LAWRENCE, Kan. —
Kansas men’s basketball is No. 13 in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches' Poll released Thursday, marking the 20th time in the last 23 seasons the Jayhawks have been ranked nationally in the coaches' preseason poll.
Kansas is the seven-time defending Big 12 men's basketball champion entering the 2011-12 season. The Jayhawks have won or tied for 11 of the 15 Big 12 regular-season titles and eight postseason titles. KU returns one starter and eight letterwinners from last season's 35-3 team, which went 14-2 in conference play, won the Big 12 regular-season title and the conference postseason championship. The Jayhawks advanced to the Elite Eight of the 2011 NCAA Tournament.
Last season, KU entered the year No. 7 nationally and was ranked no lower than seventh throughout the season. KU ended the year fourth nationally in the coaches' poll.
Kansas is guaranteed to play eight games against teams ranked in the preseason coaches' poll: No. 2 Kentucky, No. 3 Ohio State, No. 12 Baylor (twice), No. 19 Texas A&M (twice) and No. 25 Missouri (twice). Additionally, KU could play No. 6 Duke, No. 9 Memphis, No. 18 Michigan or No. 20 UCLA at the EA Sports Maui Invitational (Nov. 21-23). The Jayhawks face Georgetown in the bracket play in Maui on Nov. 21 and will play either UCLA or Chaminade on Nov. 22.