Quint's Preseason Top 20: No Excuses — Adapt, Overcome and Enjoy

OrangeXtreme

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You’ll be provided lots of excuses in 2021. The storyline of "who didn’t play because of COVID" will be a weekly lede. It’s everybody’s headline, but you’ll hear it conveniently used by losers, those that came up short.

On gameday, you have all you need. Adapt. Be flexible. Overcome. Enjoy.

A trio of games will be televised this weekend — 3 p.m. Friday, Denver at Duke; 4 p.m. Saturday, Towson at Virginia; and 11 a.m. Sunday, Denver at North Carolina. Networks should be ACC Network Friday and Saturday and ESPNU for Sunday. Schedules are apt to change and shift, so be cognizant.

1. Duke — The Blue Devils have a second-team attack and third midfield that would start at most schools. The offensive depth is absurd given the transfersadditions of Michael Sowers and Phil Robertson (Princeton), plus the arrival of freshmen Brennan O’Neill and Aidan Danenza, who will both be in the rotation. New goalie Mike Adler (Saint Joseph’s) should get the nod this weekend behind a defense that still has much to prove.

John Danowski and Bill Tierney square off on Friday. It’s Lombardi vs. Belichick. Two Long Island high school teachers who climbed to the top of the mountain and have given so much to the sport and their players. These two men mean so much to me, to open up the TV season with this game seems fitting. My respect for their abilities is endless. They’ve always represented their programs and the sport with nothing short of excellence while helping young men develop and grow.

Sowers’ debut will be worth watching. His spontaneity, variety of attacks, ability to play at warp speed while making it look easy — that’s why he’s one of the best of his era, and the top college player in the country by a wide margin. You never quite know what’s he’s going to do next. And it might be something ridiculous.


2. Syracuse — Otto has a newly renovated Dome and its eyes set on Memorial Day. The Orange haven’t released a schedule yet, although indications are that they’ll open with Army on Feb. 21. Midfield is a logical strength with Peter Dearth, Jamie Trimboli, Brendan Curry, Tucker Dordevic, Jacob Buttermore and Lucas Quinn.


3. Virginia — The Cavs’ defense wasn’t up to par in 2020, so that’s the critical question for the ‘defending’ champs. Cade Saustad, Kyle Kology, Quentin Matsui, Jared Conners, Scott Bower and goalie Alex Rode have the unenviable task of stopping ACC foes. The Wahoo offense is stacked. Season opener against Towson will be televised 4 p.m. Saturday on ACCN.


4. North Carolina — The Heels have waves of dangerous offensive players, including William Perry, Chris Gray, Nicky Solomon, Jacob Kelly, Brian Cameron, Justin Anderson, Connor McCarthy and Tanner Cook. Question marks on the defensive end, especially in the depth department, linger. UNC hosts Denver at 11 a.m. Sunday on ESPNU.


7. Notre Dame — The Irish should have a very good team, one that would be favored to win the Big East, SoCon, Patriot and America East. Unfortunately, they play in the ACC, so they are relegated to fifth place for the moment. Notre Dame ended 2020 on a sour note, losing three straight to Maryland, Denver and Ohio State. Defenders Jack Kielty and Arden Cohen are the program’s top players.
 

Zack80

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No Hopkins?
Even with out having the Ivy League included.

Quint could have really rubbed it in if he had ranked these guys #20:
 

ivorytower

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Strange how Duke additions are rightfully incorporated into their bright outlook while ND's are somewhat downplayed despite their aggregate haul perhaps being more significant to their fortunes.

Duke bringing in the # player but ND additions fill needs and fit into openings with Gallagher, Yorke, Leahy, Lipka , Thornton moving right into roles. .
 

Zack80

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The transfer to Michigan from the Limestone, Tyler Papa, had 77 points as a midfielder at Limestone in 2019. Limestone is DII, but that is a lot of points for a midfielder. I don't know how he will work out in D1.
Michigan was also with out midfielder Avery Myers last Spring, who had scored 34 points in 2019, and he returns for a graduate season.

So you might have a starting offense for Michigan of
Attack - Zawada, Mack, Clay
Midfield - Papa, Myers, Buckanavage
They have Rocco Sutherland and Jake Bonomi in reserve.
Also, Michigan had U-19 freshman Ryan Schriber starting on the defense, along with freshman Dylan Gardner starting at LSM, who will be sophomores this year. Gardner was pretty impressive.

This year's haul, 1 5 star (Michael Bohm) and 8 4 star recruits.

Apparently, athletics are shut down at Michigan right now. not a plus
 

Orangelax

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The transfer to Michigan from the Limestone, Tyler Papa, had 77 points as a midfielder at Limestone in 2019. Limestone is DII, but that is a lot of points for a midfielder. I don't know how he will work out in D1.
Michigan was also with out midfielder Avery Myers last Spring, who had scored 34 points in 2019, and he returns for a graduate season.

So you might have a starting offense for Michigan of
Attack - Zawada, Mack, Clay
Midfield - Papa, Myers, Buckanavage
They have Rocco Sutherland and Jake Bonomi in reserve.
Also, Michigan had U-19 freshman Ryan Schriber starting on the defense, along with freshman Dylan Gardner starting at LSM, who will be sophomores this year. Gardner was pretty impressive.

This year's haul, 1 5 star (Michael Bohm) and 8 4 star recruits.

Apparently, athletics are shut down at Michigan right now. not a plus
Just realized that Tyler Papa is Nick's older brother.
 

laxobserver

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Michigan has all the talent in the world on offense.

They are a mess defensively, not sure that gets turned around this year.

Also likely the worst FOGO unit in the conference now that Rutgers brought in the transfer. Though maybe the new rules will benefit them.

Only a matter of time before the Wolverines make some noise but they are still the weakest team in that conference.

Quint's choice of 19 and 20 are headscratchers when you could have put in teams like St. Joes, Delaware, Fairfield, Bucknell (or even his own alma mater). Bryant was not a good team in 2020 and I don't think the addition from Duke (Carpenter) changes things very much.
 

Zack80

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Michigan's defense was quite young last season, starting freshman Schriber with sophomores Darby and Schaffner at close, along with a freshman at LSM in Gardner. Kiracofe was in his first year as starting goalie. A year can make a big difference in a unit like that.

While Rutgers transfer Dugenio did have the better of it against Rowlett in the St.John's game (Rowlett winning 10 of 24). This is not an absolutely convincing result. Michigan also brings in a 4-star recruit in Justin Wietfeldt. So I think that Rutgers and Michigan are probably tied for the worst FO units in the Big Ten going into the season.

The difference between Michigan with Rutgers or Hopkins seems small to me. Given that the Big Ten is supposedly playing a home-away schedule this season, it will certainly get played out on the field.
 

SkyTopBus44

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Quint's choice of 19 and 20 are headscratchers when you could have put in teams like St. Joes, Delaware, Fairfield, Bucknell (or even his own alma mater). Bryant was not a good team in 2020 and I don't think the addition from Duke (Carpenter) changes things very much.
buurrrupppapah bah burrrruppappah baaah! (my best typing of hopkins band)

Not 19 or 20 WE WANT MORE!
 

Zack80

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High Point, at 2-6 last season, seems like a bit of a strange choice for #20. They do have 2nd team preseason AA attackman Asher Nolting. Canadian Tyler Hendrycks showed some nice things as a freshmen last spring, and Drew Buckshot started to emerge as major contributor. They have some decent midfielders to go with them. So the offense should be good.
I think the problem was at the defensive end. Goalie Tim Troutner, who used to keep them in games had graduated prior to last year, and they hadn't really found a replacement.
 

ivorytower

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Would have defaulted to JHU rising from the rubble instead of High Point but sure many considerations for last few spots maybe including Stony Brook and Hofstra.

Much depends on who has or has not returned.

QK had Maryland, Denver, Gtown lower than I would have thought and PSU and Loyola slightly higher

Doesn't really matter, games do.
 

Zack80

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QK is usually down on Maryland.
That being said, I can't really complain about QK's ranking of Maryland that much.
Maryland's offense looks really strong and deep, but the 4 teams in front of them have strong offenses also.
Maryland defense was a little subpar last spring. Maryland was also searching for the right goalie starting Brandau the first 4 games, then switching to McNaney for the last 2 games. Both played alright, but neither was outstanding, so it isn't really a hole but not a plus like Porter for Syracuse.

