By Andrew Smith
The men’s basketball team has just begun their 2022-2023 season. The athletes have been training during their offseason and emotions and expectations are high as they embark on their time on the court.
The offseason plays a very important role in how the team will play. They look to get started on the right foot.
Andrew Delaney, a senior finance major, commented on what is involved in his offseason training. “This past offseason, we spent a good amount of time on skill development and live playing,” he said. “It’s great to work on our individual skills and then directly implement them in live play as much as possible.”
Delaney valued the importance of playing in live games with his teammates throughout the offseason. This allowed them the opportunity to simulate a scenario that closely resembles what they will be encountering during the long winter season. Delaney and his teammates implemented new techniques that can be implemented into a live game setting. These opportunities will in return build confidence that can directly transfer to the regular season.
Delaney added, “We also focused heavily in the weight room and our guys definitely increased their athleticism by consistently pushing themselves in workouts throughout the fall.”
Sophomore sports management major Matthew Price commented on the importance of training and staying in shape, saying it requires “nutrition, skill work, a lot of shots and game speed reps. Lifting is big to maintain strength.”
In addition, first-year graduate student Ronnie Silva, who is studying sports management, added what the offseason means to him. “I really value the offseason because I appreciate the process and I believe you can always improve your game.”
Every offseason a team has expectations to do better than the last and make their school proud. The basketball team hopes to have a strong season, continue to build their teamwork and most importantly, compete for a championship.
Silva addressed what expectations he has for the young team. “My expectations for this season is to win every single day. As the leader of the team, I want us to value the habits and the daily process instead saying we want to win a championship. It’s about actions and accountability of ourselves everyday to be great.”
Delaney added, “I’m very excited for this year. We’ve stayed true to our work this offseason. Guys have been pushing themselves and each other to get better every day in practice. I’m ready to go to battle for a championship this year with my guys.”
Price commented on the importance of putting the maximum effort in every day on the court. “We as a team have big expectations but we have to come in everyday and put in the work to earn everything.”
The team also shared their thoughts on what games they are looking forward to on the schedule. “Every game is a key game for us,” Price said. “When we as a team take it each day at a time, every game we get to go out is a blessing and great opportunity for us to win. There is no one game that we are more fired up for.”
Lastly, Delaney mentioned what it means to play in front of their peers. “I’m excited to play in front of our home crowd and be a part of the energy that comes with that.”
It has been a long and difficult journey for many college teams dealing with the pandemic and its many obstacles. The men’s basketball team has been dedicated all offseason to prepare to be successful for the 2022-2023 season.