2012-2013 record: 12-15
Returning starters: 4
Coach John Bauersfeld's quote: "We don't have a ton of size, but we still should do a pretty good job of rebounding."
Breakdown: After suffering some growing pains last winter, the Cardinals should be maturing with a more experienced roster this season.
And that could help to turn some of last year's close losses in to victories.
Speaking of growth, Bauersfeld does have a big man, 6-foot-8 junior Evan Phoenix, to mix with the rest of a lineup that doesn't boast another starter close to that size.
What he does have is quick and unselfish performers, such as senior wings Sean Mayberry (6-2) and Chris Wallace (6-3) and junior counterpart Nico Clareth (6-3), to keep rivals on their toes.
Junior Reggie Rouse (5-8) will run the point while classmate Drew Edwards (6-3) is one of the top returning players in the area and a serious threat at shooting guard.
"It's a pretty unselfish group," Bauersfeld said. "But in this league, it's a grind every night. Our wings should really help with the rebounding because we'll need everyone to contribute."
2012-2013 record: 21-3
Returning starters: 1
Coach Matt Lochte's quote: "We've got some lofty goals this year. Our goal is to finish No. 1 in our region."
Breakdown: Although point guard Jason Lawson is the only returning starter, Lochte has several key returning veterans that are chomping at the bit for playing time.
Junior guard/forward Isiah Lamb (6-4) is the most eager of the bunch after missing last season with a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his knee. Lamb played at Franklin as a freshman and shows high potential.
"He probably has about a dozen Division I colleges interested in him," Lochte said.
Another Lion drawing tons of Division I college interest is junior wing Scott Harrelson (6-4).
Senior guard Stewart German is a three-year starter in the backcourt along with Lawson.
Junior center Ben Stevens (6-6) provides stability and toughness on the boards.
"He is a perfect fit for our team," Lochte said.