Team preview: Villanova

Blue Ribbon Illustrated previews the 2004-05 college basketball season, exclusively on Insider.

Updated: October 20, 2004, 5:33 PM ET
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Finally, Jay Wright has all the pieces in place. Very few players are left from the Steve Lappas regime, as Wright has his third consecutive recruiting class in place. And last year's headaches, which included injuries to starters Marcus Austin and Derrick Snowden and a series of suspensions related to a telephone-access code controversy, are a thing of the past.

"I'm an optimist, that's just my nature," said Wright, entering his 11th season as a collegiate head coach. "I believe we're going to do well every year. But this year, everything seems to be coming together. The first recruiting class we brought in are juniors now and they're the core of the team."

Now, Wright sees it as time for Villanova to shine, just like back at Hofstra, when he took the Pride to back-to-back NCAA Tournament berths, only on the grander Big East stage.