The 2018-19 preseason AP Poll was released today (October 22nd), and the Virginia Cavaliers were voted in the top-10 at No. 5 to start the season. This is Virginia’s highest preseason ranking since starting the season at No. 1 back in 1982, and the highest ranking to start the season under head coach Tony Bennett. The 2015-16 squad entered that year at No. 6.
Virginia returns superstar players in guards Ty Jerome, Kyle Guy, and De’Andre Hunter, all three of which are up for national awards in their respective positions. In the front court, Jack Salt is back to anchor the Hoos, and Mamadi Diakite has been spending his off-season improving his game.
Kansas took the top spot, followed by Kentucky and Gonzaga in the top three.
The ACC led all conferences with seven teams ranked with Duke (No. 4), North Carolina (No. 8), Virginia Tech (No. 15), Syracuse (No. 16), Florida State (No. 17), and Clemson (No. 22) all joining the Cavaliers in the rankings. The SEC had five teams ranked, followed by the Big 12 with four and the Big Ten and Pac-12 each with three.
Virginia received votes for everything from No. 1 (Lauren Brownlow) to unranked (Andrew Lopez), but some voters may wish they had known that Braxton Key received his notice of eligibility to play this season before they ranked the Hoos.
Here are the full rankings:
AP Poll - Preseason
|10||Michigan State||Big Ten|
|12||Kansas State||Big 12|
|13||West Virginia||Big 12|
The season kicks off in two weeks against Towson in Charlottesville. Stay with Streaking the Lawn for all your coverage as we get closer to basketball.