NCAAM Teams
C.L. Brown, ESPN Staff Writer 428d

Virginia, Villanova among teams doing summer studies abroad

Men's College Basketball, Virginia Cavaliers, Villanova Wildcats, Washington Huskies, Purdue Boilermakers, Arkansas Razorbacks, Wake Forest Demon Deacons, South Carolina Gamecocks, Dayton Flyers, Wichita State Shockers, Georgia Bulldogs, UNLV Rebels, Kansas State Wildcats, Missouri Tigers, George Washington Colonials, Washington State Cougars

College basketball teams are allowed to travel internationally during the summer once every four years. More important than the games, which have wildly varying degrees of competition, coaches covet the 10 days of practice that come with it.

The trips can be eye-openers for players being exposed to different cultures off the court and getting used to new teammates on it. Here's a look at how select major college teams fared on their foreign tours and how it might impact the season ahead:

Villanova Wildcats (traveled to Spain)
What we learned: There's no "defending champs" mantra serving as Villanova's motivation, but Josh Hart still played like he's still hungry to accomplish more. Against the best competition, which featured pros from the top two divisions of the Spanish league, Hart delivered 27 points and 13 rebounds and coach Jay Wright deemed him the best player on the court.

Keep an eye on: Senior forward Darryl Reynolds did not make the trip because of a bruised sternum. Starting in his place was Fordham transfer Eric Paschall, who was the 2015 Atlantic 10 Rookie of the Year. Paschall will be a key part of the frontcourt rotation. The only area of concern was turnovers, where Nova not only misses Ryan Arcidiacono but forward Daniel Ochefu, who helped break presses.

Virginia Cavaliers (Spain)
What we learned: Cavaliers coach Tony Bennett aimed to see the newcomers play. He rested three scholarship players in each of their five games; that included probable starters London Perrantes and Isaiah Wilkins for two games each. Freshman Kyle Guy, who averaged 10.3 points, is used to being an alpha male on the court, but deferred to Perrantes' experience.

Keep an eye on: Austin Nichols, who sat out last season as a transfer from Memphis, led the Wahoos with 13 points per game and his 5.8 rebounds were second on the team behind redshirt freshman Mamadi Diakite's 6.3 boards.

Washington Huskies (Australia, New Zealand)
What we learned: Guard Markelle Fultz is as advertised. The freshman, who is already projected as a potential top-five pick in the 2017 NBA draft, led the team in scoring (21.2 PPG) and assists (4.6 APG) during the tour and was second in rebounding (6.8 RPG) over five games.

Keep an eye on: The remaining members of the Class of 2015 all seemed poised to make a big leap from freshmen reserves to key contributors as sophomores. Forward Dominic Green's could be the most dramatic improvement offensively. Noah Dickerson asserted himself as the Huskies' inside presence, averaging 10.6 points and 11.4 rebounds.

Purdue Boilermakers (Spain)
What we learned: Not too much has changed from last season, even with the loss of center A.J. Hammons. The Boilermakers' strength will still be in the frontcourt. Their questions will still come with how well the guards play. Sophomore forward Caleb Swanigan appears poised to emerge as a leader.

Keep an eye on: Freshman shooting guard Carsen Edwards was a pleasant surprise with how fast he got acclimated offensively, scoring 53 points in his first 52 minutes of play over the course of three games. 

Arkansas Razorbacks (Spain)
What we learned: Mike Anderson has built an athletic and fast roster that will keep pace with his frenetic style. The Razorbacks' senior trio of Dusty Hannahs, Moses Kingsley and Manuale Watkins is as good as any in the nation.

Keep an eye on: Freshman C.J. Jones adds another potential 40 percent 3-point shooter to the lineup with Hannahs. Freshman Adrio Bailey has hops; it's only a matter of time before he's posterizing an opponent on a SportCenter highlight.

Wake Forest Demon Deacons (Bahamas)
What we learned: The Deacons enter the season desperately needing an inside presence to emerge. Forward Dinos Mitoglou did not play. John Collins did his best to look like the guy, averaging 11.3 points. Graduate transfer Austin Arians, a 6-foot-6 forward who played at Milwaukee, introduced himself to the lineup as a key newcomer. He averaged 12.6 points in three games.

Keep an eye on: Guard Keyshawn Woods, who sat out last season after transferring from Charlotte, will have a chance to make an early impact. Woods' 14.3-point average was second to sophomore Bryant Crawford (15 PPG).

South Carolina Gamecocks (Costa Rica)
What we learned: The Gamecocks played just two games -- both against the Costa Rican national team -- and had only seven scholarship players. It led coach Frank Martin to do a lot of experimenting, both with lineups and defensive schemes. Junior college transfer Hassani Gravett and freshman Maik-Kalev Kotsar were the only two of the Gamecocks' eight newcomers to play.

