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Ohio State basketball No. 2 in Ken Pomeroy rankings

The college basketball stat wizard rates the Buckeyes as the best team in the Big Ten.

Derick E. Hingle-US PRESSWIRE

The Indiana Hoosiers top the official 2012 preseason college basketball polls, but statistician Ken Pomeroy ranks the Ohio State Buckeyes as the top team in the Big Ten and the No. 2 team overall in the country. The Buckeyes trail just the Kentucky Wildcats, who have a new-look roster a year after winning the national championship.

The Buckeyes are directly ahead of three Big Ten teams: Indiana is rated third, with the Michigan State Spartans and Wisconsin Badgers at No. 4 and No. 5. The Michigan Wolverines are the fifth team from the Big Ten in the top 15, at No. 12.

The Buckeyes will be forced to replace star power forward Jared Sullinger, but still have a very good chance at making the Final Four. They will be relying on a team that relies on returning key contributors like Deshaun Thomas, Aaron Craft and Lenzelle Smith, Jr.

Unlike previous years, the 2012-13 iteration of the Buckeyes doesn't feature any top recruits. Ohio State's lone freshman, Amedeo Della Valle, was rated only as a three-star recruit by Rivals.

Photographs by spatulated, Triple Tri, and chrischappelear used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.