Thursday, April 24, 2008

Fans and Message Boards

It's great being a fan of a particular sport, team, or even conference. But contrary to what many believe, there is something to the notion that when one team does well it helps all of the others. Let me provide a few examples:

Do you think the University of South Florida would be doing as well as they do recruiting wise and financially without Big East basketball success. I never even heard of them until they joined the Big East. When a BE team signs a few great players or plays well in the NCAA's, it helps them recruit because of the opportunity players will have to compete against the best.

When a conference such as the ACC signs alot of HS All Americans and becomes a media darling because of this, do you think it does not help Clemson, Miami (though Luke does his share lol), Virginia tech, NC State, etc.? Of course it does because it makes the ACC strong and visible and attractive to strong players not attending the top tier ACC schools.

How about Rutgers getting strong players? I cannot believe that many fans who I always thought were some of the most knowledgeable in America cannot see how this impacts other New York area teams in the BE as well as the entire conference. The publicity and fanfare surrounding the signing of great HS players at RU shows the entire tri-state area that it is cool to stay close to home. Many kids will say if those guys chose Rutgers, I can stay local and attend St. John's or Seton Hall. Trust me, kids talk and watch what is going on. The real big fish got away in the past few years but this might make many re-think going away from the area. Mike Rosario on TV also helped because all 3 local BE teams are telling recruits, "see, he stayed home to be part of something special. You can do the same thing." Curtis Kelly transferring from UConn, and maybe a certain other local kid from another large school very soon, and it's great data and testimony for local coaches as they recruit this summer.

Conference wise. The stronger the conference the more attractive each school becomes. Memphis being good is used in recruiting pitches by every school in Conference USA. In fact, in most recruiting presentations a segment is dedicated to conference foes, players making the NBA from conference, conference facilities including crowds expected and more. Trust me, many teams in the ACC, BE, SEC, and even A10, use conference affiliation and success as recruitment tools.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Why It's Hard For Local Teams To Recruit Blue Chip Players?

Recruiting Players

Lets look at SHU, SJU and RU and the recruitment of 5 star players. I could leave SJU out of this because they have a great history going back many years and have gotten more 5 star guys than RU and SHU. But we all know SJU had some things in place that made them attractive. The living stipend that gave many players more money than their parents were making, the prestige of playing at MSG, the national schedule, and the TV appearances. SJU had alot to offer. Recently we have seen Rutgers get a few blue chip guys in Rosario and Enchique, Both of these young men most have great charactor and visition because we all know they were offered the world to attend other schools. Ditto Chandler before them and even Inman, and Hamedy (sp). It takes a certain type of kid from a certain type of HS program to do what these kids have done.

When looking at SHU and RU, and even SJU now, they start at a disadvantage that they can never get around. They will not cheat or shall I say do creative recruiting. Rutgers is not going to give a kids dad without a HS diploma a job in a plant in Newark or Piscataway paying him $80,000. Or give the family a super low mortgage on a condo nearby. SHU will not give a kids AAU coach a job. The mom will not start a new job at SHU in September. You are not going to see many nice cars in the players parking lots at SJU, SHU, or RU. Unless of course they were borrowed or purchased by parents and relatives. What about the great after game handshakes. A hand shake is just that at the three area BE programs. I have heard at other super programs across the country it can be a handshake with a surprise. Especially the further away you go, and the schools with boosters that love basketball.

Maybe this stuff does not happen any longer but it was a time when kids deep in the South or Midwest would shake hands and when the person let go they had a couple of hundred if not more. What about the great car deals by boosters and alumni who just love good ole state u? Still remember a local HS star driving that great firebird he purchased when he signed with a school while living in the Queensbridge projects. Some might just allow you to borrow a car.........for a year for no money down, and $75 a month. If you missed a few payments, that's fine as long as good ole state u was winning and you were producing.

The bad thing is most kids who experience these perks rarely complete college in 6 years. They might go back 10 years later and complete at the local state college, but while playing basketball at good ole state u it was all about the basketball program.

I honestly think the NCAA knows who is really cheating. They can see it. I grew up in Harlem NY and if I walked down a street years ago (Harlem is now upscale believe it or not and people are paying thousands to live there) I could look and see who was selling drugs, taking numbers, looking to get into trouble, etc. It was plain to see but trained folks in the police department and city allowed it to go on. Well I can see who is doing what every time I am at a game, when I attend an AAU event, when you see certain folks benefiting indirectly from a kid signing with a particular school.

Yes the local schools have a hard time competing against some of the larger more established programs. Now though many continue to do creative recruiting, they also have alot of legitimate things to offer. Here is where schools like RU, SHU, and SJU need to step it up. They have great practice facilities (so does SJU), great places to play (so does SHU), and great fan support and media coverage. Playing at some of those schools is like playing in the NBA. You are a celebrity all over town. The local restaurants, college bars, malls, schools, etc. You are loved and adored. But locally many of the schools have to step it up. Where are the plans for new practice facilities for RU and SHU? Where are the plans for a new playing facility for RU or at least a renovated RAC? Where are the marketing plans to get that curtain up at the Pru Center for SHU? How about getting the season sold out at The RAC? How about SJU drawing an average of 14,000 at The Garden? selling out the games on campus? Yes the product has to be better but the facilities and fan support will only assist in attracting better players.

Lastly. Alot of stuff goes on in College Basketball. We all know the stories. Some true some not true. I do not believe the old saying where there is smoke there is fire because of personal experience. But I do believe what I have seen and heard from certain folks without an ax to grind.

It will always be hard for certain schools to compete on the large stage. Yes there will be a Davidson or George Mason every so often. But when the huge university programs with unlimited expense accounts come calling and recruiting it is very hard to beat them. Player watches a game being played in North Carolina on TV. It ends at 3 and he prepares to go to his 6 O;Clock game. He walks in and there is the Head Coach from the team he watched on TV sitting in the stands. he says to himself wow!!! Of course the coach jumped on a private jet and flew into Newark Airport or Teterboro and would be home by 9 for a late night dinner. It's having resources at your finger tips.

Well this is just something for folks to think about when wondering why certain players might not attend a particular school. Your staff could be doing everything right, but it might not be enough. Lets see what happens this year and next. It will be real interesting.

Friday, April 18, 2008

I Am Back!!!!

Out of town for a few days on business. Wish I could have closed a deal or two lol. But it is back to basketball.


OK hats off to FHJ and his entire staff. Anyone who knows me understands I give credit where credit is due. RU has really done an outstanding job recruitment wise. They got the two Jr. Studs and follow up by being in the drivers seat with Jonathan Mitchell and Devin Ebanks. All I can say is wow!! If they get Mitchell, and add Ebanks, to go along with Enchique (just got back too tired to check spelling)who could enroll this fall, Jackson, and Rosario, they could be the most improved team in America on Paper. Kids will flock to RU if Ebanks commits! They might flock if he does not commit. That team would be young and dangerous. And Ebanks could be considered a program changer. That would give RU a bunch of highly recruited players who know how to win.

