ASU basketball hopes new blood will spur a bounce-back season
It's time to celebrate the start of college basketball, as ASU kicks off its season at home Monday night against Tarleton State.
State of play: As the university's disappointing football season draws to a close, the Sun Devil faithful hope the basketball team can renew their spirits.
- UofA is typically celebrated as Arizona's premier college basketball program, but some offseason changes have sports critics predicting an ASU bounce-back after back-to-back losing seasons.
What's happening: ASU lost a few starters to the transfer portal during the offseason, including forward Jalen Graham and guard Jay Heath.
- Yes, but: The team is anticipating the return of forward Marcus Bagley, an NBA prospect who missed all but three games last year to a knee injury.
- The Sun Devils also picked up four promising transfers and two high school recruits.
What they're saying: "It's not about the rankings and who is rated the highest prospect, it's really about who is the best fit. I think with each guy, there is a very specific need and I think we addressed those things the way we wanted to," head coach Bobby Hurley told The Arizona Republic earlier this year.
The intrigue: DevilsDigest.com says Hurley has more talent to work with this year than at any time since he joined the program in 2015.
- ESPN predicts ASU will finish sixth in the Pac-12 standings, up from ninth last year.
What we're watching: The Cambridge brothers.
- ASU picked up Desmond and Devan Cambridge from Nevada and Auburn, respectively.
- In addition to their on-court potential, they've brought a good vibe and chemistry to the team, Hurley told the Republic.
- "Forget everything y'all have seen from ASU for the past two years. We got a new team, winning culture and a different mindset. Promise y'all we tourney bound," Devan tweeted when his transfer was announced.
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