Thursday, April 2, 2009

My Thoughts......And Only My Thoughts

The season has long been over for local teams. But what are they doing to stay in the news so that potential recruits now and next year will remember and identify with them?

Corey Chandler has decided to return to Rutgers next season? Wow I am surprised! Not because of the rift between him and FHJ. I am surprised because of the distribution of playing time that could be impacted by a stud JC point guard. Than it will be the same thing as this year especially if Rutgers is losing. Could it had been better if he left for Rutgers and Corey? We will see!

Final four is set and Villanova will have alot of folks cheering for them. They were not supposed to be there. Through true team chemistry and great coaching they are in the final four. No aircraft carriers in the middle, and I really do not see a true lottery selection in the group. Just very good players getting it done.

Speaking of Villanova it is interesting how they do so well in a large market with a true on campus gym, and a NBA arena for the larger games. Great marketing! Some teams need to steal the 2nd person in charge of Villanova basketball marketing from them!

Been thinking about the RAC lately and I really feel it just might not be as bad as I and others have said in recent months. What it does need in updating including new wider seats and new seat cushions even if it decreases capacity by 500 seats. The students seats should be changed from the bland regular wood look to scarlet colored to give the arena a different look. Also a different floor, different concessions, a new scoreboard with video, new sound system, and a practice facility that is state of the art including computer labs, lap pool, weight room, and two separate practice courts. The old weight room could be converted into a Restaurant for boosters and fans to have pre-game meals and athletic functions.

Seton Hall has worked very hard to get Jarid Famous, the 6 ft 11 player from my old school Westchester Community College. But the 50,000 dollar question is will he attend SHU, or the other late arriving schools recruiting him? Everyone says his dad loves SHU. That might be so, but does the dad have others thinking he loves them as well? Is the fact SHU is so close to the family home and easy for the parents to get to a factor in what they say based on getting to many SHU games? Are they just enjoying the ride?

Whether Famous attends SHU or not, SHU will be fine next season with some very good talent who will be displayed all over the NY Metro area this summer in various sanctioned leagues playing for friends of Bobby G and Dermon P. But Famous would be a nice get!

St. Johns is still waiting to see what Lance Stephenson decides to do. It seems he was prepared to attend Kansas until Calipari went to Kentucky. Now he has everything on hold. I really feel St. Johns would be great for him because he needs a place that needs him to come right in a play well. Honestly Lance needs St. Johns because it is the one place that will allow him to make mistakes and still play big minutes as a freshmen. Watching him play recently has been equal to watching an out of control dune buggy on the beach. He is all over the place with turn overs, and more. He actually looked sloppy on the court and played with very little purpose the first half of the McDonalds game and a few other times I have seen him. Choose a school with very good players already in the fold and it will be easy for the coach to sit him down for long periods for hurtful play. St. Johns? They will allow him to play through his mistakes!

St. Johns seems very quiet on the Norm front. Interesting to see what happens if Lance chooses to attend a school other than St. Johns. Will they keep Norm who has shown progress? Will they dismiss him and go after one of the coaches in demand?
It would be such a sour thing to let the recruitment of a 17 year old kid determine a hard working coach's future.

So Calipari goes to Kentucky. Well sometimes things are done for more than money. But than again what's the big difference between $35,000,000 and $37,000,000? What makes Kentucky such a great job is the tradition, fans, and passion the entire state has for Kentucky basketball. It is one of those places where the Football Team is almost unknown to the average fan. But Memphis is also a great basketball city with great fans and tremendous support from corporations such as Federal Express. Interesting thing about Kentucky is they are supported largely by hard working blue collar people who love Kentucky basketball and will travel the country to watch them play.

Lastly I need to say looking at the final 4 and all the recent coaching changes makes me realize how hard it is to have a national contender in college basketball. In demand coaches who can coach + Great recruiters + Access to great facilities including practice courts + Great budgets + Great guards with other good players + great fan support = Basketball Success. Now there is a way around this but I will let others talk about that since it involves great basketball boosters lol.


John said...

LF, the trend of your blog comments on Famous has me already accepting that we'll never see him at SHU. Yes, we've worked the longest and the hardest and yes we may actually be the best place for him.

I have a question for you. For a long time, I accepted your position that the local NY/NJ power schools should focus on recruiting the local kids - because they SHOULD want to stay home.

It seems to me that most of the local kids want to run away from home the first opportunity they get. In a sense, SHU, RU and SJU are CRIPPLED by being the local schools and that what we have to do is reverse-recruit - for kids who actually want to come to NY/NJ - and also - recruit transfers who have realized that they made a BIG MISTAKE by leaving the NY/NJ area.

There's no use in telling a kid that he should stay home and that he'll be sorry that he went OUT THERE. He won't listen. He'll listen when he's burned by the experience and wants to come home.

My question is: I am challenging your thoughts about the state of what kids should do in this area. They travel with their AAU teams and see other places they want to be in. And those places are NOT HOME.

LFBall said...

John I understand what you are saying. Unfortunately NY area teams have to work harder than others because most programs from all over America are recruiting NY metro players while local players in South carolina, geeorgia, etc. are not really recruited by the programs in this area. So not only do the big 3 go against each other, they go against the entire nation.

As far as taking out of area kids. Of course they should. Which is what St. Johns has done and it has paid off. But there are so many good kids here that all thats needed is sound programs. Unfortunately none of the 3 area coaches are entirly safe next season.

Regarding famous. He might still be a SHU Pirate. But he seems to really enjoy the love he is recieving. To me SHU still leads but the dad just enjoys all the attention.

Thanks for some great comments.