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NBCSports.com’s Conference Awards and All-League teams

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AMERICAN

Player of the Year: Sean Kilpatrick (Cincinnati)
Coach of the Year: Mick Cronin (Cincinnati)
Newcomer of the Year: Nic Moore (SMU)
source: APFirst Team All-American
  • Nic Moore (SMU)
  • Sean Kilpatrick (Cincinnati)
  • Shabazz Napier (Connecticut)
  • Russ Smith (Louisville)
  • Montrezl Harrell (Louisville)
Second Team All-American
  • Joe Jackson (Memphis)
  • Victor Rudd (South Florida)
  • Isaiah Sykes (Central Florida)
  • Justin Jackson (Cincinnati)
  • TaShawn Thomas (Houston)

ATLANTIC 10

Player of the Year: Jordair Jett (Saint Louis)
Coach of the Year:  Mike Lonergan (George Washington)
Newcomer of the Year: Maurice Creek (George Washington)
First Team All-Atlantic 10

  • Jordair Jett (Saint Louis)
  • Chaz Williams (UMass)
  • Trevon Graham (VCU)
  • Dwayne Evans (Saint Louis)
  • Langston Galloway (St. Joseph’s)

Second Team All-Atlantic 10

  • Juvonte Reddic (VCU)
  • Ovie Soko (Duquesne)
  • Xavier Munford (URI)
  • Isaiah Armwood (George Washington)
  • Ronald Roberts (St. Joseph’s)

ACC

source:
AP Photo

Player of the Year: T.J. Warren (N.C. State)
Coach of the Year: Tony Bennett (Virginia)
Newcomer of the Year: Jabari Parker (Duke)
First Team All-ACC

  • Tyler Ennis (Syracuse)
  • Lamar Patterson (Pittsburgh)
  • Marcus Paige (North Carolina)
  • T.J. Warren (N.C. State)
  • Jabari Parker (Duke)

Second Team All-ACC

  • C.J. Fair (Syracuse)
  • Rodney Hood (Duke)
  • K.J. McDaniels (Clemson)
  • Daniel Miller (Georgia Tech)
  • Malcolm Brogdon (Virginia)

BIG 12

Player of the Year: DeAndre Kane (Iowa State)
Coach of the Year: Bill Self (Kansas)
Newcomer of the Year: Andrew Wiggins (Kansas)
First Team All-Big 12

  • DeAndre Kane (Iowa State)
  • Andrew Wiggins (Kansas)
  • Melvin Ejim (Iowa State)
  • Juwan Staten (West Virginia)
  • Marcus Smart (Oklahoma State)

Second Team All-Big 12

  • Marcus Foster (Kansas State)
  • Markel Brown (Oklahoma State)
  • Buddy Hield (Oklahoma)
  • Joel Embiid (Kansas)
  • Georges Niang (Iowa State)

BIG EAST

Player of the Year: Doug McDermott (Creighton)
Coach of the Year: Jay Wright (Villanova)
Newcomer of the Year: Rysheed Jordan (St. John’s_
First Team All-Big East
  • Doug McDermott (Creighton)
  • D’Angelo Harrison (St. John’s)
  • Bryce Cotton (Providence)
  • James Bell (Villanova)
  • Semaj Christon (Xavier)

Second Team All-Big East

  • Ethan Wragge (Creighton)
  • FuQuan Edwin (Seton Hall)
  • Kellen Dunham (Butler)
  • Markel Starks (Georgetown)
  • JayVaughn Pinkston (Villanova)

BIG TEN

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Player of the Year: Nik Stauskas (Michigan)
Coach of the Year: Tim Miles (Nebraska
Newcomer of the Year: Noah Vonleh (Indiana)
First Team All-Big Ten

  • Nik Stauskas (Michigan)
  • Gary Harris (Michigan State)
  • Yogi Ferrell (Indiana)
  • Frank Kaminsky (Wisconsin)
  • Caris LeVert (Michigan)

