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UTEP Basketball: Miners picked sixth in C-USA Preseason Poll

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NCAA Basketball: Conference USA Tournament-UTEP vs Marshall Marvin Gentry-USA TODAY Sports

With so many unknowns outside of three returning starters, C-USA coaches voted the Miners sixth in the 2016-17 preseason poll released by the conference today.

For the first time in a while, UTEP also did not have any players voted to the all-conference preseason team.

UAB picked up 10 first place votes to lead the pack, while Middle Tennessee picked up four votes coming in second place. UAB placed both Chris Cokley, and William Lee on the all-conference teams.

Rice sophomore guard Marcus Evans is the youngest member of the all-preseason team, but made an immediate impact as the top freshman scorer in the nation, averaging 14.5 ppg. The 2016 C-USA Freshman of the Year is also the only returning member of the All-Conference First Team and earned a spot on the C-USA All-Defensive Team as he led the league with 2.2 steals per game.

Conference USA will open its 22nd men’s basketball campaign on Friday, November 11, and the season will culminate with the 2017 Conference USA Basketball Championship, March 8-11 in Birmingham, Alabama. UAB will serve as the host school for the third year in a row. The men’s championship game is slated for Saturday, March 11 at 8:30 p.m. EST/7:30 p.m. CST, and will be televised on CBS Sports Network.

2016-17 C-USA MEN’S BASKETBALL PRESEASON ALL-CONFERENCE TEAM

Student-Athlete | School | Class | Pos. | Hometown

Erik McCree | Louisiana Tech | Senior | F | Orlando, Florida

Jon Elmore | Marshall | Junior | G | Charleston, West Virginia

Ryan Taylor | Marshall | Senior | F | Indianapolis, Indiana

Giddy Potts | Middle Tennessee | Junior | G | Athens, Alabama

Reggie Upshaw Jr. | Middle Tennessee | Senior | F | Chattanooga, Tennessee

Jeremy Combs | North Texas | Junior | F | Dallas, Texas

Marcus Evans | Rice | Sophomore | G | Chesapeake, Virginia

Chris Cokley | UAB | Junior | F | Savannah, Georgia

William Lee | UAB | Junior | F | Plantersville, Alabama

Justin Johnson | WKU | Junior | F | Hazard, Kentucky

2016-17 C-USA PRESEASON POLL (#) first-place votes

  1. UAB (10)
  2. Middle Tennessee (4)
  3. WKU
  4. Marshall
  5. Old Dominion
  6. UTEP
  7. Louisiana Tech
  8. Charlotte
  9. Rice
  10. North Texas
  11. FIU
  12. Florida Atlantic
  13. Southern Miss
  14. UTSA