Mark Gottfried knows all about bringing in an unbelievable recruiting class and not living up to expectations; that is exactly why he is not jumping on the Kentucky bandwagon this upcoming season. The North Carolina State coach recently stated that he couldn’t imagine another team being preseason No. 1 than his in-conference rival Duke.
Duke signed the biggest thing before Andrew Wiggins in Jabari Parker. Parker is a great talent that would have made any team significantly better, especially a team coached by one of the best ever. Prized recruits Semi Ojeleye and Matt Jones will give the Blue Devils great talent on the wing, especially with standout freshman Rasheed Sulaimon back and also Andre Dawkins.
Quinn Cook showed just how good of a point guard he can be last season and he will be back to run the show for Duke. They also add Mississippi State transfer, Rodney Hood who had to sit out last season. The Blue Devils have a great deal of talent on their squad this season, and Gottfried feels it is enough for them to be the best team in the country.
Perhaps Gottfried forgot their was a state called Kentucky in the United States though. Kentucky and the University of Louisville are both located there. Louisville is the defending national champions and the home of an extremely iconic coach in Rick Pitino. That national championship squad returns almost all of their key players including one of the best players in the country, Russ Smith.
Oh yeah, Kentucky is bringing in arguably the best recruiting class EVER. John Calipari has six, yes six, which is more players than allowed on the court at once, McDonald’s All-Americans. They also have a couple players returning from what was a highly ranked recruiting class last year.
Everyone has Kentucky at No.1 and Louisville at No. 2 for this upcoming season except Mark Gottfried. Maybe he thought the best conference in the country was supposed to hold the best team in the country or maybe he just wanted to talk good about his rival so they don’t give his rebuilding squad as big of a beat-down as they could, but clearly Mark Gottfried wasn’t remembering Louisville and Kentucky when he made this statement.