The independent news organization of Duke University

2020-21 Elon men's basketball preview

Elon Phoenix

2019-20 record: 13-21, 7-11 in the Colonial Athletic Association

Head coach: Mike Schrage

Tenure at Elon: 2nd season

Career coaching record: 13-21 

Home court: Alumni Gym

Starters: G Hunter McIntosh, G Kris Wooten, F Chuck Hannah, F Federico Poser, F Hunter Woods

Bench: G/F Jadun Michael, G Ikenna Ndugba, G/F Zac Ervin, F Michael Graham, G Ben Daugherty

Overview: Elon is a historically mediocre program that is hoping to be revived by last year’s hire of Mike Schrage. Schrage comes from the Bobby Knight and Mike Krzyzewski coaching tree, so rebranding this program is certainly not out of the question, but there is still a ways to go. 

The Phoenix struggled last season, in large part due to their 41.7 percent field goal rate. While overall they did not convert on nearly enough shots from the field, they shot the ball extremely efficiently from 3-point range. They made 36.3 percent of their attempts from the land of plenty and were among the top 10 in total 3-point attempts in the NCAA, but that is really the only part of their play that can be considered successful. 

It’s going to be an uphill battle for Elon to score, especially to start the year with the departure of its leading scorer Marcus Sheffield II. The Phoenix playing style is similar to a number of other college programs that are opting to go with a third forward instead of a traditional center in the schematics, and they are going to need one of their other four returning starters to fill the void. 

Team ceiling: The Colonial Athletic Association is a crapshoot when it comes to trying to predict who is going to rise to the top of the conference. In the past four years, four different teams have won the conference tournament, but with how much Elon struggled last year, a semifinal tournament appearance is its ceiling.

Team floor: Despite being such an experienced team, Elon could easily slide to the bottom of the conference if a prolific scorer does not emerge. Schrage should be able to manufacture some wins via his schematics, so the floor of this team is repeating as seventh place in the conference. 

Jake C. Piazza

Jake Piazza is a Trinity junior and sports editor of The Chronicle's 117th volume.


Share and discuss “2020-21 Elon men's basketball preview” on social media.