If Tim Miles’ Twitter account is any indication as to how he feels to finally start the basketball season, then his heart will be pounding when CSU hosts Regis tonight at 7 p.m. in its first pre-season game.
Miles, entering his third year as head coach of the Rams, compared the feeling before the first game of the season to playing hide and seek as a child on his Twitter page Monday morning.
“I remember . yelling ‘ready or not here we come,’ then rushing into the night with my heart thumping ready for the adventure . sounds like training for a coach whose first game is tomorrow no?” Miles “Tweeted.”
Tonight’s contest against Regis is the first of two pre-season games before the Rams travel to Eugene, Ore. for the Basketball Travelers Tip-Off Tournament Nov. 13.
The Rams are coming off a 9-22 season marked by injuries, suspensions and transfers which left the team shorthanded for chunks of the season.
Guards Marcus Walker and Willis Gardner are gone due to graduation, but the team returns starters, Andre McFarland, Andy Ogide and Jesse Carr. Key reserves, Harvey Perry, Travis Franklin, Arin Dunn and Mame Bocar Ba also return.
“We were basically an expansion team last year, but now we’re starting new and looking forward to gaining some confidence,” Miles said.
The Regis Rangers, a Division II team from the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference (RMAC), are led by guard Matt Rosinski, who averaged 17. 3 points per game last season.
CSU is 22-7 all-time against the Rangers in regular-season contests. The last time the two schools met in exhibition play was November 2007 in Miles’ first appearance at Moby Arena as CSU’s head coach.
Miles knows Regis’ head coach Lonnie Porter and expects to face a tough defense from the Rangers.
“He’s a gritty, tough coach, and they will execute at what they do well,” Miles said. “They are very tough defensively and will give us a good challenge.”
The exhibition games give the Rams the chance to pan out some of its offensive sluggishness and help Miles decide better on a rotation of players he feels comfortable with.
“Everyone’s effort has been really good in practice and the kids are excited,” Miles said. “We’ve been a little sloppy in some areas but that’s what the exhibition games are for. We’ll get a chance to work some things out before the season starts.”
Tip-off is set for 7 p.m. at Moby Arena, and Miles said the team is just ready for a live contest of basketball.
“I’m all fired up, and I’m ready,” Miles said. “We have the attitude of ‘ready or not here we come’ because the season is finally here and there’s no turning back.”
Men’s Basketball beat report Stephen Meyers can be reached at email@example.com.