James Barbosa - Fr PF 2.38 52.3 69.0 23 42 47 28 50 58 12 18 24 56 58 68 484
Richard Bowman -  Jr C 3.40 59.8 55.9 56 20 75 59 69 39 11 12 11 69 77 47 545
3/6/2012 5:45 PM (edited)
Thomas Recruiting Season 55

Overall Grade: B-

Three goals for recruiting: a guard, a small forward, and a post.

This had the makings of a A-, possibly A, level recruiting class until the last cycle before signings began.  And then I messed things up.  I'm pretty disgusted with myself.  I think the most important thing I've done in recruiting for the past dozen plus seasons is to (a) sign a small forward every other season and (b) redshirt that small forward so that I always have an experienced upperclassman to start and an experienced underclassman that will play a decent number of minutes in reserve.  The strategy has had the potential to blow up in that I rarely attempt to guarantee the redshirt in recruiting.  This time I did, it failed, and therefore this strategy is going to have to be adjusted in some manner over the next couple of seasons.  I'm pretty ticked at myself about it.

In addition to that, I ended up guaranteeing a start that I didn't have to do if I hadn't been so greedy about the redshirt.  I thought I had Youngblood in the bank and thought I had an opportunity to take the extra money I had saved for him if the battle got bigger and tried to redshirt Taylor with two campus visits.  That failed and Taylor rejected the redshirt.  Meanwhile, my competition for Youngblood decided to give it one last go and the money I had to make sure I'd win had been blown on the failed redshirt effort.  I wasn't sure it was necessary but because I didn't want to take chances, I threw a promised start at Youngblood to make sure I'd win.

So in the end, I got the post player I wanted.  I also got the guard I wanted but I have to start him.  And I got the small forward but I can't redshirt him.  Rather disappointing conclusion to where I stood just before signings began.  I'm relatively happy with the three individual players but I'm not sure any of the three can score.  For one player, possibly two, that isn't a big deal.  But when it is all three that have trouble putting the ball through the basket, there might be some trouble ahead.

Jess Youngblood
PG | 5'11" | 185 lbs. | 2.3 GPA
Immaculate Heart HS | Tucson, AZ
Athleticism - 49 (high)
Speed - 71 (high)
Rebounding - 15 (low)
Defense - 47
Shot Blocking - 9 (low)
Low-post - 1 (low)
Perimeter - 17 (high)
Ball Handling - 43 (high)
Passing - 58 (high)
Work Ethic - 31
Stamina - 76
Durability - 36
FT Shooting – 63.5%

Jeffrey Taylor
SG | 6'0" | 185 lbs. | 2.7 GPA
Melbourne Central Catholic HS | Melbourne, FL
Athleticism - 37 (high)
Speed - 38 (high)
Rebounding - 23 (high)
Defense - 30 (high)
Shot Blocking - 4 (low)
Low-post - 26
Perimeter - 37 (low)
Ball Handling - 41 (high)
Passing - 42
Work Ethic - 57
Stamina - 69
Durability - 41 (high)
FT Shooting – 58.8% (high)

Larry Oakes
C | 6'8" | 233 lbs. | 3.2 GPA
Holderness HS | Plymouth, NH
Athleticism - 54 (high)
Speed - 4 (low)
Rebounding - 64 (high)
Defense - 42 (high)
Shot Blocking - 50 (high)
Low-post - 52 (low)
Perimeter - 1 (low)
Ball Handling - 1 (low)
Passing - 9 (low)
Work Ethic - 46
Stamina - 76
Durability - 40 (high)
FT Shooting - 58.3% (high)

Jess Youngblood -- If you have to throw a promised start at a player, this is probably the one to do it.  The ball handling needs work and the passing needs a bit as well but he's pretty close to being a starting quality player already.  So if it weren't for the IQ issues, the promised start wouldn't be that big of a deal.  In the long run, this might be a good thing.  Depending on just how good his potential is, starting as a freshman will really help him fully develop his talents.  For example, if his perimeter is high-high (no idea if it is), I probably need a lot more than 4 years of growth with the 31 work ethic to get him close to his potential.  What I do know is that he is high-high in athleticism, ball handling, and passing.  So ... ignoring the WE problems for a second ... 80 ATH, 90 SPD, 70 BH, 85 PAS when fully developed.  That's one heck of a good point guard.  Probably not good enough to replace the departing NPOY in John Bradley but about as good a replacement as I could hope to get.  I'm not expecting Youngblood to be a scoring threat, but if he turns into one he'll be one of the top D3 signings in season 55.  In the short run, it's asking a lot for a freshman to be a starter, especially in the NAC.  Youngblood is a triangle/press player which won't do much good for the Terrier flex/zone.

Jeffrey Taylor -- Kicking, kicking, kicking myself about trying to guarantee the redshirt instead of just rolling the dice on him.  Ignoring the redshirt issues, Taylor is a mediocre signing.  Thomas has had a really nice run in signing exceptional small forwards but the last two aren't anything special.  Taylor should be a decent enough roll player but he won't be able to score and that will limit his effectiveness.  I know little about his potential other than the fact that both speed and ball handling are high-high.  Bare minimum, Taylor should be a 55 ATH, 65 SPD, 40 REB, 50 DEF, 60 BH, 50 PAS small foward.  Ignoring the fact that he can't score -- which is a big thing to ignore -- he'll be a well rounded small forward.  Hopefully this is a player that prevents Thomas from losing games but I'm not sure Taylor will be good enough to win games.

Larry Oakes -- Pretty much what I want in a post player so I'm very happy to have him.  Already an athletic rebounder that can play defense and block shots.  All are high potential.  The athleticsm is low-high potential but the other three are high-high.  So 70 ATH, 90 REB, 70 DEF, 70 BLK.  That'll do quite nicely.  I would like to think that with athleticism so good, the 52 low post rating might be enough for him to develop into a scoring threat but recent experience with a couple of similar players suggests this won't be the case.  I'm ok with that, Oakes can be a force on the defensive end and clean up misses on the offensive end.
3/6/2012 12:44 PM
Joseph Updegraff, PF, FR  High REB/DE/P/FT  Low SPD/BLK/LP/PE/ST/DU  JoJo said he didn't want to have to sit out a season, so he figured D3 was the way to go.

