|IKE FONTAINE, CIRCA '95|
Today, he lives in West Seattle and works as the executive director of the North Seattle Boys & Girls Club. He and his wife Monique have three girls, one of whom is an up-and-coming basketball star for Cass 3A powerhouse Kennedy High.
ONE OF THE MOST PRESSING questions for the Cougars this pre-season is to find a backup for senior point guard Taylor Rochestie.
|GUY WILLIAMS, CIRCA '82|
The 6-4 Capers, from Montverde, Florida, is quick and anticipates well on defense. Bennett calls him a slasher with a nice feel for the game, a la Kyle Weaver. The 6-3 Harthun, from Medford, Oregon, played a lot of point in high school and has outstanding scoring ability from just about every point on the court.
Rochestie turned in a team-leading 34.9 minutes of playing time per game last season. Bennett was able to cover his infrequent breathers by having Weaver or Derrick Low bring the ball up court.
AT SATURDAY'S DINNER in Seattle, a highlight video of the Cougars' Sweet 16 season was shown before Bennett took to the podium. When Bennett got to the mic, he quickly intoned, "What great memories – God I miss Kyle, Derrick and Robbie. I've watched that video a bunch of times."
He said the Cougars' tough non-conference schedule, which includes the likes of Gonzaga, Baylor and LSU, will get his young players tested early, serving as instant preparation for the rigors of the Pac-10.
Bennett said his two bookends – Rochestie at the point and Baynes at center – are a nice place to build around. He also noted that junior Nikola Koprivica has lost weight and that his surgically repaired knee is strong. He's moving and cutting like he was before the injury. Add in seniors Daven Harmeling and Caleb Forrest and you have "five guys with experience and real good leadership skills."
They'll be critical to bringing along the seven true freshmen and three redshirts from last season who comprise the rest of the team. "They haven't played (college ball) so it's daunting. We need three to five of them to step in. A couple will have to play significant minutes."
One of the youngsters sure to see the court, and perhaps even contend for a starting job, is highly touted 6-7 swingman Klay Thompson of Orange County, Calif.
QUOTE OF THE NIGHT: "I make way more (money) than I should and there's no place I'd rather be," Bennett told his Seattle dinner audience.