But honestly I think even without Ebanks Rutgers has really gotten better. Ebanks would be icing on a cake that already looks delicious. It is hard to pass up certain programs based on what they OFFER. Just hope Ebanks looks at life after basketball when he makes his decision. Anything can happen and just as easy as he could be an NBA 1st rounder, he could be out of basketball because something went wrong. This is why it is important to choose that school with great connections where you wish to reside. It's about opportunity. Heck even walk-on's from SOME LOCAL programs received great advice and career connections that have allowed them to become very successful 1 or 2 years after college.

Now if this happens alot of folks will try to duck Rutgers this season. And FHJ will have to pull the right strings and show the world he can coach! But one thing for certain, they are in homes of almost every good HS player in the area. They are getting it done more than any other college or university in the area,

Seton Hall

Despite not having anyone super significant other than Jordan Theodore coming aboard at this time, SHU will still be a better team next season. They will jell and be a huge surprise in college basketball. Watch NuNU have a great year!!! Watch improved play from the SHU big guys. If Mike Glover is eligible he could be a difference maker. Ask kids at other schools. In fact ask Devin Ebanks and Christian Morris. Mike could be a beast in the Big East.

Watch Bobby G and Dermon get 1 or 2 players who will play significant minutes.
But even if they do not get great talent, the kids in the program with Theodore and Glover, could be a tough out night in and night out. Trust me, kids like SHU!!! Stay tuned.

Danny Hurley

I am soooooooooooo glad he will remain on the HS level. Everyone knows I love the way he handles his job, players, and coaches the game. He is needed for at least a few years more before going back to college basketball. I really wish he would wait on my grandson Logan, who will be between 6 ft 8 and 7 ft tall in a few years.

Coaching Candidates at UMASS.

Looks like the Rick Patino School of Coaches Career Day! 4 out of 6 guys being considered are close to Patino. That includes alot of guys who are nowhere as connected, nor are close to having the basketball understanding that current Umass Assistant Timmy Maloney has. Timmy is the best choice for the job but I am sure Rick will have his hands deeply involved in choosing the future coach.

Monday, April 14, 2008

More on AAU and Agents

Sitting here in the very early AM thinking about my tasks for today. All of a sudden an email arrives asking what else I have to say about Street agents and agents in general. Well here is my response.

Remember a street agent is just a term used for folks years ago who received money for steering kids to certain colleges. And those colleges would surprise you. I mentioned in my last blog post the kind of guys who did this. Not sure if this still happens because I for one have not seen kids being outright sold to schools. But here is what I have heard and it was mentioned on the comment section of this blog as well by a few folks.

Certain folks are paid for influence in various ways. It could be final four tickets, large payments to attend awards ceremonies, purchase of tournament programs for $200 or more, donated athletic gear, jobs from friends and alumni, discounts on purchases, and even discounted loans. Now remember these are stories I have heard. They might be true, they might not be true. That's why I am not attaching names to these stories. But years ago it was a cash and carry business that started as far back as biddy basketball. Still remember some of the more famous named guys hanging around my biddy all star team. Of course I was just a role player but the stars were being groomed to attend very nice Prep Schools before that was the in thing to do.

But what really has happened is the certified agents have become much more aggressive in pursuing HS and College kids for future NBA drafts as well as over seas opportunities. It is why you see certain prominent sports agents at HS events. They are not there just because they love the games. Unfortunately even NBA teams are now showing up at big HS games to scout future players. The NBA really should not allow this but deep inside they really know it is the younger players who will keep the NBA alive. Some NBA teams even have scouts who ONLY go to HS games. One team I heard had a head of HS scouting position. With the NBA putting so much energy into looking at HS kids, it's no wonder Agents are now deeply involved.

Agents usually hire younger guys who really are not certified. These guys jobs are to act as runners. They go to games on the HS and college level and make friends. They come across as nice and considerate and in many cases they really are. But the main thing they are doing is establishing relationships that will pay off in the future JUST IN CASE! Just in case a player or two becomes good enough to get paid for playing. Please do not be fooled into thinking agents cannot make a fortune sending players to Europe. Some agents have become very wealthy without one NBA player. 25 guys over seas at an average salary of $50,000 equals 1,250,000. Agents can take 15% for the contract, and even more for managing money and paying expenses here in the states. Think about the guys with 10 NBA players? WOW!!! imagine 5-10% of $600,000,000? Not counting endorsement percentages, bill paying, and more.

Many of these agents are bright enough to become friendly with local AAU and HS coaches. I have heard that some even pay expenses and provide financial assistance behind the scenes. In many cases it is clear who is doing what. Some college coaches are very friendly with certain agents. Ditto sneaker camp people and AAU coaches. I have heard stories about prominent college coaches telling star players who they HAD to sign with. I have seen travel and AAU types suggest kids sign with particular people. maybe they were just looking out for the kids.

But the bottom line to this is the recruitment of kids and influence peddling is way out of control. When and where will it stop. I still remember the small time guys who have been replaced by super sophistication and salesmanship.

Guys Going To NBA

Earl Clark? Maybe I am missing something but is this kid throwing it all away? Has he not heard the Omar Cooke and Lenny Cooke stories? I asked a kid at a recent AAU event if he ever heard of Lenny or Omar Cooke. He answered no. Well Earl Clark must know something most of us do not. He must have been told he would be a first rounder.

Derrick Character can be put in the same category. Who is his advisor? Is it just because he is not doing well in school? This kid could become an instant "And 1" player if he is not careful. They are drooling just thinking about the possibility he could be on the next tour. I say this because this is a great kid off the court! But he might still be lacking the discipline needed to make huge money in Europe.

Two kids in real need of solid life advice. But than again, Rick could be pushing them to the door. I wonder who he would suggest they choose as an agent?

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Recruitment Time and They are Back

I wrote the following blog post in early November. Because we are close to the travel team circuit heating up, and the NBA draft, I thought it would be a great topic for discussion. I love talking about street agents, and others impacting sports. The so called scouts with no experience playing or coaching also deserves serious discussion. Very curious to what DarrenMaloney and others have to say. We can follow up with thoughts I have going forward.

Scouts and Street Agents

The term street agent was commonly used many years ago when the PSAL was the strong league in NYC. The Public Schools had the great teams at Boys, Wingate, Clinton, Franklin, etc. During these times there were no AAU tournaments in Vegas, or College Park or Providence. There were semi large tournaments in Pa., Conn., Portchester, NY, and the big NYC event called up at the community center in the Bronx in the Bronx. Part of a hospital and I cannot think of the name. Montifiore?

