Florida Gators ranked No. 8 in USA Today preseason basketball coaches' poll
The Florida men's basketball team will begin the 2013 season ranked No. 8 in the USA TODAY Coaches' Poll.
The Gators have advanced to the NCAA Tournament Elite Eight the past three seasons, but will be without three starters from last season's team. The Gators have two starters returning to this year’s team and five of the top eight scorers.
Florida is coming off a 29-8 record, including a SEC regular season championhip.
Florida has been ranked in the preseason coaches’ poll in each of the past 14 seasons. This is the seventh time the Gators have been in the poll’s preseason top 10. Last season, Florida was a preseason No. 10 team, and finished ranked No. 9.
SEC East foe Kentucky, which missed out on the NCAA Tournament last season, is the preseason No. 1. It is the first time in the history of the USA TODAY coaches' poll, which began during the 1991-92 season, that a team enters a season No. 1 after finishing the previous year unranked.
The only other time the Wildcats opened the season as the coaches preseason No 1 pick was 1995-96 - and they went on to win a national championship.
Michigan State is No. 2, followed by defending national champion Louisville, Duke, Arizona, Kansas, Syracuse, Florida, Michigan and Ohio State rounding out the To 10.
Here is a look at the full USA TODAY Coaches' Poll: