September 21, 2016

The John A. Logan College men’s basketball team has been ranked 12th nationally in a preseason poll by the Sporting News.

Sophomore forward Michael Tucker was selected as preseason First-Team All-American by the same publication.

“It is always good to get national recognition and show that our program is we thought of nationally,” said Head Coach Kyle Smithpeters. “This is the second straight year we have been ranked in the preseason. Now we have to go out and prove we are worth the honor.”

The Volunteer who started last season ranked 14th finished the year 24-8.

“It really doesn’t matter where yare are at the beginning, it is where you finish,” said Smithpeters. “Our goal is to reach the National Tournament in Hutchinson (Kansas). We were there two years ago, but came up short last season.”

Smithpeters, who will begin his fifth year as head coach this season with an 89-38 record believes Tucker is deserving of the pre-season accolades.

“Tucker has worked very hard over the summer and is deserving of this honor,” said Smithpeters. “If he keeps up the hard work he will definitely be one of the top junior college players in the country this year.”

Tucker is coming of a stellar freshman campaign where he averaged 13.6 points and 7.3 rebounds per game.

The Volunteers will host the first ever Midwest Jamboree on October 23 at the SIU Recreation Center. Top junior college teams: Southwest Tennessee, Three Rivers, Mineral Area College, Missouri State-West plains, Wabash Valley, Shawnee College, Olney will join Logan.