Preview: Eastern Illinois Panthers

The return of several rising players should help boost Panthers in OVC

Updated: October 9, 2013, 3:32 PM ET
By Corey Schmidt | ESPN Insider

Eastern Illinois Panthers

2012-13: 11-21 (6-10)
In-conference offense: 1.05 points per possession (7th)
In-conference defense: 1.09 points per possession (10th)

After starting the 2012-13 season with a miserable 3-16 record, Eastern Illinois went 8-5 over its last 13 games. Considering Jay Spoonhour inherited a roster with just one player with more than a year of experience at EIU, that late-season progress is indicative of solid player development and coaching. Those skills will come in handy once again this season as Spoonhour welcomes back just four players who previously stepped on the court. Fortunately, three of those players were starters last season, and a number of the newcomers have junior college experience or redshirted last season in the program.