The Carroll College men's basketball team is off to a 14-0 record through the nonconference portion of the season.
The Saints now turn their attention to the Frontier Conference.
Here are coach Carson Cunningham's thoughts about the state of the program at midseason.
What characteristics stick out about this team so far? How does it compare to last season’s team?
Our team plays with competitive fire, with connectivity and unselfishly. I think they played that way last year, too. It's fun to be a part of.
Who has taken the biggest leap in terms of development at this point in the season?
We've had impressive growth by the players. They are willing to work on things, which is huge. I think Lorel Johnson (is) really underrated. He does a ton for us and has for years. He has taken his ability to QB a hoops team and put his imprint on a game to even another level this season. And his defense has been locked in. But, again, other guys have really stepped up, too, from Ife to Wyman to more.
Sitting undefeated, is this where you thought this team would be reentering conference play?
We try to remain open-minded about where we can take this while focusing on what's in front of us, on our next workout and game. Each game is a battle.
What’s the secret to winning games in the Frontier Conference?
We just try to focus on playing with unity, with competitive vim and vigor, on getting stops and playing with a purposeful flow. The rest should take care of itself. For us, whether playing a Frontier game or not, our 4Gs approach -- trying to cultivate Goodness, carry out the Golden Rule, be open to growth, and be gritty -- is where it starts for us. We want this approach to set the tone and have things flow from there.
What difference has the new court in the PE Center made for the program?
The floor is phenomenal. The best part of it for us is what's beneath the surface -- the cushioning it gives our guys' legs.
What else about the facilities upgrades over the last year have made a difference?
Having a half-court space for fellas to get in reps has been a huge upgrade for our program. We're very grateful for the space.
Which position does your team need to recruit this season?
We're open-minded with regard to recruiting, assessing and looking for great fits.