Believe it or not, the Providence Friars were actually a fun to team to watch last season. Not because they scored a lot of points, because they played ZERO defense and other Big East teams had a field day running up and down the floor on them.
Our 99 team college basketball previews in 99 days continues with the Friars who certainly had their share of issues this off-season. Click here to check out the in-depth previews of the teams we have already broken down.
By: David Kay
Providence Friars (15th, 4-14 in Big East, 12-19 overall)
Projected Depth Chart
F/C: Bilal Dixon (So)/Ray Hall (Sr)
F: Kadeem Betts (Fr)/Ron Giplaye (Fr)/Lee Goldsbrough (Fr)/Brice Kofane (Fr)
G/F: Marshon Brooks (So)
G: Gerard Coleman (Fr)/Duke Mondy (So)
PG: Vincent Council (So)/Dre Evans (Fr)/Bryce Cotton (Fr)
Gone: PF-Jamine Peterson (dismissed from team), PG-Sharaud Curry, SG-Brian McKenzie. PG-Luke Burchett, PG-Johnnie Lacy (transfer-Howard Junior College), F-Russ Permeneter (transfer-Lubbock Christian), F/C-James Still (dismissed), G/F-Kyle Wright (left team)
Providence was more like Provience last season. Their defense was atrocious as they allowed more than 82 points per game which was second worst among all 347 Division One teams. That is a huge reason why the Friars ended their season with 11 straight losses.
The prospective for Keno Davis this season does not look much better after a tumultuous off-season. Jamine Peterson averaged a double-double last season but was dismissed from the squad for violating team rules. Johnnie Lacy and James Still will not return after assaulting a student on campus. There was also a sticky situation with in-coming freshman Joseph Young who wanted out of his national letter of intent but was not granted a release by Providence and will likely go the junior college route instead.
There is some talent coming back as the Friars return starters Bilal Dixon, Marshon Brooks, and Vincent Council from last season. Freshmen Gerard Coleman and Kadeem Betts figure to make immediate impacts as well. But playing in the Big East will be too big of a challenge for this team in 2010-2011 especially if they continue to ignore playing with any toughness or passion on the defensive end.
Player to Watch: Bilal Dixon, F/C
If the Friars are going to make any strides on the defensive end it will have to begin inside with the 6-8 Dixon. After red-shirting his freshman season, Dixon averaged about 8 points and 7 boards a game last season. With Peterson gone and a plethora of freshmen forwards arriving, Dixon will have to step up his game on both ends of the floor if PC is going to have any hope of not being near the bottom of the standings.
Key Non-Conference Games:
11/23 vs. La Salle (Cancun Challenge)
11/24 vs. Missouri/Wyoming (Cancun Challenge)
12/1 vs. Northeastern
12/4 vs. Rhode Island
12/8 at Boston College
12/11 vs. Alabama