#126 Troy Men's Basketball 2018-2019 Preview

Troy Trojans
2018-2019 Overall Rank: #126
Conference Rank: #4 Sun Belt
 Troy Logo
Troy underachieved last season, finishing a disappointing 9-9 in Sun Belt play. And that was with the school’s all-time leading scorer Wesley Person leading the way. Now the Trojans and Coach Phil Cunningham must move on without Person, who averaged 17.6 points per game during his senior season. The good news though is that Jordan Varnado is back for his senior season. The 6-6 senior forward led the team with 18.0 points and added 7.0 rebounds and 1.4 blocks. As long as Varnado is on the floor, this is a Troy team that can beat anybody on any given day.
2017-18 Record: 16-17, 9-9
2017-18 Postseason: None
Coach: Phil Cunningham
Coach Record: 68-93 at Troy, 68-93 overall
Key Departed Players:
Wesley Person, Guard, 17.6 ppg
Kevin Baker, Guard, 6.8 ppg
Juan Davis, Forward, 5.7 ppg
Shawn Hopkins, Guard/Forward, 3.2 ppg
Key Returning Players:
Jordan Varnado, Senior, Forward, 18.0 ppg
Alex Hicks, Senior, Forward, 11.7 ppg
B.J. Miller, Senior, Guard, 7.5 ppg
Javan Johnson, Sophomore, Forward, 5.8 ppg
Darian Adams, Sophomore, Guard, 2.9 ppg
Malik Burnett, Sophomore, Guard, 1.2 ppg
Key New Players:
Devante Foster, Junior, Forward, JC Transfer
Charles Norman, Junior, Guard, JC Transfer
Spencer Rodgers, Freshman, Guard
Atakan Sahinkaya, RS Freshman, Guard/Forward
KJ Simon, Freshman, Guard
Xavier Williams, Freshman, Forward
Troy has some very good pieces to fill around Varnado. Most notable is fellow senior forward Alex Hicks who is developing into a star in his own right. Hicks averaged 11.7 points and a team high 8.4 rebounds last season. Like Varnado, he is a threat to knock down some three-pointers and will block a few shots too. With Javon Johnson and junior college transfer Devante Foster providing some depth, no team in the Sun Belt will have an easy time matching up against Troy’s frontcourt. The backcourt has a few more questions to answer. Senior B.J. Miller leads the unit after averaging 7.5 points and 3.2 assists last season. He will need help from sophomores Darian Adams and Malik Burnett along with junior college transfer Charles Norman. Norman averaged 16.1 points per game last season at Shelton State Community College and he could be the answer to Troy’s perimeter scoring questions. As long as the backcourt can find a shooter or two, the Trojans will be a tough team to beat. If they can remain consistent, they can compete for a Sun Belt title.
Projected Postseason Tournament: CBI/CIT
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 75.0 (141st in nation, 5th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 73.0 (188, 9)
Field-Goal Percentage: 43.9 (210, 5)
Field-Goal Defense: 43.4 (149, 9)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 8.8 (71, 3)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 33.7 (241, 8)
Free-Throw Percentage: 73.6 (93, 2)
Rebound Margin: -0.2 (203, 6)
Assists Per Game: 13.2 (206, 5)
Turnovers Per Game: 12.4 (122, 4)