Second Team All-Big Ten

  • Terran Pettaway (Nebraska)
  • Aaron Craft (Ohio State)
  • Devyn Marble (Iowa)
  • Adreian Payne (Michigan State)
  • Sam Dekker (Wisconsin)

MOUNTAIN WEST

Player of the Year: Xavier Thames (Mountain West)
Coach of the Year: Steve Fisher (San Diego State)
Newcomer of the Year: J.J. Avila (Colorado State)
First Team All-MWC

  • Xavier Thames (San Diego State)
  • Deonte Burton (Nevada)
  • Ryan Watkins (Boise State)
  • Larry Nance Jr. (Wyoming)
  • Cameron Bairstow (New Mexico)

Second Team All-MWC

  • Tre’ Coggins (Air Force)
  • Tyler Johnson (Fresno State)
  • Kendall Williams (New Mexico)
  • J.J. Avila (Colorado State)
  • Khem Birch (UNLV)

PAC-12

Player of the Year: Kyle Anderson
Coach of the Year: Sean Miller
Newcomer of the Year: Delon Wright (Utah)
First-Team All-Pac-12

  • Nick Johnson (Arizona)
  • Jahii Carson (Arizona State)
  • Kyle Anderson (UCLA
  • Roberto Nelson (Oregon State)
  • Jordan Bachynski (Arizona State)

Second Team All-Pac-12

  • T.J. McConnell (Arizona)
  • Chasson Randle (Stanford)
  • Delon Wright (Utah)
  • Jordan Adams (UCLA)
  • Josh Scott (Colorado

SEC

Player of the Year: Scottie Wilbekin (Florida)
Coach of the Year: Billy Donovan (Florida)
Newcomer of the Year: Julius Randle (Kentucky)
First Team All-SEC

  • Scottie Wilbekin (Florida)
  • Julius Randle (Kentucky)
  • Casey Prather (Florida)
  • Jordan McRae (Tennessee)
  • Jabari Brown (Missouri)

Second Team All-SEC

  • Jordan Clarkson (Missouri)
  • Trevor Releford (Alabama)
  • Johnny O’Bryant (LSU)
  • Jarnell Stokes (Tennessee)
  • Jarvis Summers (Ole Miss)

WCC

Player of the Year: Tyler Haws (BYU)
Coach of the Year: Rex Walters (San Francisco)
Newcomer of the Year: Jared Brownridge (Santa Clara)
First Team All-WCC

  • Tyler Haws (BYU)
  • Kevin Pangos (Gonzaga)
  • Anthony Ireland (LMU)
  • Brad Waldow (Saint Mary’s)
  • Johnny Dee (San Diego)

Second Team All-WCC

  • Sam Dower (Gonzaga)
  • Stephen Holt (Saint Mary’s)
  • Cole Dickerson (San Francisco)
  • Kyle Collinsworth (BYU)
  • Stacy Davis (Pepperdine)

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AMERICA EAST

Player of the Year: Jameel Warney (Stony Brook)
Coach of the Year: John Becker (Vermont)
Newcomer of the Year: Rodney Elliot (UMBC)
All-America East

  • Jameel Warney (Stony Brook)
  • Brian Voelkel (Vermont)
  • Clancy Rugg (Vermont)
  • Mark Nwakamma (Hartford)
  • Peter Hooley (Albany)

ATLANTIC SUN

Player of the Year: Langston Hall (Mercer)
Coach of the Year: Bob Hoffman (Mercer)
Newcomer of the Year: Jason Riley (East Tennessee State)
All-Atlantic Sun
  • Langston Hall (Mercer)
  • Brett Comer (Florida Gulf Coast)
  • Bernard Thompson (Florida Gulf Coast)
  • Torrey Craig (USC Upstate)
  • Ricardo Glenn (USC Upstate)

BIG SKY

Player of the Year: Derrick Barden (Northern Colorado)
Coach of the Year: Jack Murphy (Northern Arizona)
Newcomer of the Year: Jeffrey Solarin (Idaho State)

