The Manitoba Bisons men’s basketball team has surprised many as they
were ranked in pre-season poll at number 11 out of 13 teams in the
Canada West to begin the 2010-11 conference season. Early this
conference season, the Bisons have impressed with a strong 3-0 start and
look to continue their winning ways when they travel to play against
the Victoria Vikes (2-2) on Friday, November 5 at 10 p.m. CT and
Saturday, November 6 at 9 p.m. CT.



Since the merger of the Great Plains Athletic Conference (GPAC) in basketball occurred in the 2001-02 season, this is the first 3-0 start by Manitoba men’s basketball in Canada West play. They did start the 2004-05 season with two consecutive conference wins. The Bisons had not won three straight games at any time in Canada West since the 2007-08 season.


Manitoba is being led by second year head coach Kirby Schepp. After a span of seven consecutive seasons (since the 2003-04 season) without a post-season berth for the Bison men’s basketball program, he was busy in recruiting to build the team into reaching their realistic goal of qualifying back for the post-season this season.


The changes account with six rookies out of the 13 person roster in this year’s Bison squad. Manitoba remains a relatively young team with balance of vets and rookies, as there are just three fifth year players and only one fourth year player.


Early in Canada West stats, Manitoba is ranked fifth in scoring at 87.7 and eighth in scoring defence at 79.7 plus fourth in scoring margin at +8.0. The Bisons are also fourth in rebounding offence at 44.7 per game and fifth in rebounding margin at +1.3. The Herd are tied for third at 15.0 assists per game, fourth in offensive rebounds at 16.0 per game, fifth in defensive rebounds at 28.7 avg. and fourth in 3-point made at 8.7 avg. Manitoba is first in Canada West turnover margin at +6.67 and first in assist/turnover ratio at 1.7.


Individually in Canada West stats, captain and guard Eric Garcia is tied for eighth at 19.0 points per game and forward Richard Reimer is 13th at 17.3. Reimer is third in rebounding at 11.3 per game and seventh in field goal percentage at .594. Josh Ogden is second with 6.0 assists per game and Kevin Oliver is tied for second with 3.0 steals per game. Garcia is first and Ogden is second in assist/turnover ratio at 11.0 and 9.0.

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