Keep an eye on: The Gamecocks will be guard-heavy, led by seniors Sindarius Thornwell and Duane Notice. Before leaving on the trip, Martin called his post players "more athletes than basketball players." That's why the 6-10 Kotsar's performance was a promising sign.

Dayton Flyers (Spain)
What we learned: The Flyers didn't take their full allotment of 10 practices before heading overseas. That didn't seem to affect forward Josh Cunningham, who sat out last season after transferring from Bradley. Cunningham was a physical presence inside and showed no signs of rust with senior forward Kendall Pollard still out, rehabbing wrist and knee injuries.

Keep an eye on: Dayton's sophomore trio of guard John Crosby and forwards Sam Miller and Ryan Mikesell showed some good signs, but also some inconsistencies. Dayton's success as a team will hinge on them providing quality depth.

Wichita State Shockers (Canada)
What we learned: We already knew Gregg Marshall was the type of coach who will fight for his guys. We didn't need the demonstration. The Shockers don't have a scholarship senior on the roster, so their loss to Canadian powerhouse Carleton University to start the tour should come as no surprise. If anything it was an early signal that the post-Fred VanVleet and Ron Baker era will have a transition period.

Keep an eye on: Forward Darral Willis Jr. looked like a perfect fit for the rotation with his ability to run the floor and physical presence. Junior college transfer Daishon Smith has the physical tools but faces a steep learning curve trying to play point guard in Marshall's system.

Georgia Bulldogs (Spain)
What we learned: The competition wasn't the greatest, so coach Mark Fox took a bit of a different approach for the Dawgs. He allowed each of his three assistant coaches to be the head coach for a game on the trip. Forwards Yante Maten and Derek Ogbeide arguably had the best performances.

Keep an eye on: Guard Juwan Parker returned to the lineup after missing all of last season with an Achilles injury. Freshmen guards Tyree Crump and Jordan Harris each showed signs that they can contribute -- and they'll have to in a depleted backcourt rotation.

UNLV Runnin' Rebels (Bahamas)
What we learned: It's a rebuilding year for first-year coach Marvin Menzies. The Runnin' Rebels lost their first game to a University of Toronto team that Wake Forest beat by 21. Only three players remain from last year's roster, so expect an extended period for the newcomers to get acclimated.

Keep an eye on: UNLV already shares the ball well, as three different players led the team in scoring. Uche Ofoegbu, Christian Jones and Kris Clyburn -- all transfers playing their first year for the Rebels -- will assume big roles in the lineup. Jones led the team with 13.0 rebounds per game and also chipped in 15.6 points per game.

Kansas State Wildcats (Italy, Switzerland)
What we learned: K-State is very much a work in progress, going 3-2 on its tour. Sophomore forward Dean Wade played through pain after taking a blow to the head that required stitches in the third of five games on tour. He still led the Wildcats with 6.2 rebounds per game and was second in scoring at (9.6 PPG).

Keep an eye on: Freshman Xavier Sneed only started one of the five games played, but led the Wildcats in scoring at 10.4 points per game. Bruce Weber was so encouraged by the play of his freshmen, he started Sneed, Brian Patrick and Isaiah Maurice in the final game.

Missouri Tigers (Italy)
What we learned: The NCAA had a team like this in mind in allowing for foreign trips, as the Tigers welcome in five freshmen. Of the newcomers, forward Willie Jackson appears to be the most ready to compete early. Jackson led the Tigers with 9.5 rebounds per game and twice recorded double-doubles.

Keep an eye on: Sophomore guard Terrence Phillips might be the most complete player on the team. He averaged 11.8 points, 7.5 rebounds and 6.0 assists in the four games they played.

George Washington Colonials (Japan)
What we learned: Junior guard Yuta Watanabe played in his native Japan for the first time in three years. His homecoming provided something -- he'll take a more active role in the Colonials' offense this season after averaging 8.4 points as a sophomore. Leading scorer Tyler Cavanaugh will still be their primary option.

Keep an eye on: Sophomore guard Jordan Roland played a bit role in every game last season, but seems ready to break out. He's much more aggressive offensively and confident about displaying his midrange game.

Washington State Cougars (Italy)
What we learned: Coach Ernie Kent likes for his teams to play fast, but they will have to learn how to slow it down a bit when leading the game. The Cougars were 3-2 on their trip, with both losses coming after losing leads in the fourth quarter. (That included a 29-point halftime lead against Loca Ubriaca that ended in a 114-109 overtime loss.)

Keep an eye on: Josh Hawkinson and Ike Iroegbu, the leading scorers from last season, will again power the Cougars. Freshman Malachi Flynn, who had more than seven assists in three of the five games, looks to be the key newcomer.

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