CFB Week 9 Card

ND (-3.5) vs UNC: UNC is 0-2 away from home and their D is horrific, which will help mask the deficiencies of this ND offense. The Irish are improving on the defensive side, and have quietly been rolling since the loss to undefeated Cincy. They have pivoted to focus more on running the ball, Kyren Williams is rolling, and the Tar Heels can’t stop a nose bleed. Look for Williams to have a massive day and for ND to roll offensively. The Irish should get enough stops to win this one comfortably. Cash it.

Iowa (ML) @ Wisconsin: But…but…but Iowa lost to Purdue who immediately got trounced by Wisconsin, how could you possibly…hold up a sec, allow me. The Hawkeyes got drunk on their own Kool-Aid and laid an egg against an inferior team, so what? They’re back off the matt and still the same vaunted defense that has made opposing QB’s look silly every other week, and who do they get to see this week? Graham Mertz. Mertz is pathetically bad, even Badger fans know it. If you can contain the run, which Iowa can, he will just give you the ball 3-4 times and Iowa is elite at taking advantage of bad QB play. Hawkeyes roll thanks to Mertz and establish themselves as the Big Ten West fave. Cash it. 

Auburn (-2.5) vs Ole Miss: Bo Nix has this Auburn offense rolling and they get one of the worst defenses in the SEC coming to town to continue this run. Nix has had his issues, especially on the road, but he gets to face a terrible defense and at home under the lights he has shined in his career. With Corral clearly compromised and Auburn’s defense much better than Ole Miss’ I see Auburn controlling this one. The win @Arkansas may have me overreacting but I’m loving what the Tigers are doing. In Bo we trust. Cash it. 

Kentucky (-2) @ Miss St: Tough road game here for the Wildcats but UK has been underrated all year imo, and Miss St is just not great. Kentucky is built to win these games, with a great defense and a strong running game behind Chris Rodriguez Jr, I think they win a really close battle here. At the end of the day give me the team that gets stops and controls the line of scrimmage in these matchups, and 2 points is too low. The Bulldogs will need more than 70k cowbells to win this one. Kentucky ugly but decisively. Cash it. 

W. Virginia (+7) vs Iowa St: Iowa St is coming off of one of the biggest wins in the programs history, a natural let down spot. The Mountaineers are by no means better than Iowa St, but this is a trap game and WV is always frisky at home. This is purely a bet on the hangover from the Cyclones and in the end I think they win the game late but 7 points is a lot to cover on the road after that kind of win. Hungry dogs run faster, especially at home. Cash it.

UCLA (+6.5) @ Utah: DTR looks like he’s going to play for the Bruins, and off a tough loss to a great Oregon team I see no reason to think they take a beating from the Utes. Going to Utah is one of the more difficult trips in college football, but this UCLA offense is electric and they are battling for the Pac-12 South. Utah is getting love based on who they’ve historically been, a defensive juggernaut, but the 2021 defense is porous and I expect DTR and company to tear right through em. Sprinkle the UCLA ML but love the 6.5. Cash it. 

Wake (-16.5) vs Duke: Duke is terrible. Their last two road games they were beaten by 48 and 31 and now they get undefeated white hot Wake Forest. The only trepidation here is Wake’s defense, but Duke only put up 7 total points in those two games against really bad UNC and UVA defenses, so I’m not concerned. This is truly a shit-pumping in the making as Wake has one of the most explosive offenses in the ACC. It’s alot of points but the Demon Deacons should be covering by halftime. Cash it. 

CFB Week 7 Card

Season Record: 14-8-1 (+5.6u)

Nebraska -3.5 (Lock): Nebraska heads to Minnesota after a heartbreaking loss to undefeated Michigan on a go ahead FG with a minute left in the game. I love where the Huskers have gone since the Week 0 loss to Illinois, as they’ve lost 3 games but all to undefeated teams and every game was a slugfest that they had a chance to win. Minnesota has been mostly in shambles this season, including a loss to Bowling Green and I truly think Nebraska is going to walk in there and heir their frustrations. Nebraska has been playing as good as any team in the 15-25 range they just haven’t been able to seal the deal. This is way more lopsided a matchup than people are looking at it. Cash it.

