The Big East Conference is holding its annual basketball media days in Madison Square Garden this week and one of the first acts of business was the release of the preseason coaches’ polls for the 2007-08 season.
The USF men’s basketball team was picked to finish last in the conference, receiving only 23 voting points in the poll, while the women’s squad was given a preseason rank of ninth in the conference.
Sitting atop the men’s preseason poll is Georgetown, which advanced to the Final Four in 2006, and Louisville, which finished last season with a 24-10 record and made it to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. Both teams received eight first place votes.
On the women’s side, Connecticut is the coaches’ preseason pick to finish first in the conference. The Huskies received 15 of the 16 possible first place votes. The last vote went to Rutgers, which lost to Tennessee in the national championship game last year.
Senior Kentrell Gransberry has been named a preseason candidate for the 2007-08 John R. Wooden Award, presented annually to the outstanding collegiate basketball player of the year. Gransberry is one of eight Big East players on the list -?the most of any conference.
The 6-foot-9, 270-pound center was South Florida’s MVP last year. He finished the season ranked third in the nation in rebounds (11.4 per game) and fourth in the Big East in double-doubles (12).