One team that many were intrigued in watching at the Hoop State League was the Cougars of JL Chambers and to see what they would be bringing to the table this year. Our own, Rick Lewis, recently made a visit to an open gym but this was game action, giving us a further understanding of what this team may look like this year. After a strong season last year, JL Chambers lost some key players in Daniel Sanford and Jaylen Curry, so it was going to be intriguing to see how they would fare without those two key pieces.
Though it is early and just Week 1, it was clear that Chambers will once again be a presence in the state of North Carolina and they might not miss too much of a beat compared to last year. Now, there still will be some obstacles to overcome with this team but when watching the Cougars in action, they have plenty of weapons and may be able to share the ball more around the floor.
Chambers will have its clear leaders in 2023 Nick Dorn and 2024 Maurio Hanson, two key pieces that return from last year. Dorn looks stronger, and continues to knock down shots and add more to his game, while Hanson has only improved each and every time and will be a force down in the post.
But what makes this team so intriguing to watch is the depth and experience they will have at the guard position, being able to come in waves and have depth at the position. 2023 Amari Richardson, 2024 Jordan Patton, 2023 Jacoby Jackson, and several others return and have a chance to really showcase what they can provide. Chambers also added to key pieces in 2023 Marcus Brown and 2023 Jahmir Brown, who can instantly come in and be productive on both sides of the ball.
Even though Chambers lost key pieces, they may be able to have a more balanced attack on the court and share the ball more, getting many involved and having critical depth. The Cougars looked strong and though there may be some learning curves, they have a chance to be strong once again and showed hat at the Hoop State Fall League in Week 1.