How do all 357 Division 1 NCAA BAsketball programs rank for the upcoming season?
The 2020-2021 NCAA Basketball season is here, and I won’t speak for everyone, but how could you not be excited by it. After everything that has happened in 2020, this may be the best thing for all fans of the sport. Most schools are not going to allow fans most likely but nonetheless, the sport is back, and it is shaping up to be one of the weirdest college basketball seasons ever.
Let’s recap, earlier in the offseason the NCAA mentioned that in order to be eligible for the tournament teams could play as few as 13 games or as many as 29. There are going to be some teams who play only 13 games and make the tournament and others who will not have any schedule disruptions. There are also 10 teams who have decided to opt-out of the entire season and not even give it a shot. That is a choice they made along with the 347 schools who have elected to play.
In ranking the teams from 357-1 the first 10 teams are those teams who are not playing this year and have elected to opt-out. The list of teams playing starts at 347 and goes down to 1. These rankings were created based on my own personal scouts and beliefs in how each team will fare this season.
I did my own research; no KenPom or other media influences for me. We all love rankings, and after the ranking is a blurb about the team as well as a player to watch. So without further ado, Enjoy!
357. Maryland Eastern Shore Hawks – Opting out of season due to Covid-19
The Hawks have already announced they are only going to play conference games only due to the Covid 19 pandemic. Given their late start and the overall strength of the MEAC this year it is going to be an uphill climb for Maryland Eastern Shore, especially given the fact that they scored a meager 58 points per game last year. The Hawks are led by sophomore Da’Shawn Phillip.
356. Bethune-Cookman Wildcats – Season Cancelled Due to Covid-19
Bethune-Cookman is not going to be playing basketball during their final season in the MEAC. The school has decided to opt-out of all athletic events during the Covid-19 pandemic. So the Wildcats will not be playing basketball this year which is a shame because sophomore guard Joe French can really shoot the ball.
355. Columbia Lions – Season Cancelled Due to Covid-19
The Lions were bad last year, they had one of the worst years an Ivy league school has had in a long time. Last year Columbia got all their scoring from one player who is currently no longer on campus. The Lions were also hurt by two players who ended up not playing last year in Patrick Tape who is now at Duke. The other player who sat out last year was guard Gabe Stefanini who returns to the Columbia offense. The Lions are still going to be bad.
354. Cornell Big Red – Season Cancelled Due to Covid-19
Cornell didn’t compete much in the Ivy last year. They only finished with 4 league wins and they were a rocking chair game for the top of the league. This year doesn’t appear to be any different as the top of the Ivy is strong again and the Big Red didn’t do anything to improve their team. Jimmy Boeheim enters his senior year at Cornell, and he may average around 20 points per game for the Big Red.
353. Penn Quakers – Season Cancelled Due to Covid-19
Steve Donahue has had a nice three year run as the head coach of the Quakers. Penn has had a winning record in all three of those seasons and has finished in the top four of the Ivy every year. The Ivy League tournament is only the top four teams in the league and the winner of the 4-team tournament heads to the NCAA tournament. So for Penn to be in contention for the NCAA tournament the last three seasons is a good run.
This year though may be a bit of a rebuilding year for the Quakers, as they lost a ton of production from last year. This year they are going to have to rely on a ton of new pieces, but good for Penn is that sophomore Jordan Dingle is a budding star. Penn doesn’t have enough and finishes in the bottom half of the Ivy.
352. Dartmouth Big Green – Season Cancelled Due to Covid-19
Will the Ivy League play basketball is a question on everyone’s mind? They were the first conference to opt-out in March saying they would not be participating in the NCAA tournament if it were held and they may be the first full conference to opt-out of basketball for this season, although nothing has been said yet.
Dartmouth doesn’t do anything flashy; they play solid defense and can score enough to win some games. They are not the worst team in the league, but they are nowhere near the best. The Big Green get back star shooter Brendan Barry which is going to help them immensely on the offensive end.
351. Brown Bears – Season Cancelled Due to Covid-19
Brown has been on the upswing as a program in the last few years. The Bears are likely going to make their first tournament sooner. If the Ivy League decides to play Brown is going to be some must-watch TV especially when they are playing the three teams with the most history in the conference. Brown is the best of the second group of Ivy teams. Tamenang Choh is primed for a breakout.