Oregon -13.5: The Ducks have had 2 weeks to chew on that tough loss on the road to Stanford, and you know their blood is boiling and they’re itching to prove they haven’t gone anywhere. Cal is the unfortunate twig house in the path of a hurricane in this one and the Ducks should go under the lights on a Friday night and win this by 3+ TD’s. I think this Oregon team has a legitimate shot to still run the table the rest of the way and play themselves into the playoff with that win over Ohio St, and they know it too. Every game has more urgency and we’ll feel that urgency on Friday night. Cash it.

UCLA – ML: The Bruins have been pretty damn good this season and Washington has been very mediocre, so I’m not sure why UCLA is a dog in this matchup but I love them to take care of business in this one. The thing that does worry you is that they welcome in Oregon next weekend, but you know Chip Kelly has been driving home that next week will mean a whole hell of a lot less if they lose this one to Washington. With only 1 Conference loss thus far the Bruins are not out of it in terms of a Conference Championship, so the motivation is still there. Cash it.

TCU +13.5: TCU’s offense is dynamic and I’m really betting on Oklahoma having a let down game after that emotional come from behind victory over Texas last week. Not to mention they have a QB controversy on their hands which adds to the emotional toll heading into this game and TCU under Gary Patterson have always gotten up for the big ones against Texas and OU. I definitely think Oklahoma wins this game but I think TCU punches em in the mouth early and is able to hang around in a very high scoring game. Cash it.

Arkansas -3.5: I’m still riding Sam Pittman and Arkansas and definitely do not buy into the narrative that they are overhyped, if anything I think they are still underappreciated. This offense is dynamic, see 51 points last week, and while the defense has been suspect Auburn is not anywhere near as explosive as Ole Miss. I like Arkansas in their home stadium again to enact a little revenge against a team who beat them last season on an officiating blunder. Also, fading Bo Nix on the road is just a winning strategy regardless of the matchup. Cash it.

Michigan St -4.5: This is a disrespectful line for Sparty, and while I understand the “trap game” thinking, I just don’t see a team who is so fundamentally sound and so consistent in the trenches to lose a game to an inferior team playing with their backup QB. Kenneth Walker is going to rack up another 200+ yards and Sparty will slowly wear down this Hoosiers team and win by double digits. IU just isn’t who we thought they would be, and without their dynamic QB is going to have major struggles on both sides of the ball. Ride this one if not for anything above at least for the potential undefeated matchup next weekend with Michigan. Cash it.

CFB Rankings (Week 6)

6.Oklahoma State5-0
9.Penn State5-1
11.Ohio State5-1
12.Ole Miss4-1
13.Michigan St6-0
14.Wake Forest6-0
15.Notre Dame5-1
16.Coastal Carolina6-0
17.Arizona St5-1
21.NC State4-1
22.Texas A&M4-2
24.San Diego St5-0

CFB Week 6 Card

Texas +3.5 & ML: Oklahoma is favored in this rivalry game and what I’ve seen from them gives me zero confidence they can beat this Texas team that has been rolling as of late. We dismissed Texas after they went on the road and lost to Arkansas, but how bad does that really look now? Oklahoma has struggled with the likes of Nebraska, Tulane, and K-State in recent weeks and Texas has been dominate since moving to Casey Thompson at QB. This should be a shootout, but I love Texas at +3.5 and I’m on the ML as well. Bijan Robinson goes off. Cash it.

Arkansas +6.5: Call me a sucker but I still love what Arkansas has rolling with Sam Pittman, even after watching them get drubbed by Georgia. Georgia is the best team in the country and is a nightmare matchup for what the Arkansas’ strengths are, but the good news is Ole Miss is the antithesis of Georgia. Arkansas will be able to run the ball and burn the Rebel D on play action, it’s bread and butter and Ole Miss offensively is not a ground and pound team like Georgia. Arkansas has the athletes on the outside defensively to slow Ole Miss down and make this one go down to the wire. 6.5 is way too many points. Cash it.

