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65 Teams in 65 Days: #28 Siena

George BarnetteContributor ISeptember 18, 2009

15 Mar 2002:  Steve Blake #25 and Juan Dixon #3 of Maryland pressure Tommy Mitchell #25 of Siena during the first round the NCAA Men's Basketball Championship at the MCI Center in Washington D.C. Maryland defeated Siena 85-70. DIGITAL IMAGE  Mandatory Credit: Doug Pensinger/Getty Images


Location: Loudonville, NY
Nickname: Saints
Conference: Metro Atlantic Athletic
Last Year’s Record: 27-8

Siena G/F Edwin Ubiles

Siena G/F Edwin Ubiles

Why they’ll make it: In on word: experience. The Saints return four starters to a team that has been to the Big Dance the past two seasons. This team is not satisfied with just getting there though. This squad made it to the second round in both trips and gave the No. 1 seed Louisville all it could handle last year. This year, with Edwin Ubiles as a candidate for MAAC Player of the Year, this team is capable of making a legitimate run at the NCAA tournament’s second weekend. He along with Ronald Moore, Ryan Rossiter, and Alex Franklin are definitely capable of leading this program to heights it hasn’t seen before.

Why they won’t make it: There’s no way you lose a guy like Kenny Hasbrouck and it doesn’t hurt your team. The first-team all-conference selection finished second on the team in scoring, but his impact was deeper than that. Hasbrouck was the heart and soul of the Saints and the unquestioned leader of the team. That’s not something that it is taught. Players are born with it. Coach Fran McCaffery has to figure out which one of his guys has that quality. If there isn’t a Saint with it, they may struggle this season.