ASU men's basketball holds first practice

JONESBORO, Ark. ( – The 2013-14 Arkansas State University men's basketball team started its quest for a Sun Belt Conference (SBC) Championship and a postseason tournament berth this Tuesday (Oct. 8) afternoon as the Red Wolves conducted their first official practice of the season at the A-State Convocation Center in Jonesboro, Ark.

A-State practiced two-plus hours in Tuesday's workouts culminating in an eight-minute scrimmage to end the session.  The Red Wolves started out executing fundamental drills with heavy focus on defensive breakdowns and principles.  A-State then held two-on-two and three-on-three breakdown drills in various game situations before reviewing its transition break and basic offense.

Following the practice, Arkansas State head coach John Brady was pleased with how the Red Wolves performed.

"It was a good first day," said Brady, who enters his sixth year at A-State this 2013-14 season.  "I thought our players held up well in two and a half hours of practice because of their conditioning.  We spent a large of majority of our time on defense, having our guys defend and rebound which will carry over into games.

"We're ahead of where we were a year ago and playing the exhibition games in Canada was beneficial for us," added Brady.

This summer, A-State traveled to Calgary, Alberta, where the Red Wolves played three exhibition games in three days (Aug. 15-17).  Arkansas State posted a 2-1 record in the Battle of the Border Tournament against the University of Calgary and the University of Alberta during its foreign tour, which the NCAA allows U.S. collegiate teams to play exhibition games in a foreign country once every four years.

The early practice date is part of a new NCAA rule, which allows teams 30 practices in the 42 days leading to the season opener.  A-State has set up its preseason practice schedule to allow for one day off per week.

Arkansas State opens its 2013-14 season Nov. 2 with an exhibition game against Henderson State at the Convocation Center in Jonesboro, Ark.  The Red Wolves start the regular season on Nov. 11 at Jackson State before hosting Tennessee-Martin Nov. 13 in their regular-season home opener.