Team preview: Bethune-Cookman

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(Information in this team report is as of October 1.)

Last season was one for the ages for Bethune-Cookman.

The Wildcats put together their first non-losing season in 29 years, and they did it in dramatic fashion, beating regular-season champion Delaware State at the buzzer, 72-71, in their final home game. It was one of only two MEAC losses suffered by the Hornets last year.

Bethune-Cookman also picked up a notable win during the year when it stunned Big East foe USF in overtime, 75-68.

Long-suffering Wildcat fans were thrilled, but their excitement was short-lived. Attrition took a heavy toll as four seniors departed the program, along with 89 percent of Bethune-Cookman's scoring from last year. Six of the Wildcats top seven scorers are gone from last season.

Reed admits this could be a transition year.

"We're in a rebuilding process," he said. "We graduated two first-team all-conference players and six of our top seven scorers from last season. It's awful hard to replace players like that.

"However, we've got some transfers that will be eligible and some other new guys that we think can help us.''

Reed has done a nice job in one of the MEAC's toughest jobs. He became the head coach under unusual circumstances five years ago when then-head coach Horace Broadnax left the team in the middle of the season to become a lawyer. The program has steadily gotten better under Reed's leadership.

"It was a good year," Reed said of last season. "We were proud of what we accomplished, but a little disappointed about the way the year ended [the Wildcats were beaten in the quarterfinals of the MEAC Tournament by Hampton, 57-55]."