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Return to the 2006-07 Top 144 Preview

August 16th, 2006

By Joel Welser

Broadcast Basketball

 

Fordham Rams

 

Overall Rank: #86

Conference Rank: #6 A-10

 

2005-06: 16-16, 9-7, 5th (t)

2005-06 postseason: none

 

Fordham is slowly crawling out of the cellar and their ascent continues with postseason hopes spurning all over the Bronx.  Coach Dereck Whittenburg returns four starters to a team that placed fifth in the Atlantic 10 and is brimming with confidence after a nice run in the conference tournament.

 

Who’s Out: Jermaine Anderson, who averaged 15.6 points, 3.4 assists and 3.7 rebounds as a senior, will leave a gaping hole in the backcourt.  That hole was supposed to be filled by Penn State transfer Marlon Smith, but his status is uncertain and it seems less certain that Smith will don the Fordham uniform with each passing day.  Guards Corey McCrae, Nicholas Vita and Tom Tubridy saw most of their action off the bench last year and add more questions to the increasingly slim backcourt. 

 

Who’s In: The backcourt will find some depth with newcomers Herb Tanner, Brenton Butler and Dave Boykin.  Tanner, who can play either guard spot, is a solid scorer.  He can shoot from the perimeter and get to the basket and is the most likely freshman to make major contributions.  Butler is a hard working shooting guard who will battle for some minutes as well.  Boykin is a decent floor leader and could end up to be a great pickup for the Rams.  Boykin had back surgery in 2005 and, now healthy, will add some depth at the point.  Small forward Dan Landisch’s stock soared over the last year and, if he continues to improve, Landisch will make some noise at Fordham before his collegiate career is through. 

 

Who to Watch: Over the past two seasons Bryant Dunston has cemented himself as a star in the A-10 and a future NBA draft pick.  As a sophomore last season, the 6-8 forward led the Rams with 16.1 points, 7.6 rebounds and 2.4 blocks.  He’ll have some help up front with returning starter Michael Binns and experienced junior Sebastian Greene.  All three can step outside and hit the long ball or battle in the paint.  Emerging sophomores Chris Bethel, Demetrius Phillips and Luke Devine will provide depth at the three, four and five spots.  If Coach Whittenburg wants the best five on the floor, he may start three players over 6-7.

 

Final Projection: Kevin Anderson is an offensive liability, but he can run the point well enough to keep Marcus Stout at the two guard spot.  Stout averaged 13.0 points as a sophomore and will be asked to carry the scoring load in the backcourt with the absence of Jermaine Anderson and McCrae.  There are too many questions on the perimeter for the Rams to make the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 1992 and, with the new 32-team NIT, it will be tougher for Fordham to make the NIT.  If any of the newcomers can add some quality depth, an NIT trip is very plausible.  The good news is the fact that most of the impact players are juniors.  One more year and we’ll be talking about breaking that NCAA drought.

 

Projected Post-season Tournament: none

 

Projected Starting Five:

Kevin Anderson, Junior, Guard, 3.2 points per game

Marcus Stout, Junior, Guard, 13.0 points per game

Michael Binns, Junior, Forward, 5.6 points per game

Sebastian Greene, Junior, Forward, 4.3 points per game

Bryant Dunston, Junior, Forward, 16.1 points per game

87 Notre Dame » Complete List » 85 Penn State

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