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September 12, 2009

Rivals.com 347 Countdown: Nos. 251-300

MORE: Nos. 301-347

We continue our 1-347 countdown. Today, it's teams ranked 251st through 300th.

We'll rank teams in groups of 50 until we get to the teams in the top 50, which will get full-fledged breakdowns.

251. Detroit
CONFERENCE: Horizon
BEST PLAYER: F Xavier Keeling
QUICK TAKE: The Titans have fallen on hard times, winning just 14 games combined the past two seasons.
BUZZ: The most intriguing team in the league, Detroit has the potential to be a serious climber. Two Indiana transfers could make a big difference for former IU assistant Ray McCallum, whose debut season finished at 7-23. Keeling was the team's best player before suffering a season-ending foot injury seven games into last season. And C Eli Holman is eligible. Keep an eye on the Titans.

252. Southern Utah
CONFERENCE: Summit
BEST PLAYER: G Davis Baker
QUICK TAKE: The Thunderbirds' closest conference foe is Oral Roberts, which is about 1,250 miles away.
BUZZ: Baker (17.4 ppg) can score from anywhere on the floor, and he might be good enough to lift Southern Utah into the league's upper regions. The Thunderbirds lose a lot of quality size, though, in Tyler Quinny and John Clifford. Guys such as 6-9 Lucas Jones and 6-9 Jaren Jeffery have to give Baker some help.

253. Liberty
CONFERENCE: Big South
BEST PLAYER: G Kyle Ohman
QUICK TAKE: High-scoring guard Seth Curry decided to transfer after last season, effectively extinguishing the Flames' hopes for this season.
BUZZ: Liberty's 23 wins last season tied a school record for the most in a season since the program went Division I, but the Flames suffered some big losses in the offseason. First, Curry transferred to Duke. Then, coach Ritchie McKay resigned to become an assistant at Virginia. New coach Dale Layer, a former Liberty assistant who was at Marquette last season, returns, but he won't have Curry or Anthony Smith. Ohman (13.9 ppg), a senior, is the leading returning scorer.

254. North Dakota State
CONFERENCE: Summit
BEST PLAYER: F Michael Tveidt
QUICK TAKE: The Bison made the NCAA field last season, but they look to be bereft of talent this season.
BUZZ: NDSU was one of the best stories in college basketball last season, a story that ended with guard Ben Woodside putting 37 on Kansas in a thrilling first-round defeat. A comeback win over Oakland in the Summit title game made that possible. But four key seniors are gone, leaving coach Saul Phillips with Tveidt (9.8 ppg) and a lot of openings.

255. Bucknell
CONFERENCE: Patriot
BEST PLAYER: F Patrick Behan
QUICK TAKE: The Bison were last in the Patriot League last season, but they appear to be slowly climbing back into the mix.
BUZZ: Expect a significant leap from last season's last-place showing. The young Bison lose Justin Castleberry, but Behan (13.8 ppg, 6.8 rpg) should be one of the league's top scorers. Sophomore guard Bryan Cohen (11.8 ppg) is terrific as well. He and wing forward G.W. Boon (9.8 ppg) combined for 104 3-pointers last season.

256. Towson
CONFERENCE: Colonial
BEST PLAYER: G Josh Thornton
QUICK TAKE: Former Florida State and DePaul coach Pat Kennedy is finding the going tough with the Tigers.
BUZZ: The Tigers became the first No. 11 seed to advance to the CAA tournament semifinals. But leading scorer and rebounder Junior Hairston is gone. The backcourt is OK with Thornton and Troy Franklin, although it took a hit when freshman Will Adams was diagnosed with Hodgkin's disease.

257. High Point
CONFERENCE: Big South
BEST PLAYER: G Nick Barbour
QUICK TAKE: New coach Scott Cherry was a backup guard on North Carolina's national title team in 1993.
BUZZ: Cherry was an assistant at South Carolina last season. Cherry never has had a losing record during his 10 seasons as an assistant and four seasons as a player at North Carolina. Despite High Point's 9-21 record last season, Cherry may be able to keep his streak going with the help of guards Barbour (14.2 ppg) and Eugene Harris (12.0 ppg).

258. Loyola (Ill.)
CONFERENCE: Horizon
BEST PLAYER: F Andy Polka
QUICK TAKE: The Ramblers lost their two leading scorers and could find it tough to stay out of the Horizon basement.
BUZZ: A team that struggled to defend last season and loses top scorers J.R. Blount and Justin Cerasoli will be in a battle to avoid last place in the conference. Sophomore forward Jordan Hicks (4.5 ppg) showed promise despite modest numbers, and coach Jim Whitesell has some recruits on the way who are expected to make an immediate impact.

