Head coach: Nick Buford (1st season)

Last season: 9-16, lost to Cordova in region quarterfinals

Starters lost: 3


Starters returning: 2

Players to watch: F Javaris Tolton, G Levi Poindexter, F Michael Lee, G Braden Lewis, G Shane

You can expect Munford to have quite a different look this season for several reasons.

The team’s top two scorers from last season – T.J. Tyus and Jayson Williams – graduate.

Ryan Ross, who had coached the team for five seasons, left last June to take a job in East Tennessee.

Enter Nick Buford, a standout player for Munford in the mid-2000s, who was named the head coach last summer.

The Cougars played a very deliberate (translation: slow) brand of basketball under Ross.

Will that change under Buford? He’s not getting into that right now. For the time being he’s focused on developing a bond with his new players.

“Things have gone pretty well,” Buford said. “We’re adapting to each other. They struggled with the change at first, but they’re coming along.”

Senior forward Javaris Tolton figures to be a big part of things this year. He’s a very athletic player who can score in a variety of ways.

Junior Levi Poindexter proved to be a very reliable 3-point shooter last season and can also make things happen off the dribble.

Junior forward Michael Lee saw plenty of action last year as well.

Two seniors – Braden Lewis and Shane Cox – joined the team this year and expected to contribute.

Munford was very young last year after losing four starters from a district championship team, but still managed to finish second in the district tournament.

Buford isn’t thinking about the postseason yet.

“They are a really fun group,” he said. “We’re just trying to get better each night. They’re going to be enjoyable to watch.”

Jeff Ireland
Author: Jeff Ireland