On Tuesday, the Wolfpack were named the favorites out in the WAC, beating out last season's champions, Utah State, winner of 87 games the last three years and New Mexico State in the polls. Surprising that a 13-19 team, the first losing season for the program since 2000-01 is a team to watch? The entire starting lineup returns and is being tabbed to knock off three-time defending champion Aggies.
The Wolfpack place one player on the preseason first-team, Deonte Burton, the freshman of the year a season ago, and two more on the second-team, forward Dario Hunt and guard Malik Story. Story led the team in scoring with 14.5 points per game to go along with 3 rebounds and 2 assists; Burton was second on the team with 13.7 points and the top distributor with 3.5 assists per game and Hunt will once again be counted on for some monster production in the frontcourt after falling just shy of averaging a double-double (12.4 points, 9.7 rebounds). The starting lineup is rounded out by former Duke Blue Devil, Olek Czyz at either frontcourt spot forward and another versatile wing in sophomore Jerry Evans.
The talent is there. Now, all coach David Carter has to do is prove last season was a fluke experience and this year is a sign of things to come with none of his five starters being in their senior class year.