Last season: Northern Colorado was 13-18 and 10-10 in the Big Sky, lost in Big Sky semis.
Key returners: Derrick Barden, 6-5 first team Big Sky led league with 9.1 rebounds per game to go with 13.5 ppg; Senior guard Tate Unruh hit three 3-pointers per game and shot 43 percent from long range for 13.5 ppg as UNC shot 38 percent from 3-point range last year.
Something to watch: Northern Colorado hasn't done much for the past couple years after beating NMSU in the 2011 BracketBuster game in Las Cruces during the school's only NCAA Tournament run. NMSU beat the Bears in Greeley to open the next season. But it sounds like they have been building for this season with four seniors and expect to be better this year, although there is only two players listed who are 6-8 or bigger. They didn't have any seniors last year and they have some size with 6-9 senior center Connor Osborne, whose 28 blocks last year set a single season record, which Sim Bhullar also did in Las Cruces with 85 blocks.