Defending national champion Louisville is the coaches' preseason pick to win the inaugural American Athletic Conference title in the Cardinals' lone year in this league.

With three starters back, the Cardinals received nine of 10 votes in the poll released Wednesday before the AAC's media day at the FedExForum. Louisville will join the Atlantic Coast Conference next year.

Connecticut received the other vote and is picked to finish second behind the Cardinals. Memphis, which will host the league's tournament in March, was picked third ahead of Cincinnati, Temple, SMU, Houston, South Florida, UCF and Rutgers

This also will be the lone year in the AAC for Rutgers, which will join the Big Ten after this season.

Louisville senior guard Russ Smith was the preseason AAC's player of the year selection.