OPEN Golden Eagles Scrimmage Tonight

COOKEVILLE, Tenn. – Fans of the Tennessee Tech men’s basketball team will get a couple of chances for a preseason preview of 2016-17 squad, as the Golden Eagles have announced they will hold open, intersquad scrimmages twice over the next two weeks.

“We are learning,” head coach Steve Payne said. “When you have as many new guys as we have and as many guys playing new roles as we do, everything is new. But I really think we are doing a pretty good job right now of executing offensively. We are a long way away from being good defensively, which is something that this team will have to do to be successful, but we are making progress.

“We have some pieces to put in place and still have a lot to learn. The big key so far is that our effort has been great. We are learning to consistently work. They are kind of getting beat down physically, but they are fighting through some things and that’s important. I think we have a good base right here.”

With a strong base in place, the next step for the Golden Eagle squad is defining the leadership roles among the 14 members of the team, something that Payne has already witnessed developing.

“The first thing a leader has to do is take care of his own work both on and off the court, and they’re all doing a pretty good job of that,” Payne explained. “I would say that the most vocal guy that we have on the floor is Savonte [Frazier]. Kajon Mack is a guy that is going to have to step into a more vocal role as a point guard for us, and I think he is more than capable of that. Stephaun Adams and A.J. [Aleksa Jugovic] are both guys that have a chance to do that as well.

“Mason [Ramsey] is a great at leading by example, communicating, helping others, and making others better. He is doing several of the things we need done, especially by an upper classman, but there is a lot of room for guys to step in and be leaders for this team.  And we had such strong senior leadership last year. This bunch will have to learn where some of that is going to come from with only one senior this year.”


The first scrimmage is set for Monday, Oct. 17 and will begin at approximately 6 p.m. CT following the team’s practice, which starts at 5 p.m. The second scrimmage will take place on Monday, Oct. 24, also at 6 p.m. following a 5 p.m. conference.

The practices and scrimmages will take place at the Hooper Eblen Center on the campus of Tennessee Tech University and provide fans an early look at this year’s squad that welcomes six new faces to the mix.

The Golden Eagles will kick off their 2016-17 schedule Friday, Nov. 11 when they visit Georgia Tech for a 7:00 p.m. CT tilt.

For season ticket information, contact the Tennessee Tech Athletics Ticket Office in Eblen Center or call 931-372-3940. Tickets are also on sale online at

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