Louisville basketball: Ranking the non-conference opponents

Samuell Williamson #10 of the Louisville Cardinals (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Samuell Williamson #10 of the Louisville Cardinals (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) /
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louisville basketball; uofl basketball
LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY – JANUARY 25: Samuell Williamson #10 of the Louisville Cardinals celebrates during the game against the Clemson Tigers at KFC YUM! Center on January 25, 2020 in Louisville, Kentucky. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) /

#6 Southern Illinois Salukis

Conference: Missouri Valley

2019-20 Final KenPom Ranking: 178

2020-21 Preseason KenPom Ranking: 185

Preseason AP Poll: Unranked

The Salukis are expected to be led by stud sophomores Marcus Domask and Lance Jones in the 2019 campaign along with Southern Utah grad transfer Jakolby Long.

Domask, a 6’6″ forward, averaged 13.6 points, 5.2 rebounds, and 2.5 assists per game as a freshman. That was good enough to earn him Mountain Valley Conference freshman of the year honors.

Jones averaged 9.3 points, 2.9 rebounds, and 2.5 assists as a true freshman in 2019 as well. The 6’1″ 200-pound guard will be the leaders of the bunch.

Long averaged six points per game for Southern Utah before transferring for his graduate year to play for the Salukis.

This is Louisville’s first game of the season. The Salukis’ young sophomores will be ready and hungry to build on their monster freshman campaigns. This is not going to be a walk in the park for Louisville. However, the Cards have more overall talent across the board. They should take care of business in this game.