Indiana took the No. 1 position in the preseason USA TODAY Sports men’s basketball coaches poll on Wednesday, receiving 21 of 31 first-place votes.
Indiana coach Tom Crean said he embraces the expectations being the No. 1 team.
“I think it’d be crazy to try to shy away from it,” Crean said. “If we were, our kids would look at us and roll their eyes. We don’t talk about it much. We talk about living up to the standards that we need to live up to on a daily basis to have it that way at the end of the year.”
Louisville is No. 2 and defending NCAA champion Kentucky comes in at No. 3. The Cardinals and Wildcats picked up five No. 1 votes each.
The Big Ten has five teams in the top 25, topping all conferences. Ohio State checks in at No. 4, Michigan No. 5., Michigan State is 14th and Wisconsin is No. 21. North Carolina State starts at No.6, their highest ranking ever in the poll. Kansas, Duke, Syracuse and Florida round out the top 10.
The Pac-12 has two teams in the top 25, with Arizona being ranked No. 11 and UCLA at No. 13.