Originally posted on The Sports Bank  |  Last updated 10/21/11

Welcome to The Sports Bank’s second annual college basketball season preview series.  Last year we looked at 99 teams in 99 days.  This year, we are being slightly more aggressive and expanding to 111 teams in 111 days.  We will rank the 74 power conference teams and top 37 mid-majors in reverse power ranking order.  We’ll break down rosters, non-conference schedules, and pick a player to watch for each team.

The top spot in the Atlantic 10 figures to once again be a battle between Temple and Xavier.  Fran Dunphy returns all but one of his key contributors from last year and will feature an experienced backcourt.

TEMPLE OWLS
Last Season: 2nd, 14-2 in A-10, 26-8 overall
Predicted A-10 Finish: 2nd

Projected Depth Chart
F/C: Michael Eric (Jr)/Jimmy McDonnell (Fr)
F: Rahlir Hollis-Jefferson (Jr)/ Anthony Lee (Fr)
G/F: Scootie Randall (Sr)/ Aaron Brown (So)
G: Ramone Moore (Sr)/Khalif Wyatt (Jr)
G: Juan Fernandez (Sr)/T.J. DiLeo (Jr)/Will Cummings (Fr)

Gone: PF-Lavoy Allen, C-Dutch Gaitley

2011-2012 Outlook:
The strength of the Owls will be on the wing where they return four players who averaged more than ten points per game last season.  The quartet of Juan Fernandez, Ramone Moore, Scootie Randall, and Khalif Wyatt bring a lot of versatility to the starting line-up.

All four guys are capable of handling the ball, shooting it from deep, and getting to the basket.   Moore is most talented of the bunch and can score in a variety of ways.  Fernandez has good size for a point guard and can post up smaller defenders.  He brings a lot of poise to the floor when running the show.

Scootie Randall was named the A-10 Most Improved Player, making a huge jump from his sophomore season to his junior campaign.  He brings more size to the wing and will probably even see some minutes at the four when Dunphy decides to use a smaller, four-guard line-up.

Wyatt worked his way into the starting line-up late in the year when Randall went down with injury and made the most of his opportunity.  He averaged more than ten points per game despite playing less than 21 minutes a night and will be the team’s sixth man.

T.J. Dileo and Aaron Brown were each roles players a year ago and will be used in that same role when Moore, Fernandez, or Wyatt need to rest.  Freshman point guard Will Cummings will likely be the odd man out in the rotation.

The concern for Temple comes in the frontcourt where they must replace Lavoy Allen.  Michael Eric started the first 24 games of last season but missed the remainder of the year due to a fractured right patella.  Eric’s return will give the Owls with a legitimate center and shot blocking presence.  Rahlir Hollis-Jefferson is an under-sized power forward who brings hustle and defense to the floor but is not very polished on the offensive end.  Jimmy McDonnell and Anthony Lee both redshirted last season but will be relied upon to provide depth inside behind Eric since they are the only other players on the roster who stand taller than 6-6.

The Owls also picked up a key transfer in Dalton Pepper of West Virginia.  The physical wing can shoot it from deep but must sit out this season per NCAA transfer rules.

Temple will once again try to control the tempo and force teams to play at their pace.  They are a very solid half-court team on both ends and are difficult to beat when they play their game.  Dunphy knows the high level of production he will get out of his wing players, but the frontcourt play will likely determine whether this is just a NCAA Tournament team or whether the Owls are capable of making a deep run come March.

Player to Watch: Ramone Moore
Moore briefly flirted with leaving school and entering the NBA Draft but wisely chose to return to Temple for his senior season.  He has a complete offensive game whether he is attacking the basket, pulling-up and hit mid-range jumpers, or stroking it from three.  For a team that likes to use a lot of shot clock, the Owls will rely on Moore to make things happen when time is running down.

Key Non-Conference Games:
11/17 vs. Western Michigan (Puerto Rico Tip-Off)
11/18 vs. Purdue/Iona (Puerto Rico Tip-Off)
11/20 vs. Alabama/Maryland/Wichita State/Colorado (Puerto Rico Tip-Off)
12/10 vs. Villanova
12/17 at Texas
1/4 vs. Duke
1/21 vs. Maryland

OTHER 111 IN 111′S:
#23 Cincinnati Bearcats
#24 Kansas Jayhawks
#25 UNLV Rebels
#26 Washington Huskies
#27 UCLA Bruins
#28 Butler Bulldogs
#29 Missouri Tigers
#30 Texas Longhorns
#31 Villanova Wildcats
#32 Michigan State Spartans
#33 Florida State Seminoles
#34 Notre Dame Fighting Irish
#35 Harvard Crimson
#36 Illinois Fighting Illini
#37 Oregon Ducks
#38 Wichita State Shockers
#39 Cal Golden Bears
#40 Belmont Bruins
#41 Mississippi State Bulldogs
#42 Saint Mary’s Gaels
#43 Purdue Boilermakers
#44 BYU Cougars
#45 Kansas State Wildcats
#46 West Virginia Mountaineers
#47 Virginia Cavaliers
#48 George Mason Patriots
#49 Old Dominion Monarchs
#50 VCU Rams
#51 Kent State Golden Flashes
#52 Arkansas Razorbacks
#53 St. John’s Red Storm
#54 Northwestern Wildcats
#55 Georgetown Hoyas
#56 Miami Hurricanes
#57 Nevada Wolfpack
#58 Detroit Titans
#59 UCF Knights
#60 Long Beach State 49ers
#61 Virginia Tech Hokies
#62 Clemson Tigers
#63 New Mexico State Aggies
#64 Tennessee Volunteers
#65 Iona Gaels
#66 Murray State Racers
#67 N.C. State Wolfpack
#68 Fairfield Stags
#69 George Washingon Colonials
#70 Indiana State Sycamores
#71 Oklahoma State Cowboys
#72 Indiana Hoosiers
#73 UAB Blazers
#74 Iowa State Cyclones
#75 Creighton Bluejays
#76 USC Trojans
#77 Weber State Wildcats
#78 Maryland Terrapins
#79 Tulsa Golden Hurricane
#80 Minnesota Golden Gophers
#81 Western Michigan Broncos
#82 Dayton Flyers
#83 Stanford Cardinal
#84 Yale Bulldogs
#85 Georgia Bulldogs
#86 Rutgers Scarlet Knights
#87 Richmond Spiders
#88 Ball State Cardinals
#89 Utah State Aggies
#90 Arizona State Sun Devils
#91 Marshall Thundering Herd
#92 Oregon State Beavers
#93 Washington State Cougars
#94 Iowa Hawkeyes
#95 Ole Miss Rebels
#96 Nebraska Cornhuskers
#97 Oklahoma Sooners
#98 South Florida Bulls
#99 LSU Tigers
#100 Colorado Buffaloes
#101 DePaul Blue Demons
#102 Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets
#103 Wake Forest Demon Deacons
#104 Seton Hall Pirates
#105 Providence Friars
#106 Auburn Tigers
#107 South Carolina Gamecocks
#108 Texas Tech Red Raiders
#109 Penn State Nittany Lions
#110 Boston College Eagles
#111 Utah Utes

David Kay is a senior feature NBA Draft, NBA, and college basketball writer for the Sports Bank.  He also heads up the NBA and college basketball material at Walter Football.com and is a former contributor at The Washington Times Communities.  David has appeared on numerous national radio programs spanning from Cleveland to New Orleans to Honolulu.  He also had the most accurate 2011 NBA Mock Draft on the web.

You can follow him on Twitter at DavidKay_TSB.

 

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