Players from that era were often paid to play in games and tournaments by street hustlers and agents. Often it would be $50 or $75 a player for the top 4 guys and the rest played for free. I have the names of the street agents but it might be in poor taste to mention. But many books mention them. They made a living betting on HS and college basketball while also selling players to many colleges throughout the country. At the time it was no such thing as coaches spending weeks in NYC and NJ. Sneaker camps? never heard of them. Just great rec teams that often had hired guns! Even good people such as Leroy Otis gave out quarters to young players on his Young Life and Church of the Masters teams for ice cream after games. Those who remember him should be reminded of the change always in his pocket.

I cannot think of one person currently around the game with the reputation that past street agents had. They were crooked and they let you know. Well, there are maybe a few around, but still not on those guys level. Those guys did everything from supplying women to taking a kid clothes shopping. They were investing in the future. After selling the kids to colleges, they would stay in touch in order to deliver the kids to a particular agent who would pay the street agent for their services.

The people who currently run scouting services are far from being street agents or illegal. Tom Konchalski runs a service and talks to coaches all the time. Is he illegal? Of course not! Many people calling themselves scouts are really folks who love HS basketball. They go to a lot of games and become rather good at establishing communication with great players and gaining trust. They are more of an information service than a scouting service. UCLA or St. Johns will not offer a scholarship to a kid based on a "scout" saying he is a good player. With earned trust and credibility a scout can get a college coach to watch kids play. Hell, Tom himself cannot get schools to give scholarships without the coach seeing kids play. Junior Colleges are the exception to the rule. A person such as Ed Butler in NJ, who may be the best of all the scouts, can get on the phone and get a kid into a high level JC sight unseen. In the future so will All the others. Russ Blake can also open doors at JCs as he did for Kasib Powell years ago. Kasib went on to play for Bob Knight at Texas Tech and has come close to making NBA rosters plenty of times. But most of the scouting services are strictly for fans. Coaches are not reading those reports like they are reading the Bible. They make the person putting the report together feel they read it like it is the gospel. They do this because many "Scouts" have good relationships with players they might recruit.

I will not say much about this, but I tend to question the credibility of some scouting services. Russ Blake and I use to debate this yearly (I have big respect for the job Russ does). Most of these guys have never played, coached (even biddy ball), managed, or even watched much. They have no idea of who can play and cannot play. Yet they rank players! Hell Stevie Wonder can see that OJ (No need for a last name) is a player. Same with his teammates, Ditto Lance Stevenson. But what about kids who are at schools not on the radar screen? Find those! It still amazes me to see the list of the top 300 SRS, top 300 Juniors, Top 125 4th graders, all from NYC. Who has really seen those kids enough to evaluate them? And what are the evaluations based on? Those services that sell this meaningless information are the real crooks. They are the ones that sell rumors and hearsay!

As far as AAU teams are concerned, I have not seen many folks get rich off AAU teams. I see guys lose money because they are committed to helping kids. I see guys with huge egos attempting to be the best. But so what, that hurts no one while providing a service. People always complain about sponsor money and the AAU teams that get it. Are the complaints based on jealousy? Gary Charles of the NY Panthers spends more than he gets. Jim Salmon in NJ does fund raiser including selling hot dogs at events sponsored by the Hoop Group to pay expenses. Gauchos? Who are they stealing from? No one! Riverside Church? Ditto! The new teams have taken it a step further. New Heights based in NYC has tutoring and position practices. The Westchester Hawks are doing great things. I can go on and on about this. In fact, many from the above mentioned programs are being steered to academically sound prep schools (more on this at a later date).

In closing let me just say it could be much worse. It could be the people from years ago still on the scene. Buying and selling players. Thanks to stronger HS coaches and caring people it will only get better.


What some real agents certified by the NBA are doing with HS Kids

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Wednesday Stuff

Bobby Gonzalez

Glad this stuff is behind him. I still think there were legs to those rumors. Fortunately folks saw the great support he has and recognized it would be wrong to let him go. Now watch him work even harder to make SHU a great program

The Freddy vs Bobby Rivalry

I LOVE IT!!!! This is one of the best things to happen to local college basketball in many years. You could not pay for better press than what this will generate.

Tamir Jackson

Are you kidding me? UAB!!!! What is he thinking? O guess there are a lot of local UAB grads around here to help him when he completes school. Ernie Loich, the Riverside/Metro Hawk head guy taught me years ago that kids need to attend school near where they want to live as adults unless they choose a high profile national programs. UAB is not that type of program. Maybe he wants to make Alabama his future home. This is the type of kid that should not be leaving the area. Where was Fordham? Siena? SJU? St. Joe's? Temple?

The Local Scene

lots of talk about recruiting on the HS level. Funny because why would a kid not want to attend a school that has their program together. As opposed to complaining, why not put the time and work into your local program to make them competitive.

I often have complained about the Teaneck NJ HS program becoming just a team after doing so well in prior years. Well if the Coach is not making it attractive and putting in the time to make the team a program, it is no wonder they are running to attend school 20-40 miles away. And the school board needs to recognize this as much as the current principal.

The College Season

Well the college season for teams is about complete. The only thing left are tournaments for the various players seeking to make the NBA or play in Europe. I am referring to a colege all-star game here and there,the Portsmouth Invitational, and the NBA pre-draft stuff.

Personally I am glad it is over! Seemed like a very long season and I for one think the ESPN, ABC, CBS, and other games on TV were less interesting than in previous years. If I saw Michigan on TV one more time last season I would have broken my TV. How did that horrible team get so many games on TV?

Well as a local AAU Coach said to me many years ago when my son's sophomore season in HS was ending, "The Real Season Is About To Start." He of course was referring to the Travel Team season. This season should be great despite the lack of any real strong NYC teams. The talent seemed, from the little I saw in Saturday, watered down! Again that's good and bad.

Just to recap local things of interest.

Seton Hall

Decent season and chance to really improve next season. It was wrong what Bobby G had to go through but the experience will make him stronger in the long run. However, I am sure he will remember his treatment so watch out if he really turns Seton Hall into a NCAA team.

recruitment wise, no matter what the outcome is, all the negativity had to hurt SHU recruitment. I think SHU needs to extend Bobby G's contract 2 additional years to show they are really in his corner. That would send a strong message to everyone including those doing negative recruitment against SHU.


Rosario and Chandler? Sounds and looks great on paper. But what will be also needed is JR Inman to step his game up to a level where RU has three legit scoring options. Of course others can score, but three definate makes a world of difference.

I do know JR wants to play in the NYC Pro-Am this summer as opposed to the Barn League. A team for him to play on has been identified. Up to FHJ now! JR will also go back to working out the way he did in HS and prior to his first season at Rutgers. Good news because sometimes guys working out kids for money over do it and forget the real important thing such as how to compete on every play, working away from the ball, running the court, positioning, leadership, and did I say competing!

The other new recruits, especially Jackson will help as well. Everyone is curious to see the 2008-2009 RU Men's Basketball Team. And if Ebanks is on the team......!