John Jacks, PG, FR HIgh ATH/DE/LP/BH/ST/FT  Low REB/BLK/PE/DU  Will be given a RS

Donald McKeone SF FR  High ATH/SPD/PE/DU  Low LP/BH
3/6/2012 1:26 PM
Overall Recruiting Grade: B+

Charles McBryar PG 24 69 15 20 1 1 46 45 31 63 67 43 425 650+
Aaron Stevenson SF 46 43 19 51 12 12 46 14 10 28 70 73 424 650+
Jeffery Forte PF 20 10 49 22 29 62 9 22 21 92 65 44 445 640+
Francis Calder C 36 16 67 45 51 55 1 10 22 49 53 51 456 615+

Recruiting Goals: 2 Guards and 2 Front Court Players

Recruiting Results: 4 very solid players, but no real superstar in the group. Was only able to secure one Guard which is the only real downside from the recruiting session. A very versatile SF if his WE can get up quickly. Two pretty nice big men who should have pretty good LP skills.

Freshmen Outlook: Stevenson gets serious quality time to get that WE up ... if it gets up to where he can reach potential in his high's then he becomes the hidden gem of the class. McBryar gets quality time as a key backup off the bench and might be a starter as a Soph. Calder will get a few minutes when possible, around 10 minutes a game to increase growth. Calder becomes a key backup as a Soph. Jeffery Forte gets redshirted as a Frosh to take advantage of his 92 WE and develop his game. Forte definitely see serious court time as a RS/FR.

The only reason I didn't rate the class an A- or A is we could only bring in one guard. But other than that, we definitely think this was a B+ worthy class.

3/6/2012 5:05 PM (edited)
First, pardon typos. Doing this on my Evo.

Husson recruiting grade: B-

Recruits : SG John Johnson
424 overall
11 ath avg
52 speed low
23 rebounding avg
20 defense avg
8 shot blocking low
23 low post high
51 perimeter avg
37 ball handling high
16 passing high
52 work ethic avg
80 stamina avg
51 durability avg
D- ft high
Johnson fills the need of having a shooting guard on the team. His perimeter shooting is already good, but I am not at a lack of shooters. He will probably only play roughly 10-15 minutes a game starting off. I have better options on the roster that can fill the 2. Seeing how the others perform will go a long way in how much playing time Johnson gets.

3/6/2012 7:49 PM
Dan Parker - PF
20 ath avg
22 speed high
57 rebounding avg
11 defense avg
45 shot blocking high
37 low post avg
37 perimeter low
26 ball handling low
20 passing average
39 work ethic avg
78 stamina low
76 durability high
D+ ft high

To start the season, Parker will be in the startimg five mainly because of the offered and accepted start. I liked much of what he seems to offer in rebounding and the potential of low post play. He is better already than a couple of recruits that I signed last year. As always time will tell how.much I will utilize him. I am so.light in the LP category that he may have to do.
3/6/2012 8:05 PM
Husson Season Outlook

OOC - 9-1 (thought that I had scheduled a little more difficult competition but it appears on the surface that these teams are on rebuilding tracks. I am sure there is a game or two that will surprise me. It always happens.)

Conference - 8-8 (we all know that in this conference guessing that is like finding a Kardashian at a Mensa meeting. Extremely difficult to do. I never would have guessed that I would beat Thomas and Lasell in games last year but it happened)

Overall, I see myself as a 9 seed in the West. First round, mild.upset of the 8 seed, crushed by the number one seed.
3/6/2012 8:16 PM
MMA season 55 recruiting. Had one scholarship and initially thought to just take a walk-on; but then read that 1/4 of my scholarship money would carry over only if I filled my available scholarships. Using kujay's suggestions for minimum scores, and since my current group would be a contender in the NAC south if their ATH was 30 or 40 points higher, I started looking on the 2nd day of recruiting. Nothing fit in D3, but a # of kids looked good in D2 (including mizzou's Bowman) so floated a few letters and waited for drop-downs. All that said, none of that worked. Not sure how this kid got on my list on Monday, but he was the only one to not laugh or refuse to take the call, so I am hoping he will be better than a walk-on.

Sherman Buttler  SF   F  Ath  53,   Speed 44,   Reb 29,  D  31,  SB  16,  LP  11,  Per 9,  BH  20,  P 33,  WE 53,  Stam  60,  Dur  45,  FT  C

3/7/2012 12:01 AM

Team Offense: Flex
Team Defense: 2-3 Zone

Likely Starting Lineup, (Season 54 Stats)
PG: Dennis Myers, Sr (0 GS, 10.9 pt, 1.9 ast, 43 FG3%)
SG: Jess Youngblood, Fr
SF: Lee Brown, Sr (35 GS, 9.7 pt, 4.2 reb, 2.8 ast, 1.1 stl)
PF: Al Brogden, Sr (0 GS, 2.5 pt, 3.6 reb)
C: Bryan Vaden, Sr (35 GS, 8.8 pt, 8.9 reb, 1.9 blk, 56 FG%)

1st guard off the bench: Cory Bjorklund, Jr (35 GS, 7.2 pt, 2.3 ast, 1.1 stl)
1st post off the bench: Richard Kimble, So (0 GS, 0.5 pt, 1.0 reb)


Season 55 is likely to be a disappointing season in Waterville, simply because Thomas will not be able to repeat the success of season 54's national title.  Thomas lost an awful lot to graduation, including the NPOY.  Thomas still should be quite good, however, and will be a threat do both damage in the North Atlantic and NT.  Winning the NAC would be unlikely, but not impossible.  Making it much beyond the first weekend of the NT would be unlikely, but also not impossible.  The overall roster for Thomas is one of the weaker groups of 12 that has been seen in recent memory, but the cream of the crop is good enough to compete with any D3 team and just might be the best in the entire D3 world.  Dennis Myers provides exceptional guard play and deadly three point shooting.  Bryan Vaden is a rebounding and shot blocking machine that shot 56% from the field as a Junior.  Last, but not least, Lee Brown might be the best all-around player in the D3 and as the starting small forward can help both the guards and the post players with his all around play.

In order to get the newest batch of Terrier recruits to Waterville, several promises of time on the court were made.  Most notably, Jess Youngblood was guaranteed a starting spot in the lineup from day 1.  Those promises may have long term benefits for the Thomas program, but could have a substantial negative impact in season 55.  Play in the North Atlantic is always tight and giving minutes to those not ready for the rough-and-tough game of the NAC could lead to some extra losses.  Meanwhile, Thomas has a difficult non-conference slate that is also likely to punish giving substantial minutes to true freshman.

