For the first time in over a decade, it’s okay to be excited for Oklahoma State basketball.
No Travis Ford means Oklahoma State has the potential to reach, well, their potential.
Brad Underwood gets to coach a potential starting five of Jawun Evans, Phil Forte, Leyton Hammonds, JUCO signee Tyrek Coger and who knows the fifth.
Maybe Jeffrey Carroll finds his way in there, but lack of depth could rear its ugly head in.
But Evans to Forte is such an intriguing thought, and Underwood can coach. Last year the Big 12 was the toughest conference in basketball, so Oklahoma State going 12-20 isn’t that big of a surprise.
Buy or Sell: The Cowboys will exceed 20 wins in year one of the Underwood era.
Oklahoma State might have the best 1-2 duo in Evans and Forte in the conference; just the thought of Evans driving and kicking it out to an open Forte gives me goosebumps.
We only saw a glimpse of Evans’ potential last season, but if he’s anything like his 42 point explosion in Bedlam last January, he has lottery potential written all over him.
Forte is going to be the best three point shooter in the country next year, yeah I said it, and the fifth year senior is one of the most motivated players ever to walk through the doors at Oklahoma State.
Hammonds spent his junior year underrated and quietly had himself a solid season.
If Hammonds lives up to the hype, Oklahoma State will have a big three that rivals any other team in the conference. Underwood hasn’t proven that he’s going to take down the KU conference title streak, or that the Pokes will immediately contend for a conference title but he’s definitely not Ford. 21 wins isn’t too much to ask for.
Who exactly is going to come off the bench?
Is Mitchell Solomon going to be starting at center?
There is only so much Underwood is going to be able to do in year one, as the bench could put a serious limitation on how well Oklahoma State does.
The Big 12 is going to be good as usual, and outside a pair of players, the Cowboys don’t really have the talent other teams do.
Coger is a huge get for the Cowboys next year, but he’s only six-foot-nine and not the answer the Cowboys need at center. He should make for a fantastic power forward, but that leaves Solomon at the five.
Oklahoma State was invited to the Maui Invitational this year and has a road trip to Maryland to take on Melo Trimble and the Terps. Over 20 wins would be great, but someone is going to have to step up down low.
What do you guys think? 20 wins, more or less for the Oklahoma State basketball team next year?