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Thursday, October 28, 2010Center Adnan Hodzic and guard Josh Slater are the headliners for the Lipscomb Bisons basketball team this season, but there are four freshmen bubbling with personality and talent who have possibly made the biggest impact during preseason practices.
Point guard Robert Boyd, forward Damarius Smith and guard Carter Sanderson are true freshmen. Guard Brandon Barnes is a redshirt freshman.
“They are so energetic and play with so much energy on the floor in practice,” Bisons’ coach Scott Sanderson said. “They talk more than almost anybody on the floor. They have enthused our seniors.
“Whether they play or don’t play they have already impacted our team in a positive way. They have fit into our team every quickly.”
Boyd is a guard from Fulton High School in Knoxville, Tenn. He has all the tools to run the team on the point. Sanderson expects Boyd to have an impact on the team for several years.
“He is so quick to the basket,” Sanderson said. “He shoots the ball really, really well. He can defend.
“He brings great energy. The rest of the team plays harder when he is in the game. He also has a very good feel of how to play.”
Sanderson predicts that Smith, from Kenwood High School in Clarksville, Tenn., will become one of the best defenders in the history of the program.
“Potentially Damarius could be one of the best defenders we have ever had,” Sanderson said. “He is long and athletic. He has a good feel for the game.
“He can pass the ball. He is going to be one of the best athletes we have ever had here. But he is still learning.”
Carter, who played at David Lipscomb High School, is the oldest of Scott Sanderson’s sons. He is planning to redshirt this season. During the summer he had surgery on his back.
“Carter has shot the ball pretty well in practice,” coach Sanderson said. “He has a feel for what we are doing. His biggest adjustments are the strength and speed of the game.”
Barnes, from Chapel Hill High School in Douglasville, Ga., has benefited from a redshirt year in terms of maturity.
“Brandon has learned,” Sanderson said. “He has allowed himself to be coached. He is accepting coaching and his play has reflected that.
“He is going to have an impact on our team. He is more involved with the team on and off the floor. He has grown up and understands his role on the team.”
Barnes will play on the wing in both the No. 2 and No. 3 spots.
“Brandon is a relentless offensive rebounder,” Sanderson said. “He is a very, very good defender. He drives the ball to the hole and finishes to the basket to get a foul almost as well as anyone on the team.”
The Bisons will play Trevecca Nazarene in an exhibition game Nov. 4 at Allen Arena. They will open the season on the road Nov. 12 in a nationally-televised game at the University of North Carolina.
Written by Mark McGee, Senior Publisher/Director of Media Relations.