Thomas' strength will come from its defense and it should be one of the better defenses in the North Atlantic.  In terms of pure defensive rating, Thomas is tops in the North Atlantic.  That skill set is partnered with athleticism that is also best among NAC teams but speed that is middle of the pack.  The rebounding is slightly above average but with the zone defense will probably be run of the mill in the NAC.  Combined, that probably means that the Terrier defense will be one of the best in the North Atlantic at stopping the first shot but will give up too many second chance points to have a truly elite defense.  The wildcard is how the freshman hold back the defensive unit.  A very good defender in Cory Bjorklund is giving up his starting spot for Jess Youngblood and that will undoubtedly cost Thomas a bucket or two (at least) per game.

For what seems like the umpteenth season in a row, it's a bit sketchy as the season begins as to where exactly the Terrier scoring will take place.  The senior trio of Myers, Brown, and Vaden should all be good efficient scorers.  After that?  Cory Bjorklund shot a barely passable 38% from three point range last season but that looks unlikely to improve this season with his perimeter shooting maxed out.  Nobody else looks like they will be able to hit an outside shot for Thomas in season 55.  In a similar fashion, nobody really seems able to score within the paint beyond Vaden.  Thomas has a number of players with low post ratings that are maxed out at around 50.  That doesn't really cut it for being a good scorer, especially not in the North Atlantic.

With this not being a vintage Thomas squad, the non-conference schedule might be biting off a bit more than the Terriers can chew.  It has been a while since Thomas did not finish non-conference play above .500 but there is a decent risk of that happening this season.  Expect a 6-4 mark when all is said and done.

It will take a minor miracle for Thomas to repeat as NAC South champs.  Mount Ida and Maine Maritime appear to be better and while Thomas might finish ahead of one of them in the standings, it would be unlikely for them to get past both.  10-6 seems like a reasonable projection for Thomas which should give the Terriers a shot at finishing 2nd in the South and a first round bye in the CT.  Once in the CT, Thomas looks unlikely to hang another banner in the Larry Mahaney Gymnasium.  Even if Thomas could get past the teams in the South, there are too many superior teams in the North for Thomas to sneak away with a CT title.

Despite the difficult schedule, Thomas should not be sweating a bid for the NT.  However, the seed will not be as good as what Thomas has become accustomed to receiving.  Recently, Thomas has put up a nice stretch of Sweet 16 showings but the brackets might not be so friendly this season.  Miracles do happen but it would take an awfully big one for Thomas to make a run at repeating in the NT this season.  Expect a loss in the round of 32 or 16.


Option 1 will be Dennis Myers.  So will option two, three, and four.  The Thomas backcourt is a bit of a mess and is quite inexperienced as well.  Not a good combo.  Myers as the lone Senior guard will be carrying the weight of Waterville on his shoulders as he attempts to lead this team.  As a senior, Myers is mostly maxed out but still has average room for growth in perimeter shooting, ball handling, and stamina.  Maxing out that stamina rating is a priority.  With it currently sitting at 63, Thomas is counting on the lesser guards to be playing way too much.  If the perimeter shooting maxes out, Myers will be a deadly 99 rated assassin.

Anthony Lockwood will be the other starting guard.  He's a great recruit but he's not ready to hit the court.  The less he touches the ball, the better for Thomas.

Cory Bjorklund started in season 54 despite not deserving the honor.  Instead, the coach threw him in the starting five in a somewhat desperate attempt to increase the lazy guard's work ethic.  Now in season 55, he deserves the start after the graduation of better players but the coach has promised the starting spot to an incoming freshman.  While the second best guard on the roster, Bjorklund isn't all that good and can't be too upset he has lost his spot.  Bjorklund is a good athlete that plays good defense.  While the defense of 63 is almost maxed out, he can still improve his speed (59) and athleticism (67).  However he's a bit of a mess on the offensive end.  His perimeter shooting is just about maxed out at 72 and that's not going to equate to the team trusting him shooting from long range.  He has some room for growth in his ball handling but with a 54 rating won't ever be too good with the handle.  And while he passes well for a big man, he's rather atrocious for a guard.  The 38 rating can get better but it won't reach 50 and that's pretty ugly for a perimeter player.  Last year's preview noted that "Bjorklund is starting this season but might get lapped sooner rather than latter by the guys on the bench."  That prophecy proved to be true.

Bruce Sawyer is the first guard off the bench.  He looks to be slightly better over time than Cory Bjorklund but not much better.  In season 55 he won't be anything special although as just a second year player he does have room to get better.  Eventually he will likely be a better defender than Bjorklund.  His 54 athleticism has some room to grow but the case for him being a superior player on the defensive end rests with his high potential in speed (66) and defense (47).  On the offensive end, Sawyer is a mixed bag, much like Bjorklund.  His perimeter shooting is high potential but it is currently rated 21.  It might not ever be rated highly but even if it is, he probably won't develop that potential while at Thomas since the slow developing rating is going to develop even slower than it should because of his terrible work ethic.  His 69 ball handling and 46 passing ratings have average potential which seem to suggest a rather mediocre guard on offense.

Anthony Lockwood seems to have a bit more potential than Sawyer but as a redshirt freshman also is not really yet ready for the spotlight to shine on him.  Average room for growth in athleticism (60), speed (57), and defense (64) suggests an above average player on defense.  How good he will be on offense is yet to be determined.  He won't be good in season 55 but he does have high potential ratings in perimeter (40), ball handling (48), and passing (48).  The perimeter shooting might end up maxing out before he becomes an outside threat but if he does max out the ball handling and passing he should be an above average guard with the ball in his hands.  The word "if" is used with regard to him maxing out since he too has work ethic problems.

Small forwards

Lee Brown is fine, fine player.  And he does have the potential to be even better by the time he graduates.  The senior is close to being maxed out in several categories but he does still have average room for growth in speed, defense, ball handling, passing, and stamina.  Brown probably should finish his Thomas career as a 700 overall rated player.  Those players tend to be pretty good regardless, but especially for a player like Brown who only has a work ethic of 51, stamina of 79, and durability of 27.  When Brown is on the court, he'll likely have a substantial advantage over his opponent.

