I start today's post with a statement that ANYONE WHO CANNOT TAKE THE HEAT OF ME BEING CRITICAL NEEDS TO CLICK OFF THIS BLOG RIGHT NOW!
Now that I am left with the folks who really want to hear what I have to say let me start by saying I am so disappointed when I see kids put their trust in a university and a system and give there all only to be criticized in private and humiliated in public. I am so upset with what is happening at Rutgers. It is to the point that I am not sure what I can say when a few folks with kids being recruited ask my opinion on the program. Here is what is pissing me off.
JR Inman, Anthony Farmer, and Jeron Griffin all made a pact years ago to attend college in the state where they played HS basketball. Believe it or not they had other options yet they decided to invest in the State University of New Jersey. They were laughed at for that decision by many other players in the state. They faced great peer pressure about attending Rutgers. Yet they enrolled with the hope of being a part of a new beginning. Well this is a great case to show kids what loyalty will provide. It is a great case to me as a person who has pushed and pushed for kids to stay local as opposed to going away. How wrong I might have been.
The treatment received by Anthony Farmer, JR Inman, and even Jeron Griffin is
nothing short of embarrassing and wrong! This is the way I feel and if folks wish to disagree, and I know they will because Freddy can do no wrong at Rutgers as a NJ Son, they have a right to their opinion. But in this case it is so obvious what is happening. The treatment of these kids in regard to playing time, shots, ball touches, and treatment is almost criminal and straight out of the Movie "Blue Chips" minus the physical treatment the high level recruit received at the hands of the big walk-on the coach sent to beat on him during a one on one drill in an attempt to get him to quit.
Funny part is all 3 kids, along with Corey Chandler were considered the future at Rutgers at some point. They all could have transferred yet none did. They hung around believing in Fred Hill much more than he seems to believe in them. Are they perfect? No! Are they young men still in need of development and guidance? Yes! Is this happening? No!
Does anyone actually feel Mike Coburn, and Earl Pettis are better than Inman and Farmer? Heck no and we who follow basketball know they both were recruited based on getting some decent players with some sort of name. Mike Coburn did not have alot of options. If he did I am not sure he would have chose Rutgers. He was at a game years back to see Pitt because they had a HS teammate of his. I am sure he did not have the options that Farmer had. Yet Farmer is his back-up? Mike is a solid player and an asset to RU. But farmer he is not! Pettis was a bench player at his prep school. Not a bad player, just a solid kid who should be getting 12 minutes at the BE level at a school like RU. Yet he plays over JR Inman who has averaged double figures over the past 3 years? Please! And if anyone believes JR is this bad apple they are so mistaken. He might have made a mistake or two and maybe 3 by attending Rutgers, but he is far from a bad seed or apple. Chandler? No need to even comment about his career at RU thus far. He took major abuse by attending Rutgers. He did it with more options than ANYONE on the RU roster. He loved FHJ and his State University. Now he backs up guys he clearly is better than.
I look at the minutes the four of them played against NJIT and became very upset. This was a game not only for the highly rated freshmen, but a game to get these guys on track for the BE season. yet they play behind these kids and barely get touches.
Now I am a TRUE DANNY and BOB HURLEY Fan. Trust me! But I will also say I have watched them enough to know they are not easily fooled. And if folks think that by kissing the butts of players from St. Ben's and St. Anthony's will make them become Rutgers feeder schools they are wrong. These guys are watching what is happening as much as anyone else. So are other coaches I know. And they are watching how players can go from double figure guys to bench guys as Seniors. I can only imagine what is being said by RU coaches when this comes up in home and school visits. I have been in such visits in the past years with various college coaches.
Why should anyone believe in a program that takes starters who had at the least honorable mention all BE potential and bury them on the bench making them lose confidence and the desire to compete and play? When a kid starts for 3 years and than get his time cut in half with very little encouragement it speaks volumes. Funny thing they were all warned this might happen. I knew JR was going to have a senior year like this. But now it is too late for the FIG class. I guess the kids that transferred saw the writing on the wall.
Now allow me to be clear about one thing. I am not saying Rosario and Greg E are not good players. They are. But I also think they arrived with privileges from day 1. I also think they chose the right school for their freshmen year because anything can happen in years 2,3, and 4 as you can see with FIG. They also chose RU because they knew they would get playing time THEY WOULD NOT have gotten at Duke or similar programs. Smart of them!
I also want to talk about Griffin shaking his head about entering the game against NJIT. He was wrong but I understand. He has been relegated to the bench and against the worst team in D1 was humiliated by the playing time he was going to get. Wrong, wrong, wrong of the RU coaching staff's part. It is the old what have you done for me lately syndrome.
Well the BE season and the NC game are upon us. Rutgers has a good record to date after playing one of the worst and easiest pre conference schedules in the history of the Big East. Looks good at this point. Here is what looks bad. Player development, home attendance, commitment to excellence, and putting team in position to have excuses for up-coming loses based on YOUNG PLAYERS! Smooth!
Well as I mentioned FIG is done after this season. Wonder what type of reception they will receive on Senior Night? Will folks applaud or continue to hurl insults as they do now forgetting the commitment these 3 kids on track to graduate made when they choose RU! We will see and in the meantime when folks find fault they should always remember and attempt to see what is going on mentally with these kids. A true sad situation camouflaged by a win loss record that does not paint an accurate picture of the program.
Lastly. This is not as much a criticism of coaching and recruiting. It is more about human behavior and the treatment of young men. Believe it or not I have always been a supporter of Fred Hill Jr. But I am now just so disappointed in his behavior towards kids who are part of his program. I am stunned at what has happened despite the won and loss record!