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UConn Men’s Basketball Picked to Finish 5th in AAC Coaches Poll

The Huskies are looking to outperform their preseason ranking for the first time in conference history.

Ian Bethune/The UConn Blog

Coming off back-to-back losing seasons, UConn Huskies men’s basketball was picked to finish 5th in the AAC Coaches Poll. It ties for the lowest the Huskies have ever been picked before the season equaling last season, when they were also picked fifth.

In the five-year history of the American Athletic Conference, UConn has underperformed their preseason projection every year. Their best finish in conference history came during the 2013-14 season when the Huskies finished fourth and reached the finals of the conference tournament before an incredible run to the national title.

UConn is in the first season under new head coach Dan Hurley, who took over for the departed Kevin Ollie. They return everybody from last season’s team with the exception of grad transfers Antwoine Anderson and David Onuorah. This year, the Huskies added another pair of fifth-year seniors in guard Tarin Smith and forward Kassoum Yakwe along with freshmen guard Brendan Adams.

Unlike seasons past, the conference is without a clear favorite this season. Perennial contender Cincinnati lost a lot of talent from a team that won both the conference regular season and tournament while SMU has fallen since Larry Brown left.

UConn certainly has the talent to win the conference but nearly the entire roster is players that were brought to Storrs by the previous regime. If they don’t buy into Hurley’s system as much as expected, it could be another long season.

Jalen Adams was the only member of the Huskies to be named to a preseason All-Conference team as he was named to the first team.

2018 AAC Preseason Coaches Poll

Team (1st Place Votes) Points
Team (1st Place Votes) Points
UCF (6) 114
Cincinnati (3) 107
Houston (2) 103
Memphis (1) 85
UConn 75
Temple 74
SMU 63
Wichita State 60
Tulsa 48
Tulane 23
ECU 22
USF 18

Preseason Player of the Year

B.J. Taylor, UCF

Preseason Freshman of the Year

Nate Hinton, Houston

Preseason All-Conference

First Team

Jalen Adams, UConn*
Jarron Cumberland, Cincinnati
Jeremiah Martin, Memphis
Quinton Rose, Temple
B.J. Taylor, UCF

Second Team

Corey Davis Jr., Houston
Tacko Fall, UCF
Jarrey Foster, SMU
Markis McDuffie, Wichita State
Jahmal McMurray, SMU
Sterling Taplin, Tulsa

*unanimous selection