With huge expectations hyped around our young front court and the experienced back court, what is it really going to take to become the creme de le creme of the American Athletic Conference and earn that spot in the NCAA tournament?
Well, based on the 2012-2013 overall rankings for point per game (331st overall), rebounds (256th overall), assists(278th overall), and field goal percentage(335th overall), we definitely have a mountain to climb.
With Forward Toarlyn Fitzpatrick gone, the Bulls will need more contribution in the front court with a heavy dose Victor Rudd, some solid play from the 6-foot-10 freshman Center John Egbunu, and hopefully consistent numbers out of sophomore Zach LeDay, who displayed positive signs last season averaging only 17-minutes per game, while shooting .384% from the field and finishing second in team blocks with 17.
In the back court, we should expect to see junior guard Anthony Collins build off last seasons stats by keeping his turnovers minimal, distributing the rock more, and adding to his field goal percentage where he posted .393 from the field. From the looks of things now in preparation for tip-off, if I had to gamble, I'd say lets expect to see 6-foot-5 Javontae Hawkins complete the starting lineup. Playing in 26 games last season and averaging a little more than 14 minutes game, I like the threat he adds coming off a .429 field goal percent, shooting 42 for 98 from the floor.
With Hoops fest only two days away, what remains to be seen is what type of energy, excitement, and cohesiveness this group will showcase as we watch to see if we can finish with a better overall record than last season’s 12-19, while at least finishing better than .500 in conference play.