#115 Rider Men's Basketball 2021-2022 Preview

Rider Broncs
2021-2022 Overall Rank: #115
Conference Rank: #3 MAAC
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Forget about last year when Rider went 6-17. There was a lot of rebuilding to do for the Broncs and it never really worked out. The three previous years Coach Kevin Baggett’s team finished in the top three in the MAAC. With three starters returning and four Division I transfers, Rider has the talent to find themselves right back towards the top of the conference standings.
2020-21 Record: 6-17, 5-13
2020-21 Postseason: None
Coach: Kevin Baggett
Coach Record: 147-134 at Rider, 147-134 overall
Key Departed Players:
Dontrell McQuarter, Guard, 9.0 ppg
Rodney Henderson Jr, Guard, 7.8 ppg
Christian Ings, Guard, 7.7 ppg
Key Returning Players:
Dwight Murray Jr, Senior, Guard, 15.8 ppg
Allen Powell, Junior, Guard, 8.3 ppg
Ajiri Ogemuno-Johnson, Senior, Forward, 7.7 ppg
Jeremiah Pope, Senior, Guard, 6.2 ppg
Tyrel Bladen, Junior, Forward, 5.2 ppg
Jaelen McGlone, Sophomore, Guard, 2.7 ppg
Jordan Smalls, Sophomore, Guard, 2.0 ppg
Nehemiah Benson, Sophomore, Forward, 0.8 ppg
R.J. Weise, Sophomore Guard, 0.0 ppg
Corey McKeithan, Sophomore, Guard, dnp last season
Key New Players:
Sedrick Altman, Junior, Guard, Transfer from Pepperdine
Mervin James, Junior, Forward, Transfer from North Alabama
Jett Roesing, Sophomore, Guard, Transfer from Duquesne
Dimencio Vaughn, Senior, Forward, Transfer from Ole Miss
Dwight Murray Jr. was a bright spot in an otherwise forgettable 2020-2021 season. The senior guard transferred in from Incarnate Word and immediately became the leader of the Broncs. He tallied a team high 15.8 points, 6.0 rebounds, 4.1 assists and 1.0 steals. Murray also knocked down 41.7 percent of his attempts from beyond the arc. Allen Powell is mostly a shooter, but he does it very well. Powell hit 44.0 percent of his 84 attempts from long range. Ajiri Ogemuno-Johnson and Tyrel Bladen bring some experience and toughness to the frontcourt. However, it is the transfers that have Rider fans most excited. Dimencio Vaughn is no stranger to the Broncs. He played four years in Lawrenceville before transferring to Ole Miss last year. Now Vaughn is back. Two years ago with the Broncs, Vaughn averaged 14.8 points and 6.6 rebounds. Mervin James spent last year at North Alabama where he averaged 14.4 points and 7.2 rebounds. The 6-7 forward will stretch the defense with his outside shooting ability. Sedrick Altman was a part-time starter at Pepperdine the last two years and will at least add a defensive presence for Rider. This group has much more talent and depth than they had in 2020-2021. That will result in a much improved season with potentially Rider’s first NCAA Tournament berth since 1994.
Projected Postseason Tournament: CBI/CIT
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 67.5 (262nd in nation, 5th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 74.0 (266, 10)
Field-Goal Percentage: 42.8 (239, 3)
Field-Goal Defense: 46.3 (284, 11)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 6.3 (271, 8)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 35.3 (103, 2)
Free-Throw Percentage: 73.3 (86, 2)
Rebound Margin: -0.9 (215, 7)
Assists Per Game: 12.3 (224, 6)
Turnovers Per Game: 12.7 (133, 3)