Alright everyone, the NCCollegeSports.com staff has spoken and power ranked all 18 division one basketball teams in North Carolina. Starting today, we will be counting down from #18 to #1 and previewing each team’s upcoming season, ending with the reveal of our #1 team the day before the season starts. Without further ado, let’s get started.
It was a tough campaign last season for the Seahawks. They managed only 3 conference wins on the season and didn’t hit double digits overall. UNCW decided it was time for a change, and let go of Head Coach Buzz Peterson after 4 seasons. His replacement is Kevin Keatts, former Louisville Associate Head Coach. He takes over a team that has put together 3 straight 20 loss seasons and is coming off a dead last finish in the CAA. However, there are some positive things to look to for UNCW. The first is that they have a good mixture of young and experienced talent. The Seahawks come into the season with 3 Freshmen, 3 Seniors, and a boatload of juniors. This is a good sign, as Keatts will hope to develop that Junior class along for a successful 2015-16 season. Looking at their schedule, they have quite a few winnable games before they get into conference play, including in-state matchups with UNC-Greensboro, Davidson, ECU, and Campbell. They also have an opportunity to pull off an upset when they travel to Louisville.
Cedrick Williams- F (Sr.) Williams is returning after leading the Seahawks in scoring last season as their only double-figure scorer. He also brings a solid defensive presence, having averaged nearly 1 steal and 1.5 blocks per game last season. If UNCW wants to turn things around this season, he needs to have a big impact.
C.J. Gettys- C (So.) Gettys was largely a non-factor as a Freshman, averaging only 2.7 points and 1.7 rebounds in only 11 games after being suspended due to an assault charge. However, Gettys brings huge size to the table being 7-1, and that kind of size is rarely seen at this level. Gettys has the opportunity to be an impact player if he developed well over the summer.
Prediction- There are a few pieces in place and the coaching change will help freshen things up, but this is a multi-year project. I predict a 10-19 season, with a 5-11 conference record for the Seahawks. At least it’s a minor improvement and could be a building block for the future.