At the close of the 2014-2015 season, the men’s basketball team is all about the future. Out of the 14-player active roster, eight are rookies. Only one player is graduating: Jaspreet Gill, one of the team’s primary creators and scorers. Altogether, 10 out of the 14 players on the roster are in their second year or earlier, and three current redshirts are expected to join the team next season after sitting out this year following transfers from other universities.</p>
Continuity can be a huge thing in sports — just look at the Toronto Raptors — and the Warriors will likely benefit greatly from their players learning head coach Greg Francis’ systems together. A young team is also a team that is likely to improve with each season since it isn’t losing as many of its top players each season. With that, we’re going to take a look at the first- and second-year Warriors, to shed light on what the future might entail.
Last year, the Warriors were forced to hand a large portion of minutes to first-years — a great move for player development, but a problem when going up against older, larger, and far more experienced opponents. “The rest of the league, their key players are third-, fourth-, and fifth-years,” Francis told Imprint. “We were the epitome of rookie mistakes at times.”
Myles Charvis was unquestionably the best player on the Warriors last season. The Mississauga prospect led the team in minutes, points, assists, steals, and was second in rebounds per game. Charvis dominated Western for a win in the final game of the season, dropping 30 points, five rebounds, six assists, four steals, and a block. He is third in the OUA in scoring, and seventh in CIS. Out of the top ten CIS scorers, he is one of only three lower-year students. “He’s got better at scoring this year, but where I’ve seen the most improvement with Myles is his defense and his passing,” said Francis of his star. “I expect that next year he’ll be one of the better point guards in the league, if not the country.”
Francis expects the team to shine and start seriously contending in the insanely competitive world of OUA men’s basketball within a couple years. “The best thing for this group right now is to get a year older — an off-season where they can train and get physically stronger,” said Francis. While next season will likely see the team face a number of challenges again, the experience and their work this summer will help toward building a brighter future.
Update: Read part 2 here, on key stats.