VESTAL (WBNG) -- Despite Binghamton University going remote for the rest of the semester, the Binghamton men's basketball team is continuing practice, as they prepare for the upcoming season.
Sophomores George Tinsley and Brenton Mills said the plan is still to play a handful of non-conference games, before conference play begins December 19.
"Kind of gives us you know, kind of a tell of where we're at as a team and what we need to improve on and stuff like that," said Tinsley. "It's very helpful to have five or six games before conference."
The sophomore duo is coming off an impressive freshman season. Tinsley was named America East rookie of the year, and both were named to the America East all-rookie team.
"Just really staying consistent, I think is a big key," said Mills.
"Now that people know how Brenton and I play, it's not going to be as easy," said Tinsley.
Both are entering the season with the team on their minds.
"I just want to do whatever I can to win, and to help our team win," said Mills. "So whatever that is, whether it's scoring, passing, rebounding, defense, just doing whatever I can to help."
Mills averaged 9.7 points last season, good for third-highest among freshman in the conference. He also led the team in three-point shooting.
Tinsley led the conference in freshman scoring, with 11.6 points per game. He was second overall in rebounding (7.4 per game).
With a number of new faces on the roster, Mills and Tinsley said they are ready to take on leadership roles.
" I think I'm going to have to take a bigger leadership role this year, because obviously we got some older guys but they're new and coming in," said Tinsley.
With a unique conference schedule featuring back-to-back games each weekend, they're embracing the challenge ahead.
"I think just taking care of our bodies and having that week of preparation will help us out a lot, and maintain our focus," said Mills.
"I think it's going to be kind of cool, just to set up the season a different way," said Tinsley. "No matter what happens the first day you're going to have to come out and give 100% the next one."
When the season does begin, the Bearcats don't want to be taken lightly.
"Have to be going for every team," said Tinsley. "Many teams got the best of us last year, and we're going to have to bring it this year."
"We should be in the mix this year, especially throughout the conference tournament," said Mills. "I feel like we just need to step up as a team, help each other out, and just keep working hard to achieve our goals."
The conference schedule begins with a home weekend series, as the Bearcats host Stony Brook December 19 and 20.
The non-conference schedule has not been released.