Lambert named SAAC vice chairman, is back on court

Maryville College's Wes Lambert will return to action in the 2011-12 season following a serious knee injury. In the two seasons prior, Lambert helped the Scots with a total of 113 rebounds, 135 assists and 543 points (9.9 ppg). Photo courtesy of MC Athletics website

In celebration of the upcoming basketball season, I sat down with MC’s own Wes Lambert to catch up on how he is adjusting to his duties as Student Athletic Advisory Committee (SAAC) vice chair, to find out how his rehab from knee injuries has been coming along and to see how the team is preparing for the upcoming season.

Wes Lambert was recently appointed vice chairmen of the SAAC.  The SAAC is a committee made up of student-athletes assembled to provide insight on the student-athlete experience.

“We represent two conferences—the USA South and GSAC—and there around 20 of us that form the national committee,” Lambert said.

The SAAC also offers input on the rules, regulations and policies that affect the lives of student-athletes on their respective campuses.

Lambert is also attempting a return to the hardwood after missing an extended period of time with injuries to the patella tendons in both of his knees.

“[Rehab] was a slow-moving process, and the results were not what I wanted, so I gave up on it,” Lambert said. “Nothing was helping the way I truly felt happy with, but nobody should be worried: my knees are feeling great right now.”

With college basketball on the horizon and no lockout to hold the Scots back, the first game is Nov. 15 against Centre.

The MC faithful are wondering what they can expect from the team this season after a disappointing season a year ago, a campaign which saw the Scots miss the NCAA tournament for the first time in 13 years.

“The team is looking really good right now,” Lambert said. “We have some young talent and new faces that will really help the team this year. We are going to be a lot of fun to watch: we are going to run a more up-tempo pace this year compared to last year. It’s going to be exciting.”

Before every season most teams list goals that they would like to achieve throughout the year, and MC is no different. The goals for the team this season are simple: just win, baby.

“Obviously our goal as a team is to win the conference championship—regular season and postseason,” Lambert said. “We want to get back to the national tourney, but not just get there. We want to compete while we are in it. We want to win and advance, hopefully make it the final four.”

All goals aside, there is one true goal that the team is most focused on: “getting back to Maryville.” It’s more than just a yearlong goal; it’s a goal for every team to stride for, now and 10 years from now.

Since last year was a down year for the team, “getting back to Maryville” means starting a new consecutive NCAA tournament stretch and regaining the recognition as a national powerhouse.

The only thing to do now is let the season play out.

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