five teams to watch.
The Wolf Pack took a big step forward in coach Eric Musselman’s third season. Another one could come next year with twins Caleb and Cody Martin back with more transfers on the way.
This one is a bit tougher to project, as the Martin twins and Caroline are all going to be fifth-year seniors and it’s always difficult to predict what they are going to do. If they already have their degree, does it make sense to return to school for another season? Drew’s recovery from a torn achilles is also something that could be a problem. But this was a wildly talented team that came a point away from the Elite Eight despite losing their starting point guard and having their best player deal with a foot injury the last two months of the season.