RAMS PICKED THIRD IN PRESEASON POLL, BURGESS NAMED TO FIRST TEAM AT CAA MEDIA DAY

ARLINGTON, Va. – After the most historic season in school history, several members of the VCU men’s basketball team mentioned about how the tough Colonial Athletic Association schedule prepared them for the battles that the Rams fought on the road to the 2011 Final Four.

The CAA looks to be just as tough in 2011-12 and at the conference’s annual media day, the Black & Gold were selected third in the preseason poll, selected by the coaches and selected media members.

“We know how tough the CAA is and we expect it to be a battle yet again this year,” Head Coach Shaka Smart said. “As a program, we are focused on coming to work every day, putting our hard hat on and getting better each time we step on the court. If we do that, the results will follow.”

VCU’s lone senior, Bradford Burgess (pictured, right), earned a spot on the Preseason First-Team All-CAA. The Midlothian, Va. native contributed 14.3 ppg last year and was among the CAA’s top 10 in field goal, free throw and 3-point shooting percentage.

“Brad can be as good as he wants to be,” Smart said. “He’s such an unselfish player and he’s always kind of deferred to some players around him, but this year, he’s the guy for us. We need him to become our leader in every aspect and that’s going to require him to be aggressive every time he steps on the court.”

The Rams were third in the poll behind preseason favorite Drexel, who returns all but one starter from last year’s 21-10 squad. George Mason, who returns three of its five starters from last year’s NCAA Tournament team, was selected second.

Behind VCU, Old Dominion and James Madison rounded out the top five, respectively. William & Mary was sixth, followed by Delaware, Hofstra, Northeastern, UNCW, Georgia State and Towson.

VCU opens the 2011-12 campaign with an exhibition contest against California University (Pa.) on Nov. 3 at 7:30 p.m. The regular season gets underway on Nov. 11, when Saint Francis (Pa.) visits the Verizon Wireless Arena for a 7:30 p.m. tip-off.

2011-12 CAA MEN'S BASKETBALL PRESEASON COACHES POLL

1.
Drexel
2.
George Mason
3.
VCU
4.
Old Dominion
5.
James Madison
6. William & Mary
7. Delaware
8. Hofstra
9. Northeastern
10. UNCW
11. Georgia State
12. Towson

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2011-12 CAA MEN'S BASKETBALL PRESEASON ALL-CAA FIRST TEAM

  Class

Position

Height
Weight
Hometown/Previous School
Kent Bazemore, Old Dominion
Sr.
G
6-5
195
Kelford, N.C./Bertie
Bradford Burgess, VCU
Sr. G/F
6-6
225
Midlothian, Va./Benedictine
Samme Givens, Drexel
Sr. F 6-5 220 Philadelphia, Pa./Acad. of the New Church
Quinn McDowell, William & Mary
Sr. G/F 6-6 215 Mason, Ohio/Archbishop Moeller
Ryan Pearson, George Mason Sr. F 6-6 237 Far Rockaway, N.Y./Christ the King

2011-12 CAA MEN'S BASKETBALL PRESEASON ALL-CAA SECOND TEAM


Class Position
Height
Weight
Hometown/Previous School
Chris Fouch, Drexel
Jr.
G
6-2
178
New York, N.Y./Rice
Devon Moore, James Madison
Jr. G
6-4
180
Columbus, Ohio/Northland
Mike Moore, Hofstra
Sr. G 6-5 200 New Haven, Conn./Hillhouse (Fordham)
Keith Rendleman, UNCW
Jr. F 6-7 215 Iron Station, N.C./East Lincoln
Devon Saddler, Delaware
So. G 6-2 205 Aberdeen, Md./Aberdeen/Winchendon Prep
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