Ryan Kish of George Mason Basketball is the RTC correspondent for the Colonial Athletic Association.
Predicted Order of Finish:
- Old Dominion (14-4)
- Northeastern (13-5)
- George Mason (12-6)
- Virginia Commonwealth (12-6)
- James Madison (11-7)
- Hofstra (10-8)
- Georgia State (9-9)
- Drexel (8-10)
- Delaware (6-12)
- Towson (5-13)
- UNC-Wilmington (5-13)
- William & Mary (3-15)
- Charles Jenkins (G), Hofstra
- Matt Janning (G), Northeastern
- Cam Long (G), George Mason
- Gerald Lee (F), ODU
- Larry Sanders (F), VCU
6th Man. Sherrod Wright, George Mason
Impact Newcomer. Rashanti Harris, Georgia State
- The CAA returns 73 percent of last year’s starters (44 of 60).
- Last season the CAA sent five teams to the postseason.
- Fifteen of the league’s top twenty scorers return.
- ESPN ranked George Mason’s recruiting class #1 amongst mid-majors.
- Six teams finished with 18 or more wins last season.
- VCU’s Larry Sanders already picking up nation preseason honors here, here, and here.
Predicted Champion. Old Dominion (NCAA Seed: #9). The Monarchs return six players who made 13 or more starts last season, including All-CAA Gerald Lee, who is my vote for preseason POY. Lee stepped up as a leader last season, especially late in the year at the CAA tournament. Along side Lee forward Frank Hassell gives them probably the best one-two punch frontcourt in the league. Guard Darius James is poised for a breakout season and was deadly from 3-pt land last year, so his growth could be the key to ODU being the league’s most balanced squad. Add freshman stud Josh Hicks to the mix and you got a whole lot of talent walking into CAA arenas this season. Will it be the right mix of talent and experience to run through the competitive CAA regular season? Head coach Blaine Taylor has lived in the shadow of George Mason and VCU lately despite winning 119 games over the last five years. This is his best squad on paper since 2005.