MORAGA, Calif. — After one of the most historic seasons in program history, the 2017-18 Saint Mary's men's basketball team is once again regarded as one of the top teams to keep an eye on in the upcoming season.
Nationally-ranked in every week during the 2016-17 campaign and winning 29 games for the second consecutive year, the Gaels are primed for another chance to win the league title and ultimately compete in its 10th NCAA Tournament. The new season is still five months away, but SMC is well represented in several national media preseason rankings. Below are snippets and links from a few national media outlets and their 2017-18 “Way too Early Preseason Rankings.”
USA Today: https://usat.ly/2s1rxr8 | No. 19
“The team's best weapon Jock Landale (16.9 ppg, 9.5 rpg) is back for more, making the Gaels one of the best mid-majors in the country and a viable challenger to knock Gonzaga off its perch in the West Coast Conference. Five of Saint Mary's top seven return from a 29-win club, including point guard Emmett Naar, who averaged 14 points and 6.4 assists a game as a sophomore but took a step down as a junior.” (Scott Gleeson, USA Today Sports)
Yahoo: https://yhoo.it/2qnYRU1 | No. 20
“Skeptics questioned whether Saint Mary's gaudy record and national ranking was legitimate or schedule-aided for much of last season, but the Gaels proved themselves in March. They outclassed VCU in the opening round of the NCAA tournament before leading second-seeded Arizona well into the second half. Four starters are back for Saint Mary's from that team including standout big man Jock Landale and fellow all-league contenders point guard Emmett Naar and wing Calvin Hermanson.” (Jeff Eisenberg, Yahoo Sports)
ESPN: http://es.pn/2rkJ9y0 | No. 22
“Jock Landale (16.9 PPG, 9.5 RPG, 1.2 BPG), the favorite to win West Coast Conference player of the year honors, Calvin Hermanson and Emmett Naar will guide a talented Saint Mary's squad that reached the second round of the NCAA tournament last season.” (Myron Medcalf, ESPN)
FOX Sports: http://foxs.pt/2sdInD7 | No. 20
“The Gaels were a consistent Top 25 team throughout 2017, gave Arizona a run for their money in the NCAA Tournament and return virtually every key piece in 2018. That includes leading scorer Jock Landale (16.9 a game) and guard Emmett Naar, who tied for the team lead with 5.6 assists per game last season.” (Aaron Torres, FOX Sports)
Along with the expectations of the 2017-18 Gaels, Jock Landale is highly regarded as one of the dominant players in the upcoming year. Displaying an elite inside game for SMC, Landale was recently named as one of the top players for 2017-18, courtesy of ESPN's John Gassaway. Viewers can see where Landale ranks and read the piece on the top-25 players HERE.
The Gaels will celebrate the outstanding success of the program in the comings weeks at McKeon Pavilion, with their second Gaels All-Star Classic on Sunday, June 25. Presented by Porsche Walnut Creek, tickets for the classic and all the latest information can be found HERE.
Fans can purchase 4 tickets for $20 as part of a family deal using the promo code ASG2017.
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