America East men’s basketball power rankings and predictions


Cameron Beall, Sports Editor

Power Rankings (Feb, 20, 2022)

  1. Vermont (22-5, 14-1)
  2. Stony Brook* (16-12, 8-7)
  3. UMBC (13-13, 8-7)
  4. New Hampshire (12-12, 7-8)
  5. UAlbany (12-15, 8-7)
  6. Binghamton (11-13, 8-7)
  7. Hartford (9-17, 7-7)
  8. UMass Lowell (13-13, 5-9)
  9. NJIT (11-14, 6-9)
  10. Maine (6-20, 3-12)

*Ineligible for America East Championship

It didn’t take long for Vermont to take back their throne atop the America East. The Catamounts clinched the No.1 seed for the sixth straight season with their win over New Hampshire on Feb. 16. With Stony Brook’s ineligibility for the playoffs, the UMBC Retrievers pose the biggest threat to the Catamounts when the calendar turns to March. Led by seniors Keondre Kennedy, L.J. Owens and Darnell Rogers, the Retrievers’ high-flying offense has proven itself among the class of the America East.

After the top-three, New Hampshire, UAlbany and Binghamton are as close to interchangeable as it can get. The Wildcats have a pair of Preseason All-Conference selections but could run out of gas at any point. Head coach Bill Herrion has been navigating the shortest bench in the conference over the last few weeks. The UAlbany Great Danes are a well-rounded bunch with senior guard Jamel Horton leading the charge and first-year forward Justin Neely off the bench. The injury to star graduate student De’Vondre Perry could prove fatal for the Danes down the stretch. The Binghamton Bearcats are led by junior Jacob Falko but lack much of the top-end talent seen by other programs ahead of them. The Bearcats rank around the middle of the pack in most categories.

Never say never with the last four programs. Despite not being officially eliminated from playoff contention, the Maine Black Bears will need a miracle to sneak into the tournament. Hartford and UMass Lowell were each featured in the conference championship game a season ago but haven’t been able to imitate the same success this time around. Hartford is a veteran group who is looking to make one final push before dropping down to Division III. The Hawks, River Hawks and NJIT Highlanders have each beaten teams towards the top half of the conference including Hartford taking down Vermont last week.

All-Conference Predictions:

First Team All-Conference

G-Ben Shungu (Graduate Student, Vermont)

G-Austin Williams (Senior, Hartford)

G-Anthony Roberts (Redshirt-Junior, Stony Brook)

F-Jayden Martinez (Senior, New Hampshire)

F-Ryan Davis (Senior, Vermont)

Second Team All-Conference

G-Keondre Kennedy (Senior, UMBC)

G-Moses Flowers (Junior, Hartford)

G-Tykei Greene (Redshirt-Junior, Stony Brook)

F-Miles Coleman (Senior, NJIT)

F-Nick Guadarrama (Senior, New Hampshire)

Third Team All-Conference

G-Jacob Falko (Junior, Binghamton)

G-Jahlil Jenkins (Graduate Student, Stony Brook)

G-Blondeau Tchoukuiegno (Sophomore, New Hampshire)

G-Jamel Horton (Senior, UAlbany)

G-Matt Cerruti (Graduate Student, UAlbany)

All-Defensive Team

G-Jahlil Jenkins (Graduate Student, Stony Brook)

G-Ben Shungu (Graduate Student, Vermont)

G-James Lee (Junior, NJIT)

G-Tykei Green (Redshirt-Junior, Stony Brook)

F-Max Brooks (Sophomore, UMass Lowell)

All-Rookie Team

G-Sam Ihekwoaba (First-Year, Maine)

F-Justin Neely (First-Year, UAlbany)

F-Keeshawn Mason (First-Year, NJIT)

F-Aaron Reddish (First-Year, UAlbany)

F-Kristians Feierbergs (First-Year, Maine)

Player of the Year

F-Ryan Davis (Senior, Vermont)

17.4 PTS, 5.7 REB, 58.9 FG%, 43.8 3P%

Rookie of the Year

F-Justin Neely (First-Year, UAlbany)

6.8 PTS, 4.7 REB, 45.9 FG%, 83.3 FT%

Defensive Player of the Year

F-Max Brooks (Sophomore, UMass Lowell)

10.4 PTS, 4.0 DREB, 2.3 BLK, 0.8 STL

Sixth Man of the Year

F-Justin Neely (First-Year, UAlbany)

6.8 PTS, 4.7 REB, 45.9 FG%, 83.3 FT%

Honorable Mentions

G-Marco Foster (Sophomore, New Hampshire)

7.5 PTS, 3.0 REB, 41.3 FG%, 41.3 3P%

G-Aaron Deloney (Junior, Vermont)

7.2 PTS, 1.3 REB, 50.0 FG%, 40.4 3P%

Coach of the Year

John Becker (Vermont)

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