Friday, September 22, 2017

Darryl Strawberry's Son Gives Mercer All-Southern Conference Duo, After Football Team Almost Shocks Auburn

Darryl Strawberry's son Jordan is one of two projected All-Conference players for Mercer, a school that just started their football program and yet had the ball in the second half trailing Auburn only 17-10. Mercer could join an excellent Wofford football team and other Southern schools with solid programs in both sports - but it was basketball-only East Tennessee State that dominated last season with a 27-9 record and 13-seed.

Expect Mercer to join three other surging basketball programs to pass a rebuilding East Tennessee State this year. Value Add projects Strawberry's Ria'n Holland edging out Furman's Devin Sidley for Player of the year, giving Mercer a strong one-two preseason All-Conference punch.

Value Add projects Samford (75th) and Mercer (82nd) in the top tier of the 351 Division 1 teams.
Here is where Value Add ranks each Southern Conference team for the season, and the Massey Rankings rank the football teams against all other schools.

Team - 2017 SeedHoopsFootball
North Carolina Greensboro127
East Tennessee St. 13182
The Citadel227
Western Carolina256206

Here are the top 15 projected players in the conference in order.

Top 15 Southern PlayersValue AddSchoolHt
Ria'n Holland 106.57Mercer`6-00
Devin Sibley 126.21Furman`6-02
Francis Alonso 106.19North Carolina Greensboro`6-03
Jordan Strawberry 55.62Mercer`6-01
Wyatt Walker 335.46Samford`6-09
Fletcher Magee 35.00Wofford`6-04
Cameron Jackson 334.87Wofford`6-08
Demetrius Denzel-Dyson 224.82Samford`6-05
Desonta Bradford 114.59East Tennessee St.`6-04
Preston Parks 04.20The Citadel`6-01
Zane Najdawi 354.10The Citadel`6-07
Daniel Fowler 354.08Furman`6-04
David Burrell 33.80East Tennessee St.`6-06
Stephon Jelks 153.80Mercer`6-06
James Dickey 213.58North Carolina Greensboro`6-09

Ken Pomeroy ranked the Southern Conference the 14th best of 32 Division 1 basketball conferences, which will all be previewed here with notes on which schools are now "basketball" or "football" schools based on which program is stronger this season. Football revenue is much higher, but programs are much more expensive between equipment and the requirement of matching enough women's scholarships in other sports. Therefore some programs forgo FBS football programs to focus on low cost basketball programs as their biggest revenue sport.

Sports IllustratedFox Sports and ESPN have lauded Value Add Basketball for estimating the number of points each college basketball players is worth to his team above a replacement player - similar to baseball WAR (Wins Above Replacement). Massey Ratings is used for the football rankings above.

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