A story on Zagsblog has an interview of Ben Howland who is on the East Coast scouting players. The interview further updates the injuries to Shabazz and Kyle Anderson, both of whom should be ready to practice and play well in advance of the August 22 trip to China.
The article also has a few other interesting tidbits that are worth highlighting. First on what position 6'9" Kyle Anderson is going to play:
"Offensively, he's going to play at the point but he can play four positions offensively," Howland said, adding that Anderson might defend a bigger player on the other end.
Not a surprise except it is of interest that Anderson could even play the four on offense. A position that some think, including me, is his best position on defense.
The article also highlights the forgotten freshman, Jordan Adams. It seems that Adams has really impressed Howland in practice so far:
"Jordan Adams' been really impressive. He's a wing, can play two or three offensively, and defensively, he's probably better matched up with a three."
What does this mean for the returning players and minutes?
If Anderson plays the point as expected, who plays against a point guard on defense? Could this mean Norman Powell breaks into the starting lineup with starter minutes? Is Larry Drew only a backup point guard?
Also if Anderson where to play some at the four, where would the Wears play? Could Howland bench the Wears?
Last, if Adams is really is that impressive, where does he find minutes? Does Lamb ride the pine as the odd man out?
While this is all just speculation for a team that has not yet practiced together as an entirety, I have two general thoughts:
1. One should not forget that last year's team was mediocre despite playing in the worst Pac 12 in years and lost its best (Zeek) and most experienced (Jerime Anderson) players. With the exception of Smith who was very good his freshman year, I would argue that no returning player has shown he is "that good" despite their status as a returning players.
2. Howland has to make this work, no excuses. As the article concludes:
Howland knows that big things are expected of him after he was under pressure last season and had to receive a vote of confidence after the season from AD Dan Guerrero.
"Well," he said, "we want to have a big year."
Coach Howland I think it is "must" not "want to".