By Andy Mac Williams, 10/29/2019

Xavier TEAM 98 stages its final dress rehearsal for the 2019-2020 season Wednesday night at Cintas vs University of Indianapolis (the Greyhounds from the NCAA D-2 Great Lakes Valley Conference). The Muskies played their secret scrimmage last Saturday against D-1 Akron from the MAC-shot it poorly and committed copious turnovers, but Travis Steele was pleased w/ the XU defense and rebounding and post play. He describes his second Xavier team as "blue collar and inside-out-with TOP 25 defensive efficiency (points/possession) potential."

X played Akron without two front court starters Tyrique Jones and Jason Carter. PG sub Kyky Tandy also did not play. Those three will probably miss the UIndy game also. Carter is back at practice. Tyrique is day to day w/ a sore knee and should be available for the Opener next Tuesday November 5th at Cintas against Jacksonville. Tandy may miss a couple weeks w/ a sore foot. XU has 11 players available.

TEAM 1 at practice Monday consisted of PG Quentin Gooden-2G Paul Scruggs-SF Naji Marshall and BIG Zach Freemantle plus Wing Myles Hanson who has played his way into the mix w/ his balls to the wall gung-ho approach and his unreal conditioning. W/ 3 rotation players out, even more minutes open up for guard subs Bryce Moore and Dahmir Bishop and BIGS Daniel Ramsey, Dieonte Miles and Dontarious James. PG Leighton Schrand is also available.

Xavier has lost a D-2 Exhibition Game( to Bellarmine in Chris Mack's second season-Bellarmine went on to win the NCAA D-2 Title). Findlay almost upset Xavier prior to Sean Miller's last Muskie season(2008-2009) and the Oilers then ran the table for a D-2 NCAA Championship.


XU has not played them since 1936. UIndy plays at Loyola of Chicago Tuesday then busses to Cincy to play Xavier. They meet Butler at Hinkle Fieldhouse Friday night (3 games in 4 days). The Greyhounds were 19-10 overall last season 12-6 in the GLVC.

They return 8 players including 5th year Senior PG 6-4 Jimmy King and 6-7 Wing sniper Trevor Lakes (both All GLVC 2nd Team selections). INDY adds 6-5 Frosh Josh Bryan from Muncie, Indiana(top 3 point shooter in the State).

10 players hail from Indiana so beware the jump shot! Coach Stan Gouard is in his 12th season w/ 204 wins and NCAA Tournament trips from 2010 to 2016. He played for Bruce Pearl's NCAA D-2 Champs at Southern Indiana University in 1995.


DJ Bandcamp will entertain throughout the game. Tome Eiser's colorful information packed Media Guide will be on sale around the concourse. A new STOP-KILL Tote Board will be on display to get the crowd behind the Muskies' efforts defensively. A STOP is any enemy possession that results in no points. A KILL in XU nomenclature is 3 STOPS in a row. Travis and Mario Mercurio have determined through historical research that when Xavier gets 7 or more KILLS in a game, they win 90 plus % of the time.

This fortuitous statistic holds for other Packline teams like Virginia(defending NCAA Champion) and Texas Tech(Final 4 participant last April). Travis and the team hope fans get loud(and maybe bark as the players do) when XU approaches 3 straight STOPS and 7 overall KILLS.

The new board will keep track. Xavier has the 7th highest home court winning % in NCAA D-1(.863)(258-41 over 19 seasons at Cintas). Why not make the opponent's stay a little nastier or is it more nasty??

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