The LSU Tigers disappointingly fell out of the 2015 NCAA Tournament to the NC State Wolfpack, but finally seemed to take a step forward after multiple disappointing seasons. Now, despite losing Jordan Mickey and Jarell Martin, the Tigers will set their sights on something far more prestigious than a trip to the NCAA Tournament – the National Championship.
When you look across the college basketball landscape coming into the 2015-16 season, something that jumps out is the startling lack of elite teams. Yes, the North Carolina Tar Heels, Iowa State Cyclones and Maryland Terrapins are going to be exceptionally good, but there are no 2015-16 Kentucky Wildcats, Duke Blue Devils or Wisconsin Badgers.
This is the year a sleeper team from one of the top conferences could easily steal a National Championship before they are ready, and few teams look more capable than LSU.
The Tigers boast two of the top freshmen in the country in Ben Simmons and Antonio Blakeney. These two players alone should be enough to almost make LSU a lock for the Round of 32, but the Tigers also return Keith Hornsby, Tim Quarterman, Josh Gray, Jalyn Patterson and a compliment of unproven, highly-touted recruits.
LSU are deep, talented and only need to prove that they are cohesive early in the season in order to be considered one of the best all-around teams in the country. It’s been a little bit of a project for Johnny Jones to get the Tigers back to being one of the better teams in the SEC, but they are finally there and could simultaneously be one of the better teams in the country.