Ed Cooley has constantly been referred to as the Anti-Keno, from his outgoing personality to his focus on discipline both on and off the court. Well, we can chalk up another reason for his Anti-Keno-ness, and that is winning in his debut as Coach of the Providence College Friars. Ladies and Gentleman, your 2011-2012 Friars — now with passing! And less jacked threes! I’ve seen the future, and it looks glorious! Sure, there were still some ugly things about the win over a team projected to finish last in the NEC, but hey rebuilding takes time. Most of the players on this thin roster are still trying to establish their role in Cooley’s system (Coleman off the bench?), so the 1-0 start even with a few warts is to be expected.
I also wanted to point out that now that the season has officially started, you may have missed the deadline for coming to Friartown. Sorry, Ed’s rules. I hear they are doing some nice things over in URI. For those on board, enjoy the ride. And don’t wear highly flammable clothes.
“We’re going to set this place on fire, and if you’re late, don’t come in.” – Ed Cooley
Read more after the Jump
LETS TAKE A CLOSER LOOK AT ‘THE FOUR FACTORS’
- The Friars got off to a good start in limiting opponents’ effective field goal percentage. Last season’s defense only held teams to a lower eFG% in four of the games (Praire View A&M, Villanova (!), Morgan State, and Dartmouth). The low number against Fairleigh Dickinson was mostly due to their poor 3-point shooting in the first half. If you take out Lonnie Hayes’ solid 3-8 from downtown, the rest of the team went a putrid 1-10 from behind the arc. Providence, on the other hand, succeeded thanks to Gerard Coleman’s efficient game in two-point shots (6-10, NO THREES!), and Bryce Cotton / LaDontae Henton hitting a combined 5-9 from 3-point land.
- Providence had a few sloppy exhibition games, but did an excellent job caring for the ball overall. The team had a low 15% TO%, largely in part to Vincent Council and Gerard Coleman combining for only three turnovers. Both players had the highest possessions used for PC (Coleman had 28.5%, Council had 25.6%), so they were a big part in limiting to FDU to only 12 points off turnovers. Lonnie Hayes may have been the game high scorer with 26 points, but he also led the game with 7 turnovers.
- Both teams were able to grab a large percentage of their own misses, with PC having a slight edge in getting exactly half. Bilal Dixon was the only Friar to NOT grab an offensive board. Not exactly the type of performance that is going to convince Coach Cooley for more playing time, let alone cracking the starting rotation. Ron Giplaye, Brice Kofane, and Lee Goldsbrough also did some work on the offensive glass getting three ORB a piece. While the Friars had more of a team effort on the glass, The Knights were led by 6-6 forward Kinu Rochford with 8 of the teams 19 offensive rebounds.
- Gerard Coleman and Ron Giplaye were the only Friars to get to the line frequently, while Lonnie Hayes got his points by drawing contact and attempting 11 free throws.
OTHER STAT NOTES
* 1st Half: 112.5
* 2nd Half: 121.4
* 1st Half: 98.9
* 2nd Half: 105.9
Keno Davis coached in 96 total games at Providence College, and every one of them was played faster than the first game of the Ed Cooley era. The slowest game Keno-ball ever produced was 62 possessions, which was the pace of the home Rutgers win last season.
Gerard Coleman, Bryce Cotton, and Ron Giplaye were all incredibly efficient, with GC and Gipper getting above 140 in offensive rating.