Louisville -2: This line is a head scratcher which worries me but I really think Louisville wins this pretty handily. This Virginia defense is atrocious, they just lost to Miami who is terrible and now they face one of the more dynamic QB’s in the country in Malik Cunningham. Neither defense is that great but Louisville’s offense is more dynamic and they impressed me last week taking Wake Forest down to the wire on the road. The home team and the better team only laying 2 points? Cash it.

Iowa -2.5: The game of the week in CFB as #3 Iowa takes on #4 Penn State and I love the Hawkeyes to win in an ugly punt fest. Iowa’s defense has been making QB’s look like dog shit all season, most notably media darling Brock Purdy in Week 2. I don’t think Clifford will fare any better and I look for that defense to turn over Penn St 3+ times once again and give the offense enough short fields to be able to take care of business this week. This is the best defense Iowa has faced but until they face a QB that can sling it around and take care of the football I will be hammering them. Cash it.

Nebraska +3.5: This is a dangerous game for Michigan as Nebraska has continued to look better and better every week. The Huskers lost inexcusably Week 1 to Illinois, but since then they have dominated the teams they should and were close to taking down 2 ranked, undefeated teams in Oklahoma and Michigan St. I am not sold on Michigan and think this is a monster game for Nebraska’s program. I love home dogs, especially when it means a little more. Had to talk myself down from the ML here but 3.5? Cash it.

CFB Top-25 (Week 5)

5.Penn St.5-0
7.Oklahoma State5-0
11.Michigan State5-0
14.Ohio State4-1
15.Notre Dame4-1
16.Ole Miss3-1
17.Wake Forest5-0
18.Coastal Carolina5-0
20.Arizona St4-1
22.NC State4-1
24.San Diego St4-0

NFL Picks Week 4

Week 4 NFL Picks 

Buccaneers –6.5: Tom Brady heads home to face an inferior Patriots team. Regardless of all of the storylines and all of the pageantry that will happen the Bucs are miles better than the Pats and Brady is motivated coming off a loss. This will be a blowout and ultimately mean nothing for the Brady vs Belichick debate. Cash it. 

Steelers +6.5: This is too big of a spread for a good Steelers team that will be desperate for a win. They have issues but the defense will be better with Watt back and Rodgers’ achilles heel is a front 4 that can get after him quickly. Look for it to be low scoring and the Steelers to hang around, cover but ultimately lose. Cash it. 

Colts ML: Simply put the Colts are much better than the 0-3 record shows, as they’ve played 3 good teams who likely end up in the playoffs. The Dolphins are reeling and are a good test but these Colts will not go 0-4. Hungry dogs are the most dangerous in the world of sports. Wentz gets his first dub as a Colt. Cash it.  

Chargers –3.5: The Raiders are overvalued at this stage at 3-0 and the Chargers have proven to be able to beat the best, and on the road at that. Now they come back home to take on an undefeated division opponent. Expect Herbert to go wild and the Chargers to pull away in a high scoring high action Monday Night thriller. Cash it.  

CFB Picks Week 5

CFB Week 5 Card:
Record: 8-3 (+5u)

Arkansas +18.5 (1.1u): This is as disrespectful of a line as I’ve ever seen. Arkansas has two outright
wins over ranked teams as an underdog, both by double digits. They have an explosive offense, a
defense that flies around and Sam Pittman, who clearly has changed the culture to embody the blue
collar nature of the state of Arkansas. Georgia’s best win? 10-3 over Clemson, who might not even be the 3rd best team in the ACC. This will be a dog fight, an incredible game and will be the easiest win of the weekend. Georgia wins late but Arkansas is a legitimate top-10 team. 18.5 is absurd. Cash it.

