The Way Too Early ESPN Top 25

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Argonaut

No, not that Providence.
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SC is only number 1 because ESPN writers didn’t want to hear Dawn complain just like she does about everything else.
IMO, SC can stay at the top of the polls until someone proves they shouldn’t be. But I agree that Dawn should just let her team’s play do the talking, not her tweets.
 
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Mississippi State #3? Don't understand that. They have a lot further to come than the other teams listed.
Actually I thought Mississippi State would be somewhere in the top 5. They lose only one player and add 2 McDonald's All American. They are two deep at every position. Rickea Jackson will be an All American this year.
 
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Mississippi State #3? Don't understand that. They have a lot further to come than the other teams listed.
I’m replying as a Mississippi State fan so understand it is from a fan’s perspective. However I’ll try to be as objective as possible. Overall I think there is an argument to be made for MSU to be preseason top five. Honestly I think three is high. Regardless pending any transfers their only loss is J Danberry. She is an incredibly gifted player but there are several other players capable of stepping into her position and role.
As far as star power R Jackson returns as a sophomore after having a very good freshman season. A year in the system and weight room should really help her improve. She is also an alpha. S Cooks and A Matharu also have the ability to take over games. Matharu also has the alpha mentality.
S Cooks, M Hayes, and D Gaston are the newcomers. Cooks should push for a big role. Hayes also has potential to contribute this coming season.
There are still lots of questions such as a starting five and key backups separating themselves from the rest. This past season saw games where a player may play 30 minutes one game then few or none the next game. Coach Schaefer says this team has yet to have an alpha dog emerge that will enforce practice habits and other off the court habits. There are no issues or bad attitudes but just no killers yet. That segways into the fact that the rising seniors are probably solid role players at best and the youngest players are the most talented. Will everyone accept their roles for the betterment of the team?
I don’t know enough about what the other teams at the top lose, gain, and/or have returning to decide how it compares. The one I probably know the most about is South Carolina. They have great talent returning in the starters and backups. They also have a great coach. However I am a big fan of T Harris and M Herbert-Harrigan. Both are very talented and alpha dogs. While I think there are some good players that can fill their role I’m not sure if anyone can play right away like those two.
 

oldude

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Actually I thought Mississippi State would be somewhere in the top 5. They lose only one player and add 2 McDonald's All American. They are two deep at every position. Rickea Jackson will be an All American this year.
The one player they lose is Promise Taylor who’s career appears to be over due to injury. The Bulldogs will get Danberry back for a 6th year along with big time transfer Sidney Cooks from Mi St.
 
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The one player they lose is Promise Taylor who’s career appears to be over due to injury. The Bulldogs will get Danberry back for a 6th year along with big time transfer Sidney Cooks from Mi St.
There is no way Danberry gets another year. She had to petition to get a 5th year.
 
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The one player they lose is Promise Taylor who’s career appears to be over due to injury. The Bulldogs will get Danberry back for a 6th year along with big time transfer Sidney Cooks from Mi St.
Danberry has played 4 seasons of college basketball. 3 at State and 1 at Arkansas. She petitioned for her Sophomore year at Arkansas because she only played 6 games.
 

bballnut90

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SC is only number 1 because ESPN writers didn’t want to hear Dawn complain just like she does about everything else.

Lol, valid but I think they actually have a solid claim to preseason #1 with their freshman trio returning along with Henderson, Saxton and Grissett.

Stanford looks loaded too, even without Carrington. I think there's a drop off after these 2.

Mississippi State at 3 is high IMO but I wouldn't count them out. Jackson is gonna be a star and they return a ton of talent. Vic's roster is crazy deep though which often times doesn't lead to great chemistry.

UCONN at 4 looks good. I think they're underestimating Maryland at 10 though. I'd have them around 7-8.
 

EricLA

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Meh. I don't have any issue with the rankings. Lots of games to be played next season and plenty of time for teams to move up or down. We play Oregon, Baylor and SC next season. Take care of business and we move up. Lose, and we won't.
 
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I’m replying as a Mississippi State fan so understand it is from a fan’s perspective. However I’ll try to be as objective as possible. Overall I think there is an argument to be made for MSU to be preseason top five. Honestly I think three is high. Regardless pending any transfers their only loss is J Danberry. She is an incredibly gifted player but there are several other players capable of stepping into her position and role.
As far as star power R Jackson returns as a sophomore after having a very good freshman season. A year in the system and weight room should really help her improve. She is also an alpha. S Cooks and A Matharu also have the ability to take over games. Matharu also has the alpha mentality.
S Cooks, M Hayes, and D Gaston are the newcomers. Cooks should push for a big role. Hayes also has potential to contribute this coming season.
There are still lots of questions such as a starting five and key backups separating themselves from the rest. This past season saw games where a player may play 30 minutes one game then few or none the next game. Coach Schaefer says this team has yet to have an alpha dog emerge that will enforce practice habits and other off the court habits. There are no issues or bad attitudes but just no killers yet. That segways into the fact that the rising seniors are probably solid role players at best and the youngest players are the most talented. Will everyone accept their roles for the betterment of the team?
I don’t know enough about what the other teams at the top lose, gain, and/or have returning to decide how it compares. The one I probably know the most about is South Carolina. They have great talent returning in the starters and backups. They also have a great coach. However I am a big fan of T Harris and M Herbert-Harrigan. Both are very talented and alpha dogs. While I think there are some good players that can fill their role I’m not sure if anyone can play right away like those two.
Excellent analysis - think folks may have forgotten about Cooks. They’ve got the players, to include height, and Vic, will “coach them up“, and have them ready to challenge, not only for the SEC title, but nationally as well.
 
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I’m looking forward to seeing a backcourt of Evina and Paige. I still think it’ll be Westbrook’s team, but they should play well together.
 
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"...along with rising junior Elizabeth Balogun (8.1 PPG). Balogun transferred from Georgia Tech and got a waiver to play this past season. She is the top rebounder (4.6 RPG) returning for the Cardinals."

Balogun gets a waiver, but Evina Westbrook doesn't. Rhyme and reason? UConn is just too good, so deny their waivers, no matter what?
 
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"...along with rising junior Elizabeth Balogun (8.1 PPG). Balogun transferred from Georgia Tech and got a waiver to play this past season. She is the top rebounder (4.6 RPG) returning for the Cardinals."

Balogun gets a waiver, but Evina Westbrook doesn't. Rhyme and reason? UConn is just too good, so deny their waivers, no matter what?
It was because their coach was fired for abuse.
 
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The one player they lose is Promise Taylor who’s career appears to be over due to injury. The Bulldogs will get Danberry back for a 6th year along with big time transfer Sidney Cooks from Mi St.
lol, I don't doubt it on Danberry.

Rickea Jackson is a POY candidate, in my mind. They'll be plenty deep.
 
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Overall I think the pre-season rankings are pretty fair. The only issue is I have is when analysts bring up the players a team is adding as justification for a ranking. I understand returning players and an argument can be made for transfers, but high schoolers, regardless of their rankings, haven't played in college and can't really be a barometer of how a team will do. Sure some have played against senior competition (like Edwards), but that doesn't necessarily mean they'll come in and be a showstopper. Idk that's my only gripe with some of the reasonings in the list (though I do understand they're only making predictions and recruits have to fit into that prediction based on what is known).
 

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