New Era for Thunderbird Basketball with Master's College

Published: October 30, 2016 | Author: Chanel Barnes | Read Time: 2 minutes

James McGeeThe Southern Utah Thunderbirds men’s team launches their season and new era of basketball this Saturday night in Cedar City at 6:30 p.m. as they take on Master’s College in the Centrum Arena.

With just under four weeks of official Thunderbird practices in the books, an entire new coaching staff under the helm of head coach Todd Simon, and six new players in the program, the Thunderbirds are ready to hit the court.

“We’re several weeks into practice, and the group is really starting to come together,” said Simon. “Our priority 1 has been culture. Trying to establish how we’re going to practice, our attitude and effort through adversity, turning the heat up a little bit to see how guys will respond, and putting in our system, which is obviously brand new. But we’re making great strides.”

Master’s College will open its season on Oct. 27 before making the trip to Cedar City for its second exhibition game with the Thunderbirds.

“Saturday will be a good test to see where we’re at. Then going forward, we obviously hit the ground running with a challenging schedule,” said Simon. “We want to get an opportunity under the lights with people in the stands, officials, and the whole deal. We want to get some mileage under our legs and see how guys will do in that environment.”

Amongst the few returning faces to the program, is junior guard James McGee. McGee led the Thunderbirds last season, averaging 12.1 points per game and shooting an impressive .418% from beyond the arch.

As a returning leader, McGee feels the team is starting to click.  

“I feel like we’re starting to really get it. It was hard at first, and it was hard to adjust to the fast-pace system,” McGee said. “We’re gelling really well. The competition is great.”

Following Southern Utah’s exhibition match-up with Master’s College, the Thunderbirds will host La Verne in their second exhibition game of the season on Friday, Nov. 4, at 6:30 p.m.

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