Wednesday Feb. 22, 2012
What an evening of basketball for Seton hall University! Playing in front of a large crowd of around 9000 fans they seemed to have put on a defensive clinic against a team that for years was known for toughness and a defensive presence. Georgetown University, a perennial top tier team and currently ranked in the top 10 nationally was soundly defeated by Seton Hall last night at The Prudential Center in Newark NJ.
The score is one thing, but the benefits of the win is even greater in the larger scheme of basketball existence in the NY Tri-State area. In addition to winning the game, Seton Hall is winning respect all over the east coast and entire United States of America. If they were not before, they sure are a name HS Basketball Stars all over the country now know.
As I have said in the recent past, Seton Hall is a post season team regardless of what they do from this point on. But winning games such as they did yesterday sure solidifies their chances of an NCAA birth. The next RU vs SHU game should be an outstanding one again! By the way the SHU games on TV look nothing short of awesome. Looks like 20,000 people watching lol. I guess Aquille Carr knew what he was doing and now his Baltimore buddies are patting him on the back for making such a great decision.
Big win for St. Johns against UCLA at the Garden in front of 7000 fans. I guess it shows SJU has the potential to be pretty good in the future if EVERYONE RETURNS. From there St. Johns beats a decent DePaul team to make it two in a row. With 3 very winnable games remaining on the schedule St. Johns could go into The Big East Tournament one game under 500 and winning two in the BE might get them a spot in the NIT. But again is this what St. Johns hired Steve Lavin and his super staff for? Does SJU feel attracting 6-7000 to MSG is a great accomplishment? Is St. Johns losing more money than they are making? Ummmmmmmmm. If all stays as it is next season in Jamaica Queens will provide lots of stories and even more rumors I am sure.
Still experiencing growing pains despite playing very competitive basketball. This team is all about the future and the future remains bright. Difference between the Freshmen class at RU and SJU is HS rankings. For the most part, the RU Freshmen have had better seasons and RU did not have to ,,,,,,ummmmm recruit them the same way as SJU recruited the young guys they have. Also, the RU freshmen seem to understand they are 4 year players while most of the SJU kids are looking for the first train to the NBA. Kentucky they are not unfortunately! Rutgers might not make a post season tournament but has a lot to look forward to next season.
Now my one compolaint about RU and it is not fixing up The RAC because it really still looks awesome on TV. Will Mike Rice sit his butt down a few times a game and not look so crazy in the eyes with this young group of kids? Kids need to see calmness from the sidelines. Jeez!!!!!! But other than that he does seem like a very good coach.
More on this standing all the time when coaching teams. It seems that most of the younger coaches are doing this. From Billy Donavan with his jacket off to the young HS guy coaching in Nebraska. The "I am in control" syndrome is in full affect. Watch coach K, remember Dean Smith and Joe B. Hall, how about Roy Williams, ever see Mike Brey, how about Bob Hurley? They and most other successful coaches sit and observe and stand up to make a point not to be seen. Heck some coaches stand all game going crazy like they are coaching in The Rucker tournament in NYC or the Sonny Hill league in Philadelphia. Ridiculous to say the least!!!
How about the guys who drop to one knee as if they can see the court better lolol. Are you kidding me what is that? I even see assistants on the HS level do this as if to say "I am also coaching this team." I am sure not against standing up or doing the knee thing but please do it with purpose!
I heard from a source that FDU will be the same next season as this season because the school refuses to make the progr..........oops, Team (not a program) better. So the baseball team again will get the concessions to pay for that big trip south to get ready for the season, and the season ticket holders will remain in the 200's maybe. Team wise there is talent there but talent often needs to learn how to win and believe in who they are as a team and as players. But I remain very disappointed in what has happened to a team I use to enjoy watching on cold nights while living in Teaneck, NJ. Very sad!!!!
Time for Fordham to put up or shut up. It is but so much the Coaching Staff can do recruitment wise with an old building they are trying to disguise as a NYC equivalent to Duke's Cameron Indoor Stadium. The pace is old and no matter what they do it will be the same unless they tear the entire inside out, raise the roof, squeeze 6500 chair backs in the place, and build a practice facility on the side. OK OK I have heard about the Arena that might be built on Fordham Road by the City and private investors. All I will say is the year 2045 sounds right for a ground breaking ceremony. Too bad they are not located in Brooklyn where a dream is turning into a reality.
Hofstra better get it together next season. Nice to have all that talent on the bench, the great coaching staff, and a wonderful facility. Even nice to have that great chicken and rib restaurant called Wings and things right down the street. But losing as they are is not a pretty thing. Will they recover? They should but time will tell! Very good players coming and sitting out!