St. Johns

Oh St. Johns!! What is happening in Jamaica? Who are they getting? Can Norm right the ship? Will the school be happy with a slightly over 500 record? Will the attendance in Alumni Hall get back to the glory days when every game played there was sold out? Can they ever draw 15,000 to MSG again? Can they keep NYC players home? Can they again attract high level transfers?

As you can see alot of stuff revolving around the SJU Program. And we all know with the exception of only one assistant coach there, the others would bolt in a second for a more stable job based on program pressure and the possibility next year could be it for all of them.

But believe it or not I have seen some college teams turn it around tremendously in one season. It is possible with hard work and dedication. I for one hopes it will happen.


They will be better, much better! Watch the transfers roll in and they become a player in the MAAC. They also are that local program that has almost every past NYC player making over $100,000 after finishing school there, The Iona alumni really look out for the players the right way.


One day Derrick Whittenburg will realize the importance of local folks with clout on his staff. THEY ARE 10!!!! Not MAAC!! They have to recruit the kind of players Xavier and Dayton, and RI has!! I really like him alot but he needs to get it done soon. Where are they on the local scene. I only know one guy working there, Travis ?, and he is from DC and Dematha. Oops forgot, that is where Derrick is from also!


has a coach now just have to put the right staff together. They really need a travel team connected guy on that staff to give recruiting a jump start. Steep hill to climb gut they have a guy who can get it done.


EVERYONE has always loved the current Manhattan College Coach. Going all the way back to his days working the door at The China Club in NYC. He really has a staff of close to 250, since everyone I know is on the lookout for him in the area lol. He has no choice but to be successful.

Monday, April 7, 2008

SHU, AAU Basketball and Playez Spring Fling

NEWS FLASH!!!!!!! NEWS FLASH!!!!!!! Just added

Just heard from two very reliable sources that this Bobby Gonzalez thing has legs to it. They informed me it was more that people know and understand. They also said info leaked to paper and other stff has happened all year and alot involved certain people going after the ADs job all year. Not sure about all of this but I wanted to mention it. One person went as far as saying Tim Welch would be considered for the position if Bobby is let go! All I can say is WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I HOPE THIS IS WRONG and MY SOURCES ARE NOT GETTING THE STORY RIGHT. I just cannot imagine this happening.

AAU Basketball

This is such a hard thing to write about because of the various types of people associated with AAU and Rec basketball. I really should not say AAU because most of the good teams are really just grassroots travel teams playing in 6 to 10 travel tournaments between April and August. So from this point on I will refer to these teams as Travel Teams. Before talking about the Playez Spring Fling, I need to address the different types of travel teams.

Local Teams with Local Players

These travel teams usually have a few Dads or Moms (yes Moms and they do GREAT JOBS)coaching. Each kids family has to pay a certain amount of money for the season and the kids do fund raisers to earn the rest of the money needed. These teams often play hard but have difficulty competing. And little do they know, they are often put in tournament brackets on courts no one is really watching. But it is a great experience for the kids that participate.

Regional Travel Teams

Team's from areas like Rockland County, Parts of Connecticut, Suburban NJ, and even NYC compete hard with out the players or funding that many others have, These teams seek sponsors and sometimes wealthy individuals will cover expenses for the various local and regional events they participate in. But again it is usually parents paying for the hotel and the kids pay for their own food.

Travel Teams That Charge

Big business for some teams. They get wealthy or middle class kids to play and charge a nice fee for participation. They often have a few true players on these teams but those kids do not pay to participate. It could be 12 kids and 10 are paying $2500 for the season to cover expenses for a few local events and maybe two tournaments. These programs also have 5 different teams in various age groups.

National Travel Teams

At any tournament you can tell who the national travel teams are. They are the teams with all the nice gear and matching sneakers on players and even in some cases on all the parents. It could be a wealthy ex player funding the program, or a sneaker company. But they are funded well. These teams even now have meal money for the kids that are recruited to these teams via home visits etc. In fact, some teams from California, NY, NJ, Chicago, and DC/VA have kids on the roster from a considerable distance. It is better now since a rule went into effect stating kids had to live within so many miles of where the team was headquartered. Prior to that teams had players flying in from the west coast, east coast, and in a few cases I hear kids came from other countries.

Elite National Travel Teams.

About 5 to 8 of these teams across the country. They get the best of the best and usually win in front of hundreds of college coaches during tournaments held during open recruitment periods. They have all that is mentioned above plus great travel and hotel accommodations. Money seems to just flow from these teams based on corporate sponsorships. A few local teams in this category would be: Metro Hawks (though the talent is down thus far this season), NY Gaucho's, DC Assault, DC Blue Devils, NJ Playez, Va. Squires, Boo Williams from Virginia, and Baltimore Select. I could have the NY Panthers and New heights from NYC on this list as well. Just not sure of talent this season. But New Heights is definitely a first class operation and the NY Panthers are run by a good guy ( I KNOW!!) but do not seem to have the number of teams others do.

So now that I have provided an overview, allow me to give additional information.

Travel Team Coaching and Player Development

People might disagree but the teaching and coaching by travel team coaches in many cases is better than what kids get at the high schools they attend. In fact, many of the coaches are also HS coaches. I have seen some horrible HS coaches just doing it for the pay. Especially In NYC public schools! But I have seen travel team coaches super organized. And in most cases it is no money to be made. It is really just about assisting kids with just a dash of ego attached. It was different years ago, but now players get better during summer months if they are not with an elite or hard working coach similar to those at St. Anthony, St. Benedicts, Rice, Mt. Vernon, Lincoln, Kennedy in NYC and NJ, St. Patrick's, Cardoza, Boys and Girls, and many of the Philly Schools.

I will say some of the guys coaching Travel Teams are developing even greater egos than ever before. And that is unfortunate. One coach from the NY Gauchos walked past me as I spoke with a NY Panther Coach at the Playez Spring Fling. As I tried to get his attention he walked right by us looked in our eyes and refused to even say hello. He was so caught up in coaching his travel team. I always liked this guy going back 12 years when I watched him coach young kids. Now he acts as if he is the man based on coaching at Rice HS as an Assistant and with The Gauchos. Sad guy if he thinks its about him now. Little does he know that many D1 coaches are paid to treat you like you are really important. I bring this up because this guy and others are VERY GOOD COACHES but now seem caught up in the hype! They will learn when it is way too late.

