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2020-21 Florida State men's basketball preview

Florida State Seminoles

2019-20 record: 26-5, 16-4 in the ACC

Head coach: Leonard Hamilton

Tenure at Florida State: 19th season

Career coaching record: 582-431

Home court: Donald L. Tucker Center

Starters: G Scottie Barnes, G M.J. Walker, G Anthony Polite, F Raiquan Gray, F Malik Osborne

Bench: G RayQuan Evans, C Balsa Koprivica, F Raiquan Gray, C Quincy Ballard, G Sardaar Calhoun, G Wyatt Wilkes, C Tanor Ngom

Overview: The Florida State Seminoles were one of the teams most disappointed to see the 2019-2020 postseason canceled due to COVID-19. Coming off of the best regular season in school history and first ever ACC regular season title, the Seminoles had their eyes on bringing home the school’s first national championship. 

Heading into the 2020-2021 season, Florida State returns all but two starters and two key bench players from last season. Trent Forrest, Patrick Williams, and Devin Vassel all declared for the NBA draft, and Dominik Olejniczak graduated. This leaves the Seminoles with a deep, experienced roster. Florida State’s starting five showcases four upperclassmen and the 5th ranked freshman in this year’s recruiting class according to ESPN. Look for M.J. Walker to lead his team in scoring, with key buckets from experienced bench players outsizing many other teams’ starters. Head coach Leonard Hamilton looks to lead this deadly combination of experience and talent to a national championship that his team could taste last season. 

Team ceiling: To talk about Florida State hoops without discussing height would be a disservice to the armada Hamilton has built up in recent years. The Seminoles have very tall players across the board, and will need to play to this height advantage in every game they play. With players, such as seven-footer Balsa Koprivica, who bring experience and rebound-ability to the table, Florida State proves to be a nightmare in the paint for opponents. Wyatt Wilkes and Nathaneal Jack have both shown potential to score off the bench, and will need to step up late in games. 

Team floor: M.J. Walker is the only returning starter who averaged double digit points last season. As strong as the Seminoles’ roster is, they lost their top scorers this offseason. The highest scoring player from the bench who returns this season is Koprivica, who averaged under five points per game last year. If new players do not step up, Florida State will have struggles in the scoring department, with an undue amount of pressure put on freshman Scottie Barnes.

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