259. American
CONFERENCE: Patriot
BEST PLAYER: G Nick Hendra
QUICK TAKE: The Eagles have made back-to-back NCAA appearances. They lost way too much talent to get a third consecutive bid.
BUZZ: Coach Jeff Jones and American wowed college basketball by building a 14-point lead on Villanova in the first round of the NCAA tournament, only to fade late against a team that went on to the Final Four. Jones' program is strong, but this year could be trying without Garrison Carr, Brian Gilmore and Derrick Mercer and their 42.1 points per game. A plummet appears inevitable.

260. Louisiana-Monroe
CONFERENCE: Sun Belt
BEST PLAYER: G Tony Hooper
QUICK TAKE: The return of Hooper, who missed most of last season with a broken foot, will make the backcourt markedly better.
BUZZ: The Warhawks were abysmal offensively and mediocre defensively last season. Every key offensive performer is back, along with Hooper, a preseason all-league pick last season who received another year of eligibility after he suffered a broken foot early in the season. The potential exists for a strong frontcourt.

261. Chattanooga
CONFERENCE: Southern
BEST PLAYER: G Keegan Bell
QUICK TAKE: The Mocs were a surprise entrant in the NCAA tournament last season, but they lost their top three scorers.
BUZZ: Chattanooga returned to the NCAA tournament for the first time since 2005, but forward Nicchaeus Doaks and guards Stephen McDowell and Kevin Goffney - who accounted for 55 percent of the offense - are gone. Bell, a transfer from Vanderbilt, should step right in and be a leader for the Mocs.

262. SMU
CONFERENCE: Conference USA
BEST PLAYER: G Paul McCoy
QUICK TAKE: At least coach Matt Doherty can say, "Hey, I used to coach at Notre Dame and North Carolina."
BUZZ: The bulk of the offense is going to come from the backcourt. It wouldn't be surprising if no frontcourt player averages in double figures. Doherty is on the hot seat. If he somehow manages to coax his team to finish in the top half of the league, it will have been a splendid season.

263. VMI
CONFERENCE: Big South
BEST PLAYER: G Austin Kenon
QUICK TAKE: The Keydets will score a lot. That's a given. Another given? They will lose a lot.
BUZZ: The Keydets' fast-paced offense has led Division I in scoring in each of the past three seasons. But Chavis Holmes (22.0 ppg) and Travis Holmes (19.1 ppg) - who finished 1-2 in the nation in steals per game - are gone, and you don't have to be Sherlock Holmes to know they will be tough to replace. Kenon (16.3 ppg) is the top returning scorer.

264. Prairie View A&M
CONFERENCE: Southwestern Athletic
BEST PLAYER: F Darnell Hugee
QUICK TAKE: The Panthers were a SWAC surprise last season and should be in the running for the league title this season.
BUZZ: A surprising third-place league finish at 12-6 was due in large part to Hugee (12 ppg, 7.3 rpg), the SWAC's newcomer of the year. Departing guard Derek Johnson (9.9 ppg) contributed as well, but sophomore Michael Griffin (9.6 ppg) and Christopher Jones (9.1 ppg) - along with some solid recruits - should provide plenty of perimeter punch for the Panthers.

265. Ohio U.
CONFERENCE: Mid-American
BEST PLAYER: G Armon Bassett
QUICK TAKE: The Bobcats should be good from the perimeter, but the frontcourt could be a wasteland.
BUZZ: Ohio finished in the MAC East basement a year ago and now must find a way to replace first-team All-MAC performer Jerome Tillman and two other starters. The arrival of Bassett, a transfer from Indiana, should help, but the Bobcats could struggle in the paint without Tillman controlling the glass.

266. Eastern Washington
CONFERENCE: Big Sky
BEST PLAYER: G Benny Valentine
QUICK TAKE: Valentine, a 5-7 transfer from Texas Tech, is fun to watch, but the Eagles need more offense.
BUZZ: Valentine is one of the most dynamic players in the league, a jitterbug who led the team in scoring (15.1 ppg) as a junior. He and senior center Brandon Moore (11.2 ppg, 6.8 rpg) form a potent inside-outside combo, but third-year coach Kirk Earlywine needs to find more contributors to help his struggling offense.