Maryland's defensive numbers look a little worse than they really were, as Maryland was playing a much more uptempo style than in the past. Things might have slowed down when Maryland reached Big Ten play.
 

ivorytower

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Maryland another with quite a offseason haul and Bernhardt return gives them that athletic dodger. Maybe JHU/Midatlantic fans here can provide insight on change from Reppert to Benson .Surprised D isn't stronger given personnel and coaching discipline.

Didnt see Maryland enuff to judge any change but good point on tempo. Uptick usually results in more openings, shots, transition and higher scores.

Shot clock was quickly adjusted to but still team differences in pace and schemes. Some push and pressure at every turn while others are more settled on offense and packed on D which tends to lend to lower scores. Beauty of sports is contrast to styles and approaches, to maintain that hoping that they dont lower the shot clock much further.
 

DoctahLexus

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Maryland another with quite a offseason haul and Bernhardt return gives them that athletic dodger. Maybe JHU/Midatlantic fans here can provide insight on change from Reppert to Benson .Surprised D isn't stronger given personnel and coaching discipline.

Didnt see Maryland enuff to judge any change but good point on tempo. Uptick usually results in more openings, shots, transition and higher scores.

Shot clock was quickly adjusted to but still team differences in pace and schemes. Some push and pressure at every turn while others are more settled on offense and packed on D which tends to lend to lower scores. Beauty of sports is contrast to styles and approaches, to maintain that hoping that they dont lower the shot clock much further.
Still not sure I love the Benson hire. Certainly an ambitious move, but I figured with the obstacles of the covid season, Bernhardt and two high end grad transfers in their final year, along with a perfectly successful offense last year, that they would give the reigns to a youngish alum in the interim and then make a move later, keeping a similar offense to last year. Is now the time to be introducing entirely new schemes? Could still work out for them but certainly a big time move in an area I was not expecting.
 

laxobserver

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I doubt UMD will introduce an entirely new offense this season. Benson is more than capable of coaching the existing schemes, while perhaps adding in a few tweaks on the fly. But it won't be a wholesale change. Even if it was, I'm not sure the offense he ran at JHU was wildly different from the one Maryland has been running. It will be business as usual for the Terps this year and then after the season, then maybe we see Benson put more of his imprint on things moving forward assuming he sheds the "interim" title. But for this year at least I suspect Tillman wanted a proven, veteran presence to keep the ship steady on offense. It's an added bonus that he doesn't require any time at all learning the other B1G teams and player tendencies. It will help quite a bit for Tillman to have a guy in the room who knows these teams in and out to bounce ideas off of. You don't get that with a Bernhardt or a Chanenchuk, who have never had to gameplan against B1G defenses.
 

CuseAlum87

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I doubt UMD will introduce an entirely new offense this season. Benson is more than capable of coaching the existing schemes, while perhaps adding in a few tweaks on the fly. But it won't be a wholesale change. Even if it was, I'm not sure the offense he ran at JHU was wildly different from the one Maryland has been running. It will be business as usual for the Terps this year and then after the season, then maybe we see Benson put more of his imprint on things moving forward assuming he sheds the "interim" title. But for this year at least I suspect Tillman wanted a proven, veteran presence to keep the ship steady on offense. It's an added bonus that he doesn't require any time at all learning the other B1G teams and player tendencies. It will help quite a bit for Tillman to have a guy in the room who knows these teams in and out to bounce ideas off of. You don't get that with a Bernhardt or a Chanenchuk, who have never had to gameplan against B1G defenses.
I expect him to use some two man games within the general offensive framework to free up shooters, create mismatches etc. Really not that hard to implement. I think this is a good hire considering the timing of everything.
 

Zack80

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Surprised D isn't stronger given personnel and coaching discipline.
The Terps have been a little short at close defense the last couple years. The LSMs are good, the ssdms are very good, and the goalies are good.
At close, Makar is very good, and Grill does a nice job. In the last game of last spring, the Terps moved LSM Matt Rahill to close, and I thought things looked better. Further, John Geppert looked pretty nice at LSM.
In general, things should be better this Spring with BJ Burlace transferring in, also LSM M.Ubriaco is back from being injured. Justin Sherrer looked good as the #2 LSM last spring, and having a year under his belt should help his play.
I'm sort of hoping BJ Burlace can just come in and take over that 3rd spot on the close D.
 

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