Since the UNLV Rebels are losing some great players for the 2013-14 college basketball season, others must step up. However, it boils down to two players for the Rebels.
No, two players are not going to make this team. Yes, there is still a lot of talent on UNLV outside of these two players.
The two players who need to big big this year, though, are Khem Birch and Bryce Dejean-Jones. Birch put up 7.2 points per game and 5.7 rebounds per game in just a little over 20 minutes per game last season. With Mike Moser, Anthony Bennett, Katin Reinhardt and Anthony Marshall no longer being on the team, I am going to go out on a limb and say that Birch will get more playing time.
The same goes for Dejean-Jones, who averaged 10.3 points per game and 4.4 rebounds per game this past season. Both players have different playing styles, but both will have to take over this team if UNLV plans on competing in the MWC and making the NCAA tournament. With that said, New Mexico will have a lot of talent returning and will easily have the team to beat in the conference entering the season.
Still, UNLV cannot be counted out, especially if these two players rise to the occasion. However, this occasion will have to last the entire 2013-14 season. It will be interesting to see if the Rebels can compete in the upcoming season, but there is enough talent left on this team for it to make some noise. Now, we just have to wait a few months to hear that noise.
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