Why Michigan is overrated
Picking out three overrated and three underrated teams from first AP poll
I love preseason polls. They're the purest expression of how programs, coaches, returning players, and incoming talent are regarded in the abstract. From this point on, the polls will, to some degree, be simply a measurement of the longest active win streaks, but in the preseason it's all about how good the voters think a team should be.
So when the Associated Press Top 25 preseason poll came out, I dropped everything to gulp it down. For the most part the voters and I agree. We both think Indiana and Kentucky should be really good, and we both think Cincinnati and Texas should be borderline Top 25 teams. Still, there will always be a few instances where I think the voters are out to lunch. (They, on the other hand, never think that about me. Or shouldn't.)
Mind you, what we're discussing about these teams is merely what we should think about them now. Once the games start, surprises that no one could have seen coming will occur, and we'll all adjust accordingly. But based on the information we have in October, here are six AP rankings that I can envision turning out to be misplaced:
Michigan Wolverines (No. 5)
I do think the Wolverines are being overrated slightly, but this is actually a trickier case than your run-of-the-mill overrated team. Basically I, like just about everyone else, expect John Beilein's group to be in the mix near the top of a Big Ten that will have some of the best teams in the country. Michigan will win most of its home games against such teams and lose most of its road games against tough foes.
But I guess what I'm having trouble getting past is my own uncertainty regarding exactly how the Wolverines will excel.
To read John Gasaway's full take on the three overrated and three underrated teams from the first AP poll, you must be an ESPN Insider.
MORE MEN'S COLLEGE BASKETBALL HEADLINES
- Gonzaga's Perkins (broken jaw) out indefinitely
- No. 3 Arizona edges SDSU to take Maui title
- Louisville delivers Pitino's 700th college win
- Butler hangs on to upset UNC in Bahamas
MOST SENT STORIES ON ESPN.COM
Insider CBB content
• Greenberg/Telep: Kansas Jayhawks
• Greenberg/Finkelstein: Marquette
• Gasaway/Rankin: Indiana Hoosiers
• Gasaway/Rankin: Michigan Wolverines
• Gasaway/Rankin: Ohio State Buckeyes
• Greenberg/Finkelstein: Memphis Tigers
• Gasaway/Rankin: Florida Gators
• Greenberg/Telep: Kentucky Wildcats
• Gasaway/Finkelstein: Louisville Cardinals
• Gasaway/Finkelstein: Syracuse Orange
• Greenberg/Biancardi: NC State Wolfpack
• Biancardi/Gasaway: Duke Blue Devils
• Biancardi/Gasaway: North Carolina Tar Heels
• Biancardi/Gasaway: Arizona Wildcats
• Greenberg/Telep: UCLA Bruins
• Gasaway: Breakout second-year coaches
• Lunardi: Could Louisville repeat as champs?
• Greenberg: UVA tops list of surprise teams
• Fraschilla: How returning stars can improve
• Gasaway: Top title challengers to Kentucky
• Lunardi: Who will earn No. 1 seeds in 2014?
• Telep: Latest on No. 13 junior Theo Pinson
• Rankin: What Wiggins means for Kansas
• Biancardi: KU to prep Wiggins for NBA success
• Telep: Updated look at top recruits
• Roundtable: Most impressive on AAU circuit?
• Ford: NBA draft lottery preview
• Ford: Winners from the NBA draft combine
• Fraschilla: Burke the draft's top point guard?
• Ford: Measurements concern some GMs
• Ford: Why Wiggins would go No. 1 in 2013
Jay Bilas Blog
Jay's take on latest from around the nation
Analysis from Fraschilla, Greenberg and Lunardi
Get news and rumblings before anyone
Hollinger's College PER
College basketball's top players
Get wagering advice for every game