Bucketneers

After back to back third round exits, the Bucketneers look to break the streak and make it out of Xavier on top

 


If you’re looking to bet on a team to go 2-1 in the tournament, the Bucketneers have been a good bet. Even worse, they’ve lost both third round games by just one point. Now, with even more experience and a talented roster, the Bucketneers feel like they can get over that hurdle and make a run. They played in West Virginia last year, and this year, they’re hoping their fans will travel to Xavier to support them.

The ETSU alumni team will have seven former players either playing or coaching, and they’re hoping that Buccaneer blood will lead to on-court chemistry.

For more TBT team profiles, clickย here.

Current Roster:

  • Bo Hodges (ETSU & Butler)
  • Drew Buggs (Hawaii, Missouri & Winthrop)
  • Isaac Banks (ETSU)
  • Jalan McCloud (ETSU)
  • Jalen Johnson (Mercer)
  • Jalen Riley (ETSU)
  • Joirdon Nicholas (Montana, Stephen F. Austin, & Texas Southern)
  • Jordan Bowden (Tennessee)
  • Keyshawn Feazell (Creighton/McNeese St/Mississippi St)
  • Lamonte Turner (Tennessee)
  • Makale Foreman (Cal)
  • Quan Jackson (Georgia Southern & UAB)

Coaching Staff:

  • Dillon Reppart (GM)
  • Patrick Good (Head Coach)
  • Isaiah Tisdale (Asst. Coach)
  • Joe Hugley (Asst. Coach)
  • John Tedesco (Asst Coach)
  • Jordan Coffin (Asst. Coach)
  • Shepherd Blowers (Asst. Coach)

Region:

  • Xavier, Ohio

Team MVP: Bo Hodges

Even though he didn’t finish his college career at ETSU, he will be known as a Buccaneer for life thanks to his contribution in his first three seasons. He was an all-conference player twice, including first team in 2019-2020 when he averaged 12.7 PPG, 5.8 RPG, and 1.4 SPG. The Bucketneers need him to play at this level for them to go far, and he can do just that. Expect him to be a leader on the court and be a game manager, something that is so important in TBT.

Overseas, he has been solid, averaging around 12 points per game last season in the Finnish league. If he can get to that 12-point mark in TBT, that’ll be enough, as he has several teammates who can provide scoring support.

Make-or-break Player: Isaac Banks

The Bucketneers are very guard heavy, with nine of the twelve players on the roster being listed as that position. Banks is one of the few who is not, and because of this limited size, he will need to step up. He was crucial in the Bucketneers run last year, averaging 11.7 PPG and 5.0 RPG in last year’s run. If he can put up numbers like that again and stay out of foul trouble, that will be massive for his team.

If he struggles, there just isn’t a lot of support he can get, and the Bucketneers might get bullied down low and lose control of the game. Banks has proven before that he can handle the load and should be able to benefit his team.

Team Outlook

As a reward for winning two games last year, the Bucketneers get to face the Fort Wayne Champs, a team that won their first game last year, and bring in an upgraded roster. Then, they potentially play The Program for Autism, which made the TBT final last year. Oh yeah, if they win both of those, they potentially play Zip ‘Em Up, who are hosting the tournament. Talk about a tough break.

If the team with the biggest coaching staff won TBT, then the Bucketneers might be the favorites as they bring seven members, including FIVE assistant coaches. Most of these players are former ETSU players, so they’ll have a good relationship with the guys on the court and that’ll lead to solid communication.

Two other players to watch are Jordan Bowden and Lamonte Turner, two Tennessee players who should both have a solid impact on this team. Drew Buggs is an elite passer, and he could provide some huge minutes during those stretches that Hodges is on the bench.

The Bucketneers feel like they can beat any team and that’s all that matters. Make sure to tune in one Friday for their first game as they look to continue their streak of first round wins.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.