World University Games Featuring Many Returning Stars Tips Off Saturday

Posted by rtmsf on August 11th, 2011

The second major international basketball event of the summer involving collegians is set to tip off on Saturday, and Team USA appears that it will take a heavily perimeter-oriented team into the World University Games in Shenzhen, China.  Of the twelve-man roster of mostly rising juniors and seniors, the Yanks appear to be at a serious size disadvantage with only Greg Mangano (Yale) standing at 6’10” and the beefy but 6’8″-ish forwards Tim Abromaitis (Notre Dame), Trevor Mbakwe (Minnesota), JaMychal Green (Alabama) and Draymond Green (Michigan State) likely to be giving up several inches against many of their opponents.

As discussed when the tryout roster was released in June, the WUG hasn’t been kind to Team USA over the last decade of competition.  Only the 2005 team featuring Duke’s Shelden Williams brought home the gold medal, and even a 2009 team that had the pending NPOY Evan Turner on its squad could only merit a bronze.  Apologies to Ashton Gibbs (Pittsburgh) and Abromaitis, but it’s unlikely there’s a 2011-12 NPOY hiding on this roster, which means that Matt Painter‘s team will need to take advantage of his cadre of three-point bombers that he has at his disposal.  Gibbs, Abromaitis, Marcus Denmon (Missouri), John Jenkins (Vanderbilt), Darius Miller (Kentucky), and Orlando Johnson (UC Santa Barbara) all made better than 40% from distance last season.

The team is already in China and managed to find time to clobber Japan by 40 points in a three-quarters scrimmage earlier this week.  It’s difficult to predict which teams might be the toughest competition for the Americans in the coming weeks, but the Russian, Lithuanian, Serbian and the host Chinese teams figure to be among the top several contenders.  Here are some of the sights and sounds from a recent practice as the team preps for its opening round game against Mexico on Saturday.

In case you missed the final roster announced several weeks ago, here it is:

NAME
POS
HGT
WGT
DOB
YOG
SCHOOL HOMETOWN
Tim Abromaitis
F/C
6-8
235
09/17/89
2011*
Notre Dame Unionville, CT
Marcus Denmon
G
6-3
185
03/20/90
2012
Missouri Kansas City, MO
Ashton Gibbs
G
6-2
190
01/19/90
2012
Pittsburgh Scotch Plains, NJ
Draymond Green
F
6-7
230
03/04/90
2012
Michigan State Saginaw, MI
JaMychal Green
F
6-8
225
06/21/90
2012
Alabama Montgomery, AL
Scoop Jardine
G
6-2
190
08/09/88
2011*
Syracuse Philadelphia, PA
John Jenkins
G
6-4
220
03/06/91
2013
Vanderbilt Hendersonville, TN
Orlando Johnson
G
6-5
205
03/11/89
2012
UC Santa Barbara Seaside, CA
Greg Mangano
F
6-10
240
10/28/89
2012
Yale Orange, CT
Trevor Mbakwe
F/C
6-8
241
01/24/89
2012
Minnesota St. Paul, MN
Ray McCallum
G
6-1
185
06/12/91
2014
Detroit Mercy Beverly Hills, MI
Darius Miller
G
6-6
185
03/21/90
2012
Kentucky Maysville, KY
rtmsf (3728 Posts)


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One Response to “World University Games Featuring Many Returning Stars Tips Off Saturday”

  1. greyCat says:

    The team is apparently putting their 3 point shooters to good use early. Vandy’s John Jenkins hit 8-10 from beyond the arc as Team USA beat New Century of the China Basketball Association, 88-61, in exhibition play earlier today,

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