Men's basketball looks to utilize its experience

Men's basketball looks to utilize its experience
November 14, 2008

Dave Beyer, Sports Information Director
(630) 829-6143

Head coach Keith Bunkenburg’s Benedictine University team will be relying heavily on most of the same faces that made up his roster last year, after losing just two players to graduation. With four starters back from 2007-08, the Eagles are hoping that a year of “seasoning” will serve the squad well for 2008-09. Heading the cast of returning players is senior first team All-Northern Athletics Conference (NAC) guard Jared Bailey. Bailey put up impressive numbers of 17.8 points, 4.2 rebounds, 4.6 assists and 2.2 steals per game. Bailey hit 42-percent from the three-point arc and made 2.0 treys per game. He also shot 49-percent from the floor overall and hit 85-percent from the free throw stripe. “Jared is a very special player,” said Benedictine’s veteran head coach Keith Bunkenburg. “He is a complete ‘package’ as a player in that he can spark an offense like few others as well as play in-your-shirt defense. “I really believe Jared is one of the elite players in the country and deserving of All-America consideration. He can be that good.” Junior Dan Klecan appeared in just eight games last season after being sidelined by a wrist injury. As a freshman, Klecan was the NAC’s Rookie of the Year. Klecan was averaging 10.4 points and 3.6 rebounds per game at the time of his injury. Among Klecan’s accomplishments prior to being injured was scoring a game-high 22 points versus NCAA Division I Northwestern University. Other key returning players are sophomores Brian Genslinger, a 6’7” forward, and 6’4” guard Cameron Snelling. Genslinger appeared in 18 games off the Eagles’ bench, averaging 8.7 points and 4.3 rebounds per game, along with amassing 15 blocks. Snelling’s numbers in 25 appearances (14 starts) were 8.3 points and 4.0 boards per game. Junior guard Travis Wilson, who was also on the shelf for most of last season due to an injury, appears healthy and ready to go this season. Michael Fahey and Patrick Noonan also return to the backcourt for Bunkenburg. Sophomore forward A.J. Brown averaged 6.8 points and 3.0 rebounds per game as a freshman, establishing himself as a physical presence for the Eagles’ team. Both Genslinger and Brown were named to the NAC’s All-Rookie Team. Bunkenburg is hopeful that a good crop of recruits will provide the Eagles with some depth and maybe some pleasant surprises. “I think we have a strong foundation of returning talent,” said Bunkenburg. “Now it’s a matter of how the newcomers fit into the system and who raises their game to compete for playing time. That’s what can make the difference between being in the hunt for the NAC title or not even making the conference post-season tournament.”


Benedictine University is located in Lisle, Illinois, just 25 miles west of Chicago, and has branch campuses in Springfield, Illinois, and Mesa, Arizona. Founded as a Catholic university in 1887, Benedictine enrolls nearly 10,000 students in 56 undergraduate and 19 graduate programs. Forbes magazine named Benedictine among "America's Top Colleges" for the sixth consecutive year in 2016. Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (hlcommission.org). For more information, contact (630) 829-6300, admissions@ben.edu or visit ben.edu.