267. Yale
CONFERENCE: Ivy
BEST PLAYER: G Alex Zampier
QUICK TAKE: The Bulldogs are going to struggle offensively, which likely means a second-division finish in the Ivy League.
BUZZ: The Bulldogs lose their No. 1 and No. 3 scorers, Ross Morin and Travis Pinick, so No. 2 on the list - Zampier (13.2 ppg) - will face a lot of defensive attention this season. Porter Braswell's ability to assume command at point guard will determine whether Yale can stay in the upper half of the league.

268. Maine
CONFERENCE: America East
BEST PLAYER: G Gerald McLemore
QUICK TAKE: The Black Bears fell apart late last season and look like one of the weakest teams in America East.
BUZZ: An upset loss to last-place Hartford in the play-in game of the league tournament capped a late-season swoon for a team that was playing solid basketball early in the season. The good news is that most of the primary pieces are back, with big things expected from McLemore (12.1 ppg), a sophomore. But Mark Socoby's (12.3 ppg) decision to transfer before his senior season is a blow.

269. UT Martin
CONFERENCE: Ohio Valley
BEST PLAYER: G Marquis Weddle
QUICK TAKE: High-scoring guard Lester Hudson is gone, so the Skyhawks will sink into the lower depths of the OVC.
BUZZ: Forgive the Skyhawks if they're reeling when the season begins. First, they lost Hudson, who averaged 27.5 points and was the league's best player last season. Then, coach Bret Campbell was fired during the summer for some financial improprieties. Delrico Lane and Weddle form a solid backcourt duo, but there's no one up front who scares anybody.

270. South Dakota
CONFERENCE: Independent
BEST PLAYER: F Tyler Cain
QUICK TAKE: The Coyotes, who are looking for their second consecutive 20-win season, like to get up and down the floor.
BUZZ: The up-tempo Coyotes had five players average in double figures last season. Three return, including leading scorer Cain (15.4 ppg, 11.0 rpg). He's a good shot blocker, and if he gets some offensive help up front, the Coyotes could win 20 games again.

271. New Orleans
CONFERENCE: Sun Belt
BEST PLAYER: G Billy Humphrey
QUICK TAKE: The Privateers were weak offensively last season, and they lost their two leading scorers.
BUZZ: The Privateers struggled to maintain offensive consistency last season. This season, it's hard to see UNO finishing anywhere but the Sun Belt basement. Humphrey, a Georgia transfer, better provide a lot of scoring.

272. Marist
CONFERENCE: Metro Atlantic Athletic
BEST PLAYER: G David Devezin
QUICK TAKE: Where's Rik Smits when you need him? The Red Foxes were bad last season, and their best player was a senior.
BUZZ: The Red Foxes finished at the bottom of the league last season and lost forward Ryan Schneider. Marist was awful on the road (1-13) and was way too sloppy with the ball last season. Both those traits need to change before the Red Foxes can even hope for a .500 finish. Center Casiem Drummond, a Villanova transfer, becomes eligible at midseason and should help.

273. Central Connecticut State
CONFERENCE: Northeast
BEST PLAYER: F Ken Horton
QUICK TAKE: Their nickname is the Blue Devils. Alas, they don't have as much talent as the Blue Devils in Durham, N.C.
BUZZ: Just about everyone who contributed to last season's 13-17 showing is back, which should be good news. Horton (16.5 ppg, 5.8 rpg) is a forward with two big years ahead of him, and Shemik Thompson (11.5 ppg) can pass and shoot. The Blue Devils need to improve on their 3-point shooting (31.6 percent last season).

274. William & Mary
CONFERENCE: Colonial
BEST PLAYER: G David Schneider
QUICK TAKE: William & Mary has never participated in the NCAA tournament.
BUZZ: Coming off a rare winning season, one in which they reached the CAA tournament final, the Tribe fell back in 2008-09. They look to rebound behind two seniors, Schneider (14.1 ppg) and big man Danny Sumner (13.4 ppg).

275. Texas State
CONFERENCE: Southland
BEST PLAYER: F Cameron Johnson
QUICK TAKE: The Bobcats are looking for some guards who can score. Do they have any?
BUZZ: The "B" boys, Brandon Bush and Brent Benson, are departing and taking 31.3 points per game with them. That does not bode well for a team that went 7-9 in the league before giving Nicholls State a tough game in the first round of the league tournament. Forwards John Rybak (10.0 ppg) and Johnson (9.5 ppg, 5.3 rpg) are the top returnees.

