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It's just about that time for the Aggie basketball team. Coming off of a disappointing 2011-2012 campaign, we take a look at the roster to build some early expectations. The Turners will be leading the charge this season, but there is a lot of new talent on the roster.
Okay, let me backtrack a little since I am sure you just got really confused. We are talking about basketball. Bouncy ball, Round sphere, bounces on the hardwood, squeaky-shoers run up and down the court a lot, orange ball goes through the net, ya know...basketball. Everybody back on track now? Good.
Coach Kennedy and his staff will be putting a lot of young talent on the court with only two senior starters returning for the 2012-2013 season. Since Elston and Ray Turner will bear the expectations and leadership burden this year for the Aggies, they get the pleasure of being listed first in our roster review.
Returning Impact Players
Elston Turner 31, SR, Guard
Elston will be focal point of every team we play when they are scouting the Aggies. Last season, ET played over 34 minutes per game, led the team in scoring and free throw percentage, and did that all while playing a portion of the season out of his normal position. With the two new point guards the Aggies have on the roster this season, look for Elston to fall back into the role he is much more suited for. Many are expecting a big season from him, and rightfully so. I'll be looking for his field goal and three point percentages to increase now that he's able to move more freely without the ball this season in Coach Kennedy's offense.
The other half of the Turner combo is one of the more athletic basketball players in college basketball (see evidence here and here). Ray is not the kind of player that is going to benefit from being in slow half court sets, so he's another guy that should definitely benefit from Coach Kennedy and the staff getting their system more firmly in place in year two.
Jordan Green 13, SO, Guard
Jordan Green played in 31 games for the Aggies last season as a true freshman and started in 13 games. Jordan didn't light up the stat sheets last year, but that wasn't expected of him. He is going to continue to develop into a solid all-around basketball player, and this kind of athleticism goes a long way in that development. JG can easily become a big threat for the Aggies once he gets comfortable in the system.
Kourtney Roberson 32, SO-RS, Forward
Kourtney Roberson is a guy that the Aggies absolutely need to get back to 100% and stay healthy. Kourtney can be a force down low for opposing bigs to deal with and he can really help tip the rebounding in favor of the Aggies. They two key factors for Kourtney are getting the foot back to 100% and getting his feel for the game back.
Daniel Alexander 20, SO, Forward
Daniel Alexander is another player for the Aggies that shows some promise of rapid development throughout his career. We'll see him this year switching between time at the SF position and the PF position with his ability to stretch the floor. Daniel will be a fun player to watch this season to see how far he progressed during the offseason.
Keith Davis 4, JR, Center
Keith Davis enters his Junior season with the Aggies with what many fans hope to see is a big stride in his development. Keith came to A&M as a long big man with a very raw skill set. We've seen some improvement from him since then, but I'll really be watching his development on the blocks with the ball in his hands this season.
The New Guys - JUCO Edition
Fabyon Harris comes to Aggieland from College of Southern Idaho. Fabyon's story alone is worth becoming a big fan of his. If you aren't the sentimental time, that's okay too. Fabyon will definitely be winning fans over with his style of play this season. He's a gritty point guard that will push the ball and look to score and set his teammates up better than any point guard we have seen come through the A&M basketball program in a while. Don't blink when he has the ball, because Fabyon is insanely quick off the dribble.
Andrew Young joins the team after transferring in from Monterey Peninsula College. I've been talking about Andrew in our radio show saying that he is a guy I think Aggie Hoops fans are going to fall in love with this season. He's not afraid to get rough on the blocks and mix things up. Let me put him in terms Aggie fans can appreciate: He's a tatted up Chris Walker that can actually be a threat for the Aggies.
The New Guys - Freshmen and Transfers
If you've been a fan of Aggie Basketball for any period of time since J'Mychal Reese was in about the 8th grade you don't need me to explain who he is. J'Mychal, or "J-Mike" as he's often referred to as, is coming off of an injury that forced him to very little action in his senior season of basketball at Bryan. He looks to have healed incredibly well, and he will be making an immediate impact this season for the Aggies as a true freshman. J'Mychal is a smooth point guard that can score from anywhere on the floor with ease and really open the game up for his teammates. Not sold yet? Check out his highlight reel from the Lebron James Skills Academy.
Alex Caruso is the type of basketball player any coach would want on his team. He's athletic enough and skilled enough to be able to play anywhere from the PG to the SF position. That versatility along with his height and ability to create off the dribble will allow Coach Kennedy to use Alex to create some mismatches around the perimeter. And yes, he will dunk on opponents and teammates.
Shawn Smith comes to Aggieland after being originally committed to Missouri. Shawn had a pretty stout offer list for a 3-star prospect, and he was a steal for Coach Kennedy and crew on the recruiting front. He is a solid scoring guard and he can really light things up from mid-range to beyond the arc.
Antwan Space 3, SO-TR, Forward
Antwan Space transferred to Texas A&M from Florida State where he saw very limited action as a freshman. Space adds another bruiser to the rotation for the Aggies on the blocks and he has the ability to really make his presence known with his offensive rebounding. Unfortunately, it does not look like the Aggies will have any luck in having Space's residency requirement waived as a transfer, meaning he will be sitting out this year.
The Other Guys - We Love Them
Let's be honest with each other. We love seeing these guys get a chance to play and hear the crowd cheering for them. With that said, please use the word bank below to complete the write-ups for them:
-High Hoops IQ-
-Brings his lunch pail to the gym-
-Doing great in the classroom-
-Lots of heart-
-No quit in this kid-
Blake McDonald 10, JR, Guard
Everyone's favorite to come in to the game in blowout situations returns for his junior season. Blake currently sits at 0-1 from beyond the arc for his career in Aggieland, but I think this is the year that changes. He has a reputation for being a real _______________.
Jarod Jahns 42, SR, Forward
Jarod Jahns is another walk-on player from Houston on the roster. Coaches love him because he _______________ and ________________. Jarod will be looking to score his first points as an Aggie this year, and the Reed Rowdies better go crazy when he does.
Grant Jolly 33, SO, Forward
Grant Jolly is a big sophomore that ____________. Despite only playing 2 minutes last year, he hit one of two attempted free throws in the game against Arkansas Tech to get his scoring career started. Aggie fans should keep an eye out for what some are predicting to be a "best hair" battle between Grant and Daniel Alexander (Kyle Dobbins also in the running).