Texas -5 (1.1u): Too many people on TCU. Texas was dismissed too early after a loss to Arkansas, how
does that look now? Texas is a top-25 team and will put up 40+ on this pathetic TCU defense. I don’t love road favorites but Texas is getting ignored all because they lost to a top-10 team on the road. Love Bijan Robinson, Thompson is the guy and Sarkisian has things rolling. Cash it.

Kentucky +8.5 (1.1u): Florida is going to get everything Kentucky has, similar to Alabama heading to the
Swamp a couple of weeks ago. Great teams win this game but to expect Florida to waltz in there and win
a game like this by 9 or more is asking a lot. Kentucky’s D is solid enough, and they have one of the best
rushing attacks in the SEC led by Chris Rodriguez Jr. I love home dogs, and especially when it’s a
chance for a team like Kentucky to make a statement. Sprinkle the ML if you’re feeling frisky but 8.5?
Cash it.

Oklahoma St -3.5 (1.1u): This is tough one but I think the Cowboys are better on D and better in the
trenches. Both teams can run the ball, Baylor especially, but the Cowboys have been very effective in
stopping the run. If they can force Baylor into 3 rd and longs I don’t like Bohannon’s ability to make big
plays. They are also getting a lot of love from last week, when largely the game was won on a kickoff
return. Not buying Baylor. Cash it.

Kansas St +10.5 (1.1u): Purely a bet against an overvalued Oklahoma. They barely beat Tulane,
Nebraska and W. Virginia at home. K-State is better than all of them it it’s on the road. The line has
moved heavily towards Oklahoma, so you might be able to get 12.5 on this. Oklahoma does not deserve
to be in the top-10 and should be on upset alert. Another huge home dog. Cash it.

Rutgers +15 (1.1u): I’m riding home dogs this year and here’s another one. They played Michigan very
tough and covered easily last week. Ohio State’s D is still a problem, and when you can’t get stops it’s
hard to win by 3 TD’s. Schiano clearly has something going in Jersey and this is a chance to get them on
the map. Not the same old Rutgers we’re used to seeing get steamrolled. Cash it.

2021 Nebraska Preview

Key Departures: Teddy Allen (–>N. Mexico St); Dalano Banton (NBA); Shamiel Stevenson (Pro);

New In Town: Alonzo Verge Jr (<–Arizona St); CJ Wilcher (<–Xavier); Keon Edwards (<–DePaul);Bryce McGowens (#28); Wilhelm Breidenbach (#100); Quaran McPherson (#207); Oleg Kojenets (#210); Keisei Tominaga (JUCO)

State of the Program:

                  Fred Hoiberg continues to charge forward in his noble attempt to resurrect this Nebraska program from the ashes left behind by Tim Miles’ tumultuous exit. Last season was a step in the right direction, as they improved 50 spots in overall efficiency rankings to 102nd overall, largely behind a top-50 defense. The overall record still looks ugly, with a 5-34 Big Ten record over Hoiberg’s first 2 years, but this season could be another jump forward with another influx of talent. What’s key to watch in rebuilds such as this is an establishment of a winning culture, and to see them competing harder and harder is a positive sign on that front. Improving the defense from 152nd to 40th year over year is absolutely an accomplishment, and a reflection of a culture of competing hard every possession. Now the talent is having a chance to catch up, and if that culture continues to permeate throughout the program then I expect more gains to be made on this journey back to relevance. They also are beginning to get some stability, as they welcome back several key contributors from last season’s team they can continue to build around. That group is led by G Trey McGowens (SR), F Lat Mayen (JR), F Derrick Walker (SR), and G Kobe Webster (SR). All 4 of them started games for the Cornhuskers a year ago and McGowens was the key scorer and playmaker after Teddy Allen left the program mid-season. That group combined with the incoming talent should lift this Cornhusker team out of the cellar of the Conference in another positive step for this program.

