Under head coach Bob Lindsay, the Golden Flashes have compiled a record of 186-104 overall and 120-52 in the Mid-American Conference.
The 1999-2000 edition of the team also looks good on paper.
In the preseason poll, the Flashes were picked to win the MAC East Division title and MAC Tournament crown over Toledo. Virtually the whole team is returning off a season that saw the Flashes earn a regular season co-championship along with the Rockets.
"Being picked first doesn't bother us," said Lindsay. "We've been there before. But each team has to develop its chemistry. It will take us several games to do that."
At this point in time the Flashes have gathered points in the Associated Press Top 25 poll. They certainly aren't going to sneak up on anyone this season, especially in the MAC.
Lindsay has put together a schedule that includes several teams among the top 60 in the country. Kent opens Friday and Saturday at the Howard Bank Classic in Burlington, Vermont. The Flashes will meet Dartmouth in the tournament's opener.
Over Thanksgiving break the Flashes will head south to play Alabama State and Auburn. They'll then travel to Pittsburgh and Boston College, and later in the season they'll host Kansas State and Virginia.
Not many MAC teams assemble this tough of a schedule.
Once you have the schedule, you'd better have players talented enough to take it on. And the Flashes certainly do, with five returning starters and seven letterwinners back from last year's 22-7 squad.
Kent led the league a year ago in scoring defense (62.2 points per game), steals (12.4 steals per game), turnover margin (plus 6.76) and scoring margin (plus 14.8). These statistics take a team effort, a trademark of Lindsay's teams.
There are few better players around than senior guard Dawn Zerman of Fremont. A preseason first-team All-MAC choice, Zerman is a candidate for All-American laurels. She already has a place in the Kent record book, and her statistics will only pile higher.
At 5-foot-7, Zerman is a top defensive player. She's been named MAC Defensive Player of the Year the past two seasons.
On offense she can create her own shot and is one of the top free-throw shooters in the country. She has the whole package.
Returning to the lineup after a year's absence due to injury is senior Alana Bader, who brings leadership to the team. She is an outstanding athlete who gives her team exceptional hustle at small forward.
Those are Kent's only two seniors, but they'll have plenty of help.
"We play nine to 10 players," said Lindsay. "We expect the kids to improve each year."
Kent's system is to throw players at you in waves. Eventually, the opponent can't keep up the pace and falters. Whoever is on the floor at that time must be able to take advantage of the situation.
Playing hard is a must.
Kent is adapting the triangle offense that the Chicago Bulls made famous. It relies on big, strong individuals, and the Flashes have five of them.
Junior center Julie Studer (6-4) has a soft jump shot from the foul line in. Sophomore forward Jamie Rubis (6-0) has strong inside moves with a soft touch from 3-point land.
Junior forward Liz Beggs (6-1) has returned in great shape and has shown great inside moves in the exhibition season. Freshman Katalin Kollat (6-2) is a strong rebounder with a good shooting touch, which she brought with her from Hungary.
And lastly, redshirt freshman Amanda Wolke (6-1) is playing with confidence.
On the wing with Bader is sophomore Kristen Buelow (5-10). Buelow is a coach's daughter who played in Bader's place last season. She often drew the toughest defensive assignment.
Carrie Nance, a 5-7 junior guard, is very athletic. Running and pressing is her game. She played the most minutes last year as a starter.
Looking for playing time are sophomore guard Carey Stumpf and freshman point guard Morgan O'Hara. There will be plenty of chances, but they will have to make the most of them in both practice and game conditions. Lindsay firmly believes you play how you practice.
Waiting in the wings to become eligible at midseason is sophomore Lisa Wube, a 6-1 forward. Wube transferred from Indiana, where she was a reserve player as a freshman. She played on the Brookhaven High School team that won the Ohio Division I state championship in 1997.
"We are in the process of getting confidence in a new offense and each other," said Lindsay. "The kids that have been hurt need minutes in game situations to get their skills back. I believe we are moving in the right direction."