Garden City, KS-The Broncbuster men's basketball team was picked fifth in the preseason coach's poll on Tuesday.
"I see it as a sign of respect," Head Coach Brady Trenkle said. "We don't return any players from last year, and yet they picked us that high."
Defending national champion Hutchinson was picked to win the conference followed by Coffeyville, Butler and Cowley.
"There is a lot of talent in this league," Trenkle said. "Obviously Hutch is the defending champs and Coffeyville has their three best players back. There won't be an off night; that's for sure."
Last season, Garden City raced out to an 8-1 start. But injuries hampered them the rest of the way as they finished 16-15 and eighth in the conference. In the opening round of the Jayhawk tournament, Garden City lost an early nine-point lead before falling to Independence.
"It's a new year, and a new group," Trenkle said. "I think the coaches have seen our guys during the scrimmages. So where they have us, I believe, is a direct result of what everyone has seen."
The Broncbusters open the season Wednesday, Nov. 1 vs. Sterling College. You can listen to the game beginning at 8 p.m. on 99.9 FM; westernkansasnews.com/kwkr and KWKR mobile app.