Aggies Foster Talent

Come on Craig: Foster averaged 16.6 points per game and 5.6 assists per game en route to being named LSC Player of the Year last season.

Come on Craig: Foster averaged 16.6 points per game and 5.6 assists per game en route to being named LSC Player of the Year last season.

Jack McGuire   &   Tyler Boydston

Content Editor         Managing Editor

Cameron University’s men’s basketball starting point guard Craig Foster is stepping into the upcoming season with recent awards and accolades under his belt.

On Monday, Oct. 7, the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Bulletin named Foster the Division II National Preseason Player of the Year. The announcement came after Foster led the Aggie men’s basketball team to their first ever NCAA National Tournament last season.

The Lawton native led the Black and Gold to the second-best record in the Lone Star Conference (LSC). Foster finished in the top five of six statistical categories including leading the conference in assists (5.6) and assist to turnover ration (2.3). When the announcement came out, Men’s Head Basketball Coach Nate Gamet had to wake Foster up to tell him the news.

“He came into the office and said ‘Look at this.’ Then he handed me the paper that said I was the D-II Player of the Year,” Foster said. “I had to clear my eyes for a second. I was like, ‘That can’t be true,’ because I really wasn’t expecting to be preseason player of the year.”

The senior guard always felt pressure to perform at his best, having played at Lawton High School. With the national spotlight on him, he said that the pressure has increased even more.

“So many eyes are on me now,” Foster said. “I know there is more pressure on my shoulders, but I have to relax and play my game like I always have.”

Foster said the pressure should decrease due to the nine new players recruited to the team. He claims this year’s team contains much more chances for scoring. Foster now has the opportunity to become a pass first guard as opposed to a score first guard.

“Everybody can score and take a lot of the load off me,” Foster said. “Teams will have to really start guarding everybody, not just me.”

Coach Gamet will begin his first full season as the team’s head coach after being an assistant for five years. Gamet understands Foster has to continue to work hard despite the award.

“He has all the pressure put on him and has the highest award you can get before the season,” Gamet said. “Now it is his job to shoulder the responsibility and take this team to where we were last year.”

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Last year the men’s basketball team finished as the second best team in the LSC, but was upset in the first round by West Texas A&M University. They then lost in the first round of the national tournament to St. Mary’s (Texas).

Foster wants to continue repaying the fans for their support by winning, but said the national Elite Eight is not too high of a goal.

“Most importantly we are going to keep this undefeated streak alive at home,” he said. “Then, we are going to win the conference championship and then make a strong push for the Elite Eight.”

The NCAA Bulletin also announced the preseason rankings. Cameron sits on the outside, looking into the Top 25. The Bulletin considered the Aggies to be a program to watch, possibly cracking the Top 25.

The men’s season opener takes place on Nov. 8 against Oklahoma Panhandle State University in the Aggie Gym.

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