By all accounts, gifted Duke freshman Jabari Parker is genuinely weighing the notion of coming back to school. Stranger things have happened, we guess, but let's be real: Parker is almost certainly going pro. Same goes for smooth lefty wing Rodney Hood. And you know what? Duke should be even better. How? By replacing one of their best freshmen ever with perhaps the most highly touted recruiting class of Mike Krzyzewski's coaching career. Point guard Tyus Jones and center Jahlil Okafor are the top-ranked players at their positions, according to the ESPN 100 (No. 4 and No. 1 overall, respectively). Justise Winslow and Grayson Allen are five-star prospects in their own right. That group will mix in with a solid core of returners, from skilled guards Quinn Cook and Rasheed Sulaimon to rebound-gobbling forwards Amile Jefferson and Marshall Plumlee. Two big questions here: Will Myles Turner, who is still considering Duke, pair with Okafor in a frightening frontcourt? And can Coach K, who has never had a team as young as this, get the Blue Devils up to speed (particularly defensively) in time to make a national title run?
Surprise, surprise: The Kentucky Wildcats have another stellar recruiting class arriving in Lexington this fall. Power forward Trey Lyles and center Karl Towns Jr. are two of the 10 best players in the class, per the ESPN 100, and shooting guard Devin Booker might grade out as one of the most efficient perimeter scorers in the country. As is custom, Kentucky is losing much of this season's roster, but it could return some important pieces, especially hyper-promising center Marcus Lee, who played a key, sudden role in UK's Final Four run. Whether coach John Calipari's latest batch of future NBA pros is as good as the world-destroying 2013 class -- which began with Fab Five comparisons and talk of an undefeated season, then waited until March to show everybody why -- is beside the point. What matters is how good the 2014-15 Wildcats will be relative to their competition. After four Elite Eights, three Final Fours, and one national title (and nearly his second Monday night) in Calipari's five seasons at UK, that answer should be fairly self-explanatory.