Welcome to The Sports Bank’s fourth annual college basketball season preview series where we break 111 teams in the 111 days leading up to the opening tip-off of the 2013-2014 season. We will rank the 84 power conference teams (including the new Big East and American Athletic Conferences) and top 27 mid-majors in reverse power ranking order. We’ll break down rosters, transfers, incoming freshmen, non-conference schedules, and pick a player to watch for each team.
With their top four frontcourt players gone, the Oregon Ducks will rely on their backcourt and several key transfers if they hope to remain near the top of the Pac-12 standings and make another run in March.
Last Season: T-2nd, 12-6 in Pac-10, 26-9 overall
Predicted Pac-12 Finish: 4th
Projected Depth Chart
C: Waverly Austin (Sr)/Arik Armstead (Fr)
F: Mike Moser (Sr)/Richard Amardi (Sr)/Ben Carter (So)
SF: Elgin Cook (Jr)/A.J. Lapray (Fr)
SG: Damyean Dotson (So)/Jason Calliste (Sr)/Jalil Abdul-Bassit (Jr)
PG: Dominic Artis (So)/Johnathan Loyd (Sr)
Gone: F-E.J. Singler, PF-Arsalan Kazemi, C-Tony Woods, PF-Carlos Emory, SG-Willie Moore (transfer-Miami OH), C-Austin Kuemper (transfer-Northwest Christian), SG-Fred Richardson (transfer-Houston Baptist)
The sophomore backcourt duo of Damyean Dotson and Dominic Artis have a year of experience under their belts and look to build off productive first years. Artis was the more highly touted recruit but it was actually Dotson who played a bigger role in Oregon’s success last season partially because Artis missed a chunk of conference play due to injury.
There is terrific depth at guard as well with veteran point guard Jonathan Lloyd who has been a solid contributor his first three years with the Ducks. Dana Altman also added Detroit transfer Jason Calliste who averaged 14.4 points per game last year and is a sniper from downtown. Since he graduated last Spring, he becomes immediately eligible for Oregon.
One player’s status who remains uncertain is Houston transfer Joseph Young. He has petitioned the NCAA for a waiver to play right away due to a bizarre situation involving his father’s demotion at Houston but has not yet heard back. He scored 18 points per game last year as a sophomore shooting 42% from three-point range. Add him into the mix at guard and Oregon will have five talented backcourt players which would likely lead to Altman using a smaller, three guard line-up for significant stretches.
Up-front is where the uncertainty lies though the Ducks did snag several key transfers including versatile forward Mike Moser who spent the past two seasons at UNLV after playing for Pac-12 foe UCLA as a freshman. An elbow injury limited Moser’s effectiveness a year ago but his experience and inside/outside ability was needed for Oregon.
A pair of junior college transfers will also factor into the mix. Elgin Cook is expected to start at small forward and is athletic, versatile, and also the son of former NBA player, Alvin Robertson. Richard Amardi originally committed to Iowa State but instead ended up at Oregon and will add some aggressiveness on the boards.
Waverly Austin was a serviceable reserve last season but figures to move into the starting center spot. At 6-11, 257, he is a big body inside who needs to be a rim protector in the middle of the Duck defense. Another backup last season, Ben Carter and redshirt freshman Arik Armstead join Amardi in providing otions inside.
Without Young, Oregon will be good and once again near the top of the Pac-12 standings. If Young is ruled eligible for the 2013-14 season, the Ducks figure to be a high octane offensive team capable of putting up points in a hurry and could be in line for another trip to the Sweet 16. Your move, NCAA.
Player to Watch: Mike Moser
Moser was a stat sheet stuffer who averaged a double-double at UNLV during his sophomore season. The injury really threw him off track last season as he just never looked 100%. With another fresh start, Moser is hoping for a bounceback senior year that could really provide a massive boost to a revamped Oregon Ducks frontcourt.
Key Non-Conference Games:
11/8 vs. Georgetown (in South Korea)
12/8 at Ole Miss
12/14 vs. Illinois (in Portland)
12/21 at BYU
OTHER 111 IN 111′S:
#36 St. Louis
#37 La Salle
#38 San Diego State
#40 Arizona State
#44 Iowa State
#52 Boston College
#53 Ole Miss
#56 Saint Mary’s
#60 Florida Gulf Coast
#64 Florida State
#66 N.C. State
#67 Kansas State
#70 Miami FL
#72 Texas A&M
#73 Long Beach State
#76 Indiana State
#77 Georgia Tech
#84 Washington State
#86 Oregon State
#87 Louisiana Tech
#89 Wake Forest
#90 Central Florida
#95 Seton Hall
#97 George Mason
#99 Penn State
#101 West Virginia
#102 South Florida
#103 Mississippi State
#105 South Carolina
#106 Texas Tech
#108 Virginia Tech
David Kay is a senior feature NBA Draft, NBA, and college basketball writer for the Sports Bank. He also heads up the NBA and college basketball material at Walter Football.com and is a former contributor at The Washington Times Communities. David has appeared on numerous national radio programs spanning from Cleveland to New Orleans to Honolulu to Milwaukee. He also had the most accurate 2011 NBA Mock Draft and the most accurate 2012 NBA Mock Draft on the internet , AND the second most accurate 2013 NBA Mock Draft. (Yup, nearly 3peat champ… #humblebrag.)
You can follow him on Twitter at David_Kmiecik.Follow paulmbanks