College Basketball Mid-Major Team To Watch: Lipscomb Bisons

Jesse KramerCorrespondent INovember 11, 2010

Lipscomb's Adnan Hodzic and Josh Slater celebrate a 2010 regular season Atlantic Sun championship.
Lipscomb's Adnan Hodzic and Josh Slater celebrate a 2010 regular season Atlantic Sun championship.

I have had Lipscomb under my radar for the past few seasons, and every year the Bisons have played well and just barely let me down.

In 2008-09, Lipscomb got off to a slow start, but then ended the regular season on a nine-game winning streak. The Bisons managed to crush my hopes with a first round loss to Jacksonville in the Atlantic Sun tournament. 

In 2009-10, Lipscomb got off to a slow start, losing its first four games. The Bisons heated up in conference play and finished the regular season as the Atlantic Sun champions. However, the Bisons managed to squash my wishes once more with a very disappointing loss to Kennesaw State in the first round of the Atlantic Sun tournament.

This will be the year that Lipscomb does not disappoint.

The Bisons nearly have their whole roster from last season; they only lost one player who played in more than four games last season.

Lipscomb will have four seniors: Adnan Hodzic, Josh Slater, Brandon Brown and Micahel Teller. As juniors, these four combined for 55.2 points per game.

Last season, Hodzic absolutely dominated scoring as many as 37 points against Mercer and grabbing as many as 20 rebounds against Kennesaw State. Hodzic recorded 11 double-doubles and scored 20 or more points on 22 different occasions. It is only logical to assume that Hodzic will be at least a little better as a senior. 

Slater was unfairly overshadowed by Hodzic last season. Slater scored 17.1 points per game, grabbed 5.4 rebounds per game, and averaged 5.2 assists per game. Slater had a season-high of 35 points at East Tennessee State and 11 assists against Florida Gulf Coast and Kennesaw State.

Brown and Teller were both solid last year. Brown scored 10.4 points per game, while Teller scored 5.2 points per game. Both players will be expected to have improved over the offseason. 

The Bisons also have a solid junior class, which is led by Jordan Burgason and Brian Wright. Burgason scored 12.8 points per game and shot 43.8 percent from beyond the arc last season. Wright averaged 5.8 points per game.

So, Lipscomb has a lot of talent, some depth and a lot of leadership. Even if that is enough to win the Atlantic Sun (which will still be tough with teams like Belmont and East Tennessee State), will it be enough to pull off an upset over a top 25 team in the regular season or a NCAA Tournament opponent?

It is too tough to tell with the season not even underway for the Bisons. The Bisons did schedule up so they would at least have a chance at getting a big win in the regular season. They will play at North Carolina on Friday night, and play No. 14 Baylor and No. 19 Memphis later in the season.

Do not be surprised if Lipscomb gives one of these teams a tough game.


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