R.J. Fuqua | Freshman | Son of Richard Fuqua, ORU Hall of Famer
Emir Ahmedic | Freshman | Originally from Kladanj, Bosnia and Herzegovina
James Conley | Junior | Transfer from Hutchinson Community College
Sam Kearns | Sophomore | Transfer North Platte Community College
Josiah Showman | Sophomore | Spent one season at St. Gregory’s University
Austin Ruder | Senior | Fifth year graduate student from Missouri State
Chris Miller | Sophomore | Played 28 of team’s 30 games last season
Albert Owens | Senior | Last season DI-AAA ADA Scholar-Athlete Team
Emmanuel Nzekwesi | Sophomore | 2016-2017 Summit League Freshman of the year
Javan White | R-Sophomore | Spent 2015-2016 season with ORU
Words from Albert Owens:
Q: Coming into your senior year and final season, what are your goals?
“Last year here, I am excited to get started and win games, and reconcile things that happened last year and get Oral Roberts back on the map.”
Q: How does the age of the team affect your playing style?
“We are pretty young, but honestly, I think that it’s not gonna make much of a difference. A lot of our guys are from junior college, so they have quite a bit of experience outside of high school basketball under their belt.”
Q: How does the team feel after the transition with new coach Paul Mills?
“It was tough for the guys at first, just because most of us have known Coach Sutton pretty much since we have heard about ORU. But Coach Mills has done a good job of making us comfortable and assuring us.”
Q: Any drastic adjustments?
“It’s been hard. Overall, I would say that Coach Mills really understands that nobody really signed up for things to happen the way they did. He understands that in order for us to be good, we have to earn his trust and he has to earn our trust, and he has been trying to do that everyday.”
Q: What are your plans after the conclusion of your last year at ORU?
“I am going to keep playing basketball after this, and will need a pretty good year to boost my resume for professional basketball. Either it is going to be the NBA or over seas.”
Thoughts from Coach Paul Mills:
“This is an enjoyable time of year for college ball, because you know you are on the brink of the season, and at the same time you are undefeated.
“It has been great. For the last 14 years, I have had the privilege of being at Baylor, but the desire was always to become a head coach at a place similar to Oral Roberts University. It is a school where the sport people pay attention to basketball. So to be at an institution where you have quality young men and to be around them [everyday] is a joy.
“We only have two seniors and the two seniors, Albert Owen and Austin (who is new), are great. We have two juniors, and then the rest are underclassmen. There is no [team on] the schedule I look at and think ‘Man I don’t think we can win that game,” It’s hard to predict the future, but the expectations are that you are prepared very well everyday.”