What’s New:

                  It’s a huge group of guys coming into the program, with some redshirts likely to come, but the headliner of the group is Arizona St transfer G Alonzo Verge Jr (SR). He was a prolific scorer with the Sun Devils whose game reminds you of former Maryland star Anthony Cowan. He can score at all 3 levels and has the creativity and skill to get a clean look at any moment. The Cornhuskers need that spark and playmaking and he’ll likely be a starter in the backcourt. Also looking to start right away is brother of Trey McGowens, 5-star 6’6” G Bryce McGowens (#28). McGowens is the best recruit Nebraska has ever landed, and is almost a spitting image of former Villanova and current Suns star Mikal Bridges. Same thin, long frame with the same defensive upside, along with athleticism and a more developed offensive game than Bridges had at this stage. He can come in and be a star right away for Nebraska. A couple of other transfers have a shot at minutes, the first of which is 6’7” wing Keon Edwards (FR) out of DePaul. Edwards is largely unproven, as he enrolled early a season ago and didn’t get much action. He was a top-100 recruit though, and comes in as a special athlete that has a high ceiling if he can develop his game. Former Xavier G CJ Wilcher (FR) also enters looking for backup minutes, and his game is mostly as a crafty scorer, as his athleticism doesn’t jump off the page, but he can earn minutes if he can provide some scoring punch. The other member of the Freshman class who has a legit shot at minutes is 6’9” big man Wilhelm Breidenbach (#100) who will battle RS FR Eduardo Andre for backup big minutes. His game is a little quirky, but he has a lot of potential with his height and length combined with decent handles and a decent shot. He should develop as a very good stretch big man, especially if he adds strength to his wiry frame. The rest of the incoming class will likely redshirt or never see the floor, as it’s a massive group on the roster.

Prediction: 11th Big Ten (NR)

                  All-in-all I love what Hoiberg is building and unequivocally believe he will get this program to the NCAA tournament in the next couple of years. I don’t expect them to vie for that this season, but I definitely expect huge steps forward to be taken. They will no longer be the bottom dweller in the Conference, and I think they even pull a few surprise wins over the top teams at home. You will not be able to overlook Nebraska this season, and even though they will likely still be sub-.500 in Conference play it’ll be an entirely different feel this season. The McGowens brothers combined with Verge and Mayen give the Huskers some legitimate threats offensively. If they can maintain the improvements that were made on the defensive end then they should surprise some people in terms of how close they compete against elite teams. Ultimately winning matters above all else, but in this long term resurrection plan this season can be a key turning point for Hoiberg on this journey.

2021 Minnesota Preview

Key Departures: Marcus Carr (–>Texas); Gabe Kalscheur (–>Iowa St); Liam Robbins (–>Vandy); Both Gach (–>Utah); Brandon Johnson (–>Depaul); Jamal Mashburn Jr (–>New Mexico); Tre Williams (–>Oregon St)

New In Town: Luke Loewe (<–William & Mary); E.J. Stephens (<–Lafayette); Jamison Battle (<–G. Washington) Sean Sutherlin (<–New Hampshire); Payton Willis (<–Colgate); Charlie Daniels (<–SF Austin); Parker Fox (JUCO); Danny Ogele (<–Navy); Abdoulaye Thiam (JUCO); Treyton Thompson (#178)

State of the Program:

                  Minnesota is a complete dumpster fire right now, to put it lightly. Richard Pitino had opportunity after opportunity to build and maintain success here and failed to do so, as his 8 year stint came to a crashing conclusion last season after losing 8 of 9 to end the year. That was after reaching as high as 16 in the rankings after beating the likes of Iowa, Ohio St, Michigan and Purdue. The Gophers completely collapsed, and with it came the collapse of the program as virtually everyone from a year ago has exited. New coach Ben Johnson has an almost impossible task ahead of him, as he welcomes 10 new players into the program. He begins his first stint as a head coach after playing for the Gophers and spending the last decade+ as an assistant coach at N. Iowa, Nebraska, Minnesota and Xavier. At this point if you’re still reading this you’re either a Minnesota fan, in which case I’m very sorry, or incredibly bored. I will quickly summarize the outlook for those barely hanging on, and it is as follows; your favorite team will dread playing the Gophers, only because a loss would be a disaster and a stain on the resume and a win will do absolutely nothing for you. The Gophers will be lucky to win 1 game in the Big Ten this season. Remember when Tim Miles left Nebraska in flames and Fred Hoiberg took the reins? He has won 5 total Big Ten games in his 2 seasons there, and he’s coached in the NBA. I can definitively say Coach Johnson faces an even tougher challenge having zero HC experience. Now, if you’re still with me, I’m going to painstakingly breakdown all 10 incoming players, all to surmise that they struggle to win 1 conference game. God bless your obsession to Minnesota hoops if you indulge in the exercise.

What’s New:

                  Kicking it off is 6’4” G Luke Loewe (SR) out of William & Mary. Luke was a 2x All-D and 1x All-CAA selection that averaged 16/3/3 a season ago. He’s a 3 level scorer that uses his craftiness to get to his spots despite his lack of athleticism. That will be more difficult in the Big Ten but the Gophers will undoubtedly need him to be a playmaker. 6’7” wing Jamison Battle (SO) is a southpaw who was also an All-Conference selection a season ago out of the A-10. He is likewise not the quickest, but can get to his spots and shoots well from deep and in the mid-range. Next up 6’3” G EJ Stephens (SR) out of Lafayette, who enters the program coming off an All-Conference selection of his own in the Patriot League. He put up 16 ppg and plays a similar game as Loewe, as he can create his own shot and was the main playmaker for his team a year ago. Sean Sutherlin (SR) is a 6’5” G out of New Hampshire that will represent a nice juxtaposition in the backcourt to the previous 2 guys as he’s a bouncy athlete that excels attacking the basket downhill. He plays a tough and physical brand of basketball, and he averaged 9+ rpg his last season. Payton Willis (SR) returns to Minnesota after transferring to Colgate, and he’ll assume his previous role as a perimeter shooter after shooting 40% a season ago. His experience at major level programs likely allows him to assume a starting role in the backcourt. 6’9” PF Charlie Daniels (SR) will be battling for minutes on the interior. He didn’t ever establish a major role and I don’t anticipate it happening here either, but he will be important for depth inside. Parker Fox (JR) is a 6’8” F that was a NABC DII All-American, for whatever that’s worth, and enters as a prime candidate to get big minutes at the 4/5. He dominated at that level mostly due to the fact he was simply bigger/faster/stronger than many of his opponents, which will no longer be the case, but his high energy high effort style will make him an exciting watch for Gopher fans. Abdoulaye Thiam (FR) is a 6’3” G emerging out of the JUCO ranks who will be looking to use his athleticism to earn playing time in this crowded, but up for grabs backcourt. Danny Ogele (SR) is a 6’7” F out of Navy who like Daniels never really was a standout but is a big body that will compete hard for minutes and provide necessary depth in the frontcourt. Last but not least the 1 true Freshman, 6’11” C Treyton Thompson (#178).  Thompson is a lanky big who can stretch out and shoot from 3 and uses his length to block shots inside. He will need to fill out as he develops, but should become a nice 4 year player for the program.

Prediction: 14th Big Ten (NR)

                  Predicting how the rotation will shake out feels similar to playing darts blindfolded after being spun around in circles. I will say, regardless of who gets more minutes than whom, the outlook feels much the same. The Gophers will not, under any circumstance, be a factor in the Conference beyond the conversation of being a trap game for x contender. Hopefully, for the programs sake, this will just be a bump in the road. But something about a total program exodus followed by the hiring of someone with zero head coaching experience has me a bit pessimistic about the future for the Gophers.

2021 Penn State Preview

Key Departures: Myreon Jones (–>Florida); Izaiah Brockington (–>Iowa St); Jamari Wheeler (–>Ohio St)

New In Town: Greg Lee (<–W. Michigan); Jalen Pickett (<–Siena); Jaheam Cornwall (<–Gardner Webb)         Jevonnie Scott (JUCO); Jalanni White (ßCanisius)

State of the Program:

                  It’s a new era for the Nittany Lions, and after last year’s tumultuous season led by interim Coach Jim Ferry, they have their man in Micah Shrewsberry. Shrewsberry came up under Brad Stevens, as an assistant at both Butler and with the Celtics, and also had stints under Matt Painter at Purdue. Quite the tutelage to have received on your way up, but his first D1 head coaching gig will not come without its challenges. 3 starters from last year’s 11-14 squad have left town, and with limited time to recruit amidst the chaos induced by the resignation of longtime coach Pat Chambers, Shrewsberry will be relying solely on the transfer market to replenish the program. I would expect based on his past experiences, he will come in and try and establish an old school culture based on good defense and disciplined offense. He could have his own style in there, but the impact of a dozen years alongside Stevens and Painter will surely be noticeable. He does get back a few weapons, including a couple of starters and a few role players that should be able to slide into that starting group. They will be led by the returning frontcourt Seth Lundy (JR) and John Harrar (SR), along with guards Myles Dread (SR) and Sam Sessoms (SR). They should represent 4/5 starters while returning G Daillon Johnson (SO) and F Caleb Dorsey (SO) will battle for backup minutes after playing limited minutes a year ago. The remaining rotation will be made up of transfers.

What’s New:

                  Leading the transfer group is Siena transfer, 6’4” G Jalen Pickett (SR). Pickett was a 3-time All-MAAC selection and was the unquestioned leader of the Siena team his entire time there. He was the main playmaker, both for himself and for his teammates, averaging 15/5/6 over 3 seasons with Siena. He should come in and start with Dread and Sessoms in the backcourt, and provide much needed playmaking for Shrewsberry. Next up is 6’9” F Greg Lee (SR) out of W. Michigan. Lee averaged 13/7 in his one season with the Broncos after transferring from CS Bakersfield, and looks to come in and be the primary backup for Harrar at the 5. 6’0” G Jaheam Cornwall (SR) out of Gardner Webb comes in with a pure jumper, having made over 200 3’s at a 42% clip with ability off the bounce and in catch and shoot situations. He should be the primary guard off the bench, and could serve as a sort of sparkplug for an offense that will likely struggle at times. JUCO transfer F Jevonnie Scott (JR) comes in as an elite athlete that excelled at using his quickness and strength to finish above the rim with ferocity. How he handles no longer being the quickest/strongest player on the floor will determine how much playing time he’s able to get in the frontcourt. 6’8” F Jalanni White (SR) enters the program as mostly a depth piece after starting off-and-on over his 4 years at Canisius and not averaging more than 7 ppg in any one season, finishing at only 4 ppg and 2 rpg last year.

Prediction: 13th Big Ten (NR)

                  Expectations for Shrewsberry and Penn St this season are pretty low, as the transition year could be rough at times. What is important to watch is how he’s able to establish and instill his philosophies into the existing talent, and how he can create some cohesion with this hodge podge of a roster. There are enough quality pieces to make them at least competitive so I don’t see it being a total disaster so long as he comes in and establishes a sound culture. Lundy is a bit of an x-factor for this team, as he’s had multiple explosive offensive performances in the past, if he can find some consistency he could become an all-conference performer. His past streakiness, which saw him drop 30+ and then disappear for several games, will need to be overcome however. Over the long term I have high expectations for Shrewsberry, as he’s been being molded for this opportunity over the last dozen years, and his experiences should have him fully prepared for what he’s facing. It will not be easy and it will not be quick, but I think he gets Penn St back to relevancy and back to the tournament a few years down the road. This year marks the beginning of a painful yet hopeful rebuild for a program that hasn’t been to the NCAA tournament since 2011.