The Playez Spring Fling

A few people do not like the organizer of this event. And by few it could only be 1-3 people. Why? Only they know! Because Stevie Wonder again has spoken to me about what he has seen while observing this guy. I for one think the organizer has done more for kids in NJ than 50 HS Coaches combined. Is he a friend of mine? Yes he is but we do not socialize. All I know is the facts and nothing but the facts. This guy cares about all the kids that come through the Playez basketball program and even more who do not. He is not attempting to get a coaching job out of the deal, nor is he trying to get rich. He is one of the guys who goes out and raises money for his programs through dinners, tournaments, and even selling hotdog's at Hoop Group Events years ago. I love going to his events and PAYING MY $10 because I know it is a great cause. I also will always be in his corner because I have personally had him in my corner during rough mental times. There is so much more to him than what meets the eye. He should be getting special awards from the Gov. of NJ for his work with youth. I think he and his entire staff should be commended for the work they do with kids in NJ, Delaware, and Pa.

My Thoughts on the Tournament

I traveled to Rutgers Saturday morning, paid my $10, and watched very little basketball because it was not set up for watching as much as it was set up for playing. No programs (I have spoken to the organizer about this) made it difficult to know who was who. Luckily I knew some of the kids.

games were all over the place and the teams seemed balanced. I was really impressed with the DC Assault program that had strong teams from the 15's on up. They were uniformed and sneakered down from the players to the coaches. And they ran stuff! The Playez have a similar type program and looked equally impressive.

I only stayed for a few hours and even left late because I needed to see a buddies 6 ft 9 Freshmen son play for DC Assault. And yes he can ball!!! A future top 20 kid at the least with development. But before leaving here are a few observations:

New York City teams are very weak for national type programs. Metro hawks (ex Riverside) has really feel off from what I saw. NY Panthers had nice players but no one that special like years ago. Did not see new Heights play but hey looked impressive standing around as did a young Dingle Lightening team. What I think is happening, and Robert White who does NYCNJHOOPS and more pointed this out to me, is there are so many teams in NYC the talent per team is watered down. This could be good and bad. Good because more kids get to play. But bad because they are less competitive.

NJ Playez also seem to have a team in New England called the New England Playez. same uniforms, etc.

Saw Lloyd Daniel's, ex playground, HS, and College legend had a team in the tournament. This guy is a genius when it comes to basketball. Just watching him was great and it made me wonder why more folks do not get involved after their playing days are done.

Tom Konchalski was in the house with a briefcase. Never saw him with one in the past. I thought it was a laptop but he informed me it was not. Tom still does it by hand.

Still love the guys who never played a game of basketball running around as talent evaluators. One said to me in the bathroom he was running the event with the organizer and doing player evaluations for ESPN. Go figure lolol!

John Carroll, ex SHU Asst. was also there. same great guy with a great personality.

Saw alot of NJ players during my short stay. Some are a bit overrated but have time to develop. One kid in particular I could not wait to see. . But again the guys evaluating need to have a better understanding. Where are the ex coaches and players when it comes to this?

In a few days I will post my AAU article again. It questions if AAU is good or bad. I heard a rumor on Saturday that the NCAA and NBA would be taking this over. Stay tuned!

Sunday, April 6, 2008

SHU and More!!!!!

I am stunned to see an article written in the NY Post by Len Robbins saying Bobby Gonzalez could be fired. This has come from way out in left field. Now if the article had said the AD could be fired this week, it would have been way more believable. In fact, when I saw this on a few message boards, I thought it was another April Fools jokes done a few days late.

I am so shocked that Seton Hall would even consider such a move. What really happened? There must be something going on we do not know about. Was Bobby Gonzalez robbing banks in South Orange NJ? Did he run out of the Chinese Buffet (It really is good) on the SO boarder without paying? Is he smoking drugs and needs rehab? Did he punch a player? Did he slap the AD? Come on something else had to happen for SHU to consider terminating him. Has to be more that his game behavior, and the article in the newspaper about the NCAA tournament. What gives?

Let me use my imagination and attempt to figure this out.

SHU has identified another coach that they can get if they move fast. They like Bobby G but this is a great opportunity for them. They feel Bobby has done just enough to get rid of him For Cause, which means they have a good case not to have to pay him all his money due.

Maybe the AD really is not the bad guy everyone thinks he is. Maybe he is the one really fighting for Bobby but cannot say anything public. I know often decisions are made by the top brass and mid managers have to execute the decisions made. So maybe the SHU higher ups have had it out for Bobby and was just telling JQ what to do all along.

Maybe they heard Bobby was seriously considering going to Providence College and even had secrete talks with them. SHU, not wanting the negative fallout from those meetings and the possibility of Bobby leaving, decides to beat him to the punch.

But here is what might be the real reason for the story. They are attempting to scare Bobby Gonzalez straight! They want him to know they mean business in regards for the demand they have made regarding his bench behavior and other issues. This is silly to me but highly probable!

One thing for certain is if this happens it could take SHU 3 years to recover. And if there is not a secrete deal already done with a Super Coaching replacement, getting someone good could be extremely difficulty if not impossible. But than again I am sure the Rutgers AD could assist in finding a good replacement. maybe one of the Rutgers Assistant Coaches.

Two interesting games on TV last night.

The final four is a great day for college basketball. Much better than championship Monday. In fact the airports are packed with people returning home. Tickets, many from current D1, D2, D3, HS, and AAU coaches went on sale yesterday at the local ticket scalpers windows on a corner near where the game tonight will take place.

We all know the scores and the side stories. But I am sure it was a huge win for Kansas beating the Coach who left for a better opportunity. They are smiling in Lawrence Kansas today! Memphis has to be excited. They will be in the National Championship game again. Shades of Larry Finch!! People do not remember that they were such a super power years ago under Dana Kirk ( I think that was the coaches name), that Isaac Hayes played the organ at home games which were always sold out.

The big question is where will John Calipari (sp) be next season? Who will draft Derrick Rose because he is definitely going to the NBA? Where will Psycho T (I love the name) Tyler Hansborough (sp) be next season? How about Kevin Love? By the way I like Love alot, Don't love him, or should I say don't love Love lolol. But I do thing he has great promise despite being somewhat heavy footed and athletically challenged for the NBA at this time. But again, HE GETS THE JOB DONE!

My Basketball Involvement

Someone on the RU message board asked who I am? I am just a guy who loves to watch and talk HS and College basketball. That's it!!! I do have alot of experience but that is not important. I would like to thank Jellyman from the RU board for his ACCURATE description of me. Except 2 things. I have never charged a dime to assist a kid. NEVER!! And the number of kids I have helped is alot more than a few. Try hundreds. In fact I will be doing a mental toughness workout program for basketball players in the NY/NJ area in the very near future. It involves playing and thinking the game drills. The program has worked and is designed to teach kids how to COMPETE on every play while playing smart and hard. It is a true boot camp! It will be open to no more than 15 kids including HS and College players. 6 have contacted me already. Unfortunately this time there will be a cost. And that cost will be gas money and a sandwich. This should workout to around 2-3 dollars a person lol. Hey, gas is expensive now lol. I can be contacted at

Playez Spring Fling

Lots to say about this in my next blog post. Stay tuned!

