Michigan ranked 23rd in USA Today Preseason Coaches Poll

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Michigan will start the season ranked once again this year, but the defending Big Ten Champions aren’t nearly as highly regarded as they were in recent years.

The Wolverines are ranked 23rd in USA Today’s Poll, behind four other conference foes, after starting the last two seasons ranked in the top ten.

Wisconsin (No. 4), Michigan State (No. 18), Ohio State (20), Nebraska (21) and Iowa (25) are the other league teams to earn a spot in the poll.

Michigan will face several top 25 teams during its non-conference schedule including a difficult road game at No. 2 Arizona. The Wolverines will also face SMU (No. 22) and Syracuse (No. 24) as well as a game against either Villanova (No. 12) or VCU (No. 16) in Brooklyn.

Find the complete USA Today Top 25 Preseason Poll after the jump. (Photo: Dustin Johnston)

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ROSEMONT, Ill. — John Beilein met with media in Chicago on Thursday as part of Big Ten Media Day. The Michigan coach discussed the state of other programs in the conference, the difficulties of sustaining success, and whether the Wolverines’ offense flows through Caris LeVert.

Notes and quotes after the jump.  [click to continue…]

ROSEMONT, Ill. — Spike Albrecht met with media in Chicago on Thursday as part of Big Ten Media Day. The junior guard discussed his surprising recruiting story, his improvements as a leader, and his expected role on the team during the upcoming season.

Full notes and quotes after the jump. [click to continue…]

Video: John Beilein at Big Ten Media Day

John Beilein met with the media this morning in Chicago at the Big Ten’s annual Media Day. Beilein discussed Preseason All-Big Ten junior Caris LeVert and a number of other topics and issues facing the Wolverines for the upcoming season.. Watch Beilein’s press conference in the embedded media player below or read the transcript here.

Transcript: John Beilein at Big Ten Media Day

Michigan B1G Championship-16

John Beilein was on the podium this morning in Chicago to preview Michigan’s upcoming season at the annual Big Ten Media Day. Beilein spoke about Caris LeVert, expectations, the desire to get back to the Final Four and Michigan’s Italy trip. (Photo: Dustin Johnston)

JOHN BEILEIN:  Well, it is good to be here and get the season going again.  We’ve been practicing for a little bit, but October 15th, yesterday, was the first day we really opened up camp and said we’re in it now.  This is the time of the year to get the media and all our obligations out of the way so we can really concentrate over these next four weeks to get ready for our first game.

Q.  Caris LeVert named first‑team, how do you think he’ll handle the spotlight this season?
JOHN BEILEIN:  Well, you never know.  He was in it a bit last year.  I mean, there were several games where we just went to him because people were doing things with Nick or with Glenn, Jordan Morgan, Mitch, so we just went with him.  He’s sort of used to it.  I love his personality because he doesn’t let things bother him very much, so I don’t think he gets too excited or he gets too worried about either situation.

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Caris LeVert named to Preseason All-Big Ten team

Michigan 84, Indiana 80-26
Dustin Johnston

Michigan junior guard Caris Levert was selected to the Big Ten’s five-man preseason All-Big Ten squad this morning.

LeVert averaged  12.9 points, 4.3 rebounds and 2.9 assists per game as a sophomore and will be asked to shoulder more of the load during his junior year after the departures of Nik Stauskas, Glenn Robinson III, and Jordan Morgan. The 6-foot-7 junior is projected as a first-round pick and will hope to follow in the footsteps of his former teammates Trey Burke and Nik Stauskas, the conference’s last two Big Ten Players of the Year.

Big Ten Preseason Player of the Year Frank Kaminsky was the only unanimous selection on the five-man team while Indiana’s Yogi Ferrell, Nebraska’s Terran Petteway and Wisconsin’s Sam Dekker were also selected.

The Big Ten also released the top three teams in the preseason pol. Wisconsin was a unanimous choice to win the league, followed by Michigan State and Ohio State. While the full poll is not released by the conference, an unofficial poll of league beat writers picked Michigan fifth.

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