Diplomats Preseason No. 4 in Sporting News Poll
LANCASTER, Pa. - Franklin & Marshall's men's basketball team is ranked fourth in The Sporting News College Basketball Magazine Preseason Top-10. F&M junior forward James McNally was given preseason All-America honorable mention by the organization.
"This is a tremendous honor for our team and James to be given this preseason recognition," says F&M coach Glenn Robinson. "We still have to go out there and play. Given our difficult schedule and the target on our back it will be a challenge to match last year's success."
The Diplomats return four starters from last year's 26-7 team that finished fourth in the nation. F&M advanced to the final four for the fifth time in school history. The Diplomats made their 20th NCAA tournament berth, 12th Sweet 16 and seventh Elite Eight appearances under Robinson.
This is the first All-American honor for McNally. He was named to the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) All-Middle Atlantic Region Second Team and D3Hoops.com All-Region Team in 2009. McNally earned Centennial Conference (CC) First Team honors and was named to the NCAA All-Tournament team.
"Every coach in the country would love to have a player like James," said Robinson. "He works hard everyday and really enjoys the game."
McNally averaged 16.0 points and 7.7 rebounds per game for the Diplomats in 2008-2009. He scored 529 points and pulled down 254 rebounds. He scored 20 or more points eight times on the season and recorded eight double-doubles as well
The duo of Anthony Brooks and Georgio Milligan return to the Diplomat's backcourt. Brooks averaged 10.5 points per game. He dished out 77 assists and had 47 steals last year. Milligan earned D3Hoops.com Middle Atlantic Region Rookie of Year, and was named to the 2009 CC First-Team, the first ever freshmen to receive the honor. He scored 13.5 points and 5.24 assists a game. Mike Baker and McNally return at the forward positions. Baker, a CC honorable mention, started all 33 games averaging 10.2 points and 7.5 rebounds in 2009-10.
Robinson brings a 756-291 record into his 39th season at F&M. He is the most victorious coach in Division III history and earned D3Hoops.com Coach of the Year Award last season. The Diplomats open the 2009-10 season campaign November 20th against visiting City Tech (N.Y.) at 8:00pm.
2009-10 Sporting News Division III Top-10 Poll
1. Washington (Mo.)
3. Richard Stockton
4. Franklin & Marshall
7. John Carroll
9. Wisconsin-Stevens Point