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Ole Miss Basketball Anticipates Upcoming Season after Strategic Recruiting Period

By Adam Brown
Sports Editor

With the calendar rolling over into the month of October, that means one thing — basketball season is near. In the upcoming 2018 season, both programs are entering a new era under different coaches.

Coach Kermit Davis replaces Andy Kennedy at the helm for the Rebels and coach Yolett Mcphee-McCuin takes over for Matt Insell.

On Monday afternoon coaches held their first Ole Miss basketball media day. Both expressed their excitement for the upcoming season.

The men’s and women’s teams have a plethora of new faces on their respective squads, as each had to fill a roster.

Coach McPhee-McCuin hit the ground running on the recruiting trail when she arrived in Oxford and only had six weeks to develop a full roster.

“We did a great job and were strategic,” McPhee-McCuin said. “We didn’t go with a lot of freshmen and the freshmen that we went with I had a relationship with, so we knew what they will bring to the table. And it is going to really free us up to recruit heavily for the ’19 and ’20 class.”

Coach Davis only had five players returning from last season that saw action on the hardwood.

“We found ourselves with five guys (returning) who have played in the SEC,” Davis said. “That’s not a big number out of 13.”

A common thread between both coaches was having strong leadership from the players in practice and on game day.

“Your best players are the guys that will be the easiest to coach, and with all the new players on our team (the leadership) really helps,” Davis said.

Redshirt senior Sandricka Sessoms is returning from an injury that sidelined her last season, and coach McPhee-McCuin said she has been a “blessing.”

“(Shandricka) has been phenomenal,” McPhee-McCuin said. “She has been my No. 1 advocate in the locker room as far as the returners are concerned.”

Both teams open the 2018-19 season Nov. 2 as they play host to Lemoyne-Owen (women’s) and Fayetteville State (men’s) in exhibition contests starting at 3 p.m. and 6 p.m., respectively.

Adam Brown
Adam Brown
Sports Editor

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