Look out Nassau County. The two-time defending Class AA champs have brought in the reserves.
Uniondale already had a solid base returning with slasher Roderick Epps and scorer Barry Robinson. But the Knights also bring back one of the best point guards on Long Island in Shaq Mosley. He missed the team's first two games this season to get the required practice time after his return from a brief stint at Lincoln High School in Brooklyn.
"He's a very well-rounded basketball player,'' coach Tom Diana said of the 5-7 Mosley. "He's a prototypical point guard.''
Marquis Posey has transferred from Hempstead, Romario Williams comes back after missing last season with an ACL injury, and 6-6 forward Kenny Woodard plays above the rim. Sean Brown, a 240-pound center, provides the muscle in the paint, and Rayan Reid is extremely versatile.
"We're a very deep team, but we need time to come together,'' he said. "It may be ugly early [in the season], but really good late.''
Because Nassau reverted to enrollment-based conferences from ability-based, Uniondale and the Baldwin Bruins don't meet during the regular season.
But the Bruins are likely to make just as deep of a playoff run behind 6-4 swingman T'Ziah Wood-Smith, who's averaged a double-double the past two seasons. He's flanked by All-County center Eyituoyo Ofuya and shooting guard Aaron Greene, who made all-conference as a sixth man last season.
Said Baldwin coach Darius Burton: "Uniondale is always the team to beat in my eyes. I think we're right there with them this year. We're just gonna meet up in March.''
Elmont makes the jump to Class AA this season, and is well prepared to make a postseason run behind Anthony Elechi, a 6-6 forward with a strong inside-out game, and returning All- County guard Dillon Williams.
Farmingdale returns standouts Kevin Petit-Ferar and Dalique Mingo, while Oceanside relies on lightning fast point guard Gene Garay. Hempstead doesn't open its regular season until next week, but is expected to be in the mix, along with Massapequa, Freeport and Valley Stream Central.
The depth in Class A may be even greater, but at the top are Floral Park and South Side.
Floral Park returns a dynamic duo of four-year starting guards Shamoy McIntosh, an excellent shooter, and Justin Wilson, an all-state high jumper who uses his leaping ability to play above the rim. Said coach Nick Simone: "As far as experience, we have a lot back.''
South Side does not. None of its returning players started last season, but Ryan Spadaford was an all-conference player off the bench. He added some muscle in the offseason and is expected to provide big offensive numbers along with pure shooter Kevin Waxon and point guard Darren Nickelson. Kevin Coyle, a transfer from Holy Trinity, should also contribute.
Defending county champion Westbury suffered a blow when All-Long Island selection Sheldon Hagigal transferred to prep school. But the Green Dragons still have 6-6 Luckens Victor, a strong rebounder who has an improved offensive game.
In Conference B, it's Malverne, as usual, leading the pack. Because of the new conference alignments, the Mules will pick on teams their own size in the regular season. The four-time defending L.I. champs return three-year small forward Cory Alexander, while Xavier Bernard and Ronald Spencer are also key players.
Oyster Bay was a finalist in Class B, and figures to be strong again with Joe Siringo and Perri Ipiotis
Friends Academy, the defending Class C champs, should be on top again.