Preview: LIU Brooklyn Blackbirds

LIU Brooklyn Blackbirds

2012-13: 20-14 (12-6 NEC)
In-conference offense: 1.14 points per possession (2nd)
In-conference defense: 1.08 points per possession (9th)

When Julian Boyd went down with a knee injury during a non-conference game against Rice last season, it appeared that LIU's dream of becoming the first NEC team ever to appear in three straight NCAA tournaments was dead. However first-year head coach Jack Perri rallied the troops and thanks to some luck in the conference tournament, the Blackbirds pulled off the unprecedented three-peat.

Unfortunately, Perri might have to do it again. Boyd, the 2011-12 NEC Player of the Year, re-injured his ACL in July while working his way back to full strength and is now expected to be out until at least January. Even when he returns, how much he'll be able to contribute this season is a giant question mark for the Blackbirds. So it is back to the drawing board for Perri, who must find a way to mesh star point guard Jason Brickman with younger talent in order to make another run at the NEC title.