2008 Iowa State Cyclones Basketball Preview
Last year, the Iowa State Cyclones (14-18 overall, 4-12 big 12) posted their third straight losing season, finishing 11th in their conference and once again out of the NCAA Tournament. This year’s team is young and talented. Once they get some experience, the fact is that there may be a solid future for the Iowa State Cyclones.
Senior forward Alex Thompson (12.7 MPG, 2.1 PPG, 2.1 RPG, 0,7 APG, 34.6 FG%, 42.1 FT%), a big-bodied forward who can bang, will provide rebounding chops although he won’t score much. Sophomore forward Craig Brackins (27.7 MPG, 11.4 PPG, 5.0 RPG, 1.3 APG, 43.4 FG%, 73.2 FT%) is a solid shooter and is also fine off the rim. Freshman center Justin Hamilton, who stands six-foot-eleven and weighs 250 pounds, possesses raw talent and an unimpeachable work ethic. Junior college transfer Jamie Vanderbeken, another six-foot-eleven forward, is sound inside and also a potent force from the three-point arc.
Two experienced and talented point guards, Bryan Peterson (28.1 MPG, 5.9 PPG, 2.1 RPG, 2.9 APG, 37.7 FG%, 81.8 FT%) and Diante Garrett (22.2 MPG, 6.3 PPG, 1.8 RPG, 2.8 APG, 35.1 FG%, 69.9 FT%), return to anchor the backcourt. Garrett will start and Peterson will provide solid backup. Garrett is great at driving to the basket and either scoring or kicking it out to the perimeter. Peterson is a fine open look shooter who offers quality minutes off the bench. Sophomore Lucca Staiger, who was deemed ineligible to play last season, will start at the shooting spot. There’s additional depth in the backcourt.
This club, with three seniors, a junior and a host of young talents,
is looking towards the future. Although coach Greg McDermott thinks
his team can break through this season, don’t expect these
Cyclones to blow anyone out in 2008-2009. This year will be one
of growth. With another year of experience, the Cyclones should
contend in 2009-2010. Another 11th place finish is expected this
year. Any higher finish than 11th should be considered a major accomplishment.
This will be an interesting team to watch. Expect them to provide
the nation with an upset or two.