Team preview: La Salle

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

The official statistics on La Salle University's website credit 6-8 forward Steven Smith with 69 assists last season.

Perhaps it's time for a recount.

Smith's presence in the program not only gave the Explorers a huge assist in 2005-06, but for years to come. Led by Smith, the 2006 A-10 Player of Year and the seventh all-time leading scorer in La Salle hoops history (1,940 points) and underrated guard Jermaine Thomas, La Salle was one of the two major surprise teams in the Atlantic 10, along with Saint Louis, last year -- going 18-10.

"The program badly needed a winning season and they did it," La Salle coach John Giannini said. "They were the ones that broke the streak and turned it around. Steven Smith will forever be remembered as one of the school's greatest players, while Jermaine Thomas will remembered as a 1,000-point scorer."