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Coming and Going

All of this transfer stuff is getting huge press and board mentions. What are the implications? As a dad of a kid who transferred, I regret and applaud the move he/we made. Was the transfer worth it? Did it put him at an advantage? Did he have pro potential? Was he going to get better opportunities at another school? In the case of my son I know he would not have the great career he has in the movie industry if he did not transfer. But I often think getting a degree from the school he was at would have been a great thing as well.

Transferring is always on the mind of kids and parents who feel playing time is not what it should be. But should that be the main reason? Again I went through this as a parent of a player. It was sad to me watching my son sit on a bench in the Big Ten. But honestly he did not prepare himself physically the summer before he enrolled. And his team was an NCAA team during his freshmen year. So his lack of playing was not all the coaches fault, he shared the blame. In fact he should claim 80% of the blame lol.

But what made his transfer the right thing to do was the treatment he and even his star teammates received from the head coach, who many looked at as sort of a great coach! That coach had little to do with any of his players. During Thanksgiving, the school and the coach did nothing for the kids but give them alot of stipend money to eat on their own! 18 year old kid in the Midwest eating a grilled cheese sandwich on Thanksgiving. All the kids on their own.

During the season the kids only saw this great coach in practice. He rarely had meetings with them. It was horrible. For those reasons I am so happy he left to be close to home. He did miss the special tutors, private jets to games, unlimited gear, sell out crowds, etc. But the peace of mind he got being close to home with a great person as his coach (now the ND Coach) who cared about all his players 1-13. It might have been the best place for him coming out of HS but the glamour of big time basketball got in the way.

Now as a person who has first hand knowledge I do not knock anyone who transfers. They have to do what's right for them. What gets me upset is when they get false promises during the recruitment process. I also get upset when they are not even given an opportunity to develop. If you have never seen or heard a recruitment pitch allow me to share how it goes.

Many coaches bring a high light video and some even have it in presentation mode on a laptop. They show the fans cheering, the game being won, and the best part of the campus, etc. I have even seen some coaches super impose the player they are recruiting picture on a body actually playing the game which they make look like it is being played the following year. After the video presentation which is usually done by the Assistant Coach, the Head Coach does his presentation on where the recruited player fits in on the team. He will say here are the guards, forwards, and centers. He than will show why the player he is talking to is so important and why he should attend his school. He will undersell his current kids to make sure the recruited kid sees a role for himself. He will say what it will mean to the school and the Player. In many cases involving schools outside the tri-state area, they will talk about other incentives if you know what I mean. If not at that meeting, it would be discussed with the AAU/Rec coach or outside adviser who will work those other details out. They will also talk about academic support, dorm living, and alumni support after college! They get the player fired up to attend. They make it sound as if this player is the missing ingredient. They than say they have x scholarships available for x amount of recruited players. They than talk about a campus visit if the player has not been there.

Not really knocking it because Coaches are salesmen. They do what is necessary to seal the deal. A good example is when a coach has good guards who feel they will start next season. They come from great HS programs and now it is finally their turn. Than the coach goes out and says to a promising HS guard how he could help. The promising HS guard says "Coach told me how I'd fit to their system," and "They made the Sweet 16 this year. Coach said if I was there, and in that system, they could be a Final Four team, maybe able to win the national championship." Now I wonder what the kids in the program at this school thinks? Who will sit if this kid attends? The coach in question is a GREAT GUY and VERY GOOD COACH who I really like and admire. But he is selling just like everyone else. Sadly, the kids transferring heard similar stories.

At the visit which the family can attend (they have to pay own transportation costs), the full court press is on if they really want the player. This is where they do the PA intros in the arena, you have dinner with entire team, meet faculty, go out on the town with the team to places you will not even be allowed to go when you enroll, etc.

Now I say all this because when kids choose, they should look beyond all I have mentioned. Look at pass players. Look at transfer history under current coaches. Look realistically at depth charts. And lastly, Kids Should GO WHERE THEY ARE GENUINLY LOVED, NOT WHERE THEY ARE ONLY WANTED! And understand when a kid calls to say he is coming and everyone is jumping up and down in the coaches office with happiness, it often is pure BS. Its just the closing pitch until they sign the LOI. If you have ever been to a time share presentation and heard what happens when someone buys a week and they do that huge announcement, you know what I am talking about.

That wonderful day for alot of kids turns sad because they now are leaving the school they thought they would star at. This time last year was great! Coaches smiling, kids smiling, parents proud, etc. But guess what, the new schools can work out just fine. Those transfer kids need to take their time and really pick the right school. Forget about the same level, or huge arenas. Pick a school that will give you what is needed in coaching, development, campus life, after college opportunities, and convenience to home if that is important to you. Transferring can be a great thing for an unhappy kid, if it is done for the right reason.

Who does the transferring hurt? Not the kids as much as the programs they are leaving. Smart kids look at transfer numbers as does their coaches, parents, and advisers. Especially the kids who are very good. Great 5 star players just want that 1 year and feel they are so good this will not happen to them. But the kids that really help long term will always look at transfer statistics. It looks bad when kids continue to leave. especially good kids who many will assume was run off. Trust me people notice and use it when picking schools. Other schools use it against the schools the kids are leaving. Think about the top tier programs and transfers. Some, but not many!

As we look forward to today's NCAA Final Four, we can look at a kid like Russell Robinson from NYC. Russell wanted out of Kansas very much after his freshmen year. He barely played and stayed in the doghouse of the Head Coach. Russell wanted to shoot, the Coach wanted him to make plays. The Coach won and so did Russell who will experience playing in a final four. Something he will remember the rest of his life. I just wonder what would have happened if he left and transferred to a place like St. Johns or SHU 3 years ago?

Friday, April 4, 2008

Another Day

Thank God for another day!!!!! Let me start by saying Rutgers Al still has not contacted me at He said on the RU Board that I have mail. But nothing that says Rutgers Al unfortunately. So Al I give up. Not sure who he contacted but it was not me. Maybe he should put from Rutgers Al!

Yesterday I received a comment about prep schools which I answered on the road via my laptop between meetings. Let me just say briefly again that the Prep School situation is out of control!!

There are various types of "Prep Schools." The traditional New England types such as Choate, Solebury, Ms. Porter, Berkshire, etc. There are similar ones to these in NJ and Pa. Some are Lawrenceville, Hun, and Blair. A good one in Pennsylvania is The Hill School. These schools and others like them survive through huge endowments and very high tuition paid by families who can afford to pay. In alot of cases financial aid is available. These schools are not factories because they make students earn grades regardless of how much they average point wise on the court. Player wise, they could have 1-3 D1 players, but rarely would they have 12 like some schools have had. And yes they also have beautiful campuses and facilities. Anyone ever seen Blair? OUTSTANDING!!

