#85 Washington Men's Basketball 2015-2016 Preview

Washington Huskies

2015-2016 Overall Rank: #85
Conference Rank: #9 Pac-12

Washington Team Page#85 Washington Men's Basketball 2015-2016 PreviewBuy Washington Football Tickets

Washington had a forgettable 2014-2015 season. After center Robert Upshaw was booted off of the team, the Huskies went 2-10 and rarely looked like a team that could compete in the Pac-12. Despite that horrible finish, Coach Lorenzo Romar still led his team to a winning overall record. There are some other big losses this year, but UW brings in a huge class of promising freshmen who will look to make an immediate impact.

2014-15 Record: 16-15, 5-13
2014-15 Postseason: none
Coach: Lorenzo Romar
Coach Record: 270-159 at Washington, 363-247 overall

Who’s Out:
Upshaw was leading the nation with 4.5 blocks per game when he was kicked off of the team in late January. The seven-footer was also averaging 10.9 points and 8.2 rebounds. That is a big piece of the puzzle, literally and figuratively, to lose in the middle of the season. The frontcourt also lost Shawn Kemp Jr., Jernard Jarreau and Gilles Dierickx. Kemp averaged 9.7 points per game during his senior season and Jarreau added 5.1 points and 4.7 rebounds but missed quite a bit of time with a knee injury. He is transferring closer to home and heading to Tulane. The departures on the perimeter are equally brutal. Nigel Williams-Goss spurned the NBA to transfer to Gonzaga. He averaged 15.6 points, 5.9 assists and 4.7 rebounds during his sophomore season. Losing Williams-Goss is not a huge surprise since many figured he would go to the NBA anyway, but losing him to another program will put pressure on Coach Romar to start getting results. Mike Anderson had a fine senior season, averaging 8.4 points, 2.5 assists and 6.2 rebounds. Darin Johnson averaged 4.4 points per game during his sophomore season and the 6-5 guard is now headed to Cal State Northridge to finish up his collegiate career.

Who’s In:
Washington is basically starting anew and the eight newcomers will all get an opportunity to do more than just compete for playing time. Of the seven incoming freshmen, five are ranked among the top 131 recruits in College Sports Madness’ recruit rankings. That is pretty impressive and the expectations are high for this group to come in and help turn around a program that needs a fresh start. Shooting guard Dejounte Murray is largely considered the best of the bunch. He steps into the position where UW has the most talent returning, but starting or not, Murray will get his minutes and points. Point guard David Crisp, a former teammate of Murray before going to prep school in New Hampshire, will need to at least provide quality backup point guard minutes. Small forwards Dominic Green and Matisse Thybulle are both big, athletic wings. The frontcourt needs to add a couple starters and Marquese Chriss, Noah Dickerson, Devenir Duruisseau and Malik Dime hope to fill the void. Dime is an experienced junior college transfer, but Chriss and Dickerson have the most potential. This is a great group of newcomers, but UW will need them to be quite productive.

Who to Watch:
Andrew Andrews will have to turn into a senior leader. The 6-2 guard averaged 15.0 points per game last year and is a proven outside shooter. Andrews is also a good ball handler and passer, but Williams-Goss took over those duties the last two years. Coach Romar will need to decide if he wants Andrews on the ball or needs his shooting off of the ball. That will most likely depend on the development of Crisp at the point. Quevyn Winters and Donaven Dorsey are the only other returning players who averaged double digits in minutes. Winters, a senior guard, averaged 3.4 points per game in his first season with the Huskies after a stint at the junior college ranks. Dorsey, a 6-7 forward, is a big wing who showed some potential as a freshman. He is a pretty good shooter and even his one year of experience is significant on this team.  

Final Projection:
This will be an interesting season for Washington and a big year for Coach Romar too. The backcourt should be potent with Andrews leading the way, but the play of the frontcourt has more questions. Obviously there is talent in the frontcourt, but the youth and inexperience will rear its ugly head sooner or later. That will result in an up and down season for Washington, but there could be more ups than downs and that will be enough to show that the program is back to moving in the right direction under Coach Romar.

Projected Postseason Tournament: NIT

Projected Starting Five:
Andrew Andrews, Senior, Guard, 15.0 points per game
Dejounte Murray, Freshman, Guard, DNP last season
Donaven Dorsey, Sophomore, Forward, 3.8 points per game
Malik Dime, Junior, Forward, DNP last season
Marquese Chriss, Freshman, Forward, DNP last season

By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 68.6 (139th in nation, 9th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 67.9 (210, 7)
Field-Goal Percentage: 43.8 (154, 7)
Field-Goal Defense: 42.1 (123, 5)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 6.2 (193, 6)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 33.3 (209, 10)
Free-Throw Percentage: 68.3 (214, 8)
Rebound Margin: -0.6 (217, 9)
Assists Per Game: 13.3 (109, 6)
Turnovers Per Game: 11.6 (84, 5)

Madness 2015 Men’s Basketball Recruit Rankings:
#44 Dejounte Murray
#58 Marquese Chriss
#72 Noah Dickerson
#112 Matisse Thybulle
#125 Dominic Green
#131 David Crisp


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