The Kalamazoo College Men’s Basketball team will have a lot of familiar faces on the court this year, but a new face will be leading them from the sidelines.
Coach Jay Smith is set to begin his first season as the Hornets’ head coach, and brings with him many years of collegiate coaching experience. Coach Smith has spent time as the head coach at both Grand Valley State and Central Michigan, as well as time as an assistant at the University of Michigan and the University of Detroit.
While at Central Michigan, Coach Smith led the Chippewas to two Mid-American Conference championships, and an NCAA tournament birth. At the University of Michigan, Smith was an assistant during the Fab-Five era from 1989-1996.
The Hornets saw their win total drop each of the past two seasons, but Coach Smith will look to lead an experienced group to a better season in 2016-17.
The team returns 13 players from last season, including five of the team’s leading scorers from a year ago, four of which are seniors.
Leading the returners is Chase Baysdell, the power-forward averaged 15 points and nearly eight rebounds per game last year. Joining Baysdell in the front court is senior center Josh Miller, who saw his scoring increase for the third straight season, he averaged just over eight points per game, and shot 56% from the field.
The Hornets’ back court will look to continue their hot three-point shooting from a year ago, seniors guards Adam Dykema, Tommy Cerven, and Josh Whitney all shot over 37% from deep last year.
Kalamazoo opens the regular season at home on November 18th against Manchester at 7:30 p.m., and hosts Anderson the next day again at 7:30.