Sept. 30, 2013
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - The UAB men's basketball team opened up its 2013-14 practice schedule with a workout at Bartow Arena on Monday.
The Blazers, who are entering their second season under head coach Jerod Haase, are set to start the much-anticipated 2013-14 season with their top four leading scorers, including 2013 Second-Team All-Conference USA selection Rod Rucker, returning from last year's team.
"We have a great core of guys coming back," Haase said. "We have a lot of depth and experience returning, which are always important qualities to have any time you start a new season."
Not only will Haase rely on a strong nucleus of returning players, but the Blazers' head coach will also see plenty of production from talented newcomers -- a group that was ranked as high as No. 18 in the national recruiting rankings by HoopScoop.com.
"All six newcomers have shown that they belong here talent-wise and character-wise," Haase said. "As far as I am concerned, everybody who has eligibility to play this year is starting at the same spot. It will truly be a situation where the guys who start are the guys who earn it."
According to Haase, that competition began with Monday's practice.
"Practice is going to be extremely competitive throughout the year, and I think that is one of the key elements helping us this season," Haase said. "There is always going to be that competitive level to practice, and that will carry over to the games as well."
This week, UAB continues its regular practice schedule, which will culminate with the annual Hoops on the Haasephalt event on Friday.
For more information on the UAB men's basketball team, follow the Blazers on Twitter (@UABAthletics or @CoachJerodHaase). Fans can also get the latest news by logging into www.UABsports.com.