#26 Stanford Men's Basketball 2020-2021 Preview

Stanford Cardinal
2020-2021 Overall Rank: #26
Conference Rank: #3 Pac-12
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After a few years of mediocrity, at best, Stanford made a strong push towards the NCAA Tournament last season. The team started 15-2 with their only losses coming against Butler and Kansas. The Cardinal were far less effective after that, having losing streaks of at least three games in each of January, February and March. Coach Jerod Haase will want his team to be more consistent in 2020-2021, but with four starters returning this should be a Stanford team that stays towards the top of the Pac-12 standings.
2019-20 Record: 20-12, 9-9
Coach: Jerod Haase
Coach Record: 69-61 at Stanford, 149-114 overall
Key Departed Players:
Tyrell Terry, Guard, 14.6 ppg
Isaac White, Guard, 4.2 ppg
Key Returning Players:
Oscar da Silva, Senior, Forward, 15.7 ppg
Spencer Jones, Sophomore, Forward, 8.8 ppg
Daejon Davis, Senior, Guard, 8.8 ppg
Bryce Wills, Junior, Guard, 7.8 ppg
Jaiden Delaire, Junior, Forward, 6.1 ppg
Lukas Kisunas, Junior, Forward, 2.4 ppg
James Keefe, Sophomore, Forward, 2.2 ppg
Keenan Fitzmorris, Sophomore, Center, 0.5 ppg
Key New Players:
Brandon Angel, Freshman, Forward
Neal Begovich, RS Freshman, Forward
Max Murrell, Freshman, Forward
Michael O’Connell, Freshman, Guard
Noah Taitz, Freshman, Guard
Ziaire Williams, Freshman, Forward
Oscar da Silva had a breakout season last year, averaging 15.7 points and 6.4 rebounds. He is a smart 6-9 senior who will make good passes and always be in the right position. He can even hit some outside shots. Spencer Jones proved to be an effective frontcourt mate for da Silva during his freshman year. Jones hit a team high 81 three-pointers at a 43.1 percent clip. Da Silva can stretch the defense a little bit, but it is Jones who really forces opposing forwards out of their comfort zone on the defensive end. Jaiden Delaire, Lukas Kisunas and James Keefe are all experienced forwards who will provide plenty of quality depth. The backcourt lost Tyrell Terry, but they will quickly reload. Daejon Davis is a great point guard and defender and can do more scoring than his 8.8 points per game last season would indicate. Bryce Wills earned All-Defensive honors last year and finished the season averaging 7.8 points, 4.0 rebounds and 2.0 steals. If you are looking for a new scorer to compliment Da Silva, look no further than incoming freshman Ziaire Williams. The 6-8 forward is a consensus top five recruit and he is expected to have one big season in Palo Alto before heading off to the NBA. Stanford was a young team last year and that proved to be an issue at times. This group has more experience and that will turn some of those close losses into close wins and help the Cardinal make their first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2014.
Projected Postseason Tournament: NCAA
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 69.5 (227th in nation, 10th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 62.5 (16, 1)
Field-Goal Percentage: 46.9 (30, 2)
Field-Goal Defense: 40.0 (38, 4)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 7.1 (193, 10)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 37.3 (21, 2)
Free-Throw Percentage: 70.3 (200, 9)
Rebound Margin: -1.7 (260, 11)
Assists Per Game: 12.9 (188, 7)
Turnovers Per Game: 14.3 (283, 10)
Madness 2021 NBA Draft Rankings:
#9 Ziaire Williams
Madness 2020 Men’s Basketball Recruit Rankings:
#6 Ziaire Williams
#117 Michael O'Connell