276. Valparaiso
CONFERENCE: Horizon
BEST PLAYER: G Michael Rogers
QUICK TAKE: The Horizon League, so far at least, has proven too tough for coach Homer Drew and the Crusaders.
BUZZ: Drew's second season in the Horizon (5-13) saw a substantial drop from Valpo's 9-9 debut in 2007-08. And this season could see a drop from ninth to 10th, with top scorer Urule Igbavboa and savvy guard Jake Diebler departing. Hope rests with junior guards Rogers and Howard Little, who combined to average 19.5 points per game last season.

277. Cal State Fullerton
CONFERENCE: Big West
BEST PLAYER: G Jacques Streeter
QUICK TAKE: The Titans went to the NCAA tournament in 2008, but they look likely to continue a free fall this season.
BUZZ: After winning the league and battling Wisconsin in the 2008 NCAA tournament, the Titans fell into a tie for seventh last season despite the heroics of Big West player of the year and top scorer Josh Akognon (23.9 ppg). He helped ease a rebuilding season, but he was a senior and coach Bob Burton must find more production from several returnees. The next star might be Streeter (10.4 ppg), a sophomore.

278. Monmouth
CONFERENCE: Northeast
BEST PLAYER: F Travis Taylor
QUICK TAKE: The Hawks need guard Whitney Coleman to bounce back from a season-ending knee injury last season.
BUZZ: Coleman was supposed to lead the way for Monmouth last season. He did for nine minutes, scoring nine points before suffering a season-ending knee injury. That wrecked last season, but it means Coleman will be back to lead a young, promising team. Taylor (12.4 ppg, 5.8 rpg) and Will Campbell (9.1 ppg) were all-freshman honorees last season.

279. Western Michigan
CONFERENCE: Mid-American
BEST PLAYER: G David Kool
QUICK TAKE: Kool might be the best player in the MAC, but he doesn't have enough help.
BUZZ: The Broncos have won a share of the MAC West Division title two straight years and have finished third or higher for eight consecutive seasons. Kool must have a big season for either of those streaks to continue. Kool, the MAC's reigning scoring leader, is the only returning Broncos player who averaged more than 5.5 points per game last season.

280. Alabama State
CONFERENCE: Southwestern Athletic
BEST PLAYER: F Roland Fitch
QUICK TAKE: Four key seniors are gone from a Hornets team that lost in the NCAA tournament play-in game.
BUZZ: Coach Lewis Jackson was infuriated with how things ended, a lackluster showing in a 58-43 loss to Morehead State in the play-in game, but Jackson's program had a terrific 22-10 season worth remembering. Jackson might want to reminisce often, considering the loss of the four crucial seniors - including SWAC player of the year Brandon Brooks. Fitch (9.7 ppg) and Wesley Jones (9.3 ppg) will ease the rebuilding process.

281. Bethune-Cookman
CONFERENCE: Mid-Eastern Athletic
BEST PLAYER: G C.J. Reed
QUICK TAKE: Coach Cliff Reed's best player is his son, C.J. (15.0 ppg, 3.9 apg).
BUZZ: Reed was the league's newcomer of the year as a freshman, and he might just end up player of the year as a sophomore. He helped the Wildcats to their first Division I winning record (17-16). More progress will hinge on forward Alexander Starling's ability to make up for the loss of John Holmes (10.0 ppg).

282. Northwestern State (La.)
CONFERENCE: Southland
BEST PLAYER: G Damon Jones
QUICK TAKE: The Demons won three Southland games last season, and doubling that would be a big achievement this season.
BUZZ: Injuries and suspensions contributed to a dismal 3-13 league season for the Demons, who are not used to such struggles. Hopes for a quick turnaround rest on the shoulders of the sharp-shooting Jones (12.2 ppg, 55 3-pointers) and William Mosley (6.3 ppg, 8.5 rpg), a 6-7 center who showed a lot as a freshman but needs to add weight to his 210-pound frame.

283. Florida Atlantic
CONFERENCE: Sun Belt
BEST PLAYER: G Shavar Richardson
QUICK TAKE: We don't think coach Mike Jarvis knew how far this program had fallen when he took over.
BUZZ: Jarvis certainly didn't expect to finish 6-26 overall and 2-16 in the league. The Owls won't be that bad this season, with seven newcomers, including what might be the second-best recruiting class in the league. But there isn't much holdover talent, so there will be growing pains.

284. Tennessee Tech
CONFERENCE: Ohio Valley
BEST PLAYER: F Kevin Murphy
QUICK TAKE: The Golden Eagles lack scoring punch, which likely means a long season.
BUZZ: Tech led the league in blocks and steals, which are the marks of a good defensive team. So how come the Golden Eagles finished seventh in the league in scoring defense? They have to get better on that end of the court. Murphy, a sophomore, is someone to build around, but Tech doesn't appear to have enough offensive firepower to hang with the league's best teams.

