Asheville - It's summer but with covid knocking out many fall sports many eyes turn to winter and basketball. UNC Asheville men's team is ready to get to that point of the year. The Bulldogs in Mike Morrell's seonc season rebounded from 4 wins to 15--one of the biggest turnarounds in the country. They feel this year they could do much more because of some incoming help.
The Bulldogs had a good season with smart play and athletic guards, but it was hampered by a lack of size inside. Morrell went about to change that by recruiting some size. He gets three star 6-7 versatile athlete Silas Mason from Greensboro and 6-9 big man B.J. Marable from Knoxville, Tn. They give Asheville two big guys who are terrific athletes and give the Dogs some presence which they lacked in 2019-20.
The veterans during practices this week have felt their contributions. Redshirt junior guard Tajion Jones says, "it's real critical for us because last year we ran into some teams and beat some teams that were bigger than us, but knowing we have size now down low to bang with them really helps us out this year."
Coach Mike Morrell has been impressed. He knows they've got learning to do and must fit in, but loves what they bring to the table. "A lot of athleticism and a lot of length and just a lot of youth. We have a lot of guys back so we don't rely as much on these new guys but i think a lot of these new guys are going to find their way into the rotation."
The spectre of covid is of course always around to ruin the mood but redshirt junior guard Lavar Batts Jr. says if they do play, watch out. "The expectation level and excitement is through the roof. I can't really put into words how excited we are for the season."