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SI'S 2005 TOP 10
Gene Menez
April 12, 2004
Here's our extremely early projection of the teams who'll be battling to reach next year's Final Four in St. Louis
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April 12, 2004

Si's 2005 Top 10

Here's our extremely early projection of the teams who'll be battling to reach next year's Final Four in St. Louis

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1 WAKE FOREST
This season's Sweet 16 squad, sporting size (center Eric Williams), shooting (guard Taron Downey) and smarts (point guard Chris Paul), will return virtually intact.

2 GEORGIA TECH
The Yellow Jackets lose only guard Marvin Lewis and are the favorites to sign 7-foot center Randolph Morris.

3 ILLINOIS
All of the starters from the Elite Eight team are back, including next season's best set of guards: Dee Brown and Deron Williams.

4 NORTH CAROLINA
The Tar Heels' depth problems disappear if two signees, guard J.R. Smith and power forward Marvin Williams, don't go pro.

5 LOUISVILLE
Point guard signee Sebastian Telfair is likely NBA-bound, but the Cards are boosted by the return of injured forward Ellis Myles.

6 KANSAS
If forward Wayne Simien is in Lawrence for his senior season, the St. Louis Regional finalist Jayhawks are a title threat.

7 DUKE
The Blue Devils have four starters back, but with heralded recruit Shaun Livingston likely going pro, who will play the point?

8 TEXAS
The Horns love L.A., as in LaMarcus Aldridge, a 7-foot center who's one of three McDonald's All-Americans they hooked.

9 ALABAMA
A surprise Phoenix Regional finalist, the Tide keeps rolling behind deadeye shooter Kennedy Winston, one of four returning starters.

10 WASHINGTON
The run-and-gun Huskies resume their Pac-10 rise behind 5'9" spark plug Nate Robinson. Sleepers: Maryland and Kent State.

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