Than there are schools with nice campuses that seem to be in the sports business even though they have strong academics. St. Thomas Moore, Winchendon, etc. Nice places with good teachers but low enrollment that makes it necessary to recruit in Asia alot. Those places are reputable and do a good job. But the basketball teams are really what it is about when kids attend there. Although both teams I mentioned have OUTSTANDING basketball Coaches and do a good job preparing kids for college and college basketball.

Than there are the Redemption Christian Academy type schools, store front places in Philly, one building schools in the Boston area, schools in North Carolina that in the past often ran out of food for the students, and even schools in Connecticut with no facilities. These places are about sports and getting kids eligible. If you look at the news articles, some schools had low enrollments with the school made up mostly of athletes. The odd thing is some have 7-12 D1 players.

There was almost a prep team started at a school in NYC that is known to help kids get grades in order through night courses and summer courses with grades almost purchased according to reports given. The prep business was getting so large folks were starting prep schools in community centers and sub contracting the academic portion out to local educational centers and programs.

Prep schools really are meant to be just High Schools that often have post grad opportunities that allow kids additional opportunities to mature in the classroom, or obtain additional knowledge to get accepted into that special college. They were meant to Prepare Kids For College and Life. In most cases they do just that. They were sending schools for the Ivy Universities, and schools like Bucknel, Holy Cross, Vermont, etc. Years ago the rich and famous used these types of schools as 24/7 baby sitters while they traveled the world. Very young kids were almost on their own away from home in dorms. I still remember the young kids at my son's prep school, where he did a pg year to gain maturity and re-open his recruitment.

Now every kid around thinks prep schools can make them NCAA ready in 1 year despite them not doing well or getting great grades for 4 straight years. Some of the kids are so behind they have to do 2 years in prep schools. many at the factory type schools, some with great campuses, finish at 20 and a half years old. Not mad at that, because everyone deserves an opportunity. Just know this would not be the case at the first type school I mentioned.

Let me end by saying I am not anti prep school? In fact even though I called certain type schools factories, it was a term based on them turning out NCAA D1 players. I guess they are needed as well. But the one thing that bothers me is when kids attend a so called prep school or any school where grades are barely earned!! The last thing I think of when the term "Prep School" is mentioned is a store front or two rooms in a community center in Philly.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Thursday Tidbits

Derrick Character

I cannot believe that Rick Pitino would allow a player to stop attending classes and play on the Louisville basketball team. That is wrong and deserving of an NCAA investigation. It shows a coaches priorities are wrong when this type of thing happens. It became all about the win. It became about the NCAA tournament!!

If this does not show the difference between a basketball factory and a solid basketball program I do not know what will. At the least Rick should have had him attending courses so that IF, and that is a huge if unfortunately, he wished to continue his education later in life he would be further along.

I also think his transcripts at Louisville should be examined to see what courses he has taken to date. That would be interesting to see. In fact, I would love to get a glimpse of all the Louisville players transcripts for the same reason. What is going on with the graduation rate there? No one has talked about it in the past. I wonder...........?

Rick would have looked solid if he threw Derrick off the team after realizing he stopped attending classes. He would have been applauded and even earned more lecture money from people who would have new respect for him. And please none of that he did not know. Because if that is the case no one should send a kid to Louisville because they do not keep track of players academic progress.

Now about Mr. Character turning Professional.

I am stunned that this kid decided to do this after the season he just had. Talk about poor advice!! I wonder who his agent is? Ummmmmmmmmmmm! Could it be a person who at one time I thought was the best out there for future NBA Players. A person even my son wanted to work for after college? A person who grew up in the town I lived in for many years? If so he again is doing a disservice to a young man in need of maturity and even more important, mental toughness and refined skills.

Derrick Character could easily become a Shawn Kemp type without the NBA years Shawn got in. He could also easily become a low 2nd round pick if he is picked at all. This is almost a bigger version of Omar Cooke all over again. This kid should not be looking towards the NBA, he should be looking towards transferring to another school to get his act together. Sit a year and work on stuff before playing the following year exceptionally well.

This all makes DC look like such a horrible person. But believe it or not he is NOT!! This kid is one of the nicest, most engaging, and communicative people you will ever meet. He is far from being a bad person. What has happened is he has gotten bad advice. He needs to step back and get some advice from a few folks not looking at him as a commodity.

When Did It All begin

It began when Derrick was in JHS and receiving raves from all over the country. he was a huge kid who could actually play at a young age. He had legit talent at 13 years old! Because he did the Sneaker companies, well at least one in particular, became very involved. They became his PR firm and even told him where he should be playing summer and AAU basketball. The spoiling process had begun. But despite all the fanfare, he remained A GREAT KID! And he still is. Just confused.

When it was time for HS, he chose a high profile place with a great coach and better person. Just happened to be a sneaker school unlike his town HS at that time. The coach at the HS was not about to allow him to get away with stuff. So his advisors and family had him transfer to the town HS after 1 season. Now because he was playing with buddy Lance Thomas at the local HS, they became a sneaker school.

He leaves the town school to go back to the nationally known HS. After a season back it is on to a NE Prep school that is really a basketball factory.

I could go on and on but I just want folks to see how this kid has been pulled at for many years. And trust me, I have not talked about alot of stuff. This kid could go down as a real example of what happens when too many people get involved in a kids life based on basketball potential. sadly, when all is said and done and he is playing If this does not show the difference between a basketball factory and a solid basketball program I do not know what will.

Sofman To Transfer From Rutgers

Good for this kid. He will have a very good career at another school. I hope he considers a few Colonial AA schools as well. NC Wilmington has a great program with sell out crowds every home game. University of Delaware is back and has a GREAT CAMPUS and following. Those are places that he could go and not feel he has stepped too far down. The last thing he needs to do is leave Rutgers and attend a school that averages 246 fans at home games and zero campus life. He would be better off at a place like Gannon in Erie Pa. A D2 school that has a D1 type basketball program He would enjoy that better than some D1 places with no support. Enjoy the experience I always say!

Impact on Ebanks

Will this impact Ebanks attending Rutgers? Were they REALLY friends? I honestly have a gut feeling Ebanks is looking for something more and different than what Rutgers is offering. It is unfortunate that he cannot see what RU has to offer in terms of instant Stardom and playing next to a few talented perimeter players. He could be the next Phil Sellers to go along with Rosario (Dabney), and Chandler (Jordan). I know I am stretching on the Jordan comparison lol. But I am talking about Eddie and not Michael.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

College Happenings At The Final Four

Lots going on this week. And if you ever have an opportunity to attend a final four please do so. Not just for the games, but for the networking and information that is shared. Let me give you a run down on what really happens at a final four.


Many young HS coaches and even HS JV coaches attend to participate in workshops and hang around hotel lobby's to network and find out about open college assistant positions. It is one of the best ways to break into college coaching because coaches and AD's from all over the country attend the final four. It's like the annual convention for college basketball.

