Previewing The American: Cincinnati Bearcats

Greg Bartram-US PRESSWIRE

A brief preview of the Cincinnati Bearcats in the first season of the new American Athletic Conference.

After a disappointing 2012-13 season, the Bearcats bring back nine players from last year's team and reload with a strong 2013 recruiting class. Which of the freshmen will make an impact THIS year remains to be seen as I assume at least one or two of them will redshirt. If this isn't the year for Cincinnati, there's reason to believe that next year will be a huge step forward for the program.

Returning four seniors highlighted by Kayla Cook, Cincinnati has some experience and continuity on their side. The Bearcats don't have a single incoming transfer student, meaning all nine of the returners have experience playing with each other; wether or not that will translate into wins...well, we'll see.

2012-13 Record: 12-18 (4-12 Big East)

Highest Ranking in 2012-13: N/A

2012-13 Conference: Big East

2013-14 Season Opener: 11/09 vs. Northern Kentucky

Who's back:

  • Dayeesha Hollins: Despite a less than stellar true shooting percentage (46 percent), Hollins led the Bearcats in scoring (15 points per game) and was the team's best free throw shooter (78 percent). She is one of four seniors on the squad.
  • Alyesha Lovett: Third on the team in minutes played despite starting in just 18 of the 28 games she appeared it. The junior averaged six points and four rebounds a game.
  • Tiffany Turner: The junior started in 17 games while posting a 55 percent field goal percentage.
  • Alexis Durley: As a true freshman, Durley started in 16 games and averaged five points and two rebounds a game.
  • Kayla Cook: The senior started all 30 of the Bearcats contests last year and racked up 938 minutes in the process. Cook averaged five points and two rebounds in 31 minutes a game.
  • Chelsea Jamison: As a sophomore, Jamisn started 13 games and scored four points a game.
  • Jeanise Randolph: The 6-2 forward played on only 16 games last season, but shot a impressive 42 percent from the field while averaging five points and five rebounds a game.
  • Jasmine Whitfield: As a freshman, Whitfield came off the bench in 29 of the Bearcats 30 games. The guard picked up 11 assists to go with 16 turnovers.
  • Shelbi Chandler: Played just 126 minutes last season in 23 games as a true freshman.

Who's new:

  • Brandey Tarver: A three-star recruit with an 87 grade from ESPN, Tarver was praised for her athleticism and intensity on the defensive end.
  • Bianca Quisenberry: The guard out of Springfield is ranked a 91 by ESPN and is considered a four-star recruit.
  • Marley Hill: The incoming freshman is rated a 90 by ESPN and is lauded for her physical post presence. At 6-2, Hill will be one of the tallest players on the squad.
  • Ashley Nickens: A fourth freshman rounds out the 2013 recruiting class and Nickens will now be the tallest member of the team at 6-3.

Full Roster:

10 Kayla Cook G 5-10 SR-3L South Webster, Ohio/South Webster
11 Tiffany Turner F 6-1 SR-3L Marlton, N.J./Cherokee
12 Alyesha Lovett G 6-0 JR-2L Newark, N.J./Malcolm X Shabazz
13 Brandey Tarver G 5-10 FR-HS Chicago, Ill./Bogan Computer Technical
15 Alexis Durley G 5-8 SO-1L Houston, Texas/Andy Dekaney
22 Bianca Quisenberry G 5-8 FR-HS Springfield, Ohio/Tecumseh
23 Jasmine Whitfield G 5-10 SO-1L Crestwood, Ky./South Oldham
25 Chelsea Jamison G 5-10 JR-2L Indianapolis, Ind./Broad Ripple
31 Dayeesha Hollins G 5-6 RS SR-2L Cincinnati, Ohio/Winton Woods/Michigan
32 Shelbi Chandler F 6-3 SO-1L Indianapolis, Ind./Pike
33 Jeanise Randolph F 6-2 SR-3L Chicago, Ill./Thornton Fractional North
35 Marley Hill F 6-2 FR-HS Reynoldsburg, Ohio/Columbus Africentric
44 Ashley Nickens F 6-3 FR-HS Sterling Heights, Mich./Henry Ford II





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