#13- The Western Carolina Catamounts
The Western Carolina Catamounts featured a high powered offense last season led by Trey Sumler and Brandon Boggs. However the problem for WCU is that both of them are gone. Leading rebounder Tawaski King is also gone, and these departures will tell the story for this team this season. Looking at last season, it was relatively successful for the Catamounts. They managed a winning record of 19-15, going 10-6 in conference play. They pulled off an upset of Davidson in the conference tournament semifinal, but unfortunately came up 3 points short of an NCAA tournament berth with a loss to Wofford in the final. With most of the key players gone from that squad, it’s hard to see WCU coming back as strong as they were last season, although the departure of conference heavyweight Davidson leaves some windows open.
James Sinclair (Sr.) G- Sinclair is one of the few returning impact players from last season. He had a solid 12 points and 5 rebounds average last season, and was named pre-season all-conference for this year.
Mike Brown- (Jr.) G- He got the 6th most minutes on the team last year and put up decent all around numbers. He won’t put up crazy stats this season, but he is one of the more experienced members of this young team and this season will be important towards his growth for next year’s campaign.
I don’t expect much from this team this season. It’s hard to when they lost 4 of their top 5 players in regards to minutes played from last season. However, I also don’t see one runaway team in the SoCon this year, so WCU might be able to hang around. I anticipate a season around .500 conference play, maybe a little bit worse. But, like most small conferences, anything can happen when the conference tournament comes around.