Robert Holt is Brown's backup that looks like he'll end a very nice run that Thomas has had of throwing dominant small forwards out on the court.  Holt is ok, but he won't ever be a stud.  Or more accurately, it's pretty unlikely he will.  Only his athleticism (51) and low post (45) are maxed out so he can much better than what he currently is.  Furthermore, his perimeter (35) and ball handling (33) are both high potential.  But unless one of those high potential categories has 50+ points of growth remaining, he's not going to be anything close to a star.  He's a well rounded player and won't make Thomas worse when he's on the court.  He just won't make it much better.

Jeffrey Taylor should be taking a redshirt this season but due to a recruiting snaffu is instead being promised 10 minutes of playing time this season.  He's nowhere near being ready for the court but he does have enough potential that he'll probably be a solid small forward, albeit one that looks a bit more like Robert Holt instead of Lee Brown.

Post Players

Bryan Vaden is maxed out, but he's already a very good player.  Vaden signed with Thomas after a kamikaze recruiting effort and it looks like he is good enough to have been worth the risk.  With a big senior campaign, Vaden can finish very high on the all-time list of best rebounders and shot blockers in Thomas history.  Combine that with a 53% career field goal shooting (56% last season) and you have a player who is almost as good on the offensive end as he is on the defensive one.

Al Brogden enters the starting lineup and he'll be the worst post player to start for Thomas in a number of years.  He's an ok player but nothing more than that.  Last season, Thomas had a big man in Clinton Schweiger coming off the bench that was a much better player than Brogden.  Brogden isn't that good now and it does not seem he will be getting much better.  He still has average room for growth in athleticism (45), rebounding (88), defense (49), and passing (24) but even after maxing out, he won't be much better.  His low post rating of 60 puts him at a level that makes giving him the green light to score a very questionable decision.  With some luck, Brogden falls into the category of player that won't hurt Thomas while he is on the court, but won't really be helping eihter.

Al Brogden barely played as a freshman, except for one game where he accidentally started.  When he did play, it was simply for cover and often out of position at small foward.  In season 54, he will be the 4th big in the rotation.  For a true sophomore, Brodgen does not have much potential left.  His athleticism is still high potential but that's it for big growth.  His shot blocking and low post are already maxed in the upper 50's limiting both his offense and defense.  Brodgen sort of looks like the player he is .... a recruit that was signed late in recruiting a full day late due to the Thanksgiving holiday.

The "Fugitive" does not have as bright a star as he did last season when he stepped onto campus but as he enters his sophomore campaign, Richard Kimble still looks like he might have the makings of a very good player.  Athleticism (45) and rebounding (73) are no longer high potential but the speed (22), defense (37), and low post (31) still are.  Kimble is going to be expected to contribute major minutes and while he might have developed into a player that is ready for that by season's end, it will probably be a struggle for him to adequately fill that roll earlier in the season.  The Terrier program really needs Kimble's high potential in the lost post to develop, develop, develop.  Other than senior Bryan Vaden, none of the current post players seem to have the potential to put fear in opposing defenders that are guarding the blocks.

Not much will be expected of Larry Oakes but he might get more playing time than a typical freshman since Thomas is a bit short of numbers in the post.  Nothing was promised to Oakes, who just happens to be the Thomas recruit that is most ready to see action on the court.
3/8/2012 8:51 PM
Pre-Conference All North Atlantic Conference Teams (Season 55)

First Team
Pos.  School Name  Yr.  Pos.  A  SPD  REB  DE  BLK  LP  PE  BH  P  WE  ST  DU  FT  TOT
PG Husson Timothy Hawks Jr. PG 54 92 1 52 3 15 77 59 82 80 96 51 C+ 662
SG Thomas Dennis Myers Sr. SG 57 82 14 58 4 10 89 71 65 55 62 49 C+ 616
SF Thomas Lee Brown Sr. SG 78 78 35 81 14 39 69 63 50 51 79 27 B 664
PF Lasell Michael Nau Sr. C 64 39 91 50 78 79 1 10 15 75 82 26 C- 610
C Thomas Bryan Vaden Sr. C 74 11 98 73 82 76 9 8 22 84 98 57 C+ 692

Second Team
Pos.  School Name  Yr.  Pos.  A  SPD  REB  DE  BLK  LP  PE  BH  P  WE  ST  DU  FT  TOT
PG Castleton State Timothy Wright Jr. PG 56 88 2 39 2 1 51 84 66 63 90 76 B 618
SG Mount Ida Joe Hall Sr. SG 42 66 12 44 3 57 77 61 69 64 82 82 B- 659
SF Mount Ida Jacob Smith Sr. SF 52 62 38 49 21 96 67 66 41 73 85 31 A- 681
PF Castleton State Daniel Moore Sr. C 47 35 85 60 71 95 12 13 43 81 84 40 C+ 666
C Lasell William McEwan Sr. C 80 19 99 76 80 28 8 16 27 55 81 48 B- 617

Third Team
Pos.  School Name  Yr.  Pos.  A  SPD  REB  DE  BLK  LP  PE  BH  P  WE  ST  DU  FT  TOT
PG Becker Larry Borges Sr. PG 35 84 15 45 3 22 72 81 63 64 86 34 B- 604
SG Johnson State Ryan Ernst Jr. SG 62 75 1 59 2 1 86 63 55 54 71 55 C+ 584
SF Salem State Kenneth Dunbar Sr. SF 41 63 53 66 35 63 61 30 54 79 64 49 C+ 658
PF Castleton State Mathew Brown Sr. PF 71 33 74 54 68 77 36 27 35 67 83 5 C+ 630
C Lasell Ronald Aguon Sr. C 62 16 90 73 71 67 16 8 1 37 73 53 C- 567

3/8/2012 8:52 PM

Becker Team Outlook Season 55

Team Offense: Motion

Team Defense: 2-3 Zone

Likely Starting Line-up

PG: Larry Borges (Sr)

SG: James Keith (Sr)

SF: Lloyd Calloway (So)

PF: Elmer Barnard (Sr)

C: Donald Conyers (Sr)

1st Guard off the bench: Phillip Williams (So)

1st Post off the bench: Sherman Bernard (Sr)

Super 8th man: Phillip Drew (Sr)

Potential Redshirt Player: Jeffrey Forte (Fr) 


Becker comes off an exiting season 54 where all of Coach Ixo’s goals were met. 8-2, 12-4, #1 seed, and Elite Eight berth.

