When a coach uses the well-worn expression, "We're rebuilding this year," he often really means that he has nothing to work with and anticipates no help from any quarter. But when ST. JOSEPH'S coach, Jack Ramsay, used it last season, he meant precisely what the words imply. And he has "rebuilt" splendidly. The Hawks should be among the best in the nation this year. All five starters return but some will have trouble holding their jobs in the face of strong competition from four sophomores—Jack Egan, Vince Kempton, Frank Majewski and Tony Walsh—and reserve John Hoffacker. The regulars are Joe Spratt, Joe Reilly, Bob McNeil, Bob Clarke, and Joe Gallo. They shot at a .400 clip last year, but were weak on the boards, and the sophomores are expected to make up this deficiency. Gallo has injured a knee, but should be ready on opening day. St. Joe's uses a controlled fast break and alternates between the zone and man-to-man on defense, depending on the opposition's personnel. At LA SALLE, everyone is expecting big things of new Coach Dudey Moore (see page 86), which is somewhat unfair, considering this year's material. One expert has stated flatly that Moore will win games for the Explorers on brain power alone, and he may have to, at that. Of the veterans returning, none was able to average as many as 10 points a game last season, and only one sophomore—Bob Herdelin—has shown that potential. The over-all height is also below average and so is the reserve talent. Three pretty fair shooters—Al Ferner, Ralph Bantivoglio and Joe Heyer—are the chief assets. They will undoubtedly start, along with Bob Alden and one other from Hugh Brolly, Bill Lavery and Jack McKeaney. This is Moore's turn to rebuild. The same can be said of Coach Harry Litwack at TEMPLE, though Litwack does start with one of the best backcourtmen in the East in Bill ("Pickles") Kennedy, who can shoot, is strong on defense and handles the ball with some of the finesse of his former sidekick, Guy Rodgers. All other positions are still wide-open. Three sophomores may make the grade: Bernie Ivens, a good corner shot, George Palmer and Norman Ginsberg. The veteran reserves include Ophie Franklin, Erv Abrams, Pete Goss, Joe Goldenberg, Jack Peepe and Cliff Crispin. If the rebounding is reasonably good, Kennedy is capable of directing a deceptive fast break; on defense, Litwack has his own odd variations of the zone, LAFAYETTE is on its way back to prominence under personable young Coach George Davidson, himself a former top scorer at the school. He has four of last season's starters back: Mike Wallace, Joe Sterlein, Richie Kohler and Jim Hurst. All are fast and shoot well. Davidson's problem is height; George Hoerrner is 6 feet 10 but lacks poise and experience, and sophomore Pete Hanson (6 feet 9) is even greener. Reserves include Charlie Ross, Bill MacDonald and Gerry Crean. Two sophomores, Bruce Flemming and Pete Pavia, have shown well in practice and may start later in the season. With Temple and La Salle weaker, Lafayette should improve its conference record. Coach Ben Kribbs has spent six years building basketball interest at BUCKNELL, and this season he has his best selling point: a starting five that has played together for two full years. They are Hal Danzig, Bob Ericsson, Ellis Harley, Jack Flanegan and Tom Thompson, a fast crew of fair height that may give the conference's perennial leaders real trouble. The only apparent flaw is a green, predominantly sophomore bench. Academic difficulties have depleted a promising MUHLENBERG squad, leaving three top prospects ineligible. Dick Sekunda, Mel Kessler and Bill Dissinger will surely start and the others will come from among Don Robins, Joe Berghold, Joel Sarner, Bob Lukens, Steve Matel and sophomore George Gilfillian. The size is fair, but there is a dearth of speed in the face of a tough schedule. Neither Lehigh nor Rutgers has the over-all height necessary in today's style of play, and both have lost considerable strength through graduation. At LEHIGH, Coach Tony Packer has Norm Zelenko and Arnis Balgaluis back and four veteran reserves: Al Hofman, Terry Eckert, Bob Rogan and Denis Brenan. Sophomore John Palfi seems likely to start. The squad should be about as effective as last year's, but most of the competition, unfortunately, will be better. Coach Warren Harris hopes for the first .500 season in several years at RUTGERS, on the basis of improved shooting and speed. Starters Charles Wermuth and Bruce Webster return, along with reserves Bill Wolff, Larry Kaufman and Lars Steensland. Two sophomores—Karol Strelecki and Doug Patton—will also play regularly. Rutgers' schedule includes some of the best teams in the East and appears out of its class.
Man to watch
BILL KENNEDY, TEMPLE
Fast, deceptive and a fine playmaker, he will be the steady hand guiding a very inexperienced Temple team.