PAnews.com, Port Arthur, Texas

Sports

October 25, 2012

LU basketball picked 5th in SLC

BEAUMONT —

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

five.

“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

conference.

“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

A&M-Corpus Christi.

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