The LSU Tigers‘ season was considered a disappointment when they lost to the NC State Wolfpack in the 2015 NCAA tournament, but the NCAA selection committee did them no favors by pairing them up with a team that was strong where they were weak and vice versa. I’m fully confident whichever team won that game would have defeated the Villanova Wildcats in the next round, whether it was NC State or LSU.
However, the Tigers come into the 2015-16 season without two of their biggest stars. Jordan Mickey and Jarell Martin are headed to the Boston Celtics and Memphis Grizzlies respectively and will leave a huge whole in the LSU frontcourt.
The No. 1 PF in the country, Ben Simmons, should come into this LSU squad and dominate from day one. Likely a lottery pick in the 2016 NBA Draft, Simmons is joined by another five-star recruit in Antonio Blakeney, as well as a four-star recruit in Brandon Sampson.
Those three players alone would make a team a potential top 25 choice, but the Tigers bring back far more than just the No. 3 recruiting class. Keith Hornsby, Tim Quarterman, Josh Gray and Jalyn Patterson all played over 24 minutes per game and should bring the experience needed for a potential national championship squad.
Yes, you read that correctly. The 2015-16 Tigers are a legitimate threat to win the National Championship due to their talent, experience and the coaching of Johnny Jones. Keep an eye on LSU moving forward, because Kentucky may be the favorites in the SEC for now, but that could change very quickly.