Welcome to The Sports Bank’s second annual college basketball season preview series. Last year we looked at 99 teams in 99 days. This year, we are being slightly more aggressive and expanding to 111 teams in 111 days. We will rank the 74 power conference teams and top 37 mid-majors in reverse power ranking order. We’ll break down rosters, non-conference schedules, and pick a player to watch for each team.
Giving Johnny Dawkins a two-year contract extension was a vote of confidence that the former Dukie has the Stanford Cardinal basketball program heading in the right direction. Dawkins has recruited well since arriving in Palo Alto but his team is still a year or two away from being a true contender in the Pac-12.
Last Season: T-7th, 7-11 in Pac-10, 15-16 overall
Predicted Pac-12 Finish: 7th
Projected Depth Chart
F/C: Josh Owens (Sr)/John Gage (So)/Stefan Nastic (Fr)
PF: Dwight Powell (So)/Jack Trotter (Sr)/Andrew Zimmerman (Sr)/Andy Brown (So)
SF: Anthony Brown (So)/Josh Huestis (So)
G: Chasson Randle (Fr)/Gabriel Harris (Jr)
PG: Jarrett Mann (Sr)/Aaron Bright (So)
Gone: SG-Jeremy Green
The arrival of highly-touted freshman Chasson Randle should provide the Cardinal with a major boost and scorer to replace Jeremy Green who left early for the NBA Draft, but was not among the sixty players selected. Randle is scoring combo guard who will likely be paired with last year’s starting point guard Jarrett Mann in the backcourt. Mann is more of a distributing floor leader and not a real threat to put up a lot of points so the two should compliment each other well.
Aaron Bright saw significant playing time off the bench last year as a freshman and will be in the same situation this year while Gabriel Harris will try to work himself into what figures to be a three-man rotation at guard.
Anthony Brown was named to the Pac-10 All-Freshman Team last year and will start at the three. He played for the USA U-19 team at the World Championships this summer, but didn’t see much court time. Still, that experience should pay dividends for his development. Sophomore Josh Huestes will serve as his back-up and is also capable of playing some four if Dawkins goes with a smaller, quicker line-up.
Josh Owens and Dwight Powell were effective last season but form a somewhat under-sized starting frontcourt. Andy Brown returns from back to back season-ending ACL injuries and will attempt to work himself into a crowded frontcourt also features John Gage, Jack Trotter, and Andrew Zimmerman who all saw decent minutes a year ago. 6-11 Stefan Nastic adds some needed to size to the fold. He turned down an invite to try out for the Serbian U-19 team as he continued to recover from a foot injury that forced him to redshirt last season.
Entering his third season at Stanford, Dawkins is starting to bring in his own recruits and create an identity. The Cardinal figure to be in a similar standing as a year ago but could surprise some people if the young pieces blend together sooner than expected.
Player to Watch: Chasson Randle
At 6-1, Randle’s true position at Stanford will eventually be the point but he arrives with more of a scorer’s mentality. That actually fits perfectly considering the Cardinal have an experienced point guard and need to find someone to replace Green’s point production. Eventually, Randle will need to become more of a true floor leader, but for now, he can learn from Mann while doing what he does best; scoring the basketball.
Key Non-Conference Games:
11/14 vs. Fresno State (Pre-Season NIT)
11/16 vs. Colorado State (Pre-Season NIT)
11/23 vs. Oklahoma State (Pre-Season NIT)
11/25 vs. Syracuse/Virginia Tech/George Mason (Pre-Season NIT)
12/4 vs. N.C. State
12/22 vs. Butler
OTHER 111 IN 111’S:
#84 Yale Bulldogs
#85 Georgia Bulldogs
#86 Rutgers Scarlet Knights
#87 Richmond Spiders
#88 Ball State Cardinals
#89 Utah State Aggies
#90 Arizona State Sun Devils
#91 Marshall Thundering Herd
#92 Oregon State Beavers
#93 Washington State Cougars
#94 Iowa Hawkeyes
#95 Ole Miss Rebels
#96 Nebraska Cornhuskers
#97 Oklahoma Sooners
#98 South Florida Bulls
#99 LSU Tigers
#100 Colorado Buffaloes
#101 DePaul Blue Demons
#102 Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets
#103 Wake Forest Demon Deacons
#104 Seton Hall Pirates
#105 Providence Friars
#106 Auburn Tigers
#107 South Carolina Gamecocks
#108 Texas Tech Red Raiders
#109 Penn State Nittany Lions
#110 Boston College Eagles
#111 Utah Utes
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. He also had the most accurate 2011 NBA Mock Draft on the web.
You can follow him on Twitter at DavidKay_TSB.