The edition is out. And as one of the really old timers who always waited for these preseason pubs because that was all we had ..... I bought it.
First off, let me say I take issue with a national publication that is somewhat incomplete. In their list of transfers eligible this year, none of the SLU players are listed ---either way. No Bess, no Foreman, no Henriquez, but also no Yarbrough, Reynolds or Bartley. Just saying.
The A10 focus is on new coaches at Dayton, Duquesne, Umass and VCU with a secondary mention to GeeDubya. In the top three story lines, SLU is listed second with an alert to watch Ford and his five transfers. In the predicted order of finish, they lead as all do with Rhode Island as the pick. They have SLU second, followed by SaintJoeseph's, VCU, the Bonnies, Davidson, Richmond, Dayton, Mason, La Salle, GeeDubya, Fordham, Umass and perennial doormat Duquesne. The All-Conference team is Adams of the Bonnies, EC Matthews of Rhodey, Tillman of VCU,Johnson of La Salle and Aldridge of Davidson. All-Newcomer team is Kellan Grady of Davidson (four star PG expected to take over for Gibbs), Bess and Henriquez of the Bills, Lane at VCU and Greek Freak II at Dayton. All-defense is Fore at Richmond, Adams of the Bonnies, Terrell of Rhodey, Chartouny at Fordham and Watanabe at GWU. All-Sharpshooter team is Adams, Henriquez and Aldridge joined by Mobley of the Bonnies and Charlie Brown of the Joey's.
In the SLU section, Henriquez is noted as our difference maker. The bulk of the section notes "redshirt" as the key word for SLU and focuses on the five newcomers. Bess is "high skill level and extremely competitive." Along with "versatility and leadership." Foreman is "great experience playing at high level" and is expected to "make high impact on team and in A10." Henriquez is "high level scorer, playing multiple positions, and experience." Graves only note was eligible second semester. Anthony was noted as "likely most important addition due to roster lack of size" He was discussed as "filling an immediate need as an aggressive rebounder and defender."
After that, the focus shifts to two top 100 recruits in Goodwin and French who bring "high levels of competitiveness, toughness and skill level demonstrated in high school and AAU ball. Both are expected to make immediate impacts."
The last part deals with the returnees with Roby and his returning top scorer position, Bishop back from injury, Welmer but hurt and slowed, Johnson with a solid rookie campaign that got better in conference and Hines starting all 18 A10 games and leading in minues played as former walk-on.
As for the A10 in general, I too sanction not sleeping on St. Joe's. If Fightin' Phil gets everyone back healthy and they stay that way, they can and will be tough. Kimble should be ready to go as is, however Oliva and Newkirk had ACLs so who knows when they will be back at full strength. Remember Taylor Funk as this season moves along. I think VCU is overrated at 4, they have a lot of needs given only Tillman and Williams return. This article should make it as blackboard fodder for the Bonnies. Fifth? Wow, that is low----- but they only go as far as Adams and Mobley take them. Don't get hurt. I like that someone finally recognizes how much Dayton lost and listed them as #8. And La Salle is underrated at #10 but again, their alphabet has to include the letter "D" better than before. La Salle lost games last year where they scored 92, 76, 78 and 79 points. They also won games where the opponent scored 78, 80, 81, 96, 83 and 81 points. And one of Umass' hoped for replacement parts, Jaylen Brantley a transfer from Maryland, has been diagnosed with a heart condition and his career is over.
Finally, Jordan Goodwin comes in as the 53rd ranked recruit of 2017; Hasahn French didn't make their top 100. Cart'are Gordon currently sits at #36 for next year.
This year's tournament is in DC.