#23 Stanford Men's Basketball 2014-2015 Preview

Stanford Cardinal

2014-2015 Overall Rank: #23
Conference Rank: #3 Pac-12

Stanford Team Page#23 Stanford Men's Basketball 2014-2015 PreviewBuy Stanford Basketball Tickets

On the heels of their surprise run to the Sweet Sixteen, Coach Johnny Dawkins may have his best team at Stanford to date. The Cardinal were a #10 seed in last year’s NCAA Tournament and beat New Mexico and Kansas to earn a shot at Dayton and a chance reach the regional finals. But in that game of Cinderellas, it was the Flyers that got the best of Stanford. Despite some significant losses, this is a Cardinal team that will look to repeat that success. Much of the pressure will fall on Chasson Randle. The senior point guard averaged a team high 18.8 points and he knocked down 38.9 percent of his shots from long range. Randle is the leader of this team, but how well they do will depend on everybody else.

2013-14 Record: 23-13, 10-8
2013-14 Postseason: NCAA
Coach: Johnny Dawkins
Coach Record: 117-87 at Stanford, 117-87 overall

Who’s Out:
Losing forwards Dwight Powell and Josh Huestis is big. Powell was second on the team with 14.0 points per game and also averaged 6.9 rebounds, 3.1 assists and 1.3 steals. It is not every day that a 6-10, 240 pound forward leads a team in assists and steals. There is nobody on the roster that can do what Powell did for Stanford. Huestis was a versatile forward too. On top of his 11.2 points per game, he averaged 8.2 rebounds and 1.9 blocks per game. Huestis could also stretch the defense with his shooting ability. Aaron Bright is gone after missing most of last season anyway, John Gage provided quality frontcourt depth and Robbie Lemons was occasionally a decent shooter off of the bench.

Who’s In:
Point guard Robert Cartwright is the only true point guard on the team and he will get the opportunity to see major minutes right away. He has the talent to start as long as he can prove that he can run the offense as a freshman. Dorian Pickens will add more options on the perimeter for Coach Dawkins. Cartwright could play a huge role, but the best freshman on the team is Reid Travis. The 6-8, 240 pound forward is physically ready to compete in the Pac-12 from day one. He also has a much better offensive game than most incoming freshman. Michael Humphrey is a nice talent too, but he will need to add strength before he will be able to battle in the paint effectively at this level.

Who to Watch:
Anthony Brown and Stefan Nastic are both returning starters, but the key will be filling in around the experienced trio of seniors. There are some intriguing options. Marcus Allen was a big recruit for Stanford a year ago, but he averaged just 8.7 minutes per game in 2013-2014. Now it is time for him to show off what he can do. Allen is a shooting guard, but he can also handle the ball a little bit and that would allow Randle to play off of the ball. The backcourt also has Marcus’ brother Malcolm Allen and Christian Sanders, who is coming off of an injury. Sanders, a 6-4 junior, started four games as a freshman back in 2012-2013 and will at least provide some emergency depth. In the frontcourt, Rosco Allen and Grant Verhoeven will battle it out with the newcomers for playing time. Rosco Allen averaged 3.2 points and 2.1 rebounds as a freshman before missing nearly all of last season with an injury. He is a promising prospect who can knock down shots. Verhoeven is a big body, but only averaged 5.7 minutes per game last season.

Final Projection:
Brown will start on the perimeter again, while Nastic will hold down the frontcourt. Brown was the team’s third leading scorer and turned into a nice complimentary player to Randle. He averaged 12.3 points per game and connected on 45.3 percent of his attempts from beyond the arc. Brown is also a big 6-6 guard who knows how to hit the glass. Without Powell and Huestis, the team’s top two rebounders of a season ago, Brown’s ability to help the frontcourt in the rebounding department is huge. Nastic left most of the rebounding to everybody else, but the 6-11, 245 pound center should be much more productive this season. Nastic is a solid shot blocker and a pretty good interior scorer too. If the younger talent can fill in around Randle, Brown and Nastic, Stanford will be in good shape. However, youth and inexperience are not good things to have on a team without a true point guard. If the offense starts sputtering, it may be tough to get them back on track.

Projected Postseason Tournament: NCAA Tournament

Projected Starting Five:
Chasson Randle, Senior, Guard, 18.8 points per game
Marcus Allen, Sophomore, Guard, 1.7 points per game
Anthony Brown, Senior, Guard, 12.3 points per game
Reid Travis, Freshman, Forward, DNP last season
Stefan Nastic, Senior, Center, 7.4 points per game

By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 72.7 (116th in nation, 8th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 68.3 (122, 5)
Field-Goal Percentage: 45.9 (84, 6)
Field-Goal Defense: 42.1 (98, 5)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 5.8 (211, 7)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 36.4 (80, 5)
Free-Throw Percentage: 70.2 (166, 6)
Rebound Margin: 1.8 (128, 4)
Assists Per Game: 11.5 (257, 10)
Turnovers Per Game: 11.4 (79, 4)

Madness 2014 Men’s Basketball Recruit Rankings:
#36 Reid Travis
#68 Michael Humphrey
#69 Robert Cartwright


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