The 2018-19 college basketball season is over, which means preseason rankings for the 2019-20 season are (already) out.
Here is where the experts rank the Arizona Wildcats.
Jeff Goodman, Stadium — 23rd
“The key for the Wildcats will be the upcoming FBI investigation. If they come out of that unscathed, then they will likely add a couple of top-10 freshmen – Nico Mannion and Josh Green – to a team that returns enough solid players from last year.”
Scott Gleeson, USA Today — 25th
“While coach Sean Miller’s future is uncertain (he’s at the center of a bribery trial), perhaps his parting gift to the program would be one of the best freshman classes in the country. Nico Mannion, Josh Green, and Zeke Nnaji are five-star talents good enough to get the Wildcats back to contending status.”
Jeremy Woo, Sports Illustrated — 14th
“Although it would appear Sean Miller’s fate as head coach is up in the air, Arizona should be fine so long as it can keep incoming standouts Nico Mannion and Josh Green in the fold. The Wildcats will be expected to help revive a down Pac-12, and both freshmen should be immediate starters, are ready to make an impact, and will help turn things around. Transfer Stone Gettings will also be eligible. They’ll need to get more out of Brandon Williams, and this will be a guard-driven team, but there’s almost no way they can be quite this bad again. This could be a bounce-back year if things shake out for the positive, but there’s still some roster flux that has to play out.”
Mike Rutherford, SB Nation — 21st
“With the team’s three leading scorers returning and the nation’s (currently) top-ranked recruiting class on its way to Tucson, it’s looking like last season’s disaster may wind up being an isolated incident.”
Jeff Borzello, ESPN — 17th
“The first team in the rankings that didn’t play in this year’s NCAA tournament, the Wildcats are going to rely heavily on the No. 1 recruiting class in the country. The headliners are top-10 guards Josh Green and Nico Mannion, who played together on the AAU circuit and will start immediately next season in Tucson. Freshman Brandon Williams was one of the bright spots for Sean Miller this season, and he’s the top returnee on the perimeter. Assuming that there are no Arizona-related issues in this month’s FBI trial, the Wildcats are a clear-cut top-20 team.”