All-Big Sky

  • Derrick Barden (Northern Colorado)
  • Davion Berry (Weber State)
  • Kareem Jamar (Montana)
  • Troy Huff (North Dakota)
  • Joel Bolomboy (Weber State)

BIG SOUTH

Player of the Year: John Brown (High Point)
Coach of the Year: Scott Cherry (High Point)
Newcomer of the Year: Andrew Rowsey (UNC Asheville)
All-Big South

  • John Brown (High Point)
  • Andrew Rowsey (UNC Asheville)
  • D.J. Covington (VMI)
  • Javonte Green (Radford)
  • Warren Gillis (Coastal Carolina)

BIG WEST

Player of the Year: Alan Williams (UCSB)
Coach of the Year: Russell Turner (UC Irvine)
Newcomer of the Year: Luke Nelson (UC Irvine)
All-Big West

  • Mike Caffey (Long Beach State)
  • Corey Hawkins (UC Davis)
  • Alan Williams (UCSB)
  • Christian Standhardinger (Hawaii)
  • Stephen Maxwell (Cal State Northridge)

CAA

Player of the Year: Jerelle Benimon (Towson)
Coach of the Year: Monte Ross (Delaware)
Newcomer of the Year: Davon Usher (Delaware)
All-CAA
  • Davon Usher (Delaware)
  • Jerelle Benimon (Towson)
  • Marcus Thornton (William & Mary)
  • Devon Saddler (Delaware)
  • Frantz Massenat (Drexel)

CONFERENCE USA

Player of the Year: Shawn Jones (Middle Tennessee)
Coach of the Year: Tim Floyd (UTEP)
Newcomer of the Year: Vince Hunter (UTEP)
All-Conference USA
  • Vince Hunter (UTEP)
  • Chad Frazier (UAB)
  • James Woodard (Tulsa)
  • Pablo Bertone (Florida Atlantic)
  • Shawn Jones (Middle Tennessee)

HORIZON

Player of the Year: Keifer Sykes (Green Bay)
Coach of the Year: Brian Wardle (Green Bay)
Newcomer of the Year: Kahlil Felder (Oakland)
All-Horizon
  • Keifer Sykes (Green Bay)
  • Kendrick Perry (Youngstown State)
  • LaVonte Dority (Valparaiso)
  • Travis Bader (Oakland)
  • Alec Brown (Green Bay)

IVY

Player of the Year: T.J. Bray (Princeton)
Coach of the Year: Tommy Amaker (Harvard)
Newcomer of the Year: Spencer Weisz (Princeton)
All-Ivy

  • Wesley Saunders (Harvard)
  • T.J. Bray (Princeton)
  • Justin Sears (Yale)
  • Siyani Chambers (Harvard)
  • Sean McGonagill (Brown)

MAAC

Player of the Year: Billy Baron (Canisius)
Coach of the Year: Jimmy Patsos (Siena)
Newcomer of the Year: Ike Azotam (Quinnipiac)
First team All-MAAC
  • Billy Baron (Canisius)
  • Antoine Mason (Niagara)
  • George Beamon (Manhattan)
  • Sean Armand (Iona)
  • Ike Azotam (Quinnipiac)

MAC

Player of the Year: Javon McCrea (Buffalo)
Coach of the Year: Steve Hawkins (Western Michigan)
Newcomer of the Year: Justin Drummond (Toledo)
All-MAC

  • Juice Brown (Toledo)
  • Nick Kellogg (Ohio)
  • David Brown (Western Michigan)
  • Javon McCrea (Buffalo)
  • Demetrius Treadwell (Akron)

MEAC

Player of the Year: Jeremy Ingram (North Carolina Central)
Coach of the Year: Levelle Moton (North Carolina Central)
Newcomer of the Year: James Daniel (Howard)
All-MEAC

  • Jeremy Ingram (North Carolina Central)
  • James Daniel (Howard)
  • Justin Black (Morgan State)
  • Du’Vaughn Maxwell (Hampton)
  • Kendall Gray (Delaware State)

