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Thread: Psac west predictions

  1. #1

    Default Psac west predictions

    With camp just around the corner and Boat eager to see some predictions, ...


    West

    1. IUP - A daunting schedule awaits but the Crimson Hawks are pretty loaded. The starting five will feature three quick post players at 6'9" (or taller) who can all shoot the three -- and will pose a match-up nightmare for opponents. Malik Miller is poised to be IUP's next breakout star at guard while Jacobo Diaz is a preseason All-America under the basket. Dante Lombardi returns and will look to put it all together for his senior season. Armoni Foster and Chuckie Humphries give IUP a giant upgrade off the bench over years past. Depth at guard is (again) the key concern. IUP has a grueling crossover schedule (@Kutztown, @East Stroudsburg, West Chester and Shippensburg) along with non-conference games against Concord, Bowie State, @Fairmont State and Virginia State.

    2. Slippery Rock - The roster is unknown. The only thing known is Micah Till -- and that's enough to make noise. No coach is better at assembling a new team yearly than Kevin Reynolds. He's rarely had a piece like Till to build it around. You don't need to see a printed roster to know the makeup of it -- SRU will be big, strong and athletic. Whether or not Reynolds found any shooters will determine how far this team can go.

    3. Gannon - Most people aren't picking GU this high, but John Reilly is the rock of the program. Losing Evan Phoenix was massive. But, Reilly has a knack for rebuilding quickly and putting a team on the floor that will play 100 mph and be in excellent physical condition. The point guard spot is a major concern for this team.

    4. Clarion - The Golden Eagles just may be the surprise team in the West this season. Or, a total disaster. Coach Marcess Williams landed an impressive class of JUCO imports to go along with a few key returnees. If he can get them to mesh, Clarion should see a huge improvement over the past couple years.

    5. Edinboro - The roster is unknown. Senior guard Anthony Coleman will be the headliner. He becomes the main attraction after the departures of Keshawn Liggins and Jaymon Mason. Sophomore guard Jaryn Simpson can be Edinboro's next star guard. We'll see if Pat Cleary added any beef under the basket. Trey Staunch would be a huge addition if he returns after the football season. He really turned in to a basketball player as the season wore on a year ago -- highlighted by a dominant performance in the PSAC Tournament against UPJ.

    6. UPJ - Guards Josh Wise and Drew Magestro would play heavy minutes for any team in the conference. Freshman point guard Fred Mulbah will be UPJ's next stud but that may be a year away. The post is a major concern. Odd to say but there are no more Vescovi's in the program. For now, anyway. UPJ will be very young (and undersized) under the basket. The program is well-coached -- and that will win them some games this year.

    7. Mercyhurst -- They may be wearing name tags when camp opens. Eight new faces arrived this fall. The Lakers were again hit pretty hard by graduation. This certainly has the look of a total rebuild for Coach Gary Manchel. His famous defense will eventually cause problems for some teams this year but it's going to take awhile to get all these new (young) players up to speed. Or, do they say down to speed, at Mercyhurst?

    8. California -- Danny Sancomb proved he can adjust playing styles over the years in the NCAA Tournament. Jumping from the fast-flying MEC to the PSAC West will be a culture shock of sorts. Year One has the look of a team that may struggle in the physical grind department -- not much beef (or height) on that roster. The tallest listed player is just 6'6" (and he's a guard). Wheeling Jesuit import Brent Pegram will be an instant boost to go with sophomore (future star) Philip Alexander. Obviously a transition year in the Mon Valley. It may also be a long one.

    9. Seton Hill -- When your posted 2018-19 roster shows a player who practices at Gannon daily ... the outlook can't be too good. Maybe the Griffins are playing possum. Seton Hill does return some nice players -- headlined by senior guard Trevor Blondin and junior Nathan Davis. There's very little size on this team -- and that's a major issue in the West gauntlet.


    EAST

    1. West Chester -- The Rams return a big core from a year ago -- and added some big-time newcomers.

    2. Kutztown -- Playmaking guards galore on this roster

    3. East Stroudsburg -- Five of its top eight return from last year's Elite 8 team. The three losses are BIG losses, however.

    4. Shippensburg -- Life after Sleva won't be easy but the cupboard isn't left bare.

    5. Bloomsburg -- Always scrappy and well-coached. Always also just a player short from being in the East race.

    6-8 (in no order) -- Mansfield's coach just bailed. Lock Haven saw it's two best players leave town -- one being the best returning player in the league (Amir Hinton). Cheyney ... who knows.
    Last edited by IUPbigINDIANS; 09-25-2018 at 08:48 AM.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Psac west predictions

    Can't argue with the West. IUP and SRU are an easy 1-2. It's pretty much a crapshoot for 3-6. I agree that Clarion won't be their usual easy out.

    The trouble with a lot of newcomers at Gannon is that there are always growing pains adjusting to Reilly's defensive schemes. The question is how long? It can get ugly at the Hammermill if it takes a while.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Psac west predictions

    Quote Originally Posted by Golden89 View Post
    Can't argue with the West. IUP and SRU are an easy 1-2. It's pretty much a crapshoot for 3-6. I agree that Clarion won't be their usual easy out.

    The trouble with a lot of newcomers at Gannon is that there are always growing pains adjusting to Reilly's defensive schemes. The question is how long? It can get ugly at the Hammermill if it takes a while.
    Seems like the probable outcome for the PSAC WEST. As far as the VULCANS are concerned I'd like to see some of the newbies/transfers perform beyond expectations and get them close to or beyond .500. Also could really use an upset or two along the way to raise interest. Time will tell.

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