Ken Pomeroy’s preseason rankings are out. We don’t have a fancy Q&A for those because Ken explains most of the process on his site every year. Still, there are definitely a few things worth pointing out.
1) Stony Brook seems to be ranked way too high – The Seawolves lost do-everything forward Tommy Brenton, but return most of their roster that was rated awfully high by Pomeroy last season. The expectation appears to be that Steve Pikiell will continue building there, because Ken not only has SBU as America East’s best team, but a team with the potential to knock off some bigger programs during the season.
2) Watch out for Quinnipiac – If the Bobcats were still in the NEC they’d be a decisive title favorite according to Pomeroy. Instead they’ll start the season ranked third – behind Manhattan and Iona – in the MAAC. That’s higher that most people, including me, have put the Bobcats but it isn’t particularly shocking. I think Tom Moore’s team has a chance to surprise everyone in conference play.
3) The Ivy League standings are wacky – Sure, Ken has Harvard at the top of the heap (51st overall), but as you move down the standings things get weird. Penn is rated below Columbia and Brown, which is a bit stunning. The Quakers struggled for a good chunk of last season and haven’t been particularly good during previous seasons (which is a large component), but we aren’t talking about perennial powers in Brown or Columbia either. Penn is projected to go 6-8 in the Ivies this season, which would be awfully disappointing. On the other hand, Princeton is the ratings’ decisive choice for second. The Tigers’ recent history can’t be ignored, but replacing Ian Hummer is certainly going to be a challenge. In this case league specific predictions – like Michael James’ work – might be your best bet.
4) Robert Morris and Wagner battle in the NEC – Only four slots in the rankings separate these two teams. It’ll be a battle at the top. Also, these rankings give more fuel to power the Central Connecticut bandwagon. The Blue Devils are right behind the Colonials and Seahawks in these initial rankings.
5) Towson is being taken for granted – If you’re a program on the rise – like Towson or Bryant – there’s a good chance that Ken’s rankings underrate your team because of the fact that he’s using more than one season’s worth of historical data. Something just feels a little off though with the Tigers, who are rated fifth in the CAA. A program’s transition to the big time isn’t necessarily linear, but it is surprising to see Pat Skerry’s squad so underrated.
Now that the rankings are out, expect 10,000 sims, one of our favorite preseason features, to start rolling out this week.