(Photo from gogriffs.com)
Losses: Marial Dahl, Gaby Belardo, Franklin Milian, David Santiago, Sean Ezeamama, Tyler Funk
Gains: Billy Baron, Isaac Sosa, Freddy Asprilla, Phil Valenti, Jermaine Johnson
After a long stretch of losing, Canisius is starting a new era under Jim Baron. Baron has been successful at all three of his previous stops.
At St. Francis (PA), he won an NEC championship and went to the NCAA tournament. Baron never won a conference championship with Saint Bonaventure, but he did go to three NITs and one Big Dance. And at Rhode Island, he went to five NITs and one CBI.
With the Rams, Baron had five consecutive winning seasons (four with 20 or more wins) before a 7-24 campaign this past season got him fired.
Three players transferred following the coaching change, but fortunately, only one, point guard Gaby Belardo (12 ppg, 2.6 apg), was a key player.
The Golden Griffins return Harold Washington and Alshwan Hymes, their two leading scorers, plus Chris Manhertz and Josiah Heath, their two leading rebounders.
Washington has the potential to lead the MAAC in scoring after averaging 17 points per game last season. Hymes led the MAAC in three-pointers made in 2011-12.
Canisius' biggest addition is Rhode Island transfer Billy Baron, the new coach's son.
Baron averaged 13 points, 4.5 rebounds and 2.6 steals for the Rams last season and is eligible immediately.
To help replace Belardo, Baron will have Central Florida transfer Isaac Sosa, who averaged 8.8 points per game over three seasons with the Knights.
The Golden Griffins will also have Kansas State transfer Freddy Asprilla, who averaged 4.9 points and 4.9 rebounds during his time with the Wildcats. Asprilla also played his freshman season at Florida International, where he averaged 13.7 points and 9.2 rebounds. He is bound to have an immediate impact in the MAAC and has the potential to average a double-double.