Chico State’s Men’s Basketball aim for same success this upcoming season

Carter Mahaney driving the ball. Photo taken Oct. 20 by Julia Travers.

Chico State’s Men’s Basketball team has been working hard on the court in preparation for this upcoming season, with both old and new faces on this year’s lineup. 

An inside look into their practices has shown that the team is expanding on perfecting their game with shooting drills, passing routines and intense scrimaging. 

The addition of eight new freshmen to the team this year means the Wildcats will have to adjust to new members and learn how to come together as one. They have high hopes these new members will help them get back to the top.

Joshua Hamilton, Kaleb Carter, Brennan Wheeler and Kelvin Wright Jr., four seniors on the team, spoke on how the team has been coming together this year. 

“Everyday is just about taking that step, growing together and working towards that goal,” Wright said. “It starts each day by just sticking them together and consistently playing together and doing the little things, and the rest will take care of itself.”   

Wheeler says the team’s goal is the Elite National Championships, and that it inspires them to work harder each time they step foot on the court. 

“It’s a long season,” Wheeler said. “Like we got to focus on one day at a time and see what we can get better at, but that’s the ultimate goal.”

The team’s first official game on the schedule takes place against  the Division I University of California at Berkeley Bears on Nov. 2 at 7 p.m. 

The team is excited to play against an experienced team. The game goes on their schedule, but not on their record, so it’s the perfect opportunity to be on a brightly lit stage with little consequence. 

“It’s the best competition that we’re going to face, so it’s kind of like there’s a bar I’m gonna see where we kind of rank up as a team,” senior Joshua Hamilton said. “We got to go out and see where we’re at and what we can work on to get better.” 

Last year the team had an incredible season, making it all the way to the National Collegiate Athletics Association Championship Tournament’s Elite Eight, for their third time in seven seasons. 

Making it to the Elite Eight is a huge honor. The Elite Eight breaks up teams into eight regions of the entire state and is an elimination tournament hosting some of the best schools in the nation. There is hope that Chico State can make another appearance this year. 

“I feel like at our best the sky’s the limit. We had a lot of experience last year, so this year we have a lot of new guys,” Carter said. “So we’ve got to take more time this year in teaching them the system and getting everyone acclimated to the culture.”

The team has a great schedule ahead of them, leaving fans in anticipation for the dozen home games taking place at Acker Gym this season. 

Kaleb Carter going in for a shot. Photo taken on Oct. 20 by Julia Travers.

Julia Travers can be reached at [email protected]