AAC M5: 11.04.13 EditionPosted by Ross Schulz on November 4th, 2013
- Its finally here. The first week of college basketball action is upon us, with real games to be played starting Friday. Most teams are finishing up their exhibition portion of the schedule, including Cincinnati, who had a hard fought win over Division II power Bellarmine over the weekend. Bearcat senior Sean Kilpatrick totaled 43 points in Cincinnati’s two exhibition wins. Under new head coach Eddie Jordan, Rutgers also won its exhibition game versus Division II Caldwell College in more convincing fashion, 90-60, led by Myles Mack’s 16 points. Rutgers blogger Dave White gives his five thoughts following the exhibition win.
- Temple head coach Fran Dunphy understands the challenge ahead for his squad in a rebuilding year and a stronger conference. The Owls’ six consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances could be in jeopardy this season after they lost experienced players Khalif Wyatt, Rahlir Hollis-Jefferson, Scootie Randall and T.J. DiLeo.
- While expectations may not be high, there’s reason for optimism in Tampa for Stan Heath and the South Florida Bulls with the return of a pair of all-conference selections in guard Anthony Collins and forward Victor Rudd. Bulls’ fans will get an opportunity to see their team in action tonight at 7:00 PM in exhibition action against Barry University.
- The Louisville Courier-Journal’s Tim Sullivan says the American Athletic Conference will have instant credibility in the basketball world, but finding an identity may take a little longer. Sullivan cites the conference’s two Hall of Fame coaches and the fact that two of the last three national champions now call the AAC home. The guard play in the league will be second-to-none, he writes.
- The Courier-Journal also previews the defending national champion Louisville Cardinals and says now comes the hard part, defending that title. Louisville hopes to join the rarefied air in winning back-to-back championships, something that’s only been done by Duke (1991-92) and Florida (2006-07) in the modern era. Rick Pitino says the team looks at pressure as a great thing because it brings out the best in them. The Lexington-Herald Leader also previews the Cardinals by focusing on senior Russ Smith. And finally, Louisville guard Kevin Ware took part in full time practice for the first time last week.