On Friday, the Florida Gators (0-1) take on the Charleston Southern Buccaneers (1-0) at Exactech Arena. Not many people know about low-major teams, or what to expect from them, but in this piece I will cover everything you need to know about CSU basketball and what you can expect.
Charleston Southern head coach Barclay Radebaugh likes to play a four guard set around one big man in the middle. A lot of responsibility falls on those guards, and you can expect them to produce.
Nate Louis – 5’11 Junior, Louis is a JUCO transfer that averaged 6 assist a game along with making an incredible 113 three point field goals in junior college last year.
Christian Keeling – 6’4 Junior, this do it all guard is a stud. Likely an All-Big South pick in March and a Player of the Year candidate in the conference. Keeling averaged 17.6 points, 5 rebounds, and two assist a game as a sophomore. Has an excellent mid-range jumper and will likely be able to stretch that behind the arch this season.
Philandrous Fleming – 6’4 Sophomore, Fleming averaged 10 points as a freshman to go along with four rebounds. Expect him to take and make a lot of threes.
Travis McConico – 6’6 senior, there isn’t much of a difference between McConico and Fleming, as both averaged 10 points and 4 boards a game last year. The two excel at spacing the floor on offense and draining threes in the process.
Deontaye Buskey – 6’1 Sophomore, Buskey is a well rounded do-it-all type of point guard. You can expect him to be active every minute he’s on the floor, will compete with Louis all year for that starting point guard spot.
Dontrell Shuler – 6’2 freshman, came in as an unknown recruit, but had a very solid collegiate debut. Shuler posted 9 points, 6 assists, and four steals off the bench for the Buccaneers.
Sean Price and Jamir White, the two have very similar games considering they are both 6’5 and excellent shooters. They will provide immediate scoring off the bench for the Buccaneers.
Coach Radebaugh has a quartet of young bigs he can use, although he hardly uses anyone over 6’6. Ty Jones is an undersized 4-man at 6’6 that will be used to space the floor. The Buccaneers do have a combination of freshman centers in 6’9 Sadarius Bowser, 6’8 Timmy Sellers, and 6’8 Duncan LeXander, although he did have 17 points and 8 boards in a win over Columbia International, I wouldn’t expect a lot of offensive production out of the post, considering they are undersized, inexperienced, and just not used within the offense a whole lot.
The Buccaneers should be a fun team to watch. They are guard heavy, so you can expect them to get out and run and with a seven guard rotation they will stay fresh the entire game.
Offensive focus – Radebaugh likes to shoot threes, in fact they will live and die by the long ball. The problem is, last year they died by the three finishing the season at 15-16, and ranking 293rd in college basketball in three point percentage made. With eight guards that live to score, and all being a year older I’d expect them to improve shooting threes.
The Buccaneers will space the floor by playing a four around one on offensive, and don’t be surprised if the big man doesn’t even get a touch on most possessions. CSU wants to use there guards, and they want to make threes.
Defensive focus – Defensively the Buccaneers are elite, they ranked 12th in NCAA last season in turnovers forced, Radebaugh enforces a full-court press that is the cause of forcing turnovers.
This should be a good test for the Gators as they had 16 turnovers to nine assist against Florida State, it’ll be interesting to see how freshman point guard Andrew Nembhard handles the press and can his back court mates pick up their games?