#121 Eastern Washington Men's Basketball 2020-2021 Preview

Eastern Washington Eagles
2020-2021 Overall Rank: #121
Conference Rank: #2 Big Sky
 Eastern Washington Logo
Eastern Washington won a program high 16 Big Sky games last season and earned their first conference title since 2015. The Eagles were hoping to make their third NCAA Tournament appearance in school history and would have at least reached the NIT, which would have been their fifth postseason tournament in the last six years. Reigning Conference Player of the Year Mason Peatling and his 17.2 points, 9.1 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 1.5 blocks will certainly be missed, but EWU still has two of the best players in the Big Sky.
2019-20 Record: 23-8, 16-4
Coach: Shantay Legans
Coach Record: 59-41 at Eastern Washington, 59-41 overall
Key Departed Players:
Mason Peatling, Forward, 17.2 ppg
Tyler Kidd, Guard, 5.2 ppg
Elijah Jackson, Guard, 0.7 ppg
Key Returning Players:
Kim Aiken, Junior, Guard/Forward, 13.4 ppg
Jacob Davison, Senior, Guard, 18.4 ppg
Ellis Magnuson, Sophomore, Guard, 5.8 ppg
Jack Perry, Senior, Guard, 6.2 ppg
Austin Fadal, Sophomore, Guard, DNP last season
Jacob Groves, Sophomore, Guard/Forward, 2.5 ppg
Tanner Groves, Junior, Forward, 5.4 ppg
Michael Medows, Sophomore, Guard, 0.5 ppg
Abdullahi Mohamed, Sophomore, Forward, 2.4 ppg
Casson Rouse, Sophomore, Guard, 6.5 ppg
Tyler Robertson, Sophomore, Guard/Forward, 2.2 ppg
Key New Players:
Steele Venters, RS Freshman, Guard/Forward
Mutdung Bol, Freshman, Guard
Isaiah Amato, Freshman, Guard
Victor Radocaj, Freshman, Forward
Jacob Davison led the team with 18.4 points per game and should again put up gaudy numbers during his senior season. The 6-4 guard is not a great three-point shooter, but he does have some range. He will do most of his scoring closer to the basket, but Davison could be an even better scorer if his outside shot falls more consistently. Kim Aiken is a 6-7 wing who can do it all. Last season he averaged 13.3 points, 9.7 rebounds and 1.3 assists. He is also a great defender and tallied 1.3 steals and 1.0 blocks. Sophomore point guard Ellis Magnuson and senior guard Jack Perry are also returning starters and Casson Rouse is another talented youngster looking to have a big year. However, Tanner Groves could prove to be the most important player on the team this season. The 6-9 junior has the unenviable job of replacing Peatling. He has shown plenty of potential over the last couple of years, but now he has to show it on the court on a more consistent basis. If Eastern Washington can find another consistent scoring threat to join Aiken and Davidson, they could again be the team to beat in the Big Sky.
Projected Postseason Tournament: CBI/CIT
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 80.9 (6th in nation, 1st in conference)
Scoring Defense: 72.8 (269, 9)
Field-Goal Percentage: 46.0 (57, 3)
Field-Goal Defense: 42.7 (166, 4)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 9.3 (26, 2)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 34.9 (96, 4)
Free-Throw Percentage: 69.4 (226, 8)
Rebound Margin: 1.4 (141, 4)
Assists Per Game: 17.5 (4, 1)
Turnovers Per Game: 12.8 (150, 7)