Saint Leo, Fla. (November 1, 2007) - The Saint Leo University men’s basketball team was seventh in the 2007-08 Sunshine State Conference Pre-Season Poll released on Wednesday.  Defending SSC Co-Champion Rollins was been tabbed the preseason favorite to again win the SSC men’s basketball title.

Saint Leo totaled 110 points in the pre-season poll, and was picked to finish one spot lower than the Lions finished in 2006-07.  The Lions had a 13-15 overall record a season ago, and a 6-10 record in the SSC, which was tied for fifth-place with Lynn University.

Saint Leo returns nine players for the 2007-08 season and has also added several new faces, including University of New Orleans transfer Dusty Driggs (Jr., Sharpsville, Ind.).  Among the returners are 2006-07 SSC Freshman of the Year Jordan Prais (So., Lakeland, Fla.) and All-Freshman Team selection Quentin Cullop (So., Winter Haven, Fla.).  Also back for the 2007-08 season are seniors Jonathan Banks (Tampa, Fla.) and George Eshesimua (Miami, Fla.).

Voting for the SSC men’s basketball preseason poll was conducted among the league’s head men’s basketball coaches and sports information directors.

Rollins topped the poll with 32 points, followed by Eckerd (46) and Nova Southeastern (73).  Tampa (78) was picked to finish fourth in the standings, while Lynn (90) was fifth, and Barry (101) was sixth.  Saint Leo (110), Florida Southern (133), and Florida Tech (147) rounded out the poll.

The Saint Leo men’s basketball team will open its 2007-08 schedule at home versus the University of Puerto Rico-Bayamon on Saturday, November 17 at 2:00 p.m.  The Lions will play at home for the first three games of the season and six of the opening seven contests overall.  Saint Leo will open its SSC schedule at home against SSC pre-season favorite Rollins on Saturday, January 5 at 4:00 p.m.

2007-08 SSC Preseason Men’s Basketball Poll
Place – School, Points (First-Place Votes)
1 – Rollins, 32 (12)
2 – Eckerd, 46 (3)
3 – Nova Southeastern, 73
4 – Tampa, 78 (3)
5 – Lynn, 90
6 – Barry, 101
7 – Saint Leo, 110
8 – Florida Southern, 133
9 – Florida Tech, 147