At the end of every year, players graduate and teams lose players. Fortunately for the Binghamton men’s basketball team last year, it only graduated two players from its squad, and as those players left, redshirted players are now ready to suit up for the team.
“The thing that’s unique about our team is that we haven’t had anybody new,” said BU head coach Tommy Dempsey.
This isn’t to say that the roster spots that opened up after last year have gone unfilled, but that all the players that have joined have either redshirted or sat out last year.
As the team transitions, younger players are also turning into veterans. The Bearcats currently have 10 returning upperclassmen on their roster, giving them their most experienced roster in recent memory. One of these returning players is junior guard Timmy Rose.
Hailing from Scranton Prep in Scranton, Pennsylvania, Rose led his high school team to a Lackawanna League Division I title during his senior year, averaging 14.6 points, 6.9 assists, 4.5 steals and 4 rebounds. In addition to playing high school ball, he also played Amateur Athletic Union basketball with a number of other Binghamton basketball players, including former guard John Rinaldi and current junior guard J.C. Show.
In Rose’s senior year of high school, he earned recognition as an All-State guard, which, given his statistics that year, was not surprising. Taking into consideration his skill set in high school, Rose appeared fully transitioned based on the fact that he played in all 30 games his freshman year of college. Although he only averaged 13.8 minutes per game over the course of his first collegiate campaign, Rose’s minutes steadily increased to 20.4 per game during conference play.
Additionally, Rose turned in his best performance in a game against the University of New Hampshire, scoring 15 points and grabbing eight boards. Rose finished the year top-10 in assist-turnover ratio as his involvement continued to grow throughout the season.
As Rose transitioned from his freshman to sophomore season, his role on the team continued to grow. Starting in 27 out of the 32 games he played, he averaged and led the team with 26.4 minutes per game. His increased involvement was well deserved as he not only went on to finish seventh in the America East Conference in assists, but also shot a stellar 46 percent from behind the 3-point line.
Now returning as an upperclassman, Rose looks hopeful for the upcoming season.
“The team looks good; we’ve been farther than we’ve ever been in the past,” Rose said. “I hope I can become better this year. I’ve worked really hard on my shooting and basically all aspects of my game. I’ve also had a lot of help from a lot of teammates, who come into the gym all the time to shoot a lot. Hopefully, we can shoot better as a team too.”
As the team looks forward to the 2017-18 season, Rose will definitely be a player to watch, especially when conference play begins in January. One matchup to watch, in particular, will be the Bearcats’ faceoff against UNH on Jan. 10 and Jan. 27.
“The way [UNH handles] ball screens, I like,” Rose said. “They give a hard hedge, and then they fall back. That gives me the opportunity to get in the paint and create for others, and if they don’t collapse on me, I have an ability to get a layup, and that’s probably why I’ve been successful against them.”