The Washington Huskies 2010-2011 season will be kicking off in a couple months at Hec Ed Bank of America. With Quincy Pondexter’s departure to the NBA, the Huskies will have to focus on filling the void of points Pondexter produced. Coach Romar has brought in three new guys to help the Dawgs make a run for the Pac-10 title and a ticket to March Madness.
Terrence Ross (Portland, Oregon)
Ross is a 6’6" guard who can put the ball on the floor who displays great athleticism. Ross is known as a good shooter who will compete for a lot of playing time this year.
Aziz N’ Diaye (College of Southern Idaho)
Aziz is a legit 7-footer that will cause problems for any opposition penetrating to the hole. Aziz is a transfer from Southern Idaho, who sat out last year due to a torn ACL but is back at 100 percent. Aziz has been known this summer in open gyms as a hard worker who bangs down low and likes contact and a good shot blocker.
Desmond Simmons (Vallejo, California)
Simmons likes to bang down low as an undersized power forward at 6’7. Simmons doesn’t have the finesse game in the paint, but will do the all the dirty work to make up for it. The Huskies still have the core of their team coming back minus one.
Sophomore big man Tyreese Breshers announced his retirement from basketball during the summer. Breshers battled his way through a surgery after High School that nagged on him ever since. A nice and humble guy, Breshers will still receive his degree from Washington and will still be around the team.
Each Husky will be asked to step up their game this year. Questions will need to be answered on the court. Who will step up down low in the paint? Was Abdul Gaddy’s freshman year a fluke? Will Bryan-Amaning be more consistent? Here is a rundown on each returning Husky!
Thomas has yet to disappoint ever since he put on a UW jersey. Thomas will have big numbers this year. Thomas is a captain and a team leader who shows it on the court. The key for Thomas this year will be focusing on his shooting and turnovers.
Most of the turnovers Thomas forced last year were going strong to the rim, which shows the heart in Thomas not backing down to anyone on the court. Thomas will bring his energy to the court and heart that rubs off on the team and the fans.
Everyone wants to know how Gaddy will bounce back after a subpar freshman year. Gaddy has worked all summer long to prove everyone wrong. Gaddy lets the game come to him and doesn’t force anything. A true point guard who has all the skills to be one of the best point guards in the Pac-10 if not the nation. It could be the quiet before the storm for Gaddy.
Gaddy had a quiet year last year, and wasn’t asked to do much. On the ball defense will be another focal point for Gaddy to help the Dawgs out. Gaddy’s lateral movement will need to improve to stay in front of quicker guards. Gaddy will need to bring a killer instinct to his game as well to bring out the best of him.
This will be Overton’s last year! Overton will be asked to bring his lock down defense, which is his trademark on the court. Overton will have to step his game up on the offensive side which he displayed towards the end of last year’s season by being a reliable player to get to the rim.
Overton, who can be wild at times with the ball, will also need to settle down and avoid turnovers. When calm on the court no player in the country would want to be guarded by Overton.
Another senior and a captain, Holiday has produced more and more each year. Holiday can lock his opposition down as well. Very smart and a student of the game, Holiday will be the guy doing all the little things on the court. Grabbing rebounds, steals in the passing lanes, rebounding.
Holiday will need to step his game up on the offensive side. The mid range jumper is something that Holiday showed he was getting better at last year and will be asked to shoot a bit more and be fearless going to the rim.
The third and last senior! M.B.A. will need to be more consistent down in the paint. Amaning has showed his skills all three years and what he can do, just not on a daily basis.
When M.B.A. is on his game, he is a force down low. A player who can block shots, great moves, and 10 foot jump shot M.B.A. could be the best big men in the Pac-10! When M.B.A. is off his game he is known to be one track minded and just put his head down and go to the basket.
There is no in between with M.B.A. It's either a good or bad night and that’s what needs to be changed. If you’re having a bad night in one category, make up for it in another stat column. Don’t shut down your whole game when things aren’t going right. That will help the Dawgs out a lot in the paint.
Gant has a good basketball I.Q. and works hard. Being bounced in and out of the starting lineup. Gant is a good passer down low, who has an okay 10-foot jumper. Gant will be asked to do much more out of all the big men this year. Gant will ha ve to bang down low on the offensive side to assert himself as a force to reckon with.
Will Gant, though? That might not be in Gant’s game and fans will have to realize that what Gant has been doing the last three years is who Gant is on the court—nothing fancy but a player who does get it done doing the little things. On the ground fighting for balls, finding the open man on the wing, and jump shot at times that can be reliable.
Suggs has proved he can shoot the ball but will have to prove more on the wing. Suggs will need to show that he can handle the ball, play better defense, and be more assertive on the court. Suggs has had an up and down career as a Dawg but still sticks with it. A good work ethic, Suggs just hasn’t got over the hump!
A reliable shooter when the guards penetrate and kick it out, Suggs has hit some big shots in his years as a Dawg. Lateral movement on defensive and overall defense is a key to the success of Suggs this year and those things will keep him on the court longer. If not don’t be surprised to see Ross take a lot of minutes away from Suggs.
Some say Wilcox will go down as the best shooter in UW history. A red shirt freshman last year, this will be the first year the fans and the nation will see Wilcox. Wilcox could’ve played last year if the Huskies really needed him but didn’t. A sharpshooter who is very athletic and can shoot off the dribble. Wilcox could possibly be a top-five scorer on the team! The question will be is how good is Wilcox’s defense?
Sherrer walked on to the team last year and didn’t see much time at all. If a big man gets hurt this year, Sherrer could go from seeing barely anytime to a ton of time.
The Huskies will have their first test Thanksgiving week in Maui. A showdown with Virginia and possible Kentucky will test their will power and heart. Another season leads to another chapter in the Washington Huskies book. Come march we will see how this chapter ends.