"Our goals are to finish in the top four of the region to get a bye in the [region] tournament and then to try to [be] one of those top two teams in the tournament," he said. "Then, if we can, we want to host a home game in the state tournament.
"The region tournament is in our gym, so I've got to think that's a plus for us, something to look forward to in the fact that if we do bust our butts and get a good seed, win a game, we'd know we're going to qualify."
Realizing those goals will be a challenge for the Colonels, coach Scott noted five experienced players are returning, including two starters very much linked to last year's success -- plus other new talent on the hardwoods, although he and his coaching staff must identify the new faces who will step up at crunch time.
"I don't know that I'm locked in on any lineup," he said. "Right now we've got about 12 kids dressing out on the varsity and, depending on the opponent, I could see us going 8, 9, 10 deep. Really, right now, it's not so much who starts as it is who finishes."
The most seasoned Colonels are Jozelle Payne and Tony Mitchell.
"I think Jozelle [6-foot, 1-inch senior] brings a competitiveness to us," Scott said. "He probably is going to be a wing forward for us. He was very much in the mix last year. He jumps well, runs well, can go inside, can go outside. He's probably shot the ball better over this past summer and so far this fall than he has in the past. That's a big plus for him."
Mitchell, a 5-foot, 10-inch senior, also has a lot of experience and looks to fill the slot of shooting guard. "Tony has shot the ball real well from outside this fall," Scott said. "I'm looking for him to put up some good numbers this year."
The perimeter shooter also is a 3-point threat.
Complementing the starters are three athletes who played and lettered for the Colonels, including getting a lot of experience on the junior varsity team.
"Those moving up off the JV team who played last year a lot would be Drew McKaig, Zeke Reed and Kadeem Sutton," the coach said. "Drew (5 feet, 10 inches) and Zeke (6 foot) play on the perimeter. Kadeem (6 foot, 1 inches) is a post player. I expect all of them to play pretty well this year. They played well this summer. They had a good, solid year, a good, solid summer as far as workouts and scrimmages."
He expects this edition of the Colonels to play tough in the paint.
"I think we're pretty athletic on the inside. Jozelle can go in there. Andrew Hunt (6 foot, 1 inches) is going to play in the post with Kadeem," he said. "Najae Jackson is a 6-foot, 4-inch junior. Jeremy Coone (6 foot, 5 inches) is a first-time junior who's been a very pleasant surprise."
The coach said height should be less of an issue this year. "We're a little taller than last year. How athletic we are, compared with last year, I think remains to be seen. How competitive we are at crunch time, how driven we are, I've got a sense. I think we're going to be all right in that area, but we need to see who's going to perform at the end of the game, who wants the ball in their hands. We graduated four players -- Jay [Stephens], Tarris [Batiste], Sam [Taylor] and Trey [Walker] -- and you knew at crunch time what you were going to get out of them. This year is a new team, pretty much all over, and we need to find those facts out for this year's team."
Scott expects some change in the top powers in the region from a year ago.
"Woodland's got a lot of players back. Northwest has a lot of players back. Chattahoochee probably has the best player in the region back. Sequoyah lost a lot. Creekview lost some seniors. Rome lost both of its 6-foot, 5-inch kids. Johns Creek lost a couple of kids. Central Forsyth lost a couple. South Forsyth had a couple graduate.
"I think the region probably is going to look at Chattahoochee and Woodland and maybe Northwest, with everything they've got back. I think it's a fight for every other spot. I think our kids are going to go out and compete to get one of those spots. I definitely think you have to win games at home, and you have to steal a game or two out on the road somewhere."
He said the Colonels will be tested within the region and also outside it.
"I'm not sure who we'll play at Warner Robins at Christmastime yet, but I think we'll see some very athletic teams that'll maybe force us to play a little different than at home with some of the personnel we see here," he said.
The key to the Colonels' success is how well those players and the rest of the team step up.
"I don't know if we'll be as fast as we were last year, but I think that we'll shoot the ball better from the perimeter overall," Scott said. "I think we'll have more people that'll shoot the ball better."
He noted the Colonels will play with North Cobb Christian, which made the Elite Eight in single A with a 28-3 record.
"How many times do you open a season where one team went to the second round of the state playoffs against one that went to the third round. That's a game right out of the gate you know you've got to be ready to play."
The Colonels open their year with a scrimmage game against Kell today.
Scott said Cass always tries "to open with someone pretty tough to kind of give us a measuring stick of where we're at right now" and added that's what playing Kell will do for the Colonels. Game times are 6 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. at Cass High.
He expects to see a lot of effort.
"I think we've got a pretty good mixture right now. They're working hard. They've been coachable in practice. When the lights turn on, it's a little bit different mindset and scenario. We need to throw them to the fire a little bit and see how they perform against somebody in a different-colored uniform."
Cass boys roster
1 Kadeem Sutton 12 6'1"
2 Najae Jackson 11 6'4"
3 Jairus Blackwell 11 6'
5 Tony Mitchell 12 5'10"
Kelin Wells 10 5'9"
11 Drew McKaig 12 5'10"
15 Andrew Hunt 12 6'1"
23 Jozelle Payne 12 6'1"
24 Zeke Reed 12 6'0"
25 Justin Reed 12 6'2"
32 Jeremy Coone 11 6'5"
35 Chris Darden 11 6'
Cass boys schedule
Nov. 22 SE Whitfield Trny Away TBA
Nov. 25 SE Whitfield Trny Away TBA
Nov. 26 SE Whitfield Trny Away TBA
Dec. 2 Fannin County Home 8:30 p.m.
Dec. 3 Cartersville Home 7:30 p.m.
Dec. 9 Sequoyah Away 7:30 p.m.
Dec. 10 South Forsyth Home 4:30 p.m.
Dec. 16 Creekview Home 8:30 p.m.
Dec. 17 Lambert Away 4:30 p.m.
Dec. 22 Fannin Co. Away 7:30 p.m.
Dec. 27 Vets Christmas Trny Away TBA
Dec. 28 Vets Christmas Trny Away TBA
Dec. 29 Vets Christmas Trny Away TBA
Jan. 6 Woodland Home 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 7 Adairsville Home 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 10 Rome Away 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 13 NW Whitfield Home 8:30 p.m.
Jan. 14 Chattahoochee Home 6:30 p.m.
Jan. 21 Forsyth Central Away 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 24 Sequoyah Home 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 27 Woodland Away 7:30 p.m.
Jan. 28 Johns Creek Away 4:30 p.m.
Jan. 31 Rome Home 7:30 p.m.
Feb. 3 Northwest Whitfield Away 8:30 p.m.
Feb. 4 Cartersville Away 7:30 p.m.