Last Season: 17-14
Starter's Lost/Returning: 2/3
Homecourt: Key Arena
Coach: Cameron Dollar (UCLA '97)
Record at Seattle U: 17-14
Donald Dollar (Morehouse '62)
Darren Talley (Chapman '02)
Yasir Rosemond (Oregon '03)
G-Cervante Burrell (5'10" Jr.)
G-Garrett Lever (6'0" Sr.)
G-Mark McLaughlin (6'6" Fr.)
F-Aaron Broussard (6'5" Jr.)
F-Gavin Gilmore (6'8" Jr.)
G-Freddy Wilson (6'2" Fr.)
G-Sterling Carter (6'0" Fr.)
G-Jarell Flora (6'3" Fr.)
F-Taylor Stevens (6'7" Jr.)
F-Clarence Trent (6'6") (Ineligible So.)
F-Chad Rasmussen (6'7" So.)
F-Brandon Durham (6'7" So.)
F-Alex Jones (6'8" Sr.)
With one year under his belt as head coach, Cameron Dollar is looking to improve upon last year's performance. Though last season was full of ups and downs, it is safe to say that the team's performance provided insurance that this program is headed into the right direction. Victories over legitimate division one programs like Utah, Portland State, and a 51 point win over Oregon State are evidence that Cameron Dollar is creating a competitive environment at Seattle U. Though there were still some instances where Seattle U looked like they had a long way to go (see: 46 point loss to Washington).
Every opponent this year will be a division one opponent with games against some upper-echelain teams in Maryland, Oregon St., Virginia, Washington, Stanford, and Loyola Marymount. Coach Dollar has repeatedly stated that his goal is to win the NIT, but Seattle U still might not put together enough wins to be invited to the post season tournament. It will all depend on the performance of the returning starters and whether the new comers will be able to come in and have an impact right away.
Last year it was the Charles Garcia show, with Garcia accounting for 23% of the Redhawks' point production. Garcia made the ill-devised decision to enter the NBA draft and is now playing professionally in Turkey. Returning for the Redhawks are forwards Aaron Broussard (10.3ppg, 5.1rpg) and Gavin Gilmore (4.4ppg, 2.9rpg), with guard Cervante Burrell (11.4ppg, 3.9rpg) also returning. Both Burrell and Broussard averaged a little over ten points last season, and will probably up their scoring averages with Garcia's departure.
Gavin Gilmore played in all 31 games last season, but will need to improve his rebound numbers and free-throw percentage if he wants to make a positive contribution to the team. Also returning from last season is senior guard Garrett Lever (3.5ppg, 2.9rpg) Lever is the team's best perimeter defender, leading the team with 45 steals last season. He will likely be named a starter because of his experience. The last significant returning player is forward Alex Jones (8.9ppg, 3.3rpg). Jones is another guy that needs to step up if Seattle U wants to pull off some upsets over opponents like Maryland and Virginia. He can score buckets, but his ability to rebound the basketball and being an imposing presence in the paint will open the game up for Seattle U's plethora of athletic perimeter players.
Dollar welcomes in his first recruiting class, those familiar with the local Seattle high school basketball scene will be familiar with most of these names. Freddy Wilson from Franklin High schools is an athletic guard that has a knack for scoring. Sterling Carter is also from Franklin, he will be another athletic guard that can score that Dollar will have at his disposal. I am beginning to sound like a broken record, but freshman Jarell Flora is yet again another athletic guard that can score the basketball. Flora is also from the Seattle-area, grauduating from Bremerton high school.
The biggest addition to the squad will be Mark McLaughlin from Inglemoor High School. McLaughlin is a 6-6 guard that has a natural ability to score. Perhaps the team's best athlete is former Husky, transfer Clarence Trent. Due to NCAA transfer rules, Trent will sit-out this year and practice with the team. Trent's athleticism and height will serve Dollar's goal of creating a style characterized by fast and athletic players.
A winning record is expected out of this squad, however, reaching the 20 win mark may be what the Redhawks need to be invited to the NIT. There is a strong core of returning players, but the Redhawks success will depend on how fast the newcomers will be able to adjust to the college level of play and have a contribution right away. McLaughlin could very well end up leading this team in scoring, with Brousard and Burrell chipping in double digits.
It will be interesting to see how this offense will find a rhythm. The lack of height on the perimeter and in the post hurts the Redhawks tremendously in the half-court game. As a result, similar to last season, the Redhawks will need to push the ball and use their guard depth to their advantage. Dollar may not have a potent weapon like Garcia this season, but with several returning players and a host of talented freshman, this season promises to be a relatively successful one if they can improve upon last year's record of 17 wins.