Camosun Chargers Men’s Basketball Head Coach Scot Cuachon knows that in the world of college hoops, change is inevitable. With five players graduating and a handful of others moving on to University—not to mention a pair of assistant coaches moving on as well—the 2018 season provided Coach Cuachon with an ample opportunity to reset the goals for the program.
More specifically, those goals are “more about standards and culture,” he says. “We wanted to make sure that the guys that we brought in—if they were going to be transfers—that they were the right kind of transfers, coming from the type of programs that we wanted, with certain attitudes that we wanted. That attitude being: ‘I want to be here to work and I want to be here to work for somebody else as well as myself.’ And then we wanted to make sure that the young guys that we brought in would buy into that right from the summer.”
This season, Cuachon and his two rookie assistant coaches, Brett Burley and Tyler Verde, have had to integrate an astounding nine new players into the fold. Considering the massive turnover, Cuachon is pleased with how his new squad has come together and bought into his vision. “I feel like they have started something—or they have reset something—that we can be really proud of as far as how they treat each other, as far as how they treat themselves, and more importantly, how they represent themselves out in the community,” he says. “We have a motto from the start, and that’s no matter what happens, we want to leave the jersey in a better place.”
This revamped approach has paid dividends for Cuachon, who has his fourth seeded Chargers entering this weekend’s PACWEST Provincial Basketball Championships (March 1-3) focused and prepared for their quarter-final match up against the Capilano University Blues (CAP) who are seeded fifth. “I think we are going to have a really good weekend,” proclaims Coach Cuachon. The sentiment is shared by fifth-year veteran and Computer Science student, Mathew Hampton. “I think we have a good match up playing CAP. We are 2-1 against them this season,” he says.
If the Chargers triumph over Capilano, it will set up a semi-finals showdown against island rival, the Vancouver Island University Mariners (VIU). Despite the Chargers 0-3 regular season record against VIU, there is good reason for optimism. Two of those losses were by just one point, and as Hampton points out, “In one game, anything can happen.” Hampton appears to be speaking from experience considering just two seasons ago the sixth seeded Chargers upset their way to a silver medal finish and earned a bid to the CCAA National Championships.
The 2017-18 PACWEST Provincial Basketball Championships tip-off March 1 with the #4 Camosun Chargers taking on the #5 Capilano Blues at 8:00 PM.