As of Monday, July 1, the newly formed American Athletic Conference is now official and with that we can now begin to dive into the predictions and thoughts surrounding its inaugural season.
While the demise of the Big East Conference is a sad story, it does live on with the “Catholic 7” and in turn, we are left with the remnants of realignment and a new conference. Heading into the 2013-14 season, the defending National Champion Louisville Cardinals will be the undeniable favorite in the AAC and that’s thanks in large part to the return and expected production of star guard, Russ Smith. With that being said however, don’t write off those UConn Huskies alongside of them.
After a season in which the Huskies were banned from any postseason involvement because of low APR scores, the Huskies are now eligible and ready to bounce back in a big way. Expectations are on the rise under second year head coach Kevin Ollie and that’s thanks to the team’s back court trio that should rank amongst the nation’s best in 2013-14.
Shabazz Napier, now a senior, is joined by junior play maker Ryan Boatright, but it’s the additional production of sophomore scorer Omar Calhoun that takes this group to the next level. A one, two, three punch if you will, in the back court will be highly dangerous in the newly formed AAC, so watch out for what the Huskies are going to bring to the table next season.
Can UConn take the conference crown in year one? You better believe it.
Follow Paul Seaver on Twitter: @PaulSeaverRS