MACON, Ga. - Mercer landed the top spot in the 2012-13 Atlantic Sun MenÃ¢â¬â¢s Basketball Preseason Coaches and Media Poll after setting the program record for wins (27) and earning the first postseason tournament title in program and A-Sun history with five wins in the CollegeInsider.com Tournament.
The BearsÃ¢â¬â¢ junior duo of Jakob Gollon and Langston Hall earned spots on the preseason all-conference team following their championship season. Gollon ranked in the top-10 of several A-Sun categories last season including; free throw percentage (.829), rebounds (5.9), assists (3.3) and steals (1.6). Hall averaged 11.4 points as a sophomore and dished out 4.2 assists per contest.
Mercer's Daniel Coursey was voted the Preseason Defensive Player of the Year after blocking 88 shots last season Ã¢â¬â tied for the fifth-best single season total in A-Sun history.
USC UpstateÃ¢â¬â¢s Torrey Craig, the 2012 Player of the Year, and Ty Greene, the 2012 Freshman of the Year, adorned the 10-person team with Craig picking up the Preseason Player of the Year title. Craig led the league in scoring at 16.4 points and ranked second in rebounding (7.7), while also posting top-15 statistics in six other categories. Greene added 11.4 points per game for the Spartans last season. The SpartansÃ¢â¬â¢ Mario Blessing was tabbed the Fan-Voted Defensive Player of the Year.
North FloridaÃ¢â¬â¢s shooting threat of Parker Smith and Jerron Granberry joined the all-conference team after the two combined for 172 three-pointers last season. Smith shot .410 from behind the arc, while Granberry posted a .394 three-point clip. Smith earned the most tallies on Facebook for the Fan-Voted Preseason Player of the Year honor.
FGCUÃ¢â¬â¢s Sherwood Brown ranked in the top-10 of the A-Sun for scoring (12.8) and rebounding (5.9), while helping the Eagles to the 2012 A-Sun Championship Final. Adam Pegg, a senior for Stetson, had the 10th best free throw percentage (.726) last season and added the 12th best field goal percentage (.516) to help the 6-9 center to the leagueÃ¢â¬â¢s fourth best scoring average at 14.9 points.
With a field goal percentage of .559 last season, JacksonvilleÃ¢â¬â¢s Glenn Powell landed a spot on the all-conference preseason team after averaging 10.9 points, 6.4 rebounds and 1.2 blocks. Kennesaw StateÃ¢â¬â¢s Markeith Cummings enters his senior season with 1,603 career points after finishing last season with 15.4 per game. CummingsÃ¢â¬â¢ career total is the 25th most in the A-Sun career record books.
USC Upstate and FGCU followed Mercer in the coaches and media polls, while ETSU and North Florida split the polls in fourth and fifth place. The Ospreys were picked first in the A-Sun Fan Poll with 93 votes just ahead of FGCU (81) and Jacksonville (46).
The Atlantic Sun Conference is an NCAA Division I league with 10 member institutions committed to Building Winners for Life. The A-Sun meets the challenge of maintaining the highest standards in academic and athletic achievement with a true balance between student and athlete. Headquartered in Macon, Ga., the A-Sun boasts six of the top eight media markets in the Southeast. The A-Sun includes a blend of the most prestigious and dynamic private and public institutions in the region: East Tennessee State University, Florida Gulf Coast University, Jacksonville University, Kennesaw State University, Lipscomb University, Mercer University, University of North Florida, Northern Kentucky University, University of South Carolina Upstate and Stetson University.