After winning their first outright SLIAC regular season championship in six years, Webster University is the men's basketball preseason favorites for the upcoming 2019-20 season. Webster received 78 total points, picking up 6 first-place votes in the coaches poll.

#1 Webster University

Webster returns a deep and experienced roster that includes four starters and nine players. Senior guard Josh Johnson led the team in scoring (18.0 ppg) and is a threat to drive to the hole or pull up from long-range. He earned First Team All-Conference honors last season and is joined by fellow returning All-Conference players Enrique Tankins and Rodson Etienne. Tankins is a versatile guard that averaged 14.1 points, 7.7 rebounds, 3.5 assists, and 1.5 steals per game while being named to the SLIAC All-Defensive team. Despite standing just 6'3" Etienne uses his quickness in the low post to his advantage, averaging 13.3 points per game last season while shooting 59-percent from the field. Senior guards Aron Hopp and Jordan Clay are also back and will figure into the rotation. Top newcomers for head coach Chris Bunch include Wynne Brown Jr. and Jadis Smith.

2018-19 Overall Record: 20-7

2018-19 SLIAC Record: 15-3

Head Coach: Chris Bunch

#2 Greenville University

Finishing 2nd in the poll is Greenville University with 67 points and 3 first-place votes. The Panthers turn over a large portion of their roster, losing nine seniors while bringing back just one starter. However, the lone starter is a good piece to build around as senior guard Eric Williams averaged 23.7 points and 7.2 rebounds per game last season while being named Third Team All-Conference. He will be partnered with one of the top three-point threats in the SLIAC, junior Marvin Bateman who averaged 15.3 points per game while connecting on 96 three-point field goals. Rakim Murphy figures to see his scoring increase after averaging 11.1 points per game last season while seniors Barry Nixon and Sontiago Grady will help provide leadership to the many new faces on the team. Those new faces for the Panthers and head coach Dr. George Barber will include guards Henry Johnson and Quincy Pinkard.

2018-19 Overall Record: 17-9

2018-19 SLIAC Record: 14-4

Head Coach: Dr. George Barber

#3 Eureka College

Eureka College came in 3rd on the poll with 58 total points. Desipite the graduation of SLIAC Tournament MVP Hank Thomas, who sparked the Red Devils tournament title run, head coach Chip Wilde still has the athletic Dakota Bennington to turn to. Bennington was 3rd in the SLIAC in scoring at 23.3 points per game, topping 30 points in a game five times including a 51 point outing, and finished in the top two in both field goals made and free throws made. Other returning starters include Austin Juergens and Jordan Dehm. Juergens averaged 12.9 points and 5.4 rebounds per game while Dehm averaged 12.0 points and a team high 8.6 rebounds per game. Austyn Ellison and Ian Milsteadt will look to push for minutes among the 11 returning players.

2018-19 Overall Record: 13-15

2018-19 SLIAC Record: 10-8

Head Coach: Chip Wilde

#4 Spalding University

Coming in 4th on the poll was Spalding University with 51 total points and 1 first-place vote. The Golden Eagles narrowly missed out on the playoffs last season as they were one of three teams to tie for 3rd place in the standings with a 10-8 conference record. Head Coach Kevin Gray returns six players and three starters, headlined by junior guard Marcus Montgomery. Montgomery averaged 16.7 points per game and knocked down 55 three-pointers while shooting 40-percent from long range. Shifty guard Robert Bendingfield put up 10.6 points per game while dishing out 92 assists and recording 43 steals. The inside belongs to forward Troy Amanor who averaged 9.6 points and a team leading 6.0 rebounds last season as a freshman. The Golden Eagles also welcome back fellow sophomores Brian Tribble and Breaden Warren, who sat out last year. Jaiquan Edwards, Kendal James, and Tyran Lewis are freshmen that may contribute to the team.

2018-19 Overall Record: 11-14

2018-19 SLIAC Record: 10-8

Head Coach: Kevin Gray

#5 - Blackburn College

Blackburn College was picked 5th in the poll with 45 points after going 13-13 last season and advancing to the SLIAC Tournament. Although they return three starters and 11 players it will be under the direction of first-year head coach Austin Kirby. Senior guard Karson Hayes is the go to player for the Beavers after leading the team in scoring for a second straight season, averaging 19.5 points per game last year and earning First Team All-Conference honors. Bryson Kirby is their sharp shooter, knocking down 58 three's at a league leading 43-percent clip. Chanz Aldridge, Nigel Ferrell, and Tim Marston should all play larger roles on the team this year. Allyn Bowdre, Zion Henderson, and Javon Stovall are newcomers that have a chance to make an immediate impact.