Graduation took a toll on the Hawks as stalwarts Hassan, White, Sullivan and Badger moved on. The club returns plenty of talent up front, but the back court will be the weak spot for the squad. 

Year 4 of Ixo’s tenure finds the team prepared for a solid campaign, and a realistic goal of NT. Not quite sure the squad is a top-25 team, despite what the prognosticators indicate.

The team will look quite like the previous one, with plenty of solid players but lacking a truly dominant force on most nights. Becker stresses team play, so our personnel reflect our philosophy ... that being said, we would love to have a stud on the roster and coach Ixo is addressing that in our recruiting meetings! Both Barnard and Conyers are disappointed to not get any love by the NAC media, regarding preseason honors .. specifically Conyers who believes he is the best C in the conference. Becker will most likely win games by outscoring opponents, not by shutting them down. It should be an exciting brand of ball this season. Becker will mix up between a slow and methodical approach with and up tempo game to keep opponents off balance.

Recruiting Recap

While Becker entered recruiting season with a need at almost every position, guard play was going to be a priority. Unfortunately Becker was only able to secure the services of PG Charles McBryar, who will see significant playing time. McBryar shows promise as four of his six highs are High-High. Aaron Stevenson a good looking SF will also see significant playing time in hopes of raising his WE. With no low attributes and four High-High’s, Stevenson will be a solid player only limited by his WE. Big men Francis Calder and Jeffrey Forte signed as the front court of the future. Both recruits will be very good players, with Forte having the best  star potential because of phenomenal WE and many High-High’s.

The outlook for this recruiting class is “Solid and Steady”. While none of the players will grow to be a stud, all four recruits have the potential to grace the All-Conference Teams as Seniors. The four newcomers are typical of the lunch pail type of player that Becker attracts.

Coach Ixo is very happy with the class and it’s balance across four positions. Each recruit has been welcomed with open arms on the Becker campus.

Offensive Outlook

The ball will start in Larry Borges hands and most likely will end up in the capable hands of Donald Conyers and Elmer Barnard. Becker has what it believes is the deepest front court in the league. With Drew and Bernard off the bench, Becker can play three big in a 2-3 zone when needed. James Keith provides and outside scoring threat from beyond the arc. The potential matchup problem that Becker will look to exploit this season will be Elmer Barnard, whose dual 62’s in LP and PER should provide the team with a very capable third option depending on how teams defend Becker. Offensive rebounding will be key for the squad, and getting a few more put backs per game will mean the difference in the rough and tough NAC North.

Defensive Outlook

The squad will primarily play a base 3-2 zone with Calloway anchoring a wing, but Drew will start when a bigger 2-3 zone is needed.  The team isn’t really top flight in any category, other than being in the top half of the league in REB, PER, & BH. Becker isn’t a good defensive team and will be relying on it’s very solid rebounding attributes to limit the opposition’s put backs. The team will try to find an identity during non-conference play.

Schedule Outlook

The non-conference slate is very competitive with 3 preseason Top-25 match-ups, but the schedule is friendly in that 7 games are on campus. While the team will be looking for optimum line-ups, we are expecting a record of 8-2 or 9-1 in the non conference portion. The North Division is stacked again so protecting home court will be key, and any road win will be worth its weight in gold! 9-7 to 11-5 are realistic goals for the conference, and the team is expecting to be ranked near the top-25 all season long in hopes of securing a top-4 seed in the National Tournament. Getting back to the sweet sixteen would be a respectable result for this years edition.

3/8/2012 10:16 PM (edited)
Mt Ida season #55 outlook.

ummm, season starts off... outlook good,.....
then conference begins and..... um, ask again later,
then we play deeper into the conference season and ummmm,,,, kool, outlook is good,
then we get to the conference tourney, ummm,  crap, my sources say no!
Does that mean we won't be in the National Tourney?  ummmm, Concentrate and ask again.
Crap! I said will we be in the National Tourney?.... Most Likely!
nice,,, and there you have it.
The majik -8 ball has never failed me yet. It's how I found at least 2 of my ex-wives.
3/9/2012 5:29 PM
North Atlantic Season 55 Non-Conference Review

Teams rated by total talent
1. Thomas
2. Lasell
3. Castleton State
4. MMA
5. Husson
6. Mount Ida
7. Becker
8. Johnson State
10. UMF
11. Elms
12. Salem State

Teams rated by use of talent
1. Castleton State
2. Lasell
3. Thomas
4. Mount Ida
5. Becker
6. Johnson State
7. Husson
8. MMA
9. Salem State
10. Elms
11. UMF
12. UMPI

Total talent reflects the entire 12 man roster, including those being redshirted.  Use of talent proportionally weights the rating to minutes on the court.  Because 12th men rarely impact things much, I'm using the latter number for ratings.  (And any team that is using their 12th man will have it show up anyway.)

Castleton State: 7-3, 2 RPI, 2 SOS, #10 rating
Most Talented Player: Mathew Brown, 23.9 min, 53% FG, 19.6 pt, 8.5 reb, 1.1 blk, 1.5 stl
Player being used too much: Demetrius Albert (11th in usage, 11th in talent)
Player being used too little: Thomas Allen (6th in usage, 5th in talent)
Future Star: Brian Osgood, SO SG (+31)

Five Final Fours in the past six seasons and it sure looks like RDB is on pace to make it 6 for 7.  (That #3 RPI, Elite 8 showing in season 51 really is an eyesore.)  Pretty interesting how RDB is getting it done, completely ignoring the 3 point shot and winning despite facing severe (-) defenses.  I suppose a team that quick and fast is going to be tough to guard even if you are properly positioned.  Those same traits are also forcing a ridiculous amount of turnovers.

I'm not sure if RDB is partying it up like it is season 37 but this roster reminds me a lot of the old-school Castleton that existed before WIS introduced player potential.  For those that weren't around back then, CSU was a team that looked a lot like 12 small forwards.  The guards could all rebound and the post players could dribble, pass, and shoot.  That's not exactly the case with this team, especially as it pertains to the rebounding guards.  But the post players are very good at passing and not too bad at dribbling and shooting.  The team ratings of 45 in both ball handling and passing demonstrate that.

