SANTA CLARA, Calif. – Santa Clara men's basketball kicks off a stretch of six weeks of preseason practice on Monday.
The Broncos, who feature five returners and nine new players, were able to get acclimated during the summer.
"We really tried to take advantage of the fact that we were allowed, for the first time, four hours per week with our players for basketball-related activities," head coach Herb Sendek said. "Previously, we were only permitted two hours, so the timing couldn't have been better for us for as many new players as we were welcoming. During that time, like we always do, we focused on skill development and fundamentals."
"KJ and Matt bring a tremendous amount of playing experience and have been integral players in our rotation throughout their career and we are looking forward to each of them having a career best year," Sendek said.
Sophomore guard Tahj Eaddy, who sat out last year after transferring from Southeast Missouri, will also get his first chance to see action in a Santa Clara uniform.
The Broncos not only have a number of new faces on the roster, but also two on the coaching staff with the addition of Scott Garson and Ryan Madry in the spring.
The extra practice time during the eight-week allotted stretch in July and August proved beneficial to build cohesion.
"I think it was good for us, it was the tip of the iceberg, obviously with the start of official practice on Monday we still have a tremendous amount of work to do, as you would expect," Sendek said. "But the summer is a time to help individuals get better to get to know each other, and at the same time our guys are working hard with Coach (Bob) Medina in the weight room, trying to get stronger and in many cases transforming their bodies."
The Broncos open the regular season on Friday, Nov. 9 when they play host to Prairie View A&M.
"Hank has been a tremendous team player. I think he was having the best offseason until he came down with a stress fracture and that's going to sideline him for roughly three months," Sendek said. "He won't be back in action until sometime November and it may take him some additional time to get back into the groove."
Ducasse is one of five true freshmen on the roster.
"We lost one of our top incoming freshmen in Juan," Sendek said. "He unfortunately had to have a season-ending knee surgery in August. The silver lining is that we will be able to redshirt him so he'll get that year on the back end."
Fans will have an opportunity to see the Broncos during Grand Reunion Weekend. The team will hold an open practice in Leavey Center on Saturday, Oct. 13 at 8 a.m.
There are a number of ticket options for 2018-19, which features 17 homes, including nine during the nonconference portion of the slate. In addition to season tickets, single-game and game-plan packages are on sale. For questions, contact the Santa Clara Athletics ticket office at (408) 554-4660 or BroncoTickets@scu.edu.