Wilner: UofL basketball No. 1 in 2014

Finally, an early pre-season basketball predictions that makes sense.

Jon Wilner, over at College Hotline, predicts the University of Louisville basketball program to be No. 1 when all is said and done after the 2014 college basketball season.net

Most other prognosticators seem to be going with a Kentucky team that will be relying on a team that was defeated by Robert Morris in the first round of the National Invitation Tournament this season. A team relying on a disappointing group of recruits last season and another bunch of highly-touted and untested incoming freshmen. And coached by John Calipari.

Wilner goes with experience and common sense:

1. Louisville: The national champs return leading scorer Russ Smith, Final Four MVP Luke Hancock, big men Wayne Blackshear and Chane Behanan and a slew of talented role players. And they have a quality replacement for point guard Peyton Siva in junior college POY Chris Jones. Not as talented as Kentucky but more experienced, better defensively and better coached.

We’re liking what UofL returns to the table, that and the fact that Rick Pitino is clearly focused again. Two national championships in a row could be in the making.

Wilner’s other picks:  2. Kentucky; 3. North Carolina; 4. Michigan State; 5. Duke; 6. Arizona; 7. Oklahoma State; 8. Wichita State; 9. Ohio State; and 10. Florida.

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Charlie Springer

Charlie Springer is a former Louisville editor and sportswriter, a public affairs consultant, a UofL grad and longtime fan.