2018-19 Overall Record: 13-13

2018-19 SLIAC Record: 10-8

Head Coach: Austin Kirby

#6 - Fontbonne University

Fontbonne University totaled 42 points, coming in 6th on the poll. The Griffins finished 10-15 overall last season and bring back just five players, but that number includes four starters. Head Coach Lance Thornhill has just one senior on a roster of 24 players. Jared Woodcock is the leading returning scorer, averaging 15.3 points per game last season. Other starters coming back are Gus Kleekamp (9.5 ppg) and Caden Clark (5.7 ppg). Guard Noah Coddington is back after sitting out the last two years while Jalen Wadlington returns after averaging 8.3 points per game coming off the bench last season. At the top of a deep list of newcomers for the Griffins is junior forward Dominic Doolin and freshmen Elijah Rice and Malchy Simpson.

2018-19 Overall Record: 10-15

2018-19 SLIAC Record: 8-10

Head Coach: Lance Thornhill

#7 Westminster College

Westminster College placed 7th on the poll with 35 total points. The Blue Jays are coached by Matt Mitchell and will be a completly new looking team after the departure of all five starters. They bring back seven players from last year's team with Steven Brandt (5.7 ppg) serving as the leading returning scorer. Makygh Galbreath and Trenton Barbour saw time as freshmen last year and will take on larger roles this season. They will be joined by a trio of transfers in Jaxon Althaus, Landon Harrison, and Emil Spriggs.

2018-19 Overall Record: 10-15

2018-19 SLIAC Record: 9-9

Head Coach: Matt Mitchell

#8 MacMurray College

MacMurray College finished 8th in the poll with 29 points. The Highlanders return three starters including the SLIAC Newcomer of the Year, Logan Dorethy. At 6'7" Dorethy is one of the premier big men in the conference and averaged 15.3 points and 4.8 rebounds per game while shooting 59-percent from the field and earning Third Team All-Conference honors. Guard Drew Burwinkel averaged 8.4 points per game, and as the lone senior, is the most experienced player on the roster. Sophomores Blake Drue, Manny Green, and Trevor Voss all gained valuable playing time last year and is expected to contribute more this season. Head Coach Todd Creal welcomes in a pair of freshman that will add to the team depth in George Kanatas and Elijah Powell.

2018-19 Overall Record: 7-18

2018-19 SLIAC Record: 4-14

Head Coach: Todd Creal

#9 Iowa Wesleyan University

Iowa Wesleyan University totaled 23 points and placed 9th on the poll. The Tigers are coached by Alex Huisman, who returns 13 players and four starters from last year's squad. They lose some size inside with the unexpected departure of forward Austin Rebel but will adjust their system to account for the loss. The trio of Jarryd Fernandes (12.2 ppg), Jake Neubauer (11.6 ppg), and Alberto Torres (9.6 ppg) will be the top scoring options while point guard Austin Banks is back after averaging 6.7 points per game and tallying 92 assists. Included in the group of newcomers are Robert Heise, Marvin Saintolien, and David Seber.

2018-19 Overall Record: 7-18

2018-19 SLIAC Record: 5-13

Head Coach: Alex Huisman

#10 Principia College

Principia College finished with 22 points and placed 10th on the poll. The Panthers only loss is Micah Paulson, but he is a big one as he was the 2019 SLIAC Player of the Year. Head Coach Todd Zimmerman still returns seven players and four starters. Despite the loss of the league's top scorer in Paulson they have another of the SLIAC's top scoring threats with attacking guard Trevaughn Goodman. Goodman put up 20.4 points per game last season and has increased his scoring average in each of his first three years at Principia. Forward Clark Davidson made an immediate impact for the Panthers last season as a freshman, averaging 12.7 poitns and 8.8 rebounds per game while shooting 58-percent from the field. Guards Brennan Paulson and Zack Matters will figure into the offense more often this season. At 6'7" Payton Sellars will give the Panthers increased size and comes back after not playing last year. Guard AJ Byrd joins the team after transferring in from Thiel College.

2018-19 Overall Record: 6-19

2018-19 SLIAC Record: 5-13

Head Coach: Todd Zimmerman

2019-20 SLIAC Men's Basketball Preseason Watch List

The following nine players will have an impact on the success of their teams this season in SLIAC play. Heading up that list is a trio of returning First Team All-Conference players. Dakota Bennington was 3rd in the SLIAC in scoring last year at 23.3 points per game and got to the free-throw line a league leading 180 times. Karson Hayes is looking to close out his career with Blackburn on a high note. Hayes has led the Beavers in scoring in each of the last two season (including 19.5 points per game last season) and led his team to the postseason in each of those seasons. Josh Johnson earned First Team honors after leading Webster with 18.0 points per game. He is joined on the watch list by teammates Enrique Tankins and Rodson Etienne. Tankins routinely fills up the boxscore while Etienne averaged 13.3 points per game while shooting 59-percent from the field. Last year's SLIAC Newcomer of the Year, Logan Dorethy, will be looking to further asert himself and lead the Highlanders this season. Spalding's Marcus Montgomery averaged 16.7 points per game last year while ranking 7th in three-point percentage. Trevaughn Goodman has increased his scoring in each season since his freshman year, with a career high 20.4 points per game last year, and is looking to continue that trend in his senior year. Eric Williams will have a chance at a scoring title for Greenville after finishing 2nd last season at 23.7 points per game.