VUHoops continues our coverage of Villanova Basketball’s 100th Season by previewing the entire Wildcat roster. Be sure to check out all of our coverage including Ten Top 10’s, event coverage, and schedule previews. Check back over the coming weeks as we begin the celebration of 100 years of Villanova Basketball!
Last year, Villanova had four new players and a sophomore class that needed playing time to develop. The result was an average of just over 1.3 games among the three members of the bench mob, with one of them not even making it into the game. This season Villanova has five new players, and still has a sophomore class that needs playing time to develop. Bottom line, we may not see a lot of in game action from the bench mob.
However, that doesn’t mean these two guys won’t be among the hardest working players on the team. And it certainly doesn’t take away from the leadership role that will be needed from the team’s lone senior, Tim Saunders. He and junior Kevin Hoehn will be asked to do everything any other member of the team would, and probably more. We just won’t see it on the court as we do with the rest of the team. None the less, these guys are Villanova Wildcats to their core, and just making the team as walk ons proves that.
Tim Saunders, Senior
Height: 6’4” | Position: Guard | Hometown: Del Mar, CA | High School: Torrey Pines
Saunders may not have recorded any stats in his single appearance last season, but he’s more than proven himself on the court. Before transferring to Villanova, he played two seasons at DIII University of Puget Sound. As a sophomore he averaged 12.3 PPG and broke into the starting lineup. Part of the reason he came to Villanova was thanks to his High School coach and former Villanova player, John Olive. Olive was a 1,000 career point scorer at Villanova, along with pulling down 700 career rebounds.
As we mentioned earlier, Saunders is the only senior on this year’s team. That means Jay Wright will likely lean on him heavily to be working with a very young team in practice, helping them learn and understand the system and more importantly the Villanova mantra of “ATTITUDE”. You may not get to see him on the court this year, but just remember his contributions every time a player checks out of the game and makes sure he goes all the way down to Saunders at the end of the bench for a fist bump. That’s the respect this team has for senior leaders like Tim, along with every other member of the team.
Kevin Hoehn, Junior
Height: 6’1” | Position: Guard | Hometown: Morristown, NJ | High School: Morristown
Hoehn is entering his second season as a walkon, even though he never made it onto the court last year. He’ll face an equally tough challenge getting court time this year, but I’d be willing to bet the house you won’t see him complain about it once. It’s the unwritten rule of being a walk-on at Villanova.
Hoehn had an impressive high school career, scoring over 1,000 points before deciding to try to walk on at Villanova. He was a member of the practice squad as a freshman, and earned a walk-on spot as a sophomore. Now a junior, he’ll be learning more about being a team leader from fellow walk on Tim Saunders. Next season he’ll be the ranking walk-on, and it will be up to him to carry on that Villanova tradition. As for this year, he’ll get hands on training as he’ll also be asked to bring along Nova’s group of standout freshmen.
Best and Worst Case Scenarios
For the Bench Mob it’s pretty straight forward: Playing time. The best case scenario is that Villanova’s youth fades quickly as these elite recruits prove themselves ready for the challenge. Wright feels comfortable enough with their progression that he doesn’t need to play them as much in late game blowouts. This opens the door for the walk-ons to be rewarded for their efforts by closing out a few games.
The worst case scenario is that like most freshmen, the complicated Villanova system takes a while to learn. They need the in game experience that a blowout can provide, and so while Wright sits the Top 6 players, the other five stay on the court to close out the game. The bench mob remains on the bench cheering them on, knowing that’s just what comes with the job.
Wisdom of the Crowds
Normally we’ll be voting on how many points per game a player will put up this season, but those expectations are a little different for the bench mob. Instead, we’ll ask how many total points they’ll put up this year. In 2018-19, the walk-ons went scoreless in just three games of action, but hopefully that won’t be the case this year!
How many total points will the Bench Mob score this season?
This poll is closed
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