What a few days this has been in local college basketball. Rutgers was a bright spot going 1 and 1 after losing to West Virginia and beating Notre Dame at home in front of a disappointing crowd. Is it Rutgers cannot sell out the RAC or is it Notre Dame does not bring people out as they did years ago? Where are those Subway Alumni? I still remember a 500 record Notre Dame team begging to get invited to the NIT and actually packing the place under Richard "Digger" Phelps. Digger was some marketing genius at both ND and Fordham before that. But if you ask the student athletes on the ND campus about the guy they run into while they work out in the fitness center or see on campus you would surely be surprised what many have to say.
Rutgers fans really need to support that team in large numbers to prove a new or renovated facility is needed!
Seton Hall lost last night to Villanova. OK it was a loss, and one they could have avoided with better and more consistent play. But we also have to remember that game was at Villanova and against a Big East Team and not one from the Pennsylvania Athletic Conference or the NJAC which is the league waiting on FDU. It was not Chaney State, or East Stroudsburg University, it was Villanova of the Big East! Villanova played hard and with a purpose because they really are attempting to salvage what has been a surprising and disappointing season. So it was a loss away from home against a team they really are better than at this time though the final score says otherwise.
Now I am not Kevin Willard and he has forgotten more than I will ever know about coaching. But how in heavens name does Jordan Theodore, a very good point guard, take 16 shots and make 2 while Herb Pope, though lacking great hops and athletic ability, only takes 8 shots in 31 minutes? Are you kidding me? How does Edwin take 16 shots and makes 5 as well? So the duo from Patterson Catholic HS takes 32 shots by themselves and the leader and top rated player on the team takes 8 and makes 4? I love Jordan Theodore's game but right now he needs to distribute and get others involved as he is capable of doing and has done in other games. His future is now and he needs to make this a wonderful season to remember.
On the other end of the court Jayvaughn Pinkston had a career game scoring 23 points including 13 of 17 from the FT stripe. I wonder if it is easier to be a workhorse when you get the ball and the person you match up with on the other end gets 8 shots so you really can preserve your energy? Ummmmmm!
Maalik Wayns also had a good game with a double-double including 15 of 16 from the charity stripe. Was there some sort of PG ego competition which made the SHU PG not distribute better? Again I really do not know what happened but to see Pope with 8 shots is something that makes you go ummmm!
St. Johns with the watered down roster and coaches with sneakers and open collar shirts lost to South Florida. Nothing to be ashamed about considering both are BE members and both recruit kids in similar fashion. I really do not understand what is going on at SJU but to me a D1 program with 7 players should play a bit better and more consistant. Especially a program with as many top 75 HS players as they have! Lou Carnessecca did it with 1 or 2 top HS stars and a bunch of All NYC type players who worked and played hard. The glamor of the program remains but the end result is not what was expected.
Maybe it is me but I really thought SJU would be the team in the NY Metro Area this season. I would bet that SJU has the highest basketball budget, including the largest recruiting budget by a long shot. A brand new renovated field house, a Hollywood Head Coach, a bunch of very high paid assistant coaches, the number 1 Assistant Coach in America, a great fan base, and a highly rated recruiting class.
Maybe they need a bunch of role players to compliment the kids on the roster just waiting for NBA opportunities? Maybe Ronald Roberts, who is averaging double figures at St. Joes of the A10 and not of Brooklyn, would have been a great piece to the puzzle before he (as they said.....smile) decided not to attend SJU.
And again I really do not understand that grunge look with the coaches wearing sneakers and no neck-ties. What the heck is that about? Maybe they are doing that until the day they resemble the team they are supposed to be. No pride in coaches appearance, so I guess it boils over to no pride in performance. Why not just wear sandals and shorts?
Seems like a new trend is taking place. More and more good players are transferring to low D1 programs from teams in power conferences. Just read where a kid is transferring to Rider as opposed to Arkansas after averaging around 11 a game at his previous school which was in a power conference. I also noticed Wagner has a transfer who was Mr. Basketball in his home state. He chose Wagner as opposed to going to a huge university. I guess kids are not taking chances of transferring and not being stars! I wonder who will be transferring to FDU? Great opportunity at a good academic school right near NYC. Nice campus and games are held in The Rothman Center, right on campus. Hey that sounds great. Like I said in the past, the grass always looks greener until you step on it!