MISSOURI VALLEY

Player of the Year: Cleanthony Early (Wichita State)
Coach of the Year: Gregg Marshall (Wichita State)
Newcomer of the Year: Milton Doyle (Loyola Chicago)
All-MVC

  • Cleanthony Early (Wichita State)
  • Fred Van Vleet (Wichita State)
  • Ron Baker (Wichita State)
  • Jake Odum (Indiana State)
  • D.J. Balentine (Evansville)

NORTHEAST

Player of the Year: Karvel Anderson (Robert Morris)
Coach of the Year: Andy Toole (Robert Morris)
Newcomer of the Year: Malik Harmon (St. Francis PA)
All-NEC

  • Karvel Anderson (Robert Morris)
  • Jason Brickman (LIU-Brooklyn)
  • Alex Francis (Bryant)
  • Julian Norfleet (Mount St. Mary’s)
  • Sidney Sanders Jr. (Fairleigh Dickinson)

OHIO VALLEY

Player of the Year: Glenn Cosey (Eastern Kentucky)
Coach of the Year: Rick Byrd (Belmont)
Newcomer of the Year: Cameron Payne (Murray State)
All-OVC

  • Glenn Cosey (Eastern Kentucky)
  • Cameron Payne (Murray State)
  • J.J. Mann (Belmont)
  • Tyler Stone (Southeast Missouri)
  • Patrick Miller (Tennessee State)

PATRIOT

Player of the Year: Cameron Ayers (Bucknell)
Coach of the Year: Mike Brennan (American)
Newcomer of the Year: Maurice Watson Jr. (Boston U.)
All-Patriot

  • Cameron Ayers (Bucknell)
  • Maurice Watson Jr. (Boston U.)
  • Troy Wroblicky (American)
  • Dave Dudzinksi (Holy Cross)
  • Kyle Wilson (Army)

SOUTHERN

Player of the Year: De’Mon Brooks (Davidson)
Coach of the Year: Bob McKillop (Davidson)
Newcomer of the Year: Isaiah Williams (Samford)
All-SoCon

  • Trey Sumler (Western Carolina)
  • Stephen Croone (Furman)
  • Karl Cochran (Wofford)
  • De’Mon Brooks (Davidson)
  • Z Mason (Chattanooga)

SOUTHLAND

Player of the Year: Jalan West (Northwestern State)
Coach of the Year: Brad Underwood (Stephen F. Austin)
Newcomer of the Year: Zikiteran Woodley (Northwestern State)
All-Southland
  • Jalan West (Northwestern State)
  • Michael Holyfield (Sam Houston State)
  • Denzel Livingston (Incarnate Word)
  • Shawn Glover (Oral Roberts)
  • Jacob Parker (Stephen F. Austin)

SUMMIT

Player of the Year: Taylor Braun (North Dakota State)
Coach of the Year: Saul Phillips (North Dakota State)
Newcomer of the Year: Garret Covington (Western Illinois)
All-Summit
  • Taylor Braun (North Dakota State)
  • Jordan Dykstra (South Dakota State)
  • Luis Jacobo (IPFW)
  • Marshall Bjorkland (North Dakota State)
  • Brett Olson (Denver)

SUN BELT

Player of the Year: Elfrid Payton (Louisiana-Lafayette)
Coach of the Year: Ron Hunter (Georgia State)
Newcomer of the Year: Ryan Harrow (Georgia State)
All-Sun Belt

  • R.J. Hunter (Georgia State)
  • Ryan Harrow (Georgia State)
  • Elfrid Payton (Louisiana-Lafayette)
  • Shawn Long (Louisiana-Lafayette)
  • Augustine Rubit (South Alabama)

SWAC

Player of the Year: Aaric Murray (Texas Southern)
Coach of the Year: Roman Banks (Southern)
Newcomer of the Year: Aaric Murray (Texas Southern)
All-SWAC

