Starters Lost: C Channing Frye
Key Returners: Kirk Walters, Isaiah Fox, Brett Brielmaier
Others Lost: F Matt Brase
Key Newcomers: Mohamed Tangara(redshirt), Fendi Onobun
Seniors: Isaiah Fox
Juniors: Ivan Radenovic, Kirk Walters
Sophomore: Bret Brielmaier
Freshmen: Mohamed Tangara, Fendi Onobun
Radenovic is still not a pure post player and probably never will be. Although he is developing some nice inside moves, he seems more comfortable facing up. He shot a solid .340 from behind the arc and loves to launch the three poiner.
If the Cats are to be successful they need a consistent performance from the center spot. The guy who looks to be getting the first shot at the spot is Walters. Walters was slated to redshirt last season, but after the inconsistent play of Fox and the injury to Tangara, Olson elected to pull the redshirt from Walters in an effort to bolster the post position and to get him ready for this season.
Walters was up and down last season but was a key performer with his eight points and three rebounds against UAB in the second round of the NCAA tournament. From all accounts Walters is stronger and in better shape this season and big things are expected from him.
The big enigma is Fox. Fox has had a roller coaster Wildcat career but after an 11-point, three-rebound performance against Manhattan, he never scored more than four points and did not play in eight of the last 11 games.
Fox was not in great shape, but his biggest problems seemed to come from his head. He seemed a step slow and always in the wrong place. He's a player who has had some big games, but has not been the same player after the knee injury against Florida in 2003.
He's slimmed down and dedicated himself to having a solid senior season, but anything the team gets from him will be a huge bonus.
Tangara had his season cut short when his preseason back injury never quite healed. He's a rebounding machine whose offensive game is starting to round into shape. He was impressive in the preseason pick-up games and has looked especially good in transistion. Most of his points will come from the offensive boards, but he is starting to get a reliable jump shot.
Brielmaier was a nice find as a walk-on last year. He actually jumped past Fox for much of the year and gave the Cats a physical presence off the bench. A good athlete, expect the sophomore from Minnesota to see some spot minutes, especially when the Cats need a little toughness on the floor.
Onobun is a combo forward, but may see his most time at the four. No player since Michael Wright has come in as a stronger true freshman, but Onobun is a better athlete than Wright. Still trying to find a good playing weight, the muscular newcomer is a very versatile player who can bang outside and run out on the wing. He probably won't see a ton of time this season, but gives Lute Olson an intriguing player to utilize.