Now while those younger, and sometimes older, HS coaching types are trying to obtain basketball operations and lower D1 3rd assistant, D2, and even D3 positions, there are the guys already in D1 trying to move up to a better position. All the local assistants from the MAAC, NEC, CAA, will be on hand trying to find out what's available on the A10, BE, ACC, SEC, and even Big 10 level. Those coaches will be bumping High D1 Head Coaches in restaurants, hotel lobby's, the airport, and right on the street.

Now there are the high D1 Assistant Coaches. They will be seeking head jobs at lower D1 schools in the MAAC, CAA, and NEC conferences. Many of the better ones will also be seeking to change from staff assistant, and Director of Basketball Operation positions to On The Road or recruiting positions at high D1 schools. A select few will be considered for A10 and even high D1 head coaching positions.

Than there are the head coaches in attendance. Many use this time to interview potential staff members in hotel lobby's or at dinner. But for others it is an opportunity to be approached about changing jobs for better compensation and opportunities. That allows them options and at the least salary increases where they are based on a better offer elsewhere.

As you can see the final 4 is quite a basketball career day or weekend. Yes there are great activities. Yes some folks talk about potential recruits. Yes there are some parties. And yes there are 2 games on Saturday and one on Monday. But honestly, many people leave on Sunday after the semi final games. In the past a great practice for many Assistant Coaches and others who recieved final four tickets, was to sell them through ticket brokers. This by the way included a few AAU types who are able to secure tickets from a few sources based on having strong teams with very talented players on a regular basis.

Unfortunately very few in the actual basketball community really care about the games if they are not participating or have former players participating. They are there for the festivities, networking, and fun. And as you can understand from what I have outlined. It is a great event to make deals. And I must also let you know that the sneaker companies are huge at this event as are the corporate sponsors. This is where you grab a sneaker guy and tell him about your 6 ft 10 freshmen who averaged 23 points, 12 rebounds, 4 assists, and 3 blocked shots as a 8th grader playing varsity on your team in a tough conference. Most likely after checking, your shipment of sneakers and gear from the sneaker company will be on the way. Remember the best teams in HS have nice gear that they did not have to pay for. It is just alot of fun, with great networking opportunities!

Interesting Story

Speaking of jobs. Here is a story I heard and I cannot confirm if it is true, but it is very interesting. Let me start by saying that a person has little chance of getting hired as a college coach on the D1 level by submitting a resume to an address on an ad. It almost never happens. But some Federal and school regulations say positions must be advertised. So positions are regularly advertised and people apply hoping for an interview. This brings me to what I heard. Norm Roberts was finished at Queens College and decided to write Bill Self a letter when he was appointed Head Coach at Oral Roberts University in Tulsa Oklahoma. Not sure if he had met Self, but Self loved what he read. Invited Roberts down for an interview and the rest is history! IT RARELY HAPPENS that way. Coaches hire based on recommendations from folks they worked for (that coaching tree/family thing), via relationships, friendships developed as younger coaches, and the necessity to get players from a particular area through AAU type programs

Playez Spring Fling Phase II

Looking forward to this great event. I hope they allow me in the door at Rutgers University lol. Alarms might just go off after I enter the building. Lots of great teams and an opportunity to see many of the great young players from around the country. By the way, you can almost just sit and listen to obtain great information. But you better know who you are listening to.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Rutgers Al and More!!!!!!!

Still no word from Rutgers Al! I really want to do a small piece on him for this blog. Many might disagree. but I feel he is extremely interesting and comical at the same time. I love reading his posts. Does anyone actually know him? Has anyone actually met him? Is he an adult? Is he a kid posting from school? I am so confused by him that I need to hear his thoughts so we all can know how to take him. So please Al, email me at This will be a great forum for you. Lets have some fun!!

Seton Hall

I need to be clear about my thoughts on the SHU situation. I honestly feel it is nothing wrong with the AD spending time at a RU Football game. That is as long as there are not SHU athletic events taking place at the same time! He also has a right to have a Mentor and friends at Rutgers. But it is one thing to have a Mentor and friends and another thing to talk SHU business with them considering they are and always will be rivals.

I am pleased that Bobby and the AD will come to the table together. But what will that accomplish if someone MAKES THEM MEET? The meeting will just be a formality. We all know Bobby has a strong personality and can be overwhelming. But in alot of cases that's what's needed for success. Years from now he could be the face of SHU nationally as he leads the team to national prominence. And trust me he will. Even if he has assistants he can bully lol. But he is a tireless worker who has always been loyal to folks he met on the way up including yours truly.

The RU and SHU Rivalry

There could not be two better Head Coaches for this than FHJ and BG!! This could not happen with a Norm Roberts because he is too nice and smooth. These two guys are true barracudas and will get it done by any means necessary. And this is not a bad thing. It's a GREAT THING! I even see a great charity event in the next few years with a boxing match at a location to be determined involving the two of them. The teams will be the same way. It could be the same rivalry that Duke and Carolina has. Do any of you even think Roy and Coach K really like each other? They respect each other but will never be on the golf course together in Myrtle Beach.

This rivalry will be the thing that will help keep kids home. If it is promoted right both games next season will be sold out. Enrollment wise each school will see more applications from in state students based on what happens. Of course RU gets much more now based on the football success.


Folks please do not get carried away by commitments based on rankings. Of course rankings do mean kids have talent. But remember the college game is about strength, explosiveness, skills, and heart. Not to mention coachability, which is a new word meaning they can learn and be coached. Both SHU and RU are going to get solid players now and in the future. But the name of the game remains OFFENSIVE EXECUTION and DEFENSE. Now SJU? Not sure what's happening there. Norm is the Gentleman Coach so not much is ever released. Even informed guys like John Salvo are not prevy to info from the SJU camp. But Norm better win next season!


Will they name a coach this year? Jeeeeeeeeeeez!!!!! I cannot believe they are not considering Steve Demeo (sp) the ex Providence Assistant. How about Ron Brown from FDU? Honestly, why not Jim Carr from RU? Long shot but sure fire winner: Ray Haskins ex LIU HC. I still like Jose R and Bruce H as a staff.

****** Hot news flash. I hear that Jean Prelough, ex Fordham and Teaneck Star, and Jimmy Ingles (sp) ex Assistant at Rider are being strongly considered for NJIT job!!!

Marist College

A great job and great stepping stone to bigger future positions. They seem to have some great candidates for the position. Not sure who will get it but by the look of the applicant pool, they will be on great shape. Not so sure the James Madison job is better than Marist. But maybe the conference is more competitive.


They would be fools NOT TO TAKE Jim O' Brian!!!! He is by far the best choice. But watch them take the guy from Siena lol. PC needs a guy who understands winning at the highest level. Plus Jim is a fine coach and better person. He was treated unfairly and Ohio State had to pay. OS loss should be Providence College's gain.