Nov 7, 2013 9:57 PM by Trent Merfeld and Matt SantaMaria
SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. - The Cal Poly men's basketball team starts their season Friday night at No.5 Arizona inside the McKale Center.
Head coach Joe Callero said the Mustangs have the most difficult non-conference in the 20-year division-one history of the program. On top of traveling to Arizona Friday night, Cal Poly will face Pittsburgh, Oregon, and Stanford in roughly the first month of their non-conference schedule.
"I'd like to be alive," Callero said when asked about the non-conference schedule. "I think the most important thing is that we're alive and healthy."
Returning three starters and eight letter-winners, Callero said he could see nine or ten guys getting playing time throughout the season. "It's the most depth at every position that we've ever had," Callero said, "which bodes well over 30 games."
Cal Poly will be looking to their three seniors for set the tone. Senior forward Chris Eversley was voted to the All-Big West team last season after averaging 15.0 points and 7.4 rebounds per game. Senior forward Kyle Odister averaged 6.5 points per game while appearing in 30 of the team's 32 games, and senior guard Jamal Johnson is coming off a season where he had assist-to-turnover-ratio at 2.75-to-1, 11th in the country.
With 10 underclassman on roster, Callero said he understands that injuries will happen in basketball, and he's taking a grounded approach towards their non-conference schedule and the rest of the season going forward. "As long as a team we are relatively healthy and we have a good attitude about what we took on," Callero said. "I truly believe you will learn a lot more from adversity then you do from comfort."
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