285. Brown
CONFERENCE: Ivy
BEST PLAYER: F Matt Mullery
QUICK TAKE: Mullery and Peter Sullivan are solid forwards, but they don't have much help.
BUZZ: With forwards such as Mullery (16.1 ppg, 6.5 rpg) and Sullivan (14.3 ppg), how is it that the Bears are picked this low? Basically, because they went 3-11 a year ago despite the production of those two. Mainstays Scott Friske and Chris Skrelja are gone, and that hurts. If Brown can find someone to shoot the ball, it can exceed expectations.

286. Hampton
CONFERENCE: Mid-Eastern Athletic
BEST PLAYER: G Vincent Simpson
QUICK TAKE: Assistant Edward Joyner was promoted to coach, and if the players respond to him, a MEAC title run is possible.
BUZZ: Kevin Nickelberry resigned as coach after three seasons. His replacement is Joyner, who has a lot of talent returning. Simpson (11.7 ppg) takes the big shots, Brandon Tunnell runs the team and Michael Freeman (7.7 ppg) can score around the basket.

287. Bryant
CONFERENCE: Northeast
BEST PLAYER: F Cecil Gresham
QUICK TAKE: The Bulldogs will be playing a full Northeast Conference schedule this season, but they are ineligible for the league tournament.
BUZZ: The Bulldogs will be led by Gresham, a senior, and there's a lot of size in the recruiting class. Massachusetts transfer Pap Lo, a 6-9 forward/center, has the potential to be a big-time shot blocker.

288. Hartford
CONFERENCE: America East
BEST PLAYER: G Joe Zeglinski
QUICK TAKE: The Hawks lost 15 of their final 16 games last season, and they will struggle this season, too.
BUZZ: The loss of Zeglinski (15.3 ppg) after 10 games with a torn tendon in his ankle spelled doom for a team that finished second in the league in 2008. Hartford lost 14 consecutive games to end the regular season before upsetting Maine in the play-in game. Zeglinski will be back, which is big, but the next two offensive options - Jaret von Rosenberg and Michael Turner - are gone.

289. Florida Gulf Coast
CONFERENCE: Atlantic Sun
BEST PLAYER: G Reed Baker
QUICK TAKE: The Fort Myers school will be counting on a Michigan transfer, sort of like that area's economy counts on Midwest transplants.
BUZZ: The Eagles still are in a transition stage to full-fledged Division I membership and are ineligible for the league tournament. But they could do some damage in the regular season. Baker, who began his career at Michigan, has good range and is a solid passer. F Kyle Marks is good on the boards and on defense.

290. Lamar
CONFERENCE: Southland
BEST PLAYER: F Ashton Hall
QUICK TAKE: The top three scorers are gone from a team that's likely to disappoint for the second season in a row.
BUZZ: One of the Southland's most disappointing teams a year ago, Lamar enters this season with markedly different expectations. The top three scorers, including post presence Jay Brown, are gone after combining for 41.4 points a game. The Cardinals' hopes rest with forwards Hall (8.8 ppg) and Justin Nabors, a senior who had to sit last season with an elbow injury.

291. UNC Greensboro
CONFERENCE: Southern
BEST PLAYER: F Ben Stywall
QUICK TAKE: UNC Greensboro is the other school in its market, playing in Wake Forest's shadow.
BUZZ: Mike Dement's second four-year stretch as Spartans coach hasn't gone as well as his first. Dement was 55-56 from 1991-95; since his return in 2005-06, UNCG is 52-70. But there is reason for optimism as guard Mikko Koivisto (12.4 ppg) and forwards Stywall (11.7 ppg, 8.4 rpg) and Damian Eargle (9.2 ppg, 5.6 rpg) return.

292. Northern Colorado
CONFERENCE: Big Sky
BEST PLAYER: G Will Figures
QUICK TAKE: The Bears are likely to finish near the bottom in the Big Sky; they have good guards but no frontcourt.
BUZZ: Coming off its best season in years - 15 of them, in fact - Northern Colorado might have a tough time on the interior now that 6-7 banger and all-league performer Jabril Banks has departed. The guard play is strong, though, with the 5-9 Figures (12.1 ppg) and gunner Devon Beitzel (61 3-pointers, 42.4 percent).