  • Jamel Waters (Alabama State)
  • Antwan Scott (Grambling)
  • Brandon West (Jackson State)
  • Calvin Godfrey (Southern)
  • Aaric Murray (Texas Southern)

WAC

Player of the Year: Stephen Madison (Idaho)
Coach of the Year: Dan Majerle (Grand Canyon)
Newcomer of the Year: Mitch Bruneel (Utah Valley)
All-WAC

  • Daniel Mullings (New Mexico State)
  • Isiah Grayson (Cal State Bakersfield)
  • Killian Larson (Grand Canyon)
  • Holton Hunsaker (Utah Valley)
  • Stephen Madison (Idaho)

VIDEO: Kentucky fan makes a hype video

NASHVILLE, TN - MARCH 11:  Isaiah Briscoe #13 of the Kentucky Wildcats celebrates in the game against the Alabama Crimson Tide during the quarterfinals of the SEC Basketball Tournament at Bridgestone Arena on March 11, 2016 in Nashville, Tennessee.  (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
(Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
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Memorial Day weekend is typically a slow time for sports news, so over the weekend, the CBT crew has been discussing fan videos and songs.

If you’re not familiar, a lot of programs have fans that are so passionate, that they create something as tribute for their programs. This stuff tends to happen in the offseason.

Take this 12-minute video a Kentucky fan made that was posted by Kentucky Sports Radio’s Drew Franklin yesterday as an example:

Twelve minutes is a staggering amount for a video like this, but it captures multiple seasons and even goes into the future.

Not bad.

But it definitely doesn’t beat this Villanova song released by MRG after the Wildcats’ NCAA tournament run.

So now that we’ve seen the baseline for videos and songs, do any other fanbases have anything better in them this summer? There’s still a lot of time until college hoops begins next season and there are plenty of fans who can jump in with a submission.

Throughout the summer, we’ll post the best fan submissions on CBT (as long as they’re clean and original) and see which group of fans has the best at the end of it all.

Canisius finds a new head coach following Jim Baron’s retirement

Canisius head coach Jim Baron talks with players during college basketball practice in Buffalo, N.Y., Tuesday, March 5, 2013. One year after Baron was fired at Rhode Island, the coach and his point guard son, Billy, have teamed up at Canisius to breath new life into a struggling program. (AP Photo/David Duprey)
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Canisius has found a new head coach following the retirement of Jim Baron, as the Griffins have hired former Buffalo coach Reggie Witherspoon, according to a report from Mark Gaughan of the Buffalo News.

The 55-year-old Witherspoon was formerly the head coach at Buffalo from December 1999 until after the 2012-13 season and was recently an assistant coach at Alabama and Chattanooga the past two seasons.

During his time at Buffalo, Witherspoon went 197-225 while making four postseason appearances. He takes over a Canisius program that went 14-19 and 8-12 in the MAAC last season.

As a Buffalo native who has coached in the area as a high school, junior college and Division I head coach, Witherspoon should be familiar with the landscape of being a basketball coach in that city. It’s hard to say if Witherspoon can lead Canisius to prominence at this stage in his career, but he’ll certainly know the area enough to hit the ground running.

UNC’s Roy Williams recovering from knee replacement surgery

JACKSONVILLE, FL - MARCH 19:  Head coach Roy Williams of the North Carolina Tar Heels reacts on the bench against the Harvard Crimson during the second round of the 2015 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena on March 19, 2015 in Jacksonville, Florida.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
(Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
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CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) North Carolina Hall of Fame men’s basketball coach Roy Williams is recovering from knee replacement surgery.

In an email Friday, athletics spokesman Steve Kirschner says Williams is “resting comfortably” after the procedure on his right knee performed by Dr. Walt Beaver in Charlotte. Kirschner says there’s no exact recovery timetable but Williams is expected to be on the road for July recruiting “as usual.”

The 65-year-old Williams had procedures on both knees last year but experienced discomfort during the season as the Tar Heels won the Atlantic Coast Conference regular-season and tournament titles before losing in the NCAA title game on a last-second shot to Villanova.

