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Nsic 2020-2021

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  • Nsic 2020-2021

    With the Coronavirus essentially closing down the world and no college basketball (or any other sports) to watch on tv...why not look ahead to next year in the nsic. Clearly way way too early, as much always changes in the offseason, but what the heck....

    My main prediction is that the nsic will be much improved next year and will get 2-3 teams to the regional. Let’s group into four categories of teams as follows:

    1. THE FAVORITES:

    Northern -
    They are the favorite until someone knocks them off. Loss of King and Dahl will hurt, but 4 of 5 starters back and Bergan and Belka should be able to pick up the slack from the lost seniors. This obviously assumes Fox is back next year. I have noticed even some wolves fans posting that Fox may transfer. If that happens it may knock nsu down into the second category of teams.

    Augustana - Difficult 2019-2020 season. However, the team I saw in nsic tourney looked more like what was expected in the preseason. Bring back some of the injured players, and assume Cartwright back to prior form, and augie will be tough to beat. Assume they will be motivated to exit in style with potential final season at d2 level.

    Sioux Falls - A team I underestimated the entire 2019-2020 season. All starters return so expect the coo to be tough out again next season. Loss of Green will be small scale problem. Biggest question is whether defense and rebounding again can overcome lack of outside shooters. Worked this season so why not again next year? Further improvements from grinde and houghton will make USF sure contenders.

    2. SERIOUS CONTENDERS:

    MSUM -
    No more youth excuses for dragons going forward. Next year they will be a veteran group. They also showed enough the second half of 2019 season so expectations will be high.

    Only lose one senior in Johnny Beeninga. There are internal options to make up for Beeninga’s loss (Irsfeld, Rund, Mertens, Jacob Beeninga). Baumgartner should be a top player in conference. Williams is solid defender and slasher, but needs to improve as outside shooter. Hopefully, Simon Sem returns after missing the majority of second half of season. His athleticism and defense is terrific, but also needs to work on outside shot. Wyatt Hanson had shoulder injury majority of season so look for him to come back healthy and contribute next year. He is another athletic player that missed the majority of 2019. On the interior, Zimmer played very well (especially for a freshman), Sevile had some really good moments and Bergh looked like he was making nice strides late. If these interior players take another step forward they could turn into a potential strength and dragons may move into the favorite category. Improved outside shooting in the offseason will also help to loosen up the paint. However, the extended 3 point line in 2020 works against this for all teams next year. The last few years dragons have added a juco or d1 transfer in offseason. Could possibly see them add of another shooter and/or additional interior player. Not sure if any incoming freshman will be ready to contribute.

    Mankato - Always have a lot of raw talent. Next year should be no different. By their standards may still be a bit of rebuilding year. Kirksey will be difficult to replace. Holt looks legit. Baumgardner’s return at pg will be real key. Also, very likely that Mankato brings in a few d1 transfers (as usual)...so assuming they don’t implode team chemistry then they could also rapidly jump up the list. A couple of incoming freshman also look very solid on film...let’s see how long the transition takes for jump to college. As always the roster will be talented enough to beat anyone on any given night.

    UIU - In my opinion the biggest surprise team of 2019. Very deep group of young guards. Look out if they take another step forward. Also, Chris Olson injured and likely back next year to crowd the backcourt even a bit more. One problem is they are a bit small. Can UIU handle the post season when defenses ramp up and the games slow down. They are fun to watch and will give nsic teams fits again next year.

    3. ON THE BUBBLE:

    SMSU - I expect smsu to be most improved nsic team in 2020. Everyone back. Don’t overlook mustangs next year. Could listen to arguments to move smsu into category 2 above.

    Bemidgi - Suffered unfortunate injuries in 2019 or would have won some more. Still solid core returns next season. Don’t overlook bemidgi again in 2020. Also, maybe a category 2 team.

    SCSU - loss of Marshall will hurt, but do have some nice young guards. Roberts loaded with raw talent. Not sure what else to say about 2020 team. Assuming a bunch of new guys coming in that we haven’t heard about yet. If not, may be a rebuilding year for scsu and move them down into category 4?

    Mary - don’t really lose a lot but still unlikely to challenge the top teams. Kreklow top shelf interior player that always hurts the dragons. Won’t be sad to see him graduate. Need more explosive perimeter players around him. Look for redshirt freshman Mattern to be nice surprise.