293. St. Francis (N.Y.)
CONFERENCE: Northeast
BEST PLAYER: G Ricky Cadell
QUICK TAKE: The Terriers are the best of the two St. Francises in the Northeast Conference. And "best" is a relative term.
BUZZ: In Cadell (15.3 ppg), the Terriers have a reliable go-to scorer. With 6-5 forward Kayode Ayeni (13.3 ppg, 8.5 rpg) back, St. Francis has a chance to surprise. Ayeni was gone after 10 games last season, the victim of a knee injury. Stefan Perunicic (10.8 ppg, 87 3-pointers) will make teams pay if they pay too much attention to the big two.

294. Seattle
CONFERENCE: Independent
BEST PLAYER: G Chris Gweth
QUICK TAKE: The Redhawks are in their second season transitioning back into Division I and have a proud tradition - Elgin Baylor is an alum.
BUZZ: The Redhawks have made 11 NCAA appearances, including a national runner-up finish in 1958. New coach Cameron Dollar was hired off Washington's staff in an effort to keep things running smoothly after Joe Callero was hired as coach at Cal Poly. A big scoring load will be placed on Gweth, who is the only double-figure scorer returning.

295. Northern Arizona
CONFERENCE: Big Sky
BEST PLAYER: G Cameron Jones
QUICK TAKE: The Lumberjacks used to be one of the best programs in the Big Sky. Not anymore.
BUZZ: A once-proud program is coming off a disastrous season, with injuries and dismissals depleting the roster. Now four-year PG Josh Wilson, one of the injury victims, has graduated. Don't discount the possibility of a rebound from the Lumberjacks, who have top performers in Jones (12.7 ppg) and Shane Johannsen (9.9 ppg, 72.7 field-goal percentage) returning.

296. North Carolina A&T
CONFERENCE: Mid-Eastern Athletic
BEST PLAYER: G Tavarus Alston
QUICK TAKE: The Aggies actually have some depth. The problem: They don't have many effective scorers.
BUZZ: Alston (11.1 ppg) is the only one of three double-figures scorers from last season to return, so the Aggies need to find him some help. This team has depth, though, and big man Thomas Coleman (7.7 ppg, 6.3 rpg) will get a chance to do more. If he steps up, another upper-division finish is possible.

297. Sacred Heart
CONFERENCE: Northeast
BEST PLAYER: G Chauncey Hardy
QUICK TAKE: Dave Bike is entering his 32nd season as coach. Only Syracuse's Jim Boeheim has been at a Division I school longer among current coaches.
BUZZ: The Pioneers made a nice run, finishing 12-6 and tied for second in the league, before falling in a tight one to Mount St. Mary's in the tourney semifinals. Now it's time to rebuild, because standout forwards and leaders Joey Henley (15.7 ppg, 6.7 rpg) and Ryon Howard (10.7 ppg, 6.5 rpg) have moved on. Hardy (11.3 ppg) will keep Sacred Heart competitive.

298. North Dakota
CONFERENCE: Independent
BEST PLAYER: G Travis Bledsoe
QUICK TAKE: The school's nickname is the Fighting Sioux - for a little while longer, at least.
BUZZ: The Fighting Sioux, who were 12-3 at home last season, need a big season from Bledsoe, a senior who is the only double-figure scorer returning. Bledsoe has great range and will benefit from more shots because of the departure of the team's two leading scorers.

299. Tennessee State
CONFERENCE: Ohio Valley
BEST PLAYER: F Darius Cox
QUICK TAKE: The Tigers changed coaches and their best player transferred. It could be a long season.
BUZZ: Coach Cy Alexander was fired late last season, then sophomore guard Gerald Robinson Jr. - one of the best players in the league - decided to transfer after the season. The Tigers also lost their best big man, Jerrell Houston, a senior forward who was the leading rebounder and No. 2 scorer. Where the points are going to come from is the big question for new coach John Cooper, who had been an assistant at Auburn.

300. Coppin State
CONFERENCE: Mid-Eastern Athletic
BEST PLAYER: G Michael Harper
QUICK TAKE: Coach Ron "Fang" Mitchell still is toiling away, but his team has lost some bite.
BUZZ: Tywain McKee, the MEAC player of the year and Coppin State's leading career scorer, is gone. That hurts. No one else scored in double figures last season. That's not good. But with Harper (9.3 ppg), Sam Coleman (8.2 ppg) and Vince Goldsberry (7.1 ppg) back, the Eagles might not have to endure a dramatic plummet.

MORE: Nos. 301-347



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