CAA Team Previews: Drexel Dragons
Last Season Record: (29-7, 16-2), 1st in CAA
Key Losses: 6-5 F Samme Givens. The former senior captain averaged 11.6 points, 7.9 rebounds and 1.0 blocks per game in 2011-2012. As a result of his successful year, Givens was named 2nd Team All-CAA last season and is only the third player in school history to reach more than 1,000 points and 1,000 rebounds during his career. Now that he’s graduated, the talented rebounder will take his talents to Holland and join the professional club, Aris Leeuwarden.
Key Additions: 6-7 G/F Tavon Allen. The Connecticut native was ready to contribute for the Dragons in 2011-2012, but an unfortunate foot injury he succumbed in a pre-season scrimmage against the Temple Owls ultimately forced the scorer to sit out the entire season. No longer redshirted, Allen’s size, speed and 3-point shooting ability should prove to be a very useful to the defending conference champs.
Coach: In Philly, James “Bruiser” Flint heads into his13th season at the helm of the Dragons with a 199-141 career record at Drexel. Flint, third on Drexel’s all-time coaching wins list, is just 6 points shy of the second place on the school’s win list. The veteran coach led his team to an incredible, all-around record-breaking season in 2011-2012 and looks to improve even more this campaign.
Player to Watch: 6-6 G Damion Lee. During the 2011-2012 season, the Baltimore product averaged 12.0 points 4.4 boards and just under 2 assists a night while earning CAA Rookie of the Year honors. Coach Flint will look for Lee to handle even more of the scoring load in his sophomore campaign, hoping he can lead the squad to an NCAA Tournament berth.
Prediction: In 2011-2012, The Dragons won a school record 29 games; including another record 19 straight. After winning the CAA regular season title but falling just short of the post-season crown, Drexel failed to earn a NCAA Tourney bid and eventually went on to the NIT Quarterfinals. This year, the Dragons are returning 4 of their 5 top scorers from last season and have chemistry to the nines. Since chemistry should probably push this team to similar heights as last season, look for the Dragons to compete for the conference crown once again in 2012-2013.
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