Grant McCasland, North Texas Mean Green

After clinching the Conference-USA West, the North Texas Mean Green will look slightly different. A few recruits from the portal will be solid replacements for lost players.

The countdown is officially on. For the second straight year, CBB Review has ranked the top 100 teams in college basketball heading into next season. We will reveal the next team daily until we get to number one. The North Texas Mean Green is our number 69, nice, ranked team.

Losing some significant minutes, Coach Grant McCasland went out and recruited some excellent talent to replace these players. Mardez McBridge is going to Georgia, and Coach brought in Tyree Eady, a talented guard from North Dakota State. Thomas Bell graduated and is being replaced by Jayden Martinez from New Hampshire. Continuing the culture, the North Texas Mean Green will try and finish at the top of the conference this year with some time spent growing as a team.

To those who have not, click here to learn more about our preseason top 100 teams in the 2022-23 college basketball season.

Head Coach: Grant McCasland (7th season overall, 6th season with North Texas)

2021-2022 Record: 25-7 (16-2)

2022 Postseason Finish: Lost in second round of NIT

Notable Departures: Mardrez McBridge (Georgia), Thomas Bell (Graduate), JJ Murray (Graduate), Hameir Wright (Graduate), Jahmiah Simmons (Graduate)

Projected Rotation:

PG: Tyree Eady (6-5, 210, Sr.)

2021-22 stats: 10.3 points, 5.0 rebounds, 2.4 assists, 1.0 steals, 46.5 FG%, 37.8 3P% (North Dakota State)

SG: Tylor Perry (5-11, 182, So.)

2021-22 stats: 13.5 points, 2.9 rebounds, 2.5 assists, 1.3 steals, 42.2 FG%, 41.4 3P%

SF: Rubin Jones (6-5, 184, Jr.)

2021-22 stats: 8.2 points, 3.1 rebounds, 2.2 assists, 0.9 steals, 41.2 FG%, 34.5 3P%

PF: Jayden Martinez (6-7, 210, Jr.)

2021-22 stats: 14.9 points, 5.5 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 46.6 FG%, 41.8 3P% (New Hampshire)

C: Abou Ousmane (6-10, 250, Jr.)

2021-22 stats: 10.2 points, 5.9 rebounds, 0.5 assists, 0.9 blocks, 50.2 FG%

6: Moulaye Sissoko (6-9, 225, Sr.)

2021-22 stats: 2.4 points, 2.0 rebounds, 0.1 assists, 0.1 blocks, 66.7 FG% (Dayton)

7: Aaron Scott (6-7, 190, So.)

2021-22 stats: 4.1 points, 4.1 rebounds, 0.4 assists, 0.4 steals, 0.4 blocks, 50.5 FG%

8: Matthew Stone (6-4, 220, So.)

2021-22 stats: 0.6 points, 1.7 rebounds, 0.2 assists, 0.5 blocks, 67.9 FG%

9: Rasheed Browne (6-2, 210, So.)

2021-22 stats: 1.0 points, 3.9 minutes, 12 games played

10: Bryce Zephir (6-3, 180, So.)

2021-22 stats: 1.1 points, 3.2 minutes, 11 games played

Team MVP: Jayden Martinez

A steadily growing player, Jayden Martinez is set to be a scoring asset for the North Texas Mean Green. Coming from New Hampshire, he will step into a leadership role and likely be one of the significant scorers. He has a fluid shooting motion, has an understanding of defensive breakdowns, and has some bounce to create his shot.

Martinez is used to playing extended minutes and was a leader on his former team. North Texas hopes his transition goes well as he can be a dominant force in Conference USA. I have a feeling that he can quickly become a fan favorite.

Make-or-Break-Player: Tyree Eady

Tyree Eady has been with a team that plays fast (North Dakota State). He is a solid shooter and was able to remain on the floor, rarely fouling. He has a solid basketball IQ on offense and has been a leader, which can be an asset to this team. Eady is hoping to continue to grow, and I am sure the North Texas Mean Green is hoping for the same.

Being a more experienced player, this team hopes he can step in and fulfill the vacated role and help bring along the younger and smaller talent in Tylor Perry. The worry is that he took a slight step back last year, which makes me worried as he will be incorporated into a new team, coach, and offense.

Analytic to Know: 317th in PPG in 2021-22

Scoring the basketball certainly wasn’t an asset of the North Texas Mean Green last season. They finished 317th out of the 358 teams in Division I, only averaging 65.1 points per game.

The good thing is, they will have no trouble improving in that department this season. North Texas returns a few important scoring pieces and adds some as well. While they still won’t jump off the page, it should resemble more of the 2020-21 UNT team that averaged 69.8 points per game.

Team Outlook

After finishing second in the regular season for Conference USA last year, the North Texas Mean Green are set to take over the conference. This team completed its 3-peat of winning the West Division. This led to North Texas making a trip to the NIT last year. Coach McCasland has brought in talent to replace a player lost to the portal and the others that graduated. This team will need to mesh as expected with the new faces. Looking at all of the team’s stats, this team is very balanced, and his no glaring weaknesses.

The biggest drawback for this team last year was its free-throw rate. The North Texas Mean Green only made 65.4%  of its free throws. This seems like an easy thing to fix that could easily be fixed. The competitors that could fight for the C-USA are Western Kentucky, Old Dominion, and Florida Atlantic.

Projected Conference Finish: 3rd in the C-USA

Projected Postseason Finish: NIT Appearance

Ceiling: NCAA Tournament Appearance