Don't see CSU winning the NAC North but that's because Lasell look to be on a mission to finally get Carl a NT in the Allen world.  CSU has lost three times, even if all three were close losses.  Additionally, CSU is winning by a good margin but isn't destroying the field the way that Lasell is.  CSU wins by 10 points a game, Lasell wins by 25.  Even against a slightly higher level of competition, that 15 point differential is too much to ignore.

Fun Facts
-- As good as they are, CSU is being outrebounded on the season.  Only Mathew Brown (15.0) and Daniel Moore (12.2) average more than 10 rebounds per 40 minutes.
-- CSU is at risk of getting into foul trouble.  Over the course of 40 minutes, Carl Garrett (7.1), Timothy Wright (6.7), Brian Osgood (6.4), Jerry Chambers (5.4), Demeterius Albert (5.4), and Steven Woodling (5.2) would all foul out of a game.
-- He's a freshman but Brian Osgood is currently fouling at the rate of 7.2 per 40 minutes.  Yikes.
-- Mathew Brown leads the team in scoring and that's in large part due to him getting to the free throw line at a NAC leading rate of 14.3 times per 40 minutes.

Prediction: 13-3 2nd place NAC North

Lasell: 10-0, 5 RPI, 37 SOS, #2 rating
Most Talented Player: Damian Horodyski, 18.5 min, 54.5% FG, 7.4 pt, 3.4 reb, 1.2 stl
Player being used too much: William Korn (11th in usage, 10th in talent)
Player being used too little:  Ronald Aguon (7th in usage, 4th in talent)
Future Star: William Korn, FR PG (+24)

I loved Lasell last season when my numbers suggested they weren't #1 and they went ahead and won the NAC North and made it to the National Title game.  I'll make the same prediction that I did last season: As good as the NAC North is, I expect Lasell to steamroll its way through the gauntlet to a rather remarkable season.  I think not only will Lasell be the NT favorite, but come selection time they will be sitting with the #1 RPI, #1 ranking, and will deservedly get the #1 overall seed in the NT.

With 9 upperclassmen on the roster, this shouldn't be a huge surprise.  Lasell returned a great deal of talent from the best team in the Allen world last season.  Moreover the team is so well-rounded that I'm not sure where exactly a team attacks "weaknesses" on the Laser's roster.  Maybe speed is the closest thing to a weakness since the 50 is quite good but isn't great.  However considering Carl already beat the team with the highest speed rating in the game, I'm not sure others will be able to exploit it.  The one team that might be interesting were they to square off in the NT is Rails' Carleton team.

I'm using the eye test on Carl's squad.  This looks like the best team in the NAC to me and I'm not sure how close it really is.  My formula might think otherwise but I look at Carl's team and see a rather unstoppable bunch.  Carl has the best combo of speed and athleticism in the D3 world which makes for a terrific press defense that should make just about every offense in the NAC look silly.  Carl has plenty of good rebounders, plenty of folks that can light it up from the outside, and plenty that can post up in the paint.  This team really doesn't have weaknesses.  Even if Lasell wasn't so good in the other areas, I think the press defense causes so many turnovers that very few NAC teams will stand a chance against him.  Maybe I'm buying (creating?) the hype too much but this looks to be the best Lasell team that I can remember in a while and Carl is one of the best D3 coaches in all the HD worlds.  I might change my mind but this, to me, looks like the favorite for the national title.

I'm going to predict a loss for Carl although I'm really not seeing it.  I don't see how a team goes 16-0 in the NAC.  But I really don't know where it happens.

Fun Facts
-- Carl gives the deep threats the green light and the rest of the Lasell offense is a balanced attack.  John Dunn averages 31.5 points per 40 and off the bench Ted Harey chips in 25.6.  After that, there are five players that average between 16.5 and 20.9 points per 40.
-- Five players average more than 12 rebounds per 40 minutes: Ronald Aguon (16.2), John Ballard (15.6), William McEwan (15.2), Michael Nau (13.3), Jason Baxter (12.6).
-- Lasell has three of the top 5 shot blockers in the NAC: Jason Baxter (5.1), William McEwan (4.7) and Ronald Aguon (3.2)
-- John Ballard maybe should be given more freedom to create his own shot.  He doesn't get many touches but his eFG% of 66.7 and TS% of 70.6 suggest he'd do just fine if given the opportunity.

Prediction: 15-1 1st place NAC North

Thomas: 7-3, 7 RPI, 6 SOS, #14 rating
Most Talented Player: Lee Brown, 24.9 min, 42.6% FG, 11.7 pt, 3.8 reb, 1.2 stl
Player being used too much: Jess Youngblood (5th in usage, 10th in talent)
Player being used too little: Robert Holt (9th in usage, 5th in talent)
Future Star: Richard Kimble, SO C (+34)

I've mentioned my recruiting mishaps enough already so I hate to revisit them but I will simply to point out that I don't think that Thomas is as good as their placement here.  I'm forcing minutes upon players that don't deserve them and I'm going to have to force even more minutes upon Jeffrey Taylor since what I was doing in non-conference play was going to result in me failing to fill my promise to him.  At full strength, Thomas might deserve the #3 spot although keeping in mind that the rankings are based on a formula that I created, it is going to favor Thomas and in reality even at full strength Mount Ida is probably a notch or two ahead.

Thomas has three seniors and counts on them for almost the entire team offensive output.  Bryan Vaden leads the team at 19.8 per game,    Dennis Myers is right behind him at 18.1, while Lee Brown is "only" scoring 13.4 a game due to a nasty case of Senioritis.  Alongside the three seniors are six that score less than 2 points a game and another that only averages 2.6.  The three are good enough to win against most teams but if one of them has an off night, it's probably a loss for Thomas since there is nobody else to pick up the slack.  And it is not just for lack of opportunity, Thomas' low post team rating of 30 and perimeter of 36 is the second worst scoring combination in the NAC.

Because the team is pretty weak at scoring, Thomas is going to lean on its defense to win games.  The defense is good, but not great.  Thomas does a nice job of having a low two point FG% but the three point defense isn't nearly as good and as good as the FG% defense is, Thomas is not currently forcing enough turnovers to have a truly elite defense.  Especially so when considering how frequently Thomas turns over the ball.

