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I've been trying to attend practices whenever I get a chance and have the following observations to share with you folks who haven't been able to see anything yet:

1. Reggie Bryant will be the leading scorer on this team.

2. Ohanon will play a major role. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised at all if Izik is the go-to-guy by the end of the year. He's bulked up a little and can do so much for a 6'10" kid. He can move, dribble, and he can knock it down. I've been very impressed with his progress.

3. Drejaj and Fish will be just fine at the point. I really don't think Morris was going to play a major role this year. I know you will disagree with me Roy, but I noticed in a few recruiting mags that Soderberg was quoted as saying Morris will be playing a backup role. I think the loss may hurt because we might not have an experienced true point to start next year. However, don't be surprised if Drejaj or Clarke prove they can do so.

4. Sloan is the team leader. I don't think I even needed to say this. The team really does revolve around his leadership though. He looks great - has bulked up a bit - I expect a lot from him this year.

5. Justin Johnson will be one of the first two off the bench. I've been impressed with JJ. He's got great size and can really move. He often has trouble finishing. But I would expect the type of performances this year from JJ that we saw from Izik last year. He will be a better rebounder but not the scorer that Izik was. But you will see flashes of brilliance. Remember, he's only a freshman. He moves and has a body like Nick Kern, but he also seems to have a mean side - which we need. He does a lot of mixing it up with his teammates, which I like.

6. Expect a lot from Drejaj. Granted, its only practice, but his shot looks great.

7. Clarke will be quiet this year. He just doesn't seem like someone who will put up big numbers yet, but I don't think anyone was expecting that. He can really handle the ball and will develop into a good player in a few years.

8. Frericks is a moose. As Thicks said, I don't think the guy is 6'9" - but he is definitely 250 pounds and strong. Moves pretty well for his size. I couldn't get a guage on his shot, but he definitely plays hard and will be the starting center for the next two years. If he really is 6'9" he'll be a step up from Kenny Brown - more coordinated offensively than KB was.

9. Husak and Ian - both are obviously freshman. Both will need to add weight, and neither will standout this year at all.

Overall, I'm pretty positive. There are a lot of question marks, but I'm not as worried about the frontline as Broy and others. Think about it - we lost KB, but we bring back a much improved Sloan and Ohanon. Sloan was still learning the role of a big man last year. And I believe Frericks MAY be able to replace KB's numbers. I haven't seen enough of him yet to be sure, but even if he can't I think you still make up for that in Sloan and Izik. We also will have JJ coming off the bench - much better than our backup bigs last year.

The team will be much more fun to watch - more athletic - and the scoring will be widely spread. I can envision Sloan, Izik, Bryant, and Fisher each stepping up big in different games to be the high scorers.

The Key to this team = Izik Ohanon. He could turn into our Marque Perry this year. Just think about it. Who in CUSA can guard a 6'10" wing player who can do everything?

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>>9. Husak and Ian - both are obviously freshman. Both will need to add weight, and neither will standout this year at all.<<

Mac, thicks was positive on Ian defensively. I take it you are saying that Ian's body is not mature enough yet to be a force inside (as is the case with Husak ... as we all expected). It won't be hard at all to replace the offensive production from KB and CB last year, the problem is replacing the defense. Does Tom look stout to you on the interior defensively? I know this is hard to judge in the pickup games as the guards generally dominate these affairs. Another issue to follow is whether or not to redshirt Husak this year if Ian is going to be suspended for 10 games. Could Husak contribute enough during those 10 games to warrant not being redshirted? Surely it is too early to tell.

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It's good to hear your report on Izik. I've been saying all year that the key to this team will be whether Izik can play the 3. He will create terrible matchup problems for teams if he plays the 3 well. If he plays the 4 and we play 3 guards I feel our upside is limited. I don't want to be a good little team,I want to be a good big team.

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a six foot ten inch small forward that can finish would be a difference maker. i hope izik becomes the next george gervin.

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