For those that weren’t with us in October: We don’t judge incoming transfers until we’ve seen them play in the GNAC. Period. We wait for non-conference to entirely finish up and then start making our predictions because we want to see how the teams mesh. This means that not only do we get to see non-conference, we get to see two conference games.
Still, we’ll go over the incoming coaches briefly just to give you some idea:
Incoming coaches: Jim Shaw (WOU via Saint Mary’s), Alex Pribble (SMU via Eastern Washington).
Alex Pribble: Likely hired at Saint Martin’s because he’s got a good mix of Washington AND California on his resume. As we’re starting to see -guys want to go the California schools; which makes sense. They’re in great locations, are starting to do really well, and the schools are credible academically. There are a lot of guys that we really liked on the SMU team last year and it’ll be interesting to see how he develops them. Still, can he get guys to stay? If he can, he’s well stocked because as we’ve noted: We strongly believe in the underclassmen at SMU.
Note to Coach Pribble if he sees this: I’M TRUSTING YOU WITH THOSE YOUNG GUYS. I BELIEVE IN THEM. I LOVE THEM. DO NOT SCREW THIS UP.
Jim Shaw: Love this hire. Loved Jim when he was coaching at UW, definitely some bias there with him being a part of the Sweet 16 teams. He also has California recruiting on his resume, working with Randy Bennett -a favorite west coast coach. He knows the northwest, he knows how to recruit, he himself attended WOU although in a very different era. His skills are there, but we’ll see what he does. It’s not this year that we should really be concerned about -it’ll be a year or two from now, so he’s at least got substantial job security because any real scrutiny of him probably won’t hit until year four or five.
The modified transfer acknowledging prognostication with should-be-obvious explanations:
1. WWU -one guy does not define a WWU team.
2. WOU -they could very well overtake WWU; Andy, Julian, Jordan. Who are the other two and can they make it happen?
3. CUP -Good until proven bad.
4. SPU -they have a 1-4 and a 5; it’s only two guys, but this coaching staff is undeniable.
5. NNU -this still may be too high.
6. CWU -Never underestimate a good power forward.
7. UAA -Brian McGill may be rather impotent without anyone to distribute to.
8. SMU -Their young guys are capable and if the coaching hire is right 8th could be too low.
9. UAF -Ruben was The Great Eskihope. And now he’s gone.
10. MSUB -Sorry Momir Gataric, Kendall Denham + Coaching staff.
11. SFU -Patrick Simon II transferred.
Outgoing Transfers of Note: Northwest Basketball Drain Edition.
Kalidou is transferring from UAA to Cal Baptist; Joey Schreiber from WWU to Azusa Pacific. The UAA one is a bit understandable and kind of funny: they got that really nice brand new arena for their D1 tournament, but it doesn’t change the fact that you still have to live in Alaska for most of the year and it’s really hard to get home. Joey Schreiber, the suspicion is that APU has a lot of outgoing guys and he didn’t like his prospects at WWU. We’re assuming it’s a playing time/starting issue, but it could be very well that he thinks they’re screwed without Anye; we don’t. We think WWU is going to be just fine.
The 30 Second Shot Clock
Love it. The point guards may have some issues with it, but keep your eye on Julian Nichols. When the season gets started he’s the one in our conference that you should be looking at in terms of what to expect. Honestly, it’ll be an adjustment but should be fine. Hopefully it doesn’t make the “chuck and hope” more predominant -ideally it leads to better center play because teams will want to go down low more for the high percentage shots, getting people involved, getting people banging. Bang, collapse, kick-out, sure-fire three, this speeds the whole thing up. Excited to take a look at it.
Questions you may have that won’t be addressed until September at the earliest:
- Thoughts on incoming transfers.
- 2015 GNAC grads getting signed to overseas contracts.
- Does a GNAC team deserve to be ranked to start the year?
If other info circulates or we feel the need to argue with ourselves publicly, we’ll post a re-rank of the teams; there are definite arguments that WOU should be number one.
Be safe, have fun, play basketball, don’t get injured, enjoy the Summer!