BURNSVILLE, Minn. – Coming off an 18-12 overall record and a 13-9 league mark a season ago, the Bemidji State University men’s basketball team was tabbed to finish 12th in the 2013-14 Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference Preseason Coaches’ Poll Wednesday. The Beavers were pegged to finish sixth in the NSIC North Division, while senior forward Zach Noreen (Avon, Minn.) was deemed BSU’s Player to Watch.
Entering his second season as bench boss, head coach Mike Boschee welcomed 10 newcomers (seven true freshmen) to the program this fall. The Beavers earned 77 points in the overall poll and 25 points, plus a first place vote in the NSIC North poll.
The 2012-13 regular season and conference tournament champion, Minnesota State University, Mankato was slotted to finish first, as the Mavericks earned 15 of 16 first place votes and totaled 225 points. St. Cloud State University, 2012-13 North Champions, and Winona State University, 2012-13 Central Region Champions, each totaled 191 points to tie for second. Augustana College earned the final first place vote and 181 points for fourth, while Southwest Minnesota State University was named the fifth place team with 174 points.
In the North, SCSU earned seven first place votes and 49 points to sit first. Minnesota State University Moorhead was second (41 points) and University of Minnesota Duluth was third (30 points). Just five points separated third, UMD, and sixth, BSU.
The NSIC North Division Preseason Player of the Year was Brett Ervin from Minnesota Duluth. Minnesota State’s Assem Marei was named the NSIC South Division Preseason Player of the Year.
NSIC coaches rank each team from one to 15 with a first place vote receiving 15 points, second place 14, third place 13, etc. Coaches do not rank their own team or vote for their own players.
The regular season champion will be based on the 22-game NSIC schedule. Each team will play teams in their division twice (14) and teams in the other division once (8). An NSIC North and South Division Champion will be awarded. Divisional standings will also be based on all 22 NSIC contests played. In the case of a tie, co-champions will be awarded. The 16-team NSIC / Sanford Health Men's Basketball Tournament Quarterfinals, Semifinals and Championships are set to take place Sat.-Tues., March 1-4 at the Sanford Health Pentagon in Sioux Falls, S.D. First round games will be played on the campus of the top eight seeds Wednesday, Feb. 26.
BSU’s Player to Watch
#3 Zach Noreen (F, 6-6, 250, Sr., Avon, Minn. / Albany HS) played in 30 games and started 29 as a junior. He recorded 9.7 points per game to sit fourth on the team in scoring. Noreen shot 47.6 percent from the field, 39.2 percent from beyond the arc and led the team in blocks with 25, while his 17 rejections in NSIC play ranked tied for 15th. He posted 3.7 rebounds per game, added 25 assists and 21 steals in 22.7 minutes per game. Noreen compiled double-digit scoring efforts in 15 contests, which included a career-high 19 points in the NSIC opener versus Minnesota Crookston (Dec. 1). He knocked down a career-high five 3-pointers against the Golden Eagles on a career-high eight attempts. Noreen showed up big in contests against nationally-ranked teams. He scored 18 points at No. 21 Winona State (March 2) in the quarterfinals of the NSIC Tournament and hit the game-winning 3-pointer with 1:26 left in regulation and posted a career-high eight rebounds and a career-best three blocked shots against then-No. 22 St. Cloud State (Feb. 23).
The 2013-14 men's basketball season gets underway on Friday, November 8 and NSIC action on the week of November 25.
The Beavers’ 18 wins in 2012-13 ranked fifth all-time in the 91-year history of the program. Bemidji State finished the 22-game NSIC schedule with a 13-9 mark to finish as the No. 3 seed in the NSIC North Division. Boschee set the BSU record for most wins by a first-year head coach, as the Beavers made a run to the NSIC/Sanford Health Men's Basketball Tournament Championship game.
BSU returns four regulars from last season, including seniors Noreen, Maxie Rosenbloom (F, St. Paul, Minn.) and Jake Schalow (G, Kaukauna, Minn.).
The Beavers have an exhibition contest at University of Northern Iowa scheduled for Oct. 25 and are set to begin the 2013-14 regular season hosting Mayville State University Nov. 13.
2013-14 NSIC Men's Basketball NSIC Preseason Coaches' Poll
|Overall Preseason Coaches' Poll||Points||North Division||Pts|
|1. Minnesota State (15)||225||1. St. Cloud State (7)||49|
|2. St. Cloud State||191||2. MSU Moorhead||41|
|Winona State||191||3. Minnesota Duluth||30|
|4. Augustana (1)||181||4. Minot State||29|
|5. Southwest Minnesota State||174||5. Northern State||27|
|6. MSU Moorhead||158||6. Bemidji State (1)||25|
|7. Concordia- St. Paul||124||7. U-Mary||16|
|8. Minnesota Duluth||115||8. Minnesota Crookston||7|
|Northern State||115||South Division||Pts|
|10. Sioux Falls||98||1. Minnesota State (7)||49|
|11. Minot State||85||2. Winona State||40|
|12. Bemidji State||77||3. Augustana (1)||36|
|13. Wayne State||67||4. SMSU||34|
|14. Upper Iowa||61||5. Concordia-St. Paul||21|
|15. University of Mary||43||6. Sioux Falls||20|
|16. Minnesota Crookston||15||7. Upper Iowa||12|
|first place votes in ( )||Wayne State||12|
For more information on the Bemidji State men’s basketball program, follow the Beavers on Twitter (@BSUHoops or @BSUBeavers), like them on Facebook (facebook.com/Bemidji-State-Basketball or facebook.com/BSUBeavers) or sign up for the TXTUpdates from BSUBeavers.com text-messaging system through the "Mulitmedia" pull down menu on the main page of BSUBeavers.com.
Nestled in Northern Minnesota’s wooded region and located on the shore of Lake Bemidji, Bemidji State University sponsors 15 varsity athletic programs with NCAA Division I men’s and women’s hockey membership in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association, while its 13 NCAA Division II programs hold membership in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC).