The 2006-07 version of the Clermont College men’s basketball team has begun yet another season in pursuit of still more titles, trophies, and accolades.
The Cougars have a long tradition of winning seasons and conference and tournament championships.
The Red and Black won seven of their first 10 games this campaign and currently is 10-9 overall and 8-0 in the West Division of the Ohio Regional Campus Conference. The Cougars have defeated University of Akron-Wayne 94-66, Ohio University-Eastern 95-77, Miami University-Hamilton 94-76, Ohio State-Lima 87-62, Miami University-Middletown 64-61, Ohio University-Lancaster 77-49, Ohio University-Chillicothe 97-82, Ohio University-Zanesville 82-46, Thomas More College 88-66, and Grove City University 87-82.
Composing the current version of the University of Cincinnati Clermont roster are Brad Hosler (6-foot, 9-inch, 230-pound, sophomore center), a graduate of Clermont Northeastern High School and a Southern Buckeye Conference American Division all-star; Maurice Brown (6-7, 215, sophomore forward), a graduate of Deer Park High School; Trevor Donald (6-4, 185, freshman forward), a graduate of Taft High School; Stefan Dunn (6-1, 170, junior guard), from Independence, Ky.; Javon Hammonds (6-3, 193, freshman guard), a graduate of Clayton Northmont High School; Jeff Hicks (5-8, 150, freshman guard), a graduate of Withrow High School; Jeff Kinney (6-3, 190, sophomore forward), a graduate of Deer Park High School; Clarence Smith (6-0, 185, freshman guard), a graduate of Withrow High School; Seth Steele (6-3, 185, sophomore forward), a graduate of Hughes High School; John Stone (5-10, 170, freshman guard), a graduate of Taft High School; Stephan Tingle (6-3, 160, freshman guard), a graduate of Roger Bacon High School; and James Thomas (6-3, 185, freshman forward), a graduate of Newport (Ky.) High School.
The very successful collegiate and high school coach John Hurley returns as the head coach. He is a former head basketball coach at Milford High School and Cincinnati State and is also the current Clermont College athletic director.
"Our biggest disappointment this season is not doing well against Division Three teams. We need juniors and seniors, but we're basically freshmen and sophomores. We need to maintain players with three and four years of (college basketball) experience," said the UC mentor.
Dunn and Brown pace the team with 15.3 and 13.4 scoring averages, respectively. Brown is averaging 8.2 rebounds per battle and Hosler is pulling down 4.5, but he has missed 4 1/2 games because of an ankle injury. Dunn is the playmaking leader passing for 59 assists and Hicks has been credited with 39 assists.
For the first week of December, Dunn was chosen as the USCAA Division II Player of the Week for averaging 21.3 points, nine assists, and 3.6 steals including a buzzer-beater from half court to defeat Miami University-Middletown 64-61.
"Defense has been one of our concerns," Hurley said. "We haven't been playing consistently. Some games we play good defense and then other games we don't. They're not playing to my expectations."
Clermont's coaching leader is concerned, too, about the upcoming opposition through the month of December. "It's going to be an awfully difficult schedule coming up. We have to play against teams like (Northern Kentucky University) and Shawnee State and they are both scholarship schools."
Hurley's assistant coach is Anthony Robertson. Peggy Hager is the academic advisor. She is an associate professor of mathematics at Clermont College and is a member of the first induction class of the Clermont College Athletic Hall of Fame (2005) and a Glen Este High School graduate.
The remainder of the Cougars' regular season schedule is as follows: Jan. 5 Ohio University-Eastern (7:30 p.m.), Jan. 7 Ohio State-Newark (3 p. m.), Jan. 13 College of Mount Saint Joseph (3 p.m.), Jan. 20 at Ohio State-Newark (3 p.m.), Jan. 21 at University of Akron-Wayne (3 p.m.), Jan. 24 at Miami University-Hamilton (7:30 p.m.), Jan. 27 Ohio University-Chillicothe (3 p.m.), Jan. 28 Ohio University-Lancaster (3 p.m.), Jan. 31 at Miami University-Middletown (7:30 p.m.), Feb. 1 at Ohio State-Marion (7 p.m.), Feb. 3 Ohio University-Zanesville (3 p. m.), Feb. 10 Ohio State-Lima (3 p.m.), Feb. 11 Wright State University-Lake (3 p.m.), Feb. 13 Ohio State-Marion (7 p.m.), Feb. 17 and 18 Ohio Regional Campus Conference Tournament at Ohio State-Newark, Feb. 24 and 25 Ohio Regional Campus Conference Tournament Finals at Ohio State-Lima, and Feb. 28 - March. 3 United States Collegiate Athletic Association National Tournament at the University of South Maine.