Fun Facts
-- Bryan Vaden might be the favorite for CPOY.  Thomas will probably win enough games for Vaden to be considered and since he's 2nd in the NAC in minutes per game, he's going to put up some really good counting numbers.  He's only 13th in points per 40 (24.7) but is 2nd in the NAC in scoring.  His rebounding rate (16) is 3rd in the NAC but he's lapping the field in rebounds since he plays 31 minutes a game.
-- Officials are on the hunt for The Fugitive.  Richard Kimble is whistled for 7.1 fouls per 40.  Only one other player on Thomas averages more than 4.
-- The Terriers are close to having their first corporate sponsor in Butterfinger.  Dennis Myers has the highest turnover rate in the NAC (5.5), Cory Bjorklund is 5th (5), Bruce Sawyer is 6th (4.8), and Anthony Lockwood is 11th at 4.4.  Those four are also the first four guards on the Thomas depth chart.
-- Larry Oakes made it through 88 minutes of non-conference play and didn't make it to the charity stripe once.  Pretty amazing for a center.

Prediction: 11-5, 2nd place NAC South

Mount Ida: 8-2, 10 RPI, 14 SOS, #15 rating
Most Talented Player: Jacob Smith, 22 min, 55.7% FG, 16.3 pt, 4.5 reb, 1.6 stl
Player being used too much: James Gregg (9th in usage, 11th in talent)
Player being used too little: Aaron Jackson (11th in usage, 8th in talent)
Future Star: Greg Cardinal, SO C (+29)

I think Mount Ida is the likely favorite in the NAC South, especially when coaching is taken into account.  Mizzou has had a couple of mini-runs with teams that I didn't think were all that good while he was rebuilding Ida.  So with a team this talented, I kind of expect nothing less than a Division title for Ida.  The one catch to that may be in the team athleticism.  Everything else about the roster looks like that of a team primed to make a deep tourney run.  But of what I would say are the elite D3 teams, Mount Ida has the worst athleticism.  I'm looking forward to seeing how this team does since they have top 10 ratings in speed, low post, perimeter, ball handling, and passing.

Fun Facts
-- Ida's assist-to-turnover ratios are out of this world.  Mount Ida has 4 of the best 5 in the NAC: Paul Hail (8.7 to 1), Aaron Jackson (8.5), Alexander Bragg (5.8), and Joe Hall (3.8).  That Hall makes the cut at 3.8 and Ida has two over 8 is just silly.
-- James Gregg should probably shoot more than just 5 times a game with a eFG% of 71 and a TS% of 74.2.

Prediction: 12-4, 1st place NAC South

Becker: 7-3, 106 RPI, 134 SOS
Most Talented Player: Donald Conyers, 25.8 min, 50% FG, 18.4 pt, 8 reb, 1.5 stl, 2.1 blk
Player being used too much: Aaron Stevenson (9th in usage, 10th in talent)
Player being used too little: Sherman Bernard (7th in usage, 2nd in talent)
Future Star: Charles McBryar, FR PG (+36)

I do think Becker has a nifty squad but I think there is a pretty sizable gap between 1a Lasell, 1b Castleton, and the rest of the South.  My formula says Becker is 3rd but there is a big gap between those two and the next team.  And while the formula like Becker, I think I like it less among the North teams.  I hope I'm wrong on this but I think Becker as a team is less than the sum of its parts.  With 4 senior PF/C players, I don't think the backcourt has the skills to match the frontcourt.  I think this is seen in that Sherman Bernard by my formula is the 2nd best player but only gets the 7th most minutes.  Because of this, even though my formula has Becker ahead of Johnson State, I think the Johnies will beat out Becker for 3rd in the NAC North.  I also hate to make too much of a small sample size but I can't remember a team with a 100+ RPI finishing in the top half of a NAC division in recent memory.  (And since I'm cheating by writing this four days into conference play I can note that Becker has started 0-4.)

Fun Facts
-- Sherman Bernard is top 5 in the NAC in rebounds (15.6) and blocks (4.1).  That he played 12 minutes a game in non-conference is a crime
-- Branden Badger might also need more minutes.  He only played in 43% of the available minutes but during that time had the highest rebounding rate on the team (13.3/40), fouled least among post players (3.68/40), and shot at a decent clip (53 TS%)

Prediction: 6-10 4th place NAC North

Johnson State: 9-1, 1 RPI, 3 SOS, #12 rating

Most Talented Player: Adam Wallace, 25 min, 52.6% FG, 10.6 pt, 5.1 reb, 1.1 stl
Player being used too much: William Young (1st in usage, 5th in talent)
Player being used too little: Daryl Evanoff (10th in usage, 8th in talent)
Future Star: Dennis Alfaro, SO SF (+34)

What I wrote last season:  Ryan Ernst is filling up the stat sheet and then some.  Ernst looks to be the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd option for Johnson State taking twice as many shots as any other player and averaging 38.6 points per 40 minutes.  There's nothing wrong with him hogging the ball, his eFG% of 62.4 and TS% of 62.6 is essentially the best on the team.  (Thomas Davis is better but only took 34 shots in non-conference play.)  Earnst is also leading the team in steals on the defensive side.  Looks like Johnson State will go as far as Ernst will take them.

This season:
Scoring is now 39.7 points.  eFG% is 62.8 and TS% is 63.3.  The eFG% and TS% are again leading team.  He's slipped tremendously on the defensive side, however.  His steal rate of 1.1 per 40 is the 2nd worst on the team.  I'll go ahead and ignore that and repeat my line that Johnson State will go as far as Ernst will take them.

As I'm typing this, Ryan Ernst is the #14 scorer in Johnson State history and he's not yet halfway finished with his Junior campaign.

I'm pretty shocked that Johnson finished with the #1 RPI and I'm comparing that to the #106 of Becker in figuring that despite what the formula may say, Johnson is the clear favorite to finish 3rd in the NAC.  I don't see this team winning games against 1a and 1b in the North and I think that prevents them from getting a 1st round bye in the CT.