    4. REBUILDING:

    UMD - Drew Blair will be one of the top scorers in nsic next season, which maybe should move UMD into bubble category. Just too many seniors to replace. Very good incoming freshman class will contribute right away, but probably only good enough to be middle of nsic pack. Wouldn’t be surprised to see Duluth a little better than just rebuilding next year.

    Wayne - lets say another year of rebuild despite janssen being really good.

    Concordia - perpetually in state of rebuild it seems. Not too many seniors so maybe underestimating next year’s team as they were a little better than 2019 record in my opinion. Not sure about coaching situation. Future may be bright if they can ultimately be depository for future d1s that flake out from University of St. Thomas (assuming ust receives ncaa approval for d1) just down the block. Carlson and coblin, etc. should be good enough to potentially move them into the bubble category.

    Minot - Final season for pg Max Cody. We will see what Murkin recruits from around the globe to help him out. Cody Dwyer also could have nice senior season...so cupboard not exactly bare.

    Crookston - Get used to hearing the phrase “remember when Crookston had Harrison Cleary?” On paper this team looks like it’s heading back to the dark ages of Crookston basketball. Expect big roster turnovers the next few years.
    Last edited by Moorhead123; 03-14-2020, 06:51 AM.

  • #2
    Good analysis. MSU loses Kirksey and Krieger; two mainstays for the past several years. However they return Holt, Seales, and Kramer; all of which I feel have the potential to be very good in future years. Baumgardner's return at the 1 would be helpful also. No idea if they will bring in a transfer or two; based on past history that seems fairly likely.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by MStateMaverick View Post
      Good analysis. MSU loses Kirksey and Krieger; two mainstays for the past several years. However they return Holt, Seales, and Kramer; all of which I feel have the potential to be very good in future years. Baumgardner's return at the 1 would be helpful also. No idea if they will bring in a transfer or two; based on past history that seems fairly likely.
      Baumgardner isn’t going to be ready to play right away, and he isn’t an upgrade at the 1 over Seales. Seales turned the Ball over too much, but he is a much better player overall than Baumgardner.

      Mavs brought in one transfer last year, Kramer. They are losing 3 seniors and likely Frankie Mack. They are bringing in 4 HS seniors, not sure if there is room for a transfer and if there is, it’ll likely be only one, and it would be a PG. I don’t think we’ll see many more years of multiple transfers into the program.

      Comment


      • #4
        Some of this will depend on how seriously the NCAA considers this ridiculous "give seniors another year" idea. Northern and Duluth suddenly look even better with the bonus seniors they'd get back. Augie basically returns no one of major/significant value, so I don't know that I'd have us up in the #2 spot under that circumstance.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by MStateMaverick View Post
          Good analysis. MSU loses Kirksey and Krieger; two mainstays for the past several years. However they return Holt, Seales, and Kramer; all of which I feel have the potential to be very good in future years. Baumgardner's return at the 1 would be helpful also. No idea if they will bring in a transfer or two; based on past history that seems fairly likely.
          Seems like injuries caused krieger to fall off a bit late in career. So based on that I made the assumption that he can be replaced. Unfortunate injuries as he seemed on pace to be POY caliber earlier in career. I agree seales and Kramer will be good players for Mankato.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Purple Mav Man View Post

            Baumgardner isn’t going to be ready to play right away, and he isn’t an upgrade at the 1 over Seales. Seales turned the Ball over too much, but he is a much better player overall than Baumgardner.

            Mavs brought in one transfer last year, Kramer. They are losing 3 seniors and likely Frankie Mack. They are bringing in 4 HS seniors, not sure if there is room for a transfer and if there is, it’ll likely be only one, and it would be a PG. I don’t think we’ll see many more years of multiple transfers into the program.
            Maybe true on Baumgardner and seales, but point is I think Mankato is be better off with a true pg and moving seales to shooting guard/wing. Maybe that pg is a transfer.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Moorhead123 View Post

              Maybe true on Baumgardner and seales, but point is I think Mankato is be better off with a true pg and moving seales to shooting guard/wing. Maybe that pg is a transfer.
              I’d like to see what an offseason at the 1 can do for Seales. I like the ball in his hands more. It isn’t his natural position, and he wasn’t expecting to play there this year. If after the offseason it’s apparent it won’t work/fit, then work Baumgardner back in there when he’s ready (if they don’t grab a PG transfer).

