After an up and down season that saw Virginia struggle early, peak by beating Duke, and struggle down the stretch the Cavaliers are ready to look ahead to a promising 2013-14 season. Tony Bennett's team will have two players coming off of redshirts that should be ready to make an impact.
Malcolm Brogdon says his mind keeps wandering toward next November.
"I can't stop thinking about this coming season," Brogdon, a redshirt sophomore guard on the Virginia basketball team, said recently. "We got the addition of (Anthony Gill) coming, he's a really good player. And we have those freshmen that have grown a little bit. Joe Harris and all the other guys."
"So I think we have a chance to be really good this season."
Brogdon didn't mention another reason for optimism for the Virginia basketball program when looking ahead to next year -- his healthy return. Brogdon missed the final four games of his freshman season in 2011-12, then all of last season while recovering from a broken bone in his left foot.
Typically sitting next to Brogdon at the end of the Virginia bench last season was Gill, a sophomore forward. Like Brogdon, Gill redshirted last season, after transferring from South Carolina.
"Just being out there in practice all year was tough. Just to practice, to work hard and not be able to play in games," Gill said. "Coach looks down at the bench and he sees you, but you can't go in. So I mean, it was pretty tough."
Gill played in all 31 games during his freshman season at South Carolina, including 26 starts. He averaged 7.6 points and 4.7 rebounds per game.
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I'm struck by the depth that Virginia will have on their roster next season. Jontel Evans is the only senior the Cavaliers lost who played significant minutes and the Cavaliers add two impact players in Brogdon and Gill. Typically such depth is designated only to ACC teams found around Tobacco Road.
While the Cavaliers have a wealth of talent, a big question still remains. Who will play point guard? With Evans departure it leaves a big hole. Teven Jones seems to be the most likely player to fill the spot amonst returning players. It remains to be seen if Malcolm Brogdon, Anthony Gill, or either of the incoming freshmen could fill that role.
The good news for Tony Bennett is that he'll have plenty of options for any questions confronting him.