Jay Jay Chandler

Junior guard Jay Jay Chandler defends against Texas A&M-Kingsville.

Buzz Williams’ first season as a head coach in Aggieland will officially kick off at 7 p.m. on Wednesday as Texas A&M takes on Northwestern State.

While the fanbase will try to acclimate to a new coach, it is the players who will be affected most by the change as Williams is implementing a new style and system.

Junior guard Jay Jay Chandler said he is excited to see what he and his team can bring to the floor this season as they try to fit into the new coaching system.

“I am really excited,” Chandler said. “There was a lot of work we’ve been putting in over this summer and with all the changes and everything, I’m ready for us to get out there and see what we’ve been practicing for.”

Williams said his coaching style changes over time in order to fit current team needs.

“I think it evolves monthly,” Williams said. “I don’t think that you can coach at this level and stay the same and be any good.”

This A&M team is quite young, fielding 10 underclassmen. Williams said while A&M isn’t the strongest team he’s coached from the start, they aren’t the weakest. He also said he believes that everyone on his team is a clean slate, regardless of age.

“I would say it’s somewhere in-between,” Williams said. “It’s not Marquette, it’s not Virginia Tech. It’s a new team, more freshmen on this team than most, but everybody’s new regardless of how old they are. Good teams grow, bad teams are stagnant and the worst teams get worse. We want to have a crescendo. We want to be gaining traction towards that.”

The Aggies have a chance to earn a win in Williams’ first game, as the Northwestern State Demons are one of the more struggling teams in the Southland Conference. The Demons finished with an 11-20 record in the 2018-19 season and they enter this season ranked No. 12 in the preseason conference rankings.

A&M is coming off of an 81-74 win over A&M-Kingsville in an exhibition match and will need to have improved play in order to win against Northwestern State.

Williams said he wants to see cleaner play, less turnovers and more rebounds from his team on Wednesday.

“We can’t turn over the ball at that high a rate and have a chance,” Williams said. “Can’t turn it over that much and can’t give up that many offensive rebounds while turning it over.”

The Aggies are set to host Northwestern State at Reed Arena on Wednesday. Tipoff is slated for 7 p.m., and the game will be broadcast on the SEC Network+.

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