BROOKLYN N.Y. -- Butler has been picked to finish sixth in its initial Atlantic 10 Conference men's basketball race, according to the league's preseason poll released on Thursday, Oct. 4. The poll of men's basketball coaches and media was announced at the A-10 Basketball Media Day at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y.
Saint Joseph's received 11 first place votes and was tabbed as the preseason favorite, while Saint Louis picked up 10 first place votes and was slated second. New member VCU had three first place votes and finished third in the poll, followed by Temple and Massachusetts. Butler, Temple and Massachusetts each received two first place votes.
La Salle finished seventh in the league poll, followed by Dayton, Xavier, Richmond, St. Bonaventure, Charlotte, George Washington, Fordham, Rhode Island and Duquesne.
Three Butler players also earned mention on the A-10 Preseason All-Conference Team. Senior Rotnei Clarke, preparing for his first season with the Bulldogs after transferring from Arkansas, was named second team All-Conference, while freshman Kellen Dunham was picked to the All-Rookie Team. Sophomore Roosevelt Jones was picked to the five-player All-Defensive Team.
Selected first team preseason All-Conference were Kevin Dillard of Dayton, Chris Gaston of Fordham, Chaz Williams of Massachusetts, Kwamain Mitchell of Saint Louis and Khalif Wyatt of Temple. Joining Clarke on the second team were Chris Braswell of Charlotte, Ramon Galloway of Saint Joseph's and Carl Jones of Saint Joseph's.
The preseason third team All-Conference squad was made up Darien Brothers of Richmond, C. J. Aiken of Saint Joseph's, Halil Kanacevic of Saint Joseph's, Scootie Randall of Temple and Juvonte Reddic of VCU.
Joining Dunham on the All-Rookie Team were Jordan Hare of Rhode Island, Daniel Dingle of Temple, Melvin Johnson of VCU and Semaj Christon of Xavier. The All-Defensive Team included Jones, Pierria Henry of Charlotte, C. J. Aiken of Saint Joseph's, Jordair Jett of Saint Louis and Briante Weber of VCU.
Butler will begin its 2012-13 bid on Saturday, Oct. 27, with an exhibition game at Hinkle Fieldhouse against Marian. The regular season opens at home on Nov. 9 with a game against Elon, and the conference season begins on Jan. 9 at preseason league-favorite Saint Joseph's. The 2013 Atlantic 10 Conference Men's Basketball Tournament will be held at the Barclays Center, March 14-17, with the tournament championship game slated to be televised on CBS at 1 p.m. (ET) on March 17.
2012-13 Atlantic 10 Conference Preseason Poll (First Place Votes)
1. Saint Joseph's (11)
2. Saint Louis (10)
3. VCU (3)
4. Temple (2)
5. Massachusetts (2)
6. Butler (2)
7. La Salle