BEAUMONT – With only one starter returning from last year’s NCAA Tournament
team, the Lamar men’s basketball team has been picked fifth in the Southland
Conference Preseason Coaches Poll, announced the league office Thursday.
Head coach Pat Knight, who led the Cardinals to a 23-12 record and the Southland
Conference Tournament title in his first season, will have nine newcomers and
five returning letterwinners to work with this season. Senior forward Stan Brown
is the only returning starter, posting per game averages of 4.9 points and 4.3
rebounds last season.
League newcomer Oral Roberts received seven of the possible 10 first place votes
and is the preseason favorite with 77 points. Stephen F. Austin earned the
remaining three first place votes and is picked second with 72 points.
Northwestern State (61), McNeese State (55) and Lamar (45) round out the top
“The preseason picks don’t mean anything,” said Knight. “It’s good for
the fans if you’re picked high, but it doesn’t mean anything. You have to
play the season, get through the pre-conference and then get through the
“For me as a coach, I almost like not being picked for anything because it
gives you motivation. You can use that with your team. With us having so many
new guys, I think it’s good that we’re picked middle of the pack. It gives
us something to work at to finish higher than where people think you will.”
With 42 points, Southeastern Louisiana leads the bottom half in the coaches
poll. Sam Houston State was picked seventh with 38 points, followed by Nicholls
and Central Arkansas tied for eighth with 24 points and Texas A&M-Corpus Christi
in 10th with 12 points.
The Sports Information Directors’ Poll also had Oral Roberts and Stephen F.
Austin finishing first and second, respectively, but had Lamar and McNeese State
tied for third. The SIDs picked Northwestern State to finish fifth, followed by
Sam Houston State, Southeastern Louisiana, Nicholls, Central Arkansas and Texas
The preseason All-Southland Conference Teams were also announced Thursday,
although Lamar was not represented on either the first or second team.
SFA senior guard Antonio Bostic headlines the first-team, joined by teammate
Taylor Smith, Northwestern State’s Shamir Davis, Central Arkansas’ LaQuentin
Miles and Brandon Fortenberry of Southeastern Louisiana.
Oral Roberts placed two players on the preseason second-team in guard Warren
Niles and forward Steven Roundtree. The remainder of the team is made up of
Dontae Cannon of McNeese State, James Hulbin of Northwestern State and Fred
Hunter of Nicholls.
Lamar will play a pair of home exhibition games on Nov. 3 against McMurry and
Nov. 5 against Northwood before opening the regular season in the NIT Season
Tip-Off at Kansas State on Nov. 12.
2012-13 Men’s Basketball Preseason Polls
Pl. Team (first place votes) Total
1. Oral Roberts (7) 77
2. Stephen F. Austin (3) 72
3. Northwestern State 61
4. McNeese State 55
5. Lamar 45
6. Southeastern Louisiana 42
7. Sam Houston State 38
8. Nicholls State 24
Central Arkansas 24
10. Texas A&M-Corpus Christi 12
Sports Information Directors’ Poll
Pl. Team (first place votes) Total
1. Oral Roberts (6) 77
2. Stephen F. Austin (4) 72
3. Lamar 57
McNeese State 57
5. Northwestern State 56
6. Sam Houston State 40
7. Southeastern Louisiana 33
8. Nicholls State 27
9. Central Arkansas 18
10. Texas A&M-Corpus Christi 13
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