#30 Saint Mary’s Gaels: College Basketball 111 in 111


st. mary's dance team

Welcome to The Sports Bank’s third annual college basketball season preview series.  Two years we looked at 99 teams in 99 days.  Last year, we were slightly more aggressive and expanded to 111 teams in 111 days and will do so again as we look ahead to the 2012-2013 season.

We will rank the 75 power conference teams and top 36 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.

The St. Mary’s Gaels finally broke through last season, ending Gonzaga’s 11-year reign as West Coast Conference regular season champs by sitting atop the throne all by themselves.  While the Gaels did receive some negative publicity in September when reports began to leak that the program was under investigation by the NCAA for undisclosed reasons, they return enough talent to make a repeat a real possibility.

Last Season: 1st, 14-2 in WCC, 27-6 overall
Predicted WCC Finish: 2nd

Projected Depth Chart
F/C: Brad Waldow (So)/Kyle Rowley (Sr)/Matt Hodgson (Jr)
PF: Mitchell Young (Sr)/Tim Williams (Sr)/Chris Reyes (Fr)
G/F: Stephen Holt (Jr)/Beau Levesque (Jr)/Eividas Petrulis (So)
G: Jorden Page (Jr)/James Walker (Jr)
PG: Matthew Dellavedova (Sr)/Paul McCoy (Jr)

Gone: F/C-Rob Jones, PF-Clint Steindel, F/C-Kenton Walker

2012-2013 Outlook:
Guard play will pace St. Mary’s led by Matthew Dellavedova who spent the summer representing Australia at the 2012 Summer Olympics.  The four-year starter has been an integral part of the Gaels’ success with his ability to lead the offense but also light it up from deep.  Jordan Paige bounced back from a season ending knee injury to be a solid backcourt complement to Dellavedova while Stephen Holt is a versatile wing capable of contributing in a variety of ways.

Randy Bennett also gets backcourt boost from Paul McCoy who hasn’t played in two seasons.  He sat out the 2010-11 after transferring in from SMU and then missed all of last year due to a knee injury.  McCoy can run the point if needed as well which would allow Dellavedova to play off the ball and utilize his sharpshooting ability.  JUCO transfer James Walker joins the program after spending his freshman year at Utah State to provide more depth at guard.

The frontcourt loses double-double machine Rob Jones and stretch four Clint Steindel.  Brad Waldow will be relied upon to replace Jones’ physicality down low while Mitchell Young should see a more prominent role as well.   Seven-footer Kyle Rowley and Tim Williams were seldom used a year ago but should see larger roles off the bench.  Matt Hodgson sat out last season after transferring in from Southern Utah and offers more size and strength inside.  Beau Leauvesque, Eividas Petrulis, and Chris Reyes are each capable of playing either forward position but might be hard pressed to earn minutes this season.

Bennett has St. Mary’s on a rather impressive run of winning at least 25 games in each of the last five seasons.  I still think Gonzaga is the team to beat in the WCC and BYU will be in the conversation as well while Loyola Marymount could be a sleeper.  Still, the 25-win plateau and return trip to the NCAA Tournament are both attainable goals.

Player to Watch: Matthew Dellavedova
Barring injury, the Aussie is going to shatter the St. Mary’s record books.  He already owns the program record for career assists and will soon break the three-point mark as well.  Becoming the Gaels’ all-time leading scorer is well in reach as well.  On top of that, he already owns college basketball’s goofiest mouthguard.  (I kid.)

Key Non-Conference Games:
11/15 at Utah State
11/22 vs. Drexel (Anaheim Classic)
11/23 vs. Xavier/Pacific (Anaheim Classic)
11/24 vs. Cal/Drake/Georgia Tech/Rice (Anaheim Classic)
12/22 at Northern Iowa
12/27 vs. Rhode Island
12/31 vs. Harvard
2/23 vs. TBD (ESPN Bracketbusters)


OTHER 111 IN 111’S:
#31 Georgetown Hoyas
#32 North Texas Mean Green
#33 Ohio Bobcats
#34 Texas Longhorns
#35 Miami Hurricanes
#36 Purdue Boilermakers
#37 Alabama Crimson Tide
#38 St. Joseph’s Hawks
#39 Murray State Racers
#40 VCU Rams
#41 Davidson Wildcats
#42 Stanford Cardinal
#43 UMass Minutemen
#44 St. John’s Red Storm
#45 Butler Bulldogs
#46 Florida State Seminoles
#47 Drexel Dragons
#48 St. Louis Billikens
#49 West Virginia Mountaineers
#50 BYU Cougars
#51 Temple Owls
#52 Washington Huskies
#53 California Golden Bears
#54 Kansas State Wildcats
#55 Nevada Wolfpack
#56 Colorado Buffaloes
#57 Iowa State Cyclones
#58 Northern Iowa Panthers
#59 Colorado State Rams
#60 Iowa Hawkeyes
#61 South Florida Bulls
#62 Valparaiso Crusaders
#63 Illinois Fighting Illini
#64 Arkansas Razorbacks
#65 Wichita State Shockers
#66 George Mason Patriots
#67 Virginia Cavaliers
#68 Villanova Wildcats
#69 Maryland Terrapins
#70 Marshall Thundering Herd
#71 Iona Gaels
#72 Northwestern Wildcats
#73 Oklahoms State Cowboys
#74 Rutgers Scarlet Knights
#75 USC Trojans
#76 UConn Huskies
#77 Harvard Crimson
#78 Xavier Musketeers
#79 Ole Miss Rebels
#80 Clemson Tigers
#81 Oregon State Beavers
#82 Texas A&M Aggies
#83 Providence Friars
#84 Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets
#85 Oklahoma Sooners
#86 Lehigh Mountain Hawks
#87 Washington State Cougars
#88 Long Beach State 49ers
#89 Belmont Bruins
#90 Vanderbilt Commodores
#91 Dayton Flyers
#92 Houston Cougars
#93 UCF Knights
#94 Old Dominion Monarchs
#95 Oregon Ducks
#96 LSU Tigers
#97 South Carolina Gamecocks
#98 Seton Hall Pirates
#99 Georgia Bulldogs
#100 DePaul Blue Demons
#101 Boston College Eagles
#102 Penn State Nittany Lions
#103 Arizona State Sun Devils
#104 Virginia Tech Hokies
#105 Texas Tech Red Raiders
#106 Auburn Tigers
#107 Wake Forest Demon Deacons
#108 TCU Horned Frogs
#109 Mississippi State Bulldogs
#110 Utah Utes
#111 Nebraska Cornhuskers

David Kay is a senior feature NBA DraftNBA, 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.  He also had the most accurate 2011 NBA Mock Draft and the most accurate 2012 NBA Mock Draft on the internet (Yup, repeat champ… #humblebrag.)

You can follow him on Twitter at David_Kmiecik.

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