Daniel Hamilton, Jalen Adams, Amida Brimah, Sterling Gibbs earn preseason AAC honors; Rodney Purvis snubbed?
SMU is picked to win the league. Debatable (especially with its postseason ban) but certainly not criminal. UConn's picked second, Cincinnati third, Tulsa fourth, Memphis fifth, Temple sixth, Houston seventh ... pretty standard.
Daniel Hamilton earned first-team honors, and I completely agree. I think there's a chance he could wind up conference player of the year. I'm that high on Hamilton. But it's no surprise that SMU's Nic Moore, who won the award last year, is the preseason pick.
Jalen Adams is tabbed as rookie of the year. I thought this could go to either Adams or Memphis's D.J. Lawson, who is a McDonald's All-American and could see major minutes as the player asked to replace Austin Nichols. But again, certainly no crime that Adams (who likely won't start much this season) is the choice.
Amida Brimah and Sterling Gibbs made preseason second team. Certainly fair. But here's where things get a little sticky -- Rodney Purvis did not earn any recognition. He is the Huskies' top returning scorer, and we all saw what he could do over the final couple of weeks last season, particularly in the league tourney while Ryan Boatright was battling injury and double-teams.
Of course, there are only so many spots (10) on the preseason teams, and it's hard to give four of them to UConn players. Should Purvis have got the nod over, say, Brimah? You could make that argument.
But he didn't,. and now maybe this "snub" could serve as motivation for Purvis as the season unfolds.
Nic Moore, R-Sr., G, SMU
Preseason Rookie of the Year
Jalen Adams, Fr., G, UConn
Preseason All-Conference First Team
Octavius Ellis, Sr., F, Cincinnati
Daniel Hamilton, So., G/F, UConn
*Markus Kennedy, R-Sr., F, SMU
*Nic Moore, R-Sr., G, SMU
James Woodard, Sr., G, Tulsa
Preseason All-Conference Second Team
Troy Caupain, Jr., G, Cincinnati
Amida Brimah, Jr., C, UConn
Sterling Gibbs, GS, G, UConn
Shaq Goodwin, Sr., F, Memphis
Shaquille Harrison, Sr., G, Tulsa
[*] denotes unanimous selection
2015-16 Preseason Coaches' Poll
(First-place votes in parenthesis)