              If Mack doesn’t return, Jamal Nixon would be the lone senior. And Kramer would be the only junior (assuming Baumgardner gets medical redshirt - Quincy Anderson didn’t play at all due to injury and had a redshirt left anyway). Will be extremely sophomore heavy team next year, with a few freshmen mixed in as well.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by MrAugustana View Post
                Some of this will depend on how seriously the NCAA considers this ridiculous "give seniors another year" idea. Northern and Duluth suddenly look even better with the bonus seniors they'd get back. Augie basically returns no one of major/significant value, so I don't know that I'd have us up in the #2 spot under that circumstance.
                It would be terribly ridiculous to give winter sports a waiver for a free year as well. Spring sports makes sense, winter sports had completed their regular season.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Moorhead123 View Post

                  Seems like injuries caused krieger to fall off a bit late in career. So based on that I made the assumption that he can be replaced. Unfortunate injuries as he seemed on pace to be POY caliber earlier in career. I agree seales and Kramer will be good players for Mankato.
                  Krieger would have been a POY type player if not for the injuries. But, they happened and they were unfortunate. I agree, his production is very replaceable. His leadership will be missed. Time for Seales to take that role over as well.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by MrAugustana View Post
                    Some of this will depend on how seriously the NCAA considers this ridiculous "give seniors another year" idea. Northern and Duluth suddenly look even better with the bonus seniors they'd get back. Augie basically returns no one of major/significant value, so I don't know that I'd have us up in the #2 spot under that circumstance.
                    The return of Matt Cartwright and Trevor Hanson from injury give Augustana some serious scoring punch. Considering how strong the team looked the last 4 weeks of season minus those injured players, I'd say I'm bullish on the Vikings prospects.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      [QUOTE=Purple Mav Man;n492505]

                      Baumgardner isn’t going to be ready to play right away, and he isn’t an upgrade at the 1 over Seales. Seales turned the Ball over too much, but he is a much better player overall than Baumgardner.

                      My premise is that Seales' natural position is at the 2, or maybe the 3. I felt he did quite well taking the 1 this year by necessity. Agree that he is a better player overall than Baumgardner.
                      As to the injured players, you never know of course if they will ever return to their previous level of athleticism; i.e. Krieger.
                      Wolf and also the player from Waseca, MN (can't recall his name) got some PT this year; hopefully they can contribute. As to redshirts and incoming freshmen, anyone's guess as to what level if any they will contribute to success. I would be surprised if they did not bring in at least one transfer.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Moorhead123 View Post
                        SMSU - I expect smsu to be most improved nsic team in 2020. Everyone back. Don’t overlook mustangs next year. Could listen to arguments to move smsu into category 2 above.
                        I appreciate the positive thoughts about the Mustangs. With everyone back, I do hope the team can keep its upward trajectory. As bad as the record was this past season, the thing that impressed me was how the team was in almost every game. That will be huge going forward. There were some offensive deficiencies, but I believe getting Schwartz in at PG will help the offense improve. McCray will be able to play more of a KJ Davis role and Kenny Byers won't be relied upon so much on the ball. Health was also a major issue in the second half of the season for both Byers and Nick Dufault, so it will be nice to go into next season healthy.

                        Ultimately, I think the second tier here is probably a bit of a stretch, but I do envision a significant improvement for the team.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Purple Mav Man View Post

                          It would be terribly ridiculous to give winter sports a waiver for a free year as well. Spring sports makes sense, winter sports had completed their regular season.
                          While I understand winter sports seniors technically completed their regular season, the seniors aren’t playing just to play their 30 game regular season schedule and be satisfied. Most of the seniors did indeed play their seasons completely. However, the seniors that were in the playoffs got just as much out of their seasons as the spring sports seniors did. Since you likely can’t pick and choose which seniors get to come back (Northern being only one in NSIC), you let them all have another year.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by #WolvesNation View Post

                            While I understand winter sports seniors technically completed their regular season, the seniors aren’t playing just to play their 30 game regular season schedule and be satisfied. Most of the seniors did indeed play their seasons completely. However, the seniors that were in the playoffs got just as much out of their seasons as the spring sports seniors did. Since you likely can’t pick and choose which seniors get to come back (Northern being only one in NSIC), you let them all have another year.
                            Not on board with your post. Sometimes in life things don’t work out as planned. Nobodies fault. The seniors got to play in 98% of their season. You don’t grant a whole new season because they lost out on small portion of prior season. Can argue that it’s not fair, but that’s life.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              The other part to this is that in D1, they didn’t get the same chances as D2 did, as only a few conferences even got to play games to get to the tournament. 98% of seniors in D1 didn’t get the chance that D2 players did. Perhaps NCAA will take that into consideration as well.

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