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UND vs Crown 11/7 7 PM

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The Game threads are back!

UND begins the basketball season on Thursday under new management, as the Paul Sather Era starts with a matchup with D3 Crown College.

What Happened in the Offseason:  A Lot

Things appears to be a normal offseason until news broke that Brian Jones was stepping down to take an assistant coaching job down in Illinois State.  For the first time in 14 years, UND was on the hunt for a head coach.  AD Chaves turned his attention to NSIC land to pick his new coach, as longtime Northern head coach Paul Sather accepted the position to be the new man in charge.  He brought along two staff members from Northern to be his assistants in Zach Horstman and Jamie Stevens.  

From a player perspective:  UND was looking to replace longtime starter Connor Avants and 2 year starter and key reserve Cortez Seales.  With the change in coaching staff, UND wasn't bit too hard with players leaving.  Jal Bijiek left for the JUCO ranks, Carter Brooks also left the team (not sure if he went elsewhere or just quit playing).  UND also faced a near disaster when talented big Desean Allen-Eikens  announced he was looking at other teams before reaffirming his commitment to UND.  UND returns 3 starters from the starting lineup.  Guards Marlon Stewart and Billy Brown and Forward Kienan Walter.  They also return two key reserves who might be looking to take the next step in Filip Rebraca and Aanen Moody, who put up solid freshman campaigns. 

About the new guy:

Paul Sather comes in with a pedigree of success, both at Black Hill State and at his Alma Matter, Northern State.  He sports an 282-151 all time record.  He is originally from Princeton, MN.  At BHSU, he won back to back DAC titles and took his team to the NAIA Final 4.  At Northern, he took over for legendary head coach Don Meyer and rebuilt Northern into an NSIC power.  It cultivated into back to back NSIC regular season and post-season tournament titles and a DII runner up title in the last two years.  

About Crown:

Crown finished in the middle of the pack in the UMAC last year, advancing to the UMAC semifinals before losing.  They finished with a 17-10 record and 10-6 in conference play.  They are coached by Luke Herbert, who is also their soccer coach.  He is in his 10th year as head basketball coach. 

UND History vs Crown:

UND is 2-0 all time verses Crown.  The last meeting was in the glorious 2016-17 season, where they thrashed Crown 98-48.  Q had 17 points in that contest and Drick had a double-double, 12 point 10 rebounds. 

Crown Player to Watch: Tim Wendel (Last year: 22.2 ppg, .513 fg%, .406 3 pt%, .855 ft%, 9.4 RPG)

The Senior is only 50 points away from the all time scoring leader at Crown to start the season.  The man from Uruguay is a inside-outside threat as a 6'6 forward.  Only had 7 points when he came here as a freshman, but I will bet that he will be looking to put on a show to prove that he can bring his game to a high level against D1 competition. 

The Polls!

Crown was picked 4th in the preseason polls in the UMAC, UND was picked 8th in the Summit League. 

Key Questions

1) How will teams adjust to the new rules? The two main ones are the new shot clock rule, where the clock will reset to 20 seconds on a ball that hits the rim and rebounded by the offense. The 3 point line backing up to the international line (22 feet 1 3/4 inches) will also make an impact on offenses and should affect the 3 point shooting of teams.  

2) What does a Sather team look like?  Who is in the starting lineup?  Who is in the rotation?  What does the offense and defense look like?  Yes, it is a D3 opponent, but some questions can be answered in what is being tried.

3) Who of the newbies get to play? Allen-Eikens will get most of the headlines, but would like to see if G, Carlos, and Brady do get minutes in this one or not.  

The Call:

Sather gets his first win as UND coach.  I'd say Rebraca gets a double-double and Stewart drops 20.  Not much to say about this one.  Just win big and stay healthy is all I ask.

UND 88-60

The game is on FSN North and FoxSportsGo



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The Game threads are back! UND begins the basketball season on Thursday under new management, as the Paul Sather Era starts with a matchup with D3 Crown College. What Happened in the Offseas

Sather:  Have to do a better job defensively Love it.  

UND 86 Crown 61 Final

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