CREIGHTON JIGSAW PUZZLE: The Omaha World Herald noted Oct. 18 that Creighton’s roster makes up a basketball version of a jigsaw puzzle.
Graduation claimed four experienced starters, including three-time All-American forward Greg McDermott, from last year’s team which posted a 27-8 record while being ranked No. 16 in the final Associated Press poll. Senior point guard Austin Chatman is the lone returning starter.
“We have a lot of different people that can step into a lot of different roles and go a lot of different ways,” said Chatman, Creighton’s top returning scorer as well as last season’s assists leader. “I think we’re going to surprise a lot of people this year and we’ll play pretty similar to how we did last year.”
BEARCATS FEATURE MULTIPLE OPTIONS: Cincinnati will be much taller and stronger than last season’s unit and feature more interchangeable parts on the perimeter and more scoring options inside and out.
Replacing All-American guard Sean Kilpatrick and defensive stalwarts Justin Jackson and Titus Rubles will require a group effort according to ninth-year Cincinnati head coach Mick Cronin, who says his team will be much taller and stronger than last year’s squad which posted a 27-7 record winning the inaugural American Athletic Conference regular season crown.
PRESEASON POLLS: North Carolina Central was picked to repeat as the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference champion in a preseason poll conducted by the league’s coaches and sports information directors. The Eagles are coming off a historic 2013-14 campaign in which they won both the regular season and conference tournament titles, earning its first ever berth in the NCAA Tournament while tying a school record with a 28-6 mark.
Defending regular season champ Southern was picked to finish second in the 2014-15 Southwestern Athletic Conference men’s basketball preseason poll conducted by the league’s head coaches and sports information directors. Alabama State, which returns all five starters from last year’s 19-13 team, was picked to win the league title, receiving 106 points to outdistance the Jaguars, who earned 95 points in voting.
Eastern Illinois, receiving 68 points, was picked to place third in the West Division in the Ohio Valley Conference preseason media poll conducted Friday (Oct. 17). Murray State was a unanimous favorite in the West Division, while Belmont was the choice to capture the East Division.
Conference USA only released the top four teams in the men’s preseason coaches poll and Middle Tennessee State wasn’t included.
The Southeast Conference Basketball Media Day is scheduled for Tuesday (Oct. 21) in Charlotte, N.C., while the Big East Conference Media Day is Wednesday (Oct. 22) in Madison Square Garden in New York, N.Y. The American Athletic Conference will release its preseason poll during the league’s Media Day Oct. 29. The Big Sky Conference preseason poll will be released in the near future.
Oct. 17: Five Questions
Oct. 15: DeBerry Difference Maker
Oct. 17: Redshirt freshman
Oct. 8: Smith Earns Preseason Honor
Oct. 16: Blue Madness
Middle Tennessee State
Oct. 3: In The Family
Oct. 17: Murphy Madness
North Carolina Central
Oct. 13: MEAC Preseason Press Conference
Oct. 10: Big Sky Conference prospectus
Oct. 3: Rebels Have SEC-High 5 Seniors
Oct. 17: Square Jam
Oct. 15: SWAC News
For more information, please contact Media Coordinator Mike Mahon at 515-423-6995, or email@example.com