In its first year in a new conference, the UMKC men’s basketball team finds itself in a position to surprise.
By BLAIR KERKHOFF
The Kansas City Star
That’s code for being projected to finish toward the bottom in the preseason polls.
The Western Athletic Conference polls were released Tuesday and the Kangaroos were picked to finish last out of nine teams by the coaches and eighth by the media.
First-year UMKC coach Kareem Richardson said the polls could help fuel his team.
“We won't be discouraged by it,” Richardson said. “I think it will encourage us.”
Defending tournament champion New Mexico State received all the first-place votes by the media and eight of the nine first-place votes by coaches, who cannot vote for their own team.
The UMKC women’s team fared better. Coaches selected the women fourth and the media picked them sixth.
Senior guard Elise O’Conner was chosen to the preseason first team, and forward Kim Nezianya was picked to the coaches’ second team.