National Polls Favorable To Husky Basketball

Oct. 29, 2009

SEATTLE - Each of the two major national college men's basketball polls were released today and the University of Washington featured prominently in each.

The Huskies enter the season ranked 13th in the USA Today/ESPN Coaches Poll and 14th in the Associated Press media ranking. Click here to review each of the major college basketball polls.

Washington returns three starters from last year's team that finished with a 26-9 overall record and won the Pacific-10 Conference regular season with a 14-4 league mark. The Huskies advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament and finished the year ranked 15th by the AP and 16th by the coaches.

Junior Quincy Pondexter took advantage of his offseason experience as a member of the USA National Team that participated in the World University Games in Belgrade, Serbia. The Fresno, Calif. native is among the career scoring leaders with 1,091 points in three seasons (10.9 ppg).

The Huskies possess one of the top backcourts in the nation. Sophomore Isaiah Thomas led the Huskies in scoring last season with a 15.5 per game average and was named the Pac-10 Freshman of the Year. He has been recognized as one of the country's leading returing players, recently making the watch list for the Naismith Award given to the national player of the year.

Venoy Overton has been mentioned by many as, perhaps, the nation's best defender at the guard position. Sophomore Elston Turner played in 30 games as a freshman and is one of the team's top outside shooters. Classmate Scott Suggs earned experience as a first-year player and is looking for more time on the court. Freshmen Abdul Gaddy and C.J. Wilcox have impressed coaches in preseason workouts and will most likely make a strong impact in their first season of college basketball.

Inside, the Dawgs feature 6-9 junior forward Matthew Bryan-Amaning among its arsenal. The London, England native was among the league's leaders in blocked shots and field goal percentage and is expected to shoulder much of the load for the UW interior play. Sophomore Darnell Gant started 34 of 35 games last season and has been solid in preseason, giving the impression he might surprise some observers with his versatility. Justin Holiday earned a reputation last year as a solid defender and hopes to add some scoring to his game this season. Redshirt freshman Tyreese Breshers will certainly add size and muscle inside, while freshman Clarence Trent is a high-flying forward who hopes to make a first-year impact on the squad.

Washington plays its only exhibition game on Wednesday, Nov. 4 against Central Washington at 7 p.m. Tickets are available by calling the Husky Ticket Office at (206) 543-2200.

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