Manhattan seems to be doing OK and Young Steve, who was such a nice, wonderful, yet cocky in a good way, player when he played for the Gauchos many years ago, is doing great things. This guy understands what needs to be done and get accomplished. Maybe it is from his background as a a kid from a very wealthy area who did not stay home and go to the country club with his friends. He came to the hood and played ball with the best and made alot of friends who will support him in his quest to get Manhattan back where they were and belong. Now with that said Manhattan you also need a new facility because that tin barn you dress up on game nights, the one with very limited parking, is unacceptable and really not attractive to recruits.
Both Fordham and Manhattan, two very good academic schools, should be smart enough to know putting lipstick on a gorilla will not make him attractive.
Iona made two great hires it seems. Coach Cluess and AD Marshall. The AD was smart enough to get the basketball coach into a long term contract as soon as he was hired. Now there are a few problems i have with staffing at Iona, but I sure cannot say anything about the actual coaching being done. Cluess could be the best actual coach in the entire NY Metro Area hands down. The question is, will there be a Big east Team going after him very soon?
As we come down the home stretch and county tournaments are coming to an end, the state picture is becoming clearer in NJ. Over in NY it will be the usual on the PSAL side with Lincoln, Boys and Girls, Jefferson, Cordozo fighting it out for the championship. I guess that Suicide Division in Brooklyn is alive and well.
In NJ can anyone beat St. Anthony's? Will they win their 2nd state crown and 2nd Tournament of champions trophy? Is Kyle Anderson the true number 1 player in New Jersey? My answers are No, Yes, and Yes. So the question is who is the 2nd best team and player. Is it Plainfield with the no set offense lol? Teaneck with the underrated Chris Jones, Joel Hernandez, Neville Fincher, and company? Will St. Joe's Metuchen with two very good players emerge and be a contender? How about Hudson Catholic getting it together with Reggie Cameron, Mike Young and company? Maybe St. Pats will surprise a lot of people? Gil St. Bernard is around the corner waiting for the opportunity to win it all. Yes NJ is getting ready for the 2nd place championship because beating St. Anthony;s seems to be the impossible dream. But you have to be in it to win it.
Teaneck is at the moment the 2nd best team in the state and if they get to play Plainfield it will be an interesting game with the winner having a great chance of winning the state group 3 title and earning a 2 seed in the TOC. That means Plainfield, if they win, would again play St. Anthony's but this time away from home. If Teaneck gets to the TOC as the 2 seed it could be a bit more interesting especially if they are still undefeated. It would be undefeated against undefeated and in a one game situation anything can happen. But most likely it will come down to Plainfield vs Teaneck in a very good game that many have been waiting for.
I have been on the NJ.com HS boards talking about why Chris Jones is a high D1 talent regardless of where he chooses to attend. Some of the feedback I get at games and in email messages are unbelievable. One Guy who I respect very much even said to me Chris had to be careful because the kids in 10th grade across the country are very good and could take his spot one day. Are you kidding me? Another asked about the big fella at Plainfield heading to Yale. They went on and on about how he has no game and just runs. I had to tell them that 60 percent of being successful on the court is competing hard, and that is what that kid does. But truth be told when you attend Yale University you are running straight to success in most cases. He might own an NBA team one day. A great choice for a nice player who understands hard work and competing. Than there was a guy who asked about Kyle Anderson. The person said he was just average. I had to laugh because if he is average, average is the new word for great! All I will say again is Kyle Anderson = SUCCESS for everyone around him from his teammates, to his coaches, to the people selling hot dogs.
First off why do people continue to put down young folks playing a sport? Why do people who live in the same town and county of the kids they criticize never ever give credit where credit is due? Bergen County is not a place full of non playing HS basketball players. It is far from being Sussex County in western NJ near the Pocono's. Bergen has turned out many D1 players who have gone to the BE, ACC, CAA, Big 10, Big 12, MAAC, MAC, NEC, and Pac 10. There are way to many names for me to give. But Teaneck alone had at least 8 in a 6 year period 10 years ago. Bergen Catholic, St. Joe's of Montvale, Don Bosco. Englewood, and many others have turned out some pretty good HS players. Even small Leonia had a kid sign with Villanova years back.
The players are very good in Bergen County, although a tad bit underrated for the most part. Presently with the number 2 team in the entire state as well as a few others in the top 20. In fact the championship game of the Bergen Jamboree, the best county tournament on the East Coast if not the Country, features number 10 Don Bosco Prep vs Number 2 Teaneck. Weak basketball? I do not think so!
Championship game is 7 PM Thursday at Ramapo College in Mahwah NJ. Get there early! I know I will!!!!