So how does one qualify for the all-break-out team. They have to be a returning player from last year and for the most part have to be a player that averaged less than 10 points per game last year. There are a couple of players on the 1st or 2nd team over that threshold but in that case I would be expecting some sort of big jump in minutes, points, or rebounds. Something like that. With that brief introduction let’s announce my 1st and 2nd all breakout teams.
Reaching the Summit Breakout Player of the Year
G Kareem Thompson Oral Roberts
Oral Roberts has a new head coach and lost Summit League Player of the Year Max Abmas to the transfer portal. However, there are still some familiar faces in Tulsa. So how do we name a player with 94 starts over the last 3 years who averaged similar numbers over all of those seasons breakout player of the year? Starting off, Thompson may very well be a frontrunner for Defensive Player of the Year. A player that can guard 1-5 in any Summit League lineup. However, the defense has been there all three years. The real breakout is likely to come on the offensive side of the ball. The offensive talent has been there all along but Thompson’s role in the offense is likely to expand tremendously. Thompson has averaged less than 7 shots a game over his career, and 8.2 points during that span. It is likely that Oral Roberts continues to play at a fast pace that they are known for even with the coaching change. It’s realistic that Thompson puts up double the shots that he has averaged for his career. Last season Thompson shot 50% from the field and 39% from 3. Those percentages may dip slightly with the higher volume, but Thompson has proven to be an incredibly efficient scorer in the Summit League.
Reaching the Summit 1st Team All-Breakout
G Tajavis Miller North Dakota State
There is a trio of young guards in Fargo that many expect to take a step forward this season. All 3 had moments of looking like they had it figured out mixed with times that they seemed they weren’t ready last season. Miller was the best shooter of the 3 and while Damari Wheeler Thomas is a more natural point guard, Miller can play there as well. Miller has good size and can be a tough matchup when combined with his athleticism for Summit League guards. Look for Miller to take a jump and be the third-leading scorer and top assist man for the Bison this season.
G Tyler Andrews Kansas City
Andrews has a chance to take the biggest jump of any player on this list. Gone are Shemarri Allen and RayQuawndis Mitchell who led the Kansas City attack. It’s possible that Andrews is a gifted athlete with a silky jumper that just didn’t fall last season. Andrews should join Anderson Kopp as the top backcourt scorer for the Roos. 12 or more points per game is not out of the question this season.
G Treyson Eaglestaff North Dakota
With Andrews above there’s a bit of speculation is it never quite clicked his freshman year. Eaglestaff is another 6’6 sophomore but his freshman season showed continued growth as the season went along. Eaglestaff scored in double figures all of his last 6 games last season and showed he already was one of the better shooters in the league. The addition of Eli King should actually help Eaglestaff as a competent lead guard join the roster. Eaglestaff and Omot are one of the better young duos in the league.
F Luke Appel South Dakota State
Injuries limited Appel to only 5 games last season allowing him to return for one last campaign. In his first two seasons, Appel showed flashes of brilliance and yet only made one start. This season it is likely Appel immediately join William Kyle in the Jackrabbit’s frontcourt. Appel has the ability that if he is engaged this season could lead to an All-Summit 1st team nomination. One of the more talented offensive frontcourt players in the league.
F Marquel Sutton Omaha
It’s possible this year’s Omaha team looks similar in balance to last year’s team. Last season it was a very balanced attack for the Mavericks and Sutton was the number two scorer on that team averaging just over 10 a game. I think this season Sutton’s minutes go up and he is relied on to take a lot more shots. Last season Sutton took less than 10 shots per game, I think that increases by about 35% this season. Looking at a 13 point 7 rebound-type season for Sutton.
2nd Team All Summit Breakout
G JJ White Omaha
I think it’s the same type of story for White as it is for his teammate Sutton. Someone is going to take a lead role in the Omaha backcourt in year two of the Crutchfield era and the most likely candidate is White. Last season White showed flashes of being a high-quality lead guard in the Summit League and then at times disappeared. Not only do I see a jump in White’s scoring this season but he’s a darkhorse candidate to lead the league in assists.
G Kendall Blue St Thomas
Star freshman Andrew Rohde moved on to Virginia and this opens the door for Blue who was a bit overshadowed last season. Likely an every-game starter this season, Blue seemed to hit a bit of a freshman wall the second half of last season as he scored in double digits only one time in the last 12 games and that was only 10 points. Blue showed flashes last season of a high-level Summit athlete, decent defender and scorer. This season should provide a great opportunity for a jump in production for Blue.
F Demari Williams Oral Roberts
Either Williams or teammate Sir Issac Herron was tabbed for this spot in my mind. Decided to go with Williams because of his elite athleticism for this level of basketball. Admittedly it’s hard to put anyone who averaged 5 minutes a game as a breakout candidate but this Oral Roberts needs some additional size to contribute. Even though Williams is really a guard/forward he has the athleticism and some size to help in the frontcourt and is also able to stretch the floor a little. The debate is whether things will click for Williams, if they do this pick will look smart.
F Pedro Lopez-Sanvicente Denver
Lopez-Sanvicente has had limited impact in his first two seasons in Denver, but the opportunity is there this season. Gone are Lukas Kisunas and Tyree Corbett. The Pioneers need someone to step up in the frontcourt. This may be Lopez-Sanvicente’s year. Another candidate for big frontcourt minutes is Grand Canyon transfer Isaiah Carr. It would see Lopez-Sanvicente will split minutes with Carr and Touko Tainamo this season. Could see a jump to 7-10 points and 5 rebounds per game this season for the stretch 4.
F William Kyle South Dakota State
While we may not see a huge jump in the offensive numbers for Kyle this season, I think the Jackrabbit big man will play much more consistently this season. The talent is clearly there for the big man who started 25 games in his first season. He just didn’t show it game in and game out last season which is common for a freshman. This season is likely to be a different story. Where Kyle may really jump off the page is on the defensive end, where I think there’s a chance Kyle leads the league in blocks shots this season.