College basketball season is right around the corner. For Marshall University’s men’s basketball program the expectations continue to ascend. The teams success not only lies in the returning veterans, but also in the hands of the new pieces to the puzzle.
The Thundering Herd men’s basketball team welcomes six new faces to the program.
Freshmen Kareem Canty, Austin Loop and Tamron Manning join the Thundering Herd along with three college transfers in TyQuane Goard, Elijah Pitman and D.D. Scarver. Goard will sit out for the 2012-2013 season, due to NCAA transfer rules.
In addition to the six newcomers to the team, a familiar face in DeVince Boykins, a redshirt freshman, who sat out last season, but was with the Herd during the season and was able to acclimate himself to the college basketball scene.
Tom Herrion enters his third season as Head Coach of Marshall men’s basketball. Herrion has posted consecutive 20 plus winning seasons including the programs first trip to the National Invitation Tournament (NIT) in over 20 years.
With the departure of Damier Pitts, Shaquille Johnson and Dago Pena, the Thundering Herd enter the 2012-2013 season without three of the teams top six scorers. The team does maintain three starters off of last years squad, including the teams leading scorer in DeAndre Kane and the teams leading rebounder in Dennis Tinnon.
Pittman and Scarver will have to earn their minutes in a deep and experienced frontcourt. Tinnon, Nigel Spikes, Robert Goff, Yous Mbao and Jamir Hanner all return with at least one season under their belt.
Marshall’s backcourt returns two players who stepped on the hardwood in a Herd uniform last year in Kane and Chris Martin. Canty, Loop, Manning and Boykins will have an opportunity to compete for playing time alongside Kane and Martin.
Herrion has depth at the guard position, but who will fill those slots depends on the new members work ethic in the coming weeks.
Fall practice and an exhibition game against Bluefield College October 29 will determine who fits in Herrion’s rotation for the upcoming season.
Redshirt freshman DeVince Boykins joined Marshall men’s basketball program last season. In high school Boykins led East Rutherford to a 2-A championship. He was the star of the team finished his senior season averaging 17.2 points and 13.5 rebounds per game.
Boykins had offers to play college basketball at Marquette, Miami (FL) and South Carolina before ultimately choosing Marshall. The East Rutherford star stands six feet four inches tall and is built like a football player. His size places him as one of the bigger guards on the Thundering Herd squad.
Boykins was allowed to play in the teams 2011 exhibition match against Northern Kentucky. He played 13 minutes in the contest and recorded two points, two rebounds and a steal. Boykins will look to contribute to the Herd this season.