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Virginia Basketball comes in at No. 5 in preseason AP Poll

NCAA Basketball: ACC Conference Tournament-Virginia vs Louisville Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

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

Rank Team Conference
Rank Team Conference
1 Kansas Big 12
2 Kentucky SEC
3 Gonzaga West Coast
4 Duke ACC
5 Virginia ACC
6 Tennessee SEC
7 Nevada Mountain West
8 North Carolina ACC
9 Villanova Big East
10 Michigan State Big Ten
11 Auburn SEC
12 Kansas State Big 12
13 West Virginia Big 12
14 Oregon Pac-12
15 Virginia Tech ACC
16 Syracuse ACC
17 Florida State ACC
18 Mississippi State SEC
19 Michigan Big Ten
20 TCU Big 12
21 UCLA Pac-12
22 Clemson ACC
24 Purdue Big Ten
25 Washington Pac-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.