Fun Facts that don't involve Ryan Ernst
-- Quick glance, nothing much.  Go get popcorn when the coach has him on the bench

Prediction: 10-6, 3rd place NAC North

Husson: 8-2, 14 RPI, 48 SOS
Most Talented Player: Robert Clary, 25.5 min, 53.8% FG, 17.7 pt, 5 reb, 1 stl
Player being used too much: Dan Parker (8th in usage, 11th in talent)
Player being used too little: Louis White (4th in usage, 4th in talent)
Future Star: Robert Clary, SR SF (+24)

Fun Facts
-- Nothing really stands out

Prediction: 8-8, 5th place NAC South

Maine Maritime Academy: 8-2, 33 RPI, 108 SOS

Most Talented Player: Shawn Bogard, 18.6 min, 53.2% FG, 5.8 pt, 6.8 reb, 0.9 blk
Player being used too much: Steven Moore (9th in usage, 11th in talent)
Player being used too little: Shawn Bogard (2nd in usage, 1st in talent)
Future Star: Titus Kappler, JR SF & Gilbert Saville SR PG (+21)

Fun Facts
-- Steven Moore is the leading scorer (29.4) and has taken the most attempts but he maybe should take more.  His eFG% of 70.9 and TS% of 71.4 is outstanding.
-- Rebounding is a strength.  Four average 10 per 40 and Kermit McClinsey is top 5 in the NAC at 16.9.  He's joined by Shawn Bogard (15), David Peacock (10.6), and Kevin Winters (10.5).
-- MMA has three avering 3 steals per 40.  Titus Kappler's 3.6 has him in the NAC top 5 and the 3.3 rate of both Gilbert Saville and Steven Moore are right on his heals.

Prediction: 6-10, 3rd place NAC South

Salem State: 7-3, 30 RPI, 23 SOS

Most Talented Player: Kenneth Dunbar, 27.6 min, 51.1% FG, 12.5 pt, 5.3 reb, 1 stl
Player being used too much: Donald Sydnor (4th in usage, 6th in talent)
Player being used too little: Micheal Buchberger (5th in usage, 3rd in talent)
Future Star: Kenneth Dunbar, SR SF (+22)

Fun Facts
-- Donald Sydnor is top five NAC in eFG% (72) and TS% (72.3).  After what I said about him last season, this needs to be noted.  I have opinions, they aren't always correct.

Prediction: 3-13, 5th place NAC South

Elms: 2-8, 213 RPI, 114 SOS
Most Talented Player: Donald Wilmore, 23.5 min, 50.6% FG, 10.5 pt, 5.5 reb
Player being used too much: Jimmie Robinson (5th in usage, 7th in talent)
Player being used too little: Jerome Robinson (6th in usage, 2nd in talent)
Future Star: Albert Timmerberg, FR PF & Steve Coleman, JR SF (+23)

Fun Facts
-- Nothing really, a pretty well balanced team which leaves little to put here.

Prediction: 3-13, 6th place NAC North

UMF: 9-1, 117 RPI, 364 SOS
Most Talented Player: Elroy Ver, 21.6 min, 56.3% FG, 15.3 pt, 6.7 reb, 1.3 stl, 1.4 blk
Player being used too much: Eric Hawkins (2nd in usage, 4th in talent)
Player being used too little: Elroy Ver (4th in usage, 1st in talent)
Future Star: William Critchfield, FR PG (+18)

Fun Facts
-- With eFG% of 70.5 and TS% of 76.7, Anthony Baker needs to be shooting more.
-- UMF has two of the top 5 assist rates in the NAC with William Critchfield (10.2) and Adam Gurganus (8.7)

Prediction: 3-13 5th place NAC South

UMPI: 7-3, 19 RPI, 12 SOS
Most Talented Player: Joshua Enochs, 25.5 min, 40.7% FG, 9.2 pt, 2.1 reb, 2.1 stl
Player being used too much: Randolph Donaldson (8th in usage, 5th in talent)
Player being used too little: Rodney Witt (9th in usage, 4th in talent)
Future Star: Joseph Beach, SO PF (+31)

Fun Facts
-- Paul Jarnigan is by far the worst volume shooter in the NAC.  Nobody in his range of 37.3 eFG% and TS% of 47.5 have taken half as many shots as he has.
-- UMPI gets to the line.  3 of the top 5 NAC rates come from Erick Castaldo (12.7), Paul Jarnigan (11.3), and Rodney Witt (11.1).  Three others on the roster aren't far behind averaging 9+ from the charity stripe per 40.
-- Steven Merritt has a 22 athleticism rating, a 20 defensive rating .... and is committing 7.8 fouls per 40.  Yikes!
-- If I'm going to point out the bad about Merritt I need to mention that his assist rate of 9.5 is top 5 in the NAC.

Prediction: 6-10, 3rd place NAC South

3/22/2012 11:36 PM

End Season #55

#2 Lasell carlbuzz 14-2 30-4 9-1 15-1 11-4 8-2 L1 2 2
#1 Castleton St. rdb03161987 14-2 29-6 6-2 15-3 12-4 9-1 W6 1 1
#21 Johnson St. bieberfever 10-6 22-9 6-2 13-5 1-7 7-3 L1 7 4
Becker ixolabrat 7-9 17-14 9-6 5-6 2-9 7-3 L1 33 5
Husson bigtexhawk 6-10 15-14 6-4 8-8 2-9 3-7 L2 35 7
Elms tyber90 4-12 6-21 2-6 4-14 0-8 0-10 L13 117 6

South Standings
School Coach               RPI SOS
#6 Thomas kujayhawk 14-2 26-6 8-3 13-2 8-3 8-2 L1 3 3
Mount Ida mizzou77 9-7 18-11 5-5 12-4 1-8 6-4 L1 24 8
Maine Maritime Academy jazzcog 8-8 17-12 3-5 13-5 1-5 5-5 L2 46 25
Maine, Presque Isle dacj501 5-11 12-16 5-8 7-7 0-6 4-6 L3 78 9
Salem St. Sim AI 3-13 10-17 5-8 5-8 0-8 1-9 L4 115 16
Maine, Farmington teamkf 2-14 11-16 2-7 9-8 1-6 0-10 L13 140 72
4/18/2012 9:51 AM
Lasell  Championship game = $18,000
Castleton State Wins Title    =      18,000
J State         =         6,000
Becker         =         9,000
Husson       =         3,000
Thomas      =          9,000
Mt Ida           =         6,000
MMA             =          3,000
UMPI            =          1,000

I count $73,000 or  $6,083 smackers each... enjoy!
4/18/2012 9:55 AM
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