A week later, Williams said he was considering surgery options for a “bone-on-bone” condition and noted: “I’ve got to be able to move around.”

Utah to play rival BYU in basketball again in 2017

SALT LAKE CITY, UT - DECEMBER 2: Nate Austin #33 of the Brigham Young Cougars and Jakob Poeltl #42 of the Utah Utes try for the ball in the second half of the Utes 83-75 win at the Jon M. Huntsman Center on December 2, 2015 in Salt Lake City, Utah. (Photo by Gene Sweeney Jr/Getty Images)
(Photo by Gene Sweeney Jr/Getty Images)
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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) Utah will play rival BYU in basketball again in 2017 in a game that will end a “cooling off period” Utah demanded due to events at recent games.

Utah said in a news release Thursday that the two schools have agreed to play in 2017 at BYU. The school’s athletic directors are talking about scheduling future games.

The decision to cancel the rivalry upset BYU and ignited a controversy that lit up sports talk radio and triggered legislators to order a state audit of Utah athletics. The game had been played every year since 1909 except for during World War II.

Utah coach Larry Krystkowiak said in January that the rivalry had become a “venomous and toxic environment.” BYU guard Nick Emery was ejected from December’s game for punching Utah’s Brandon Taylor.

Looking Forward: Defense will help Arizona sort out loaded rotation

PROVIDENCE, RI - MARCH 17:  Head coach Sean Miller of the Arizona Wildcats reacts in the first half against the Wichita State Shockers during the first round of the 2016 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at Dunkin' Donuts Center on March 17, 2016 in Providence, Rhode Island.  (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
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The NBA Draft’s Early Entry Deadline has come and gone. Just about every elite recruit has decided where they will be playing their college ball next season. The coaching carousel, which ended up spinning a bit faster than initially expected, has come to a close for all of the major programs. 

In other words, by now, we have a pretty good feel for what college basketball is going to look like during the 2016-17 season. With that in mind let’s take a look at Arizona, an elite program that reloads with designs on erasing the bad memories of last year’s first round NCAA tournament exit. 

After going on a two-year run in which they went 67-9, won two Pac-12 regular season titles and made two Elite Eight appearances, Arizona took a step back in 2015-16. Sean Miller’s Wildcats saw their grip on the Pac-12 loosen, with Oregon taking advantage, and their NCAA tournament stay was a short one thanks to a tough Wichita State team. Many programs would sign up for a season that included 25 wins despite injuries to freshmen Ray Smith (torn ACL) and Allonzo Trier (broken hand).

But Arizona isn’t your “run of the mill” program, which is a testament not only to what the retired Lute Olson accomplished during his time in Tucson but to what Sean Miller’s managed to do as well. Since his arrival Miller’s pumped new life into the program, with Arizona racking up highly regarded recruiting classes and the wins to match.

All that’s missing from his time at Arizona is a trip to the Final Four, an accomplishment Arizona hasn’t been able to boast since 2001. And after last year’s disappointing finish, Arizona’s work on the recruiting trail in the spring has them in a position where they can get that done. There’s talent, depth and versatility on the roster heading into the 2016-17 season, with some key returnees being joined by one of the nation’s best recruiting classes.

And with that will come an important question for the Wildcats: how will they sort everything out from a rotation standpoint?

Competition within the ranks is hardly a bad thing; “as iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” The same can be said for versatility, which will be another positive trait for Arizona in 2016-17. At first glance the roster has just two players seemingly locked into one specific position: Parker Jackson-Cartwright at point guard and Dusan Ristic at center. Outside of that, Arizona boasts a host of players capable of filling multiple spots based upon the desires of their head coach and the flow of the game.

The front court includes a mobile 7-footer in sophomore Chance Comanche, who managed to earn more consistent appearances down the stretch thanks to his activity on the defensive end of the floor. Newcomers in Lauri Markkanen and Keanu Pinder who can fill multiple roles in the front court, with Markannen’s ability to step out and hit perimeter shots being especially key, and the same can be said of the talented Smith provided there are no lingering effects from his second ACL tear in as many years.

With the injury and the time away from live action Smith will likely have some rust to shake off, but this is something Arizona can work through given their depth. There’s role versatility and this sets up to be a more mobile group defensively as well, which can only help the Wildcats moving forward.

The bigger area for Arizona from an options standpoint is on the perimeter, as they’re loaded with established returnees and high-caliber newcomers. And with the players available, how everything shakes out with regards to roles and minutes that come with them will be very interesting to watch. Trier’s back after a successful freshman season in which he averaged 14.6 points per game and shot 46.6 percent from the field, and with his ability to attack defenses off the dribble he’ll figure prominently in the Arizona rotation again in 2016-17.

Also returning are Kadeem Allen and Parker Jackson-Cartwright, who shared the point guard duties with Allen getting the starting nod thanks in large part to his ability on the defensive end of the floor. Losing Gabe York, who was second on the team in scoring and Arizona’s best three-point shooter a season ago, can’t be overlooked. But with the additions to the program, Arizona can more than account for the production lost there.

Last year Trier was the Wildcat best capable of attacking defenses off the bounce, but even with the relative “lack” of such options Arizona still managed to average 80 points per game and shoot 48 percent from the field. Things will be a bit different in 2016-17, thanks to factors such as the loss of York and Ryan Anderson and the fact that they’ll have more players capable of breaking down opponents off the dribble. Freshmen Kobi Simmons, Rawle Alkins and Terrance Ferguson can all create shots via dribble penetration, with Ferguson also being one of the top shooters in the class of 2016.

CHICAGO, IL - MARCH 30: Terrance Ferguson #6 of the East  team goes up for a dunk against the West team during the 2016 McDonalds's All American Game on March 30, 2016 at the United Center in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by David Banks/Getty Images)
Terrance Ferguson (Photo by David Banks/Getty Images)

But could this turn out to be a case of having too much of a good thing? While considered a point guard, Simmons proved to be better at getting himself looks than doing so for others, and Alkins was also considered to be a “ball dominant” guard at the high school level. How will that change at the college level, and how will the pieces fit together within Arizona’s rotation?

These are important questions to address, and how Arizona can do that is on the defensive end of the floor.

After two straight seasons of producing defenses that ranked in the top three in the country in adjusted defensive efficiency per Ken Pomeroy’s numbers (first in 2014, third in 2015), Arizona was ranked 41st in that category last season. After two consecutive seasons of limiting teams to less than 40 percent shooting from the field, Arizona allowed teams to shoot 41.3 percent in 2015-16. Also of concern was the turnover department, with teams committing an average of just 11.4 per game against the Wildcats last season.

By comparison, those two Elite Eight teams managed to force an average of 13.8 turnovers per game in 2013-14 and 12.4 per contest in 2014-15. The pack line defense isn’t one that people would necessarily categorize as a “pressure” system, but one of the strengths for Arizona during those two Elite Eight runs was having athletic options on the wings who can make life difficult for passers and the players looking to receive those passes. That wasn’t the case last season, but it may not be a problem in 2016-17 thanks to the roster additions.

Ferguson’s athleticism is noted above, and he’s also a long-armed player who more than holds his own defensively. Alkins also has the physical tools needed to cause trouble on the wing, which will give Arizona a good shot at playing defense at the level we grew accustomed to seeing them reach.

Physical tools aside, there’s always the “carrot” of playing time to dangle in front of the players. When discussing the adjustment process for freshmen many rush to the offensive end, and that’s understandable to a certain extent. But the biggest adjustment comes on the other end of the floor, and being able to prove that you can defend your position and carry out the team’s defensive game plan.

Arizona will certainly have offensive talent across the board next season. But the reason why they can rebound from last season and possibly reach the Final Four is the fact that some of that talent will make a difference defensively as well.