Cleveland State Vikings
2012-2013 Overall Rank: #130
Conference Rank: #3 Horizon
Cleveland State Team Page
Even the not so casual fans of the Horizon League may not recognize too many faces on this Cleveland State squad. Despite the loss of four starters, Coach Gary Waters has plenty of talent left on his roster. And in a conference that should be wide open, the Vikings can make a nice little run. However, it may take some time for everybody to get used to their increased playing time But do not be surprised if by January or February this is one of the better teams in the Horizon League.
2011-12 Record: 22-11, 12-6
2011-12 Postseason: NIT
Coach: Gary Waters
Coach Record: 122-82 at Cleveland State, 293-217 overall
Trey Harmon, Jeremy Montgomery and D’Aundray Brown were the usual starters on the perimeter. They were also the top three scorers on the team. Harmon was the shooter on the squad and led the team with 12.6 points per game. Montgomery ran the show, was dangerous from beyond the arc and added 10.9 points per contest. Brown came back strong for his senior season after some injuries and was the prototypical wing who could finish above the rim and help out on the glass. Even little used reserve guard Ike Nwamu is gone. The lone loss in the frontcourt is Aaron Pogue. Pogue, a 6-9, 270 pound forward, never really developed into the player many hoped he would, but he was a big body who could clog the paint.
For obvious reasons, the group of newcomers is dominated by guards. Junior Lomomba is the most intriguing prospect. He is 6-5 and has the ability to play at the three spot and CSU really needs some depth on the wing. Lomomba should be able to provide it. However, due to the lack of depth on the perimeter, he may have to spend more time at the two guard spot. That will depend heavily on fellow freshmen Bryn Forbes and Josh Ivory and if they can come out of the gate ready to compete at this level. Aaron Scales, a 6-9 center, could make a pretty big impact as well. He has the size to help replace Pogue. If he can play 15 minutes per game, it will allow Coach Waters to have a lot more options to match up against the opposition.
Who to Watch:
Part of the problem the Vikings may have this season is where to play everybody. Tim Kamczyc, the lone returning starter, is a 6-7, 200 pound forward. Ideally he would play the power forward position like he has throughout his career. However, the lack of a small forward may force him to spend some time at the three. Offensively that would not be an issue as Kamczyc is a versatile player who can shoot and pass surprisingly well for a forward. Anton Grady is also best suited to play the four spot. Grady had a superb freshman campaign coming off of the bench. He is more than ready for a starting gig after averaging 8.5 points, 6.4 rebounds and 1.4 blocks in 2011-2012. Cleveland State needs those two on the floor, and at the same time, but it remains to be seen where they play. The most likely scenario is Marlin Mason steps in at the small forward spot with Grady moving to the five. Grady is 6-8, but only tilts the scales at 215 pounds. Mason only saw action in 18 games last year as a freshman, but he is full of potential. At times Luda Ndaye or Devon Long could spend time at the center spot. Neither was particularly productive during their sophomore seasons, but they could play a bigger role as upperclassmen. The opposition may force Coach Waters’ hand as to who is on the floor, but depending on who steps up their game, he may not have too many choices either.
The frontcourt has options. The backcourt does not. A couple sophomores will likely begin the season in the starting lineup and the freshmen will have to provide all of the depth and could take over starting jobs relatively soon. Charlie Lee is not much of a scorer, but he is a quick little point guard who gained some very valuable experience last season. The Vikings do not need him to score, but they do need him to emerge as a leader who can keep the turnovers down. Sebastian Douglas barely played as a freshman and Lomomba will be pushing him for playing time from day one. Douglas can be an effective outside shooter and has enough size to be a good rebounder from the shooting guard spot, but his only advantage right now is his little bit of experience in the system. A backcourt full of underclassmen is not a good thing in college basketball and mistakes will be made. Lee will need to grow up fast and the frontcourt will have to carry this team for a while or the season could get out of control early and the young squad may not be able to recover.
Projected Postseason Tournament: CBI/CIT
Projected Starting Five:
Charlie Lee, Sophomore, Guard, 4.1 points per game
Sebastian Douglas, Sophomore, Guard, 2.9 points per game
Marlin Mason, Sophomore, Forward, 3.7 points per game
Tim Kamczyc, Senior, Forward, 9.1 points per game
Anton Grady, Sophomore, Forward, 8.5 points per game