The Valparaiso men’s basketball team has been picked to win the Horizon League Championship in 2012-2013, according to preseason polling of the league’s head coaches, SIDs and media members. In addition, seniors Ryan Broekhoff (Frankston, Victoria, Australia/Australian Institute of Sport) and Kevin Van Wijk (Hoofddorp, Netherlands/Katholieke Scholengemeenschap Hoofddorp) were both chosen to the Preseason First Team All-League.
The Crusaders totaled 382 points in the polling, picking up 40 of the 44 first-place votes to lead the pack of nine teams. Detroit was tabbed second, as the Titans received the other four first-place votes and 332 points. Green Bay, Youngstown State and Cleveland State were picked third through fifth, respectively, while Milwaukee, Loyola, UIC and Wright State rounded out the poll in order.
Broekhoff was named to the preseason First Team after being named Horizon League Player of the Year and an Honorable Mention All-American last season. He led the team and the league in rebounding, averaging 8.5 rebounds per game, and also paced the Crusaders with 14.9 points per game, good for fourth in the league. This past summer, Broekhoff was named to the Australian Boomers squad, made his first senior international appearance and was a finalist for a spot on Australia’s Olympic team.
Meanwhile, Van Wijk earned a spot on the preseason First Team after earning First Team All-League honors at the end of the 2011-2012 campaign. The native of the Netherlands led the league in field goal percentage (.617), the third-best single season effort in program history. Van Wijk ended the season sixth in the league in scoring (14.1 ppg) as well.