Men’s Basketball Picked to Finish Seventh in the MAAC

The Marist men’s basketball program was selected to finish seventh in the MAAC’s preseason coaches’ poll that was released on Tuesday night. John Dunne, who signed a multi-year contract extension following the end of the 2021-22 season, is going into his fifth year as head coach of the Red Foxes. 

A 77-52 loss at the hands of the Quinnipiac Bobcats in the first round of the MAAC Tournament highlighted a season that could have been for the Red Foxes. Marist had some big wins last season, including a sweep of the Monmouth Hawks, but the team will only be remembered for how the year ended.  

Here is the full preseason coaches’ poll with first-place votes in parentheses and total points next to each team.

1: Iona (10) 119

2: Manhattan (1) 104

3: Rider 101

4: Quinnipiac 80

5: Fairfield 77

6: Siena 70

7: Marist 41

T-8: Niagara 39

T-8: Saint Peter’s 39 

10: Mount St. Mary’s 34

11: Canisius 22

The men’s basketball team watched several of their players enter the transfer portal following their first-round loss in the MAAC Tournament, most notably Jao Ituka (Wake Forest) and Ricardo Wright (SMU). Last year’s roster was filled with talent and experience, but the Red Foxes were unable to capitalize on that towards the end of the season.  

Marist had five freshmen join the program this offseason, including guard/forward Isaiah Brickner, forward Trace Salton and forward Jaden Daughtry among others. Expect to see the younger guys get a chance to obtain important roles in the rotation. 

The Red Foxes dipped into the transfer portal in order to replenish their roster, something that has been very successful in recent memory. Patrick Gardner (Saint Michael’s), Anthony Cooper (Caldwell), Kam Farris (Robert Morris), and Stephane Ingo (Maine) will look to lift up a younger group throughout the upcoming season. 

Sophomore Noah Harris is the most notable returner, who averaged 6.1 points in 20.5 minutes per game. The 6-foot-1 guard should have an expanded role after making just four starts last season. 

Forward Javon Cooley and center Rollin Belton averaged a total of 14.9 minutes per game between the two of them last season. Expect Dunne to give both of those players an opportunity to prove themselves early in the season. 

While this group of players may be unfamiliar with the speed and physicality of the MAAC, it is a roster that has the potential to surprise a lot of people this season. Dunne and his staff will look to develop a rotation that can compete with the best teams in the conference for the 2022-23 season.

Here is the Preseason All-MAAC First Team:

Supreme Cook (Fairfield)

Nelly Junior Joseph (Iona)

Jose Perez* (Manhattan)

Matt Balanc (Quinnipiac)

Dwight Murray Jr. (Rider)

*Preseason player of the year 

Marist opens its season on Nov. 9 against American at McCann Arena and begins conference play against when it hosts Manhattan on Dec. 19.

Edited by Jonathan Kinane

Photo from Harrison Baker for Marist Athletics

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