Preseason Commonwealth Power Rankings

After a long offseason, basketball in the Commonwealth finally returns Friday night! Now seems like the perfect time to start the Commonwealth Power Rankings!

Almost every team in the state looks primed to improve this season. VCU and UVA start the season in the top-25. Bragging rights and the top spot in the rankings will be decided on Tuesday when the Rams visit the Cavaliers in Charlottesville.

Richmond, Norfolk State, and George Mason round out the second tier. All three teams are experienced and play unique styles. Richmond is an X-factor in the A-10, Norfolk State went 16-0 in the MEAC last season, and GMU is going to have to improve defensively if they want to compete in the A-10.

Virginia Tech and JMU are the only teams that look to be worse this season than in 2012-13. Virginia Tech lost too much talent in one player and JMU lost too many players with talent. The winter could be long and cold in Blacksburg and Harrisonburg

There are a lot of question marks in the bottom tier of the Commonwealth. Radford looks like a Big South sleeper. Can Liberty maintain the magic that took them to the NCAA Tournament in 2013? William & Mary can score, but can they play enough defense to compete in the CAA?

Thankfully, these questions, and more, will be answered in the coming months because of the dozens of non-conference intrastate games schedule this season. Our award for Commonwealth Scheduling goes to William & Mary. The Tribe will play Hampton, Liberty, Rutgers, VMI, Richmond, and ODU all before January 2nd.

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Friday, November 8th

  • James Madison at Virginia
  • William & Mary at Hampton

Tuesday, November 12th

  • VCU at Virginia
  • Liberty at William and Mary

Friday, November 15th

  • Virginia Union (DII) at Norfolk State

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0-0, 0-0

For once, most of the national pundits agree with VCU fans.Chris Crowley


14 PTS


0-0, 0-0

Joe Harris is the leading returning scorer in the ACC despite being on a team that plays so slowly Wisconsin thinks it’s boring. Tuesday’s game against VCU is the top Commonwealth battle of the season.Aaron Williams


25 PTS


0-0, 0-0

After a dramatic finish to a disappointing year, the Spiders are looking for a fresh start. They’ve got some talented sophomores but will miss Darien Brothers’s 14 points per game.Ross Catrow


35 PTS

Norfolk State

0-0, 0-0

The Spartans return five of their six best players from one of the best defensive teams in the state, including 6-6 sharpshooting graduate transfer Anell Alexis. They won 15 of their last 17 games in 2013.Aaron Williams


36 PTS

George Mason

0-0, 0-0

With Erik Copes living up to an annual tradition of GMU player suspensions, they could struggle early.Chris Crowley


49 PTS

Virginia Tech

0-0, 0-0

The Hokies were the worst team in the ACC last year. That was WITH the nation’s leading scorer, Erick Green, who is gone. Yeah, it’s going to be a long season in Blacksburg.Gary Cope


52 PTS


0-0, 0-0

JMU won a 7-team “CAA Tournament” to sneak into the NCAA Tournament and maybe save Matt Brady’s job…then everyone graduated.Aaron Williams


55 PTS

William & Mary

0-0, 0-0

The Pantsless Birdmen return four starters and three leading scorers. They play five in-state teams before a decimated CAA season even begins.Chris Crowley


66 PTS


0-0, 0-0

Defending Big South Champions have their work cut out for them with how good High Point and Charleston Southern are this year.Doug Ripley


69 PTS


0-0, 0-0

Four starters back for the Pirates who will see quite a few Virginia schools in 2013-14.Doug Ripley


77 PTS

Old Dominion

0-0, 0-0

Jeff Jones wasn’t the sexy hire but certainly the right one for the Monarchs in regaining long-term program stability. Jones has built a good staff and they’ll be in the C-USA discussion soon. Probably not this year though.Doug Ripley


77 PTS


0-0, 0-0

Live by the three, die by the three–and sometimes you really, really die by it.Ross Catrow


78 PTS


0-0, 0-0

The Highlanders return 90% of their minutes and a roster ready to be the second best pressing team in the state thanks to former VCU assistant coach Mike Jones.Aaron Williams


95 PTS


0-0, 0-0

Watch out, Lancers! The Hokies are coming for you…in the cellar.Gary Cope

Contributors: Ross Catrow (VT; RVANews), Chris Crowley (VCU), Gary Cope (VT;, Curt Dudley (JMU), Eric Hobeck (Longwood), Doug Ripley (Old Dominion), Adam Williams (UR), Aaron Williams (VCU; RVANews)

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