AZ State Sun Devil Basketball
Coach Herb Sendek begins his 7th year as the Arizona State Sun Devils head basketball coach. During his time at ASU the Devils are 98-96, barely above 500. Fans throughout Tempe won’t accept average basketball anymore; and neither will new athletic director Steve Patterson. Once again the Sun Devils have been given a long shot to earn an entry into the NCAA tournament and are picked 11th in the Pac 12.
Despite the dissatisfaction people need to take a look at Coach Sendek’s resume and maybe take another look at Sun Devil basketball. Excluding his tenure at ASU, Sendek has an all-time record of 254-158. Throughout Coach Sendek’s career, he has run a match-up zone on defense. Now, for the first time, Sendek will be moving to a customary man to man defense. Maybe this transition has been long overdue; but keep in mind, his willingness to make adjustments is evident and hopefully this new style of defense will lead to more wins.
Coach Sendek lost 2 assistants coaches this summer which required him to find replacements. He delivered in getting 2 proven assistant coaches. Both Eric Musselman and Larry Greer come in with NBA experience and both coaches will be extremely positive for Sendek. Hopefully the added leadership of these 2 veteran coaches will help turn around a basketball program that has yet to deliver during the Sendek tenure.
Let’s take a look at few players who might give the Sun Devils basketball program the boost it needs:
Jahii Carson: Although it seems recruiting for the Sun Devils has been a challenge (ASU has been unable to land any noteworthy recruits on a national scale since James Harden), they have a new prospect in Jahii Carson. Carson isn’t exactly a newcomer, last year he was cleared by the school, but failed to qualify for the NCAA out of high school. The former highly rated high school point guard is ready to succeed in front of the hometown crowd. Carson practiced all last year with the Sun Devils and that extra court time should pay dividends for the 2012-13 basketball season.
Carson could turn into a star under Sendek’s guidance and the Sun Devils could have one of the top backcourts in the conference. Maybe by the end of the year Carson could get more recognition as one of the better recruits in the Pac 12; if Carson is able to play up to his ability.
We know Sendek knows how to coach and Carson seems ready to take on the role of floor general and leader under Sendek; and his play could be the key to Sendek’s future at ASU.
Evan Gordon: Carson will be joined by another very talented backcourt player. Former Liberty University guard Evan Gordon joins the Sun Devil program. Gordon earned Big South All-Freshman team honors after averaging 14.4 points per game and the guard also paced the team in free throw percentage (.762) and three-point field goal percentage (.337).
Bo Barnes: Another former local Arizona high school player who transferred to ASU. Barnes played for the Rainbow Warriors of Hawaii and is a 3 point shot threat. He will play a key role for the Sun Devils this season.
In addition, Forward Carrick Felix, Forward Jonathan Gilling, and Center Jordan Bachynski will be the starters up front this season.
For the Sun Devils to succeed they need to get more production from their front court and fans want more than marginal improvement this season. So give watching ASU basketball another chance and let’s hope you will see some major improvements over the last 2 seasons.