08-09 Classic Lake Preview

As the clock ticks under 1 month remaining until the start of practice, there's no better time to kick off the Czar's official coverage of the 08-09 regular season. We begin with the Classic Lake Conference. I noted last year that the league was 81-20 in non-conference games in 06-07. In 07-08 the league was even better with a 79-18 record out of league.

Hopkins Royals (2007 Season 27-2, 7-1 conference)
Any discussion of the 08-09 season has to begin with the Hopkins Royals. 26-0 against everyone except Minnetonka last year (1-2 vs the Skippers) with most of the roster returning. So a big season was in store without any help. Then comes U of M recruit Royce White. 4 starters who have D1 scholarships and Marcus Williams is D1 capable at the point. White and Mike Broghammer (Notre Dame commit) with sophomore Marvin Singleton give the Royals a standout front line. In the backcourt, Raymond Cowles (Santa Clara commit), Trent Lockett (Arizona St commit) and Williams give them an outstanding backcourt. There's also depth at the perimeter positions with Moses Sundufu and DJ Peterson. The item to address is the loss of reserve point guard Aaron Anderson (transferred to Osseo). Don't be surprised if freshman lefty Siyani Chambers gets minutes in that spot. This team may be the best collection of talent ever assembled in Minnesota. Anything less than a state title is a disappointment.

Robbinsdale Armstrong Falcons (2007 Season 13-15, 1-7 conference)
The Falcons return a ton of experience. David Weber and Damarius Cruz return at the guard spots. Ted Vogt and Ryan Virnig return for an inside presence. Andy Seidlitz slides into the sharpshooter filled by Preston McCourt last season. Then there's sophomore Marquel Curtis as another good wing player. The loss of JD Robinson hurts, but there's still plenty of talent and experience. I think the Falcons improve on a down season last year with a win total approaching 20.

Minnetonka Skippers (2007 Season 28-3 State Champions, 7-1)
Normally a team that loses 7 terrific seniors from a state title team would have a tough time coming back from that. But the Skippers will still be loaded this season. Cole Stefan should be one of the breakout players in the metro now that he'll be the goto man. He's a lights out shooter who can fill it up in a hurry. Kyle Risinger returns to run the point. He provides toughness and experience. Taylor Nelson returns inside and look for Leonard Glass to contribute up front as well. There's still plenty of talent here for 16+ wins.

Wayzata Trojans (2007 Season 20-7, 4-4)
The loss of 15 PPG from wing Nick Rocca is a big loss for the Trojans. However, the cupboard isn't bare here either. Leading scorer Jarrod Peterson returns along with Kellen Taylor up front. Eren Cur also returns. I'll be watching sophomore Eric Robertson to see if he can develop into a player than can fill Rocca's role.

Edina Hornets (2007 Season 14-14, 1-7)
The Hornets return a quality backcourt of Will Deberg and Ben Biewen that averaged almost 25 PPG combined. They'll be a respectable team, but due to the strength of the league, their record won't show it. This happened last year and as a 6 seed they knocked out Missota champion Prior Lake in the 1st round. I won't be surprised if something like that happens again.

Predicted Order of Finish
  1. Hopkins
  2. Robbinsdale Armstrong
  3. Minnetonka
  4. Wayzata
  5. Edina
Player of the Year: Royce White - Hopkins

Games that will determine the conference title
None. Watch these games for second place.
  • Armstrong at Minnetonka - February 6th
  • Minnetonka at Armstrong - February 24th
Non-Conference Games to Watch
  • Hopkins at Washburn - December 12th
  • Cooper at Armstrong - December 12th
  • Minnetonka at Champlin Park - December 12th
  • Sibley at Minnetonka - December 16th
  • Hopkins at St. Bernard's - December 18th
  • Minnetonka vs Eden Prairie - Dec 29th (Bethel tournament, projected semifinal)
  • St. Bernard's vs Armstrong - Dec 30th (Catholic Spirit tournament, projected semifinal)
  • Sibley vs Minnetonka rematch - Dec 30th (Bethel championship, projected title game)
  • St. Cloud Tech at Hopkins - January 5th (Czar's Note 11/14/08: This game is no longer on the schedule)
  • Hopkins at Sibley - January 9th
  • Hopkins vs Milwaukee Vincent - January 23rd 8 PM at St. Paul Johnson (East Metro Showcase)
  • Minnetonka at Cooper - January 24th
  • Wayzata vs Milwaukee Lutheran - January 24th 8 PM at St. Paul Johnson (East Metro Showcase)
  • Hopkins at Cooper - February 3rd

No comments:

Post a Comment

Have a different take than mine? You can provide your take here.