After missing the entire 2011-12 season due to injury, the Temple senior, Randall, led the Owls with 31 points on 10-of-19 shooting in an 80-66 victory over Kent State Tuesday afternoon.
Randall was granted a medical redshirt last season as he recovered from a meniscus tear in his left knee. Now the fifth-year senior is expected to play an integral role on a team that was picked to finish fourth in the conference by coaches in preseason A-10 poll.
Despite being outrebounded 39-28, Temple was able to force 21 Kent State turnovers and shot 52 percent from the floor. Forward Anthony Lee added 16 points and eight rebounds.
For the Golden Flashes, Chris Evans had 17 points and seven rebounds, but also turned the ball over eight times. As a team, Kent State shot 5-of-23 from three-point range.
Temple opens its season with a win, now starting its final season in the A-10 before it moves to the Big East in 2013-14.
The 6-foot-3 guard averaged 10.3 points per game, while shooting 42 percent from three, as a freshman. He, along with Malcolm Hill and Michael Thorne Jr., is one of three returning players who averaged double figures last season.
This could prove to be a make-or-break year for John Groce, who enters his fifth season at the helm. He guided the Illini to an NCAA Tournament in his first season, but hasn’t been back since.
The key for the Illini is health. Abrams gives them experience and leadership, but it won’t be a surprise if there’s some rust in his game after spending the past two seasons on the sideline. Having a healthy Coleman-Lands will help stabilize the backcourt, while Hill, an all-conference caliber forward, and Thorne anchor the frontcourt.
Like Alkins, Jones was a sought-after scorer. The 6-foot-4 two-guard was rated No. 69 overall in the Class of 2016 by Rivals. He picked Indiana over offers from Cal, Cincinnati, Georgetown and more than a dozen other high-major programs.
Jeter, the 6-foot-10, played in a reserve role as a freshman, averaging 1.9 points and 1.9 rebounds per game last season. He will be part of a loaded frontline that includes heralded freshmen Harry Giles and Marques Bolden, as well as redshirt senior Amile Jefferson, who returns to the lineup following a foot injury.
The greatest player in Auburn program history will honored with a statue outside of the team’s home arena.
The university announced that Charles Barkley, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer, will be the fourth athlete to be given a statue, joining Heisman Trophy winners Bo Jackson, Pat Sullivan and Cam Newton.
“It just means a great deal to me,” Barkley said in a statement. “Being a kid from Alabama, going to Auburn. I think everybody knows what Auburn means to me. It’s going to be pretty cool.”
Barkley, currently working as an analyst for TNT, was the SEC Player of the Year in 1984, as well as a second team All-American. He averaged 14.1 points and 9.6 rebounds per game in 84 appearances for the Tigers.