The Demons, beginning their 14th season under coach Mike McConathy, will get in 10 days of preparation before the trip, allowing new players to blend with returning veterans.
“It’s the best possible opportunity for us to get some of our new players and our veterans all on the same page, playing in our system with our staff coaching them,” said McConathy. “(Redshirt freshman guard) Jalan West hasn’t practiced with our guys until now. We’re adjusting to the graduation of a dominant inside player, Will Mosley, and this gives us the chance to see how (seniors) James Hulbin, O.J. Evans and (sophomore) Marvin Frazier will play without Will in there.
“We have some of our signees, the Adams twins (forwards Austin and Dustin) , along with (guard) Dadrian Harris, who will get additional time to learn our system and get game experience right off the bat. We’ll face good competition but without the pressure of a normal game, even an exhibition game in November,” he said.
The Demons will play the same day they arrive, on Sunday, Aug. 12, against Quest University. They get the next day off from competition, then play Vancouver Island University on Aug. 14, and face Victoria Select on Aug. 15 and 16 before returning home on Aug. 17.
McConathy is eager to squeeze in some tourism for the team in one of the more scenic parts of north America. Vancouver hosted the 2010 Winter Olympics.
“The opportunity for our guys to experience a different culture, traveling outside the USA, is wonderful. Vancouver is a beautiful, fascinating destination in north America,” he said. “Going to Canada will be a tremendous educational experience for everyone on the trip, especially the young men involved.”
The Demons will have a 14-player roster for the trip. They will be without one veteran, junior guard Tyler Washington, who is recovering from offseason knee surgery. Three newcomers – junior forward DeQuan Hicks, junior guard Brison White and freshman forward Brandon Williams – will not travel since they have not established academic residency at NSU.
It’s the second international trip for Demon basketball under McConathy’s leadership, and was made possible by outside funds donated to the program.