Oct. 15, 2012
Atlantic 10 and national media published a number of stories last week leading up to the start of college basketball practices, but now that a full weekend of practices is complete, there were several other stories, including a full-blown ESPN team-by-team preview of the league. Follow the links below to read these stories:
In Seth Davis’ 10 Burning Questions on SI.com there was this entry about the A-10:
Is the Atlantic 10 the best conference in the country?
The question does not sound so ludicrous if you insert the word basketball before "conference" -- in which case the answer is a resounding yes. While the BCS leagues have been shifting their deck chairs in hopes of landing the biggest football payday, the Atlantic 10 has quietly upgraded its lineup as a basketball-centric conference. The league is losing Temple to the Big East and Charlotte to Conference USA, but those changes won't happen until next season. In the meantime, Butler and VCU, which have a combined three Final Four appearances the last three years, will begin playing right away.
Rob Dauster of SI.com also has a piece about VCU skipping the Midnight Madness Hoopla to get down to business: There are still some programs that operate the old school way, using the first practice as, you know, a first practice, and would it surprise you in any way to find out that VCU is one of the teams that doesn't have Midnight Madness? For the Rams, it's all business, all the time
CBSSports.com has a list of the top 68 things to watch for this season. Included on that list are Atlantic 10 race, Can Xavier be an overachieving underdog?, Chaz Williams!, and Rotnei Clarke
Five A-10 players made CBSSports.com’s list of Bounceback Players
. Charlotte’s J.T. Thompson, Dayton’s Josh Benson, two UMass players: Cady Lalanne and Sampson Carter, and Temple’s Scootie Randall.
CBSSports.com's college basketball analysts also pick their favorites to win each major conference race, including the A-10. The league is so deep this season, not only is there no consensus on who will win, the five experts (Jeff Goodman, Doug Gottlieb, Gary Parrish, Matt Norlander, Jeff Borzello) pick four different teams to win.
As for the ESPN.com previews, here are the team-by-team capsules (compiled by Blue Ribbon Basketball) and a video preview by Eamonn Brennan in which he notes the A-10 may be the third or fourth best league in the nation in 2012-13.
ESPN.com senior writer Andy Katz, who was at A-10 Media Day, has an in-depth look at several storylines, plus a quote from each A-10 head coach on players that are key or could be sleepers.
And finally, a blog from Dana O’Neil about what she can’t wait to see out of Atlantic 10 men’s basketball season.