By Kiduce Daniel | August 22, 2022
Heading into year two with Head Coach Dwayne Killings, the University at Albany Men’s Basketball Team is looking to make some noise in the America East conference. The Great Danes finished 13-18 last season, partly due to injuries both early and late in the season. They eventually fell to the Hartford Hawks in the American East quarterfinal.
Coach Killings during a game
Photo Credit: UAlbany Communications and Marketing (Used with Permission)
Following the conclusion of the 2021-2022 season, senior guard Jamel Horton transferred to Mississippi State for his final year of eligibility. Horton was the leading scorer for the Great Danes and the 2022 American East Defensive Player of the Year.
Also departing via the portal was senior forward Jarvis Doles, who transferred to the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC). This paired starting frontcourt of De’Vondre Perry and Paul Newman graduating leaves Killings with a new roster to manage.
Killings will be relying on his returning players, Ny’Mire Little, Will Amica, Aaron Reddish, Justin Neely, Trey Hutcheson, Gerald Drumgoole Jr. and Sam Shafer, to lead his team to the next level.
Due to injuries, fans didn’t get to see much of players Will Amica and Gerald Drumgoole last season. Amica dealt with a torn hip labrum that kept him out for his whole sophomore season, while Grumgoole was forced to get knee surgery which ended his season shortly.
The transfer portal was where Killings was able to make multiple splashes. Killings and his staff were able to bring in University of Wisconsin-Green Bay transfer, Japannah Kellogg II along with Cornell transfer Sarju Patel. Kellogg came off a season where he averaged 6.7 points and 4.0 rebounds for the Phoenixes while also shooting 48.6% from the field. Patel had a similar season as he averaged 9.4 points and 3.5 rebounds for the Big Red while maintaining a 46.6% clip.
The 6’9” forward Jonathan Beagle committed to UAlbany back in November out of Hudson Falls and since then was the only freshman added through scholarship. However, the Danes were able to bring in Marcus Jackson as a preferred walk-on. Jackson is the younger brother to Andre Jackson, who is a starting player for the University of Connecticut Huskies.
Despite losing their top two scorers, the team has reason to feel optimistic about the upcoming season.