Today finally brings the day MFB and the rest of Husky basketball fans have anxiously waited for, and that is the return of Husky basketball.
Sure its in the form of an exhibition game against an inferior Central Washington, but any college basketball should commence celebration, especially in Seattlle where there is no longer any professional basketball.
The preview will be short because it is an exhibition and against a small school opponent like CWU, but here are some things to look for during the game…
- How does Matthew Bryan-Amaning play as a starter? His play could be the difference between a deep tourney run and a season that ends sooner than it should, the Huskies need MBA to step up down in the paint and replace some of the post scoring lost in Jon Brockman’s departure.
- How does Abdul Gaddy handle playing off the bench? Today delivered the somewhat surprising news that Gaddy would start on the bench, something few projected although Romar has said all along that Gaddy and Overton were battling for the final spot. He says Gaddy, Overton, and Isaiah Thomas should be considered three starters, but it will be the first time in a long time that Gaddy has not started for a team, should be interesting to see how he reacts.
- How will Tyreese Breshers play in his first game back in over a year? Breshers is going to have to step up this season and help in the replacement of Brockman. His style of play is very similar to Brockman’s so maybe he will excel, but we will no know till we see him on the court.
- Will free throws be an issue? This was the problem that plagued the team two years ago and then was fixed for the most part last season. But for a team as highly regarded as Washington, they must maintain their free throw success to build towards a deep tournament run. Last season they fixed it by getting to the line often and converting, but this season sees the departure of the best free throw shooter on the team last season, Justin Dentmon. At the end of games someone will have to step up and be that guy to take those crucial free throws at the end of games.
- How will Scott Suggs play? There may not be a more intriguing story line to follow this season than the development of Suggs. He came in last year as the highest ranked incoming recruit, but saw the least amount of time out of the entire group of freshman who were eligible to play (Breshers obviously redshirted). Suggs admitted that he though of transfer at one point, but has come in this year greatly improved according to coaches and teammates. Tonight could be the preview of him writing a new chapter in his Husky career.
Just to touch on the Gaddy/Overton situation a bit more; it really should not be a big deal in the end Husky fans. It was known from the beginning that the three guards would play a huge amount of minutes, so starting really is not that big of an issue when all three will receive such heavy minutes. But I must admit, I like the idea of having Overton come off the bench and be the energy to help turn around games. There has been no one else on the internet that has praised Gaddy the way I have over the off-season, so this was something I was not necessarily anticipating. But in the end it should just be small potatoes.