2012-2013 CAA Team Previews: William & Mary Tribe
Last Season Record: (6-26, 4-14), 10th in CAA
Key Losses: The Tribe have lost two crucial seniors from last season’s roster. First, 6-6 G/F Quinn McDowell. In 2011-2012, McDowell averaged 12.5 points, 4.8 rebounds and 1.6 assists per night last season. The Mason, Ohio product was a two-time team captain and is the W&M career record holder for games and minutes played. Additionally, 6-3 G Kendrix Brown, averaged 4.0 points, 4.3 rebounds and 1.6 assists last season and will be missed in the Tribe’s backcourt.
Key Additions: Despite losing two strong senior leaders from last season, the Tribe are gaining a strong leader this season. Already named a 2012-2013 team captain, 6-8 F Kyle Gaillard is returning to the team from a medical redshirt last season Gaillard is expected to be a key feature of the Tribe’s frontcourt. Additionally, William & Mary are gaining two solid freshman. The Tribe will add 6-5 G Terry Tarpey and and 6-9 F Sean Sheldon to their roster for this season.
Coach: Entering his 10th season as the head coach of the Tribe, Tony Shaver is looking to improve his already nationally ranked active Division I head coaching winning percentage. Since joining William & Mary in 2003, Shaver has won the CAA Coach of the Year twice and been a finalist for the National Mid-Major Coach of the year. Shaver led the Tribe to the 2010 NIT, and W&M faithful expect him to be able to bring the team to the postseason once again this year.
Player to Watch: 6-9 F Tim Rusthoven. In 2011-2012, Rusthoven averaged 10.3 points, 6.6 rebounds and 1.5 assists as a sophomore starter for the Tribe. Rusthoven is one of only three returning starters to this W&M squad, and he is looking to taking over the void that resulted from the loss of McDowell. Rusthoven should be a strong leader on and off the court for the Tribe, and he probably will flirt with a double double average for the season as well.
Prediction: Last season, William & Mary struggled to compete in the CAA and in their non-conference games as well. They’ve lost one of the greatest players in their program’s history in McDowell, but they are replacing him with some solid players. However, don’t expect the Tribe to skyrocket up the CAA standings this season. They should be in the bottom of the group once again.
Jake Fischer is the CAA Correspondent for the Arena Pulse at Rant Sports. Make sure to follow Jake on Twitter @fischsportsline.