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  • crazznewt
    replied
    A couple of quick notes: Drury men's and women's basketball fans have good reason to be optimistic about the upcoming season and next season is looking great as well! Drury hasn't posted names yet on their website, so I won't name them.

    The men have signed a 6'8" highly skilled athlete for 2023-2024 who is currently coached by the highly respected Rob Yanders. Mostly what I know about this player is word of mouth, so someone else can comment on him. Sounds like a GREAT get though.

    The women have an outstanding recruiting class for 2023-2024 with at least 3
    players that had multiple D1 offers and another with multiple D2 offers.

    They have a new radio station partner that has apparently purchased nice new equipment and has made Drury Basketball a priority. Also, the Panthers return one of the best broadcast teams in the country.
    First game in less than a month!

    Leave a comment:


  • crazznewt
    replied
    Originally posted by unc4life View Post

    I think the Ashland coaching staff feels like they have a team this year that can go the distance, and I think the schedule reflects that. I have a lot of respect for Drury and the willingness they show to schedule anyone in the country. It pays off in the tournament for sure. I also wonder what the GMAC will be like this year. Several schools (Walsh, Cedarville) had top upper classmen transfer to D1 schools. Really the first time we have seen this in the new transfer world we are in. Looking forward to a great year of basketball!
    Ashland's roster looks formidable. Hopefully the injury bug doesn't bite them. Upon closer look, I don't see any GMAC team that can challenge them. I'm glad the Lady Panthers can schedule a team the caliber of Ashland in the regular season.
    I'm praying things can return to normal for this country so we can once again enjoy the things that have been taken for granted. Also hoping the obnoxious fan who CONSTANTLY and loudly berates
    the referees is held accountable this season, because that does not belong in what is otherwise one of the best d2 game game atmospheres in the country.

    Leave a comment:


  • crazznewt
    replied
    I have no idea how well the Lady Panthers will do this season after injuries and Covid cost them their best shot at a national championship the last 3 seasons. They lose a lot off of last season's team, including the national player of the year from two season's ago and 2 players who were a big part of FIVE conference championship teams.
    They do return 3 players who could conceivably land on the GLVC 1st team at season's end, and landed a transfer who was named to Conference USA's all freshman team 2 season's ago.

    They also have a couple of returning sophomores who are elite athletes at this level. Anna Hitt is possibly the fastest player in the league and had a fine freshman season. Hayley Mitchell was one of the many players hindered by injury after a promising start to the season. I saw her free a tightly wedged basketball from the rim during warm-ups using vertical on the first try. Not bad for 5'11".
    Freshman Reese Schaaf was a state champion last season and the class 3 player of the year. She will be an immediate contributor.
    Hopefully Mia Henderson can put together an elusive full season as her injury in the conference tournament (where she played very well) and ensuing absence hurt in the 5 point regional game loss against Grand Valley.
    Like Ashland, expectations are always high!

    Not up on all the GMAC but the GLVC will still be tough as Lewis returns almost everyone from last season's conference tournament runner up team and would appear to be the team in the best position to de-throne Drury. The Lady Panthers coasted to a 29 point win in that tournament championship game.

    After not having a good February and March, Truman appears to be on the upswing with some good recruits and a returning 5th year player to go with Weltha. Congratulations to them as It appears some money is being invested in improvements to their locker rooms.

    UMSL will be tough as they return the dominant Kiara Stewart and have good players around her.

    Illinois Springfield returns all their good players and last season was the latest GLVC team to beat a D1. (Bradley)

    SBU appears to have built a defensive team after having some key defections off of last season's team. They also will have the biggest team in the league as they have 6 players 6' or taller including a 6'5" and 6'6".

    Leave a comment:


  • unc4life
    replied
    Originally posted by crazznewt View Post

    I was glad to see Ashland on the Drury regular season women's schedule. Ashland has an ambitious non conference schedule that includes 4 GLVC teams, 3 of these GLVC teams could end up being ranked in the top 20. Also glad to see there are 3 other GMAC schools on the Lady Panther slate, including another powerhouse and at least one other striving to achieve national prominence.
    I have great respect for the GMAC schools and their mission statements.
    I think the Ashland coaching staff feels like they have a team this year that can go the distance, and I think the schedule reflects that. I have a lot of respect for Drury and the willingness they show to schedule anyone in the country. It pays off in the tournament for sure. I also wonder what the GMAC will be like this year. Several schools (Walsh, Cedarville) had top upper classmen transfer to D1 schools. Really the first time we have seen this in the new transfer world we are in. Looking forward to a great year of basketball!

    Leave a comment:


  • crazznewt
    replied
    Originally posted by unc4life View Post
    Looking forward to November 23. Ashland vs Drury in womens basketball. Should be a top 10 matchup!
    I was glad to see Ashland on the Drury regular season women's schedule. Ashland has an ambitious non conference schedule that includes 4 GLVC teams, 3 of these GLVC teams could end up being ranked in the top 20. Also glad to see there are 3 other GMAC schools on the Lady Panther slate, including another powerhouse and at least one other striving to achieve national prominence.
    I have great respect for the GMAC schools and their mission statements.

    Leave a comment:


  • unc4life
    replied
    Looking forward to November 23. Ashland vs Drury in womens basketball. Should be a top 10 matchup!

    Leave a comment:


  • crazznewt
    replied
    Things look good for Drury as Forbes.Com mentioned DU and several major universities in the same article reporting record freshmen enrollment at each institution. Optimism abounds as the scheduled opening of the 27 million dollar Enterprise Center (paid for with private donations), and a new recreation field for students complete with artificial turf and new lighting are nearly complete.

    Panther Sports are on a roll, as they won the GLVC Commisioners Cup last season despite a down season for Men's Basketball.

    Speaking of basketball, the Men will have one of the most exciting teams in the conference and will be the most improved.
    The women also have a lot of athleticism and will also have a very entertaining team.
    Despite losing a ton of experience, expectations are high again for the Lady Panthers as anything less than 25 wins and at least one ring is considered a disappointment.

    It all starts in a little more than two months!

    Leave a comment:


  • crazznewt
    replied
    The Lady Panthers posted their national rankings for last season's offensive numbers on their Twitter page:
    #2 free in throw attempts
    #2 free throws made
    #3 scoring margin
    #6 scoring offense
    #7 assists
    Not bad considering all the missed practices and games by several important players.

    I really like the addition of games with schools from the GMAC to the women's schedule. Drury will play Ashland and Cederville at O'Reilly, alternating with Truman State, showcasing what could be top 25 matchups on both days of their Thanksgiving classic.
    Drury will play Kentucky Wesleyan and Trevecca Nazarine in the season opening SBU Classic, which should be a fun atmosphere in Bolivar.

    The Lady Panthers also have made a roster addition that hasn't been officially announced yet.

    The Men will play an exhibition against Creighton. It likely wont be pretty, but I feel a lot better about this game than how I did about last season's game against Drake when it was announced. It would have been nice to have a rematch against Evangel though. Praying Covid doesn't rear its ugly head, because this upcoming season at O'Reilly will feature 2 very entertaining teams in one of the best small college atmospheres in the country.

    Leave a comment:


  • crazznewt
    replied
    The Lady Panthers proved the naysayers wrong (including an opposing coach), as they finished ranked nationally in these defensive categories from 2021-2022:

    Number 2 in steals.
    Number 2 in turnover margin.
    Number 6 in steals per game.
    Number 6 in turnovers forced per game.

    With the current roster and barring injury, they will be ranked at or near the top of the conference again in all defensive numbers.

    Leave a comment:


  • crazznewt
    replied
    Incoming transfer, 6'4" Preston Cook, executed one of the most incredible dunks I've ever seen in person a couple weeks back during the summer pro am. I knew the guy has an incredible vertical leap, but I had no idea it is actually 42".

    Let's put this in perspective:
    * 6'4" John Wall's pre-draft max was 39 inches.
    * Legendary, 6'4" David Thompson's standing vertical was 44"
    * 6'3" Ja Morant's is 44"
    * 6'3" Bradley Beal's is 39"
    * 6'5" James Harden? 37" if he would shave the beard, he might gain another 1/2 inch.
    * 6'3" Russell Westbrook 36.5
    These are standing verticals according to the Bleacher report.

    Uncontrollable circumstances put the coaching staff behind the eight ball last season. They responded with one heck of an effort on the recruiting trail and have put Chris Foster in the early driver's seat for coach of the year honors. Wait, this is the GLVC, that wouldn't happen for a Drury coach even if they went undefeated.

    Leave a comment:


  • crazznewt
    replied

    Leave a comment:


  • crazznewt
    replied
    Wakefield is good. Saw him play Sunday at the Pro-Am. Looks like another athlete with range. Also heard second hand there is another scholarship available. Competition for playing time will be intense with this team.
    The Lady Panthers had the highest attendance numbers in D2 last season. What a nice piece of information to use in the recruiting process! Hopefully they pick up another impact player this summer because they don't have the depth they've had the last several years IMO.

    Leave a comment:


  • panthersclawz1
    replied
    Sources: Drury has made a late addition for this season, signing 6'3 transfer guard Brock Wakefield from The Citadel. He's a 3x all-state player from Annapolis, MO. In limited minutes last season as a freshman, he shot 50% from three. Projected to be the starting shooting guard. Should be announced this week or early next.

    Leave a comment:


  • crazznewt
    replied
    Both men's teams are undefeated in the pro-am. Before last season's session ended, It was obvious that team had issues. This team is fun to watch, and they, including the freshmen, do not back down from anybody.

    My starters:
    Jr G Quenton Shelton (Has improved) or Fr Trey Lewis (GLVC FOY?)
    Fr G Andrew Dalton (This guy is relentless on the glass and has a good all around game)
    Jr G Brady O'Connell (Long, athletic, and talented.) Or a much improved Riley Naeger
    Sr F Adam Moore (big talented leader)
    Gr F Preston Cook (elite athlete at this level and can play)
    This is a competitive bunch and my projection could change.

    The women will be without a national player of the year caliber player on their roster for the first time in several years. They also lost a ton of experience that four of the departed players provided. They do return three first team all league caliber players, including at least two All American candidates.

    My Starters so far:
    Gr G Kaylee DaMitz (Probably the best point guard in the league)
    Gr G Terrion Moore (Best defender in the league)
    Sr F Alana Findley (first team all league)
    These three showed they could carry a team without Paige Robinson and the other leaders who were battling injuries.
    So G Anna Hitt (Long, athletic, competitor)
    Fr F Reese Schaaf (Big, athletic, talented, Class 3 POY, fundamentally sound)

    This team has a lot of work to do to maintain the momentum this program has.
    When the schedules are posted, you can bet other league teams quickly take note of when they play the Lady Panthers. Let's DU this.
    Last edited by crazznewt; 06-30-2022, 03:00 PM.

    Leave a comment:


  • crazznewt
    replied
    Drury Athletics hosted a "Meet and greet" for the basketball teams Wednesday night to a packed banquet hall in a show of support from the boosters, fans, and corporate sponsors. In addition, the Lady Panthers have had over 700 kids in their camps this month with golf tournaments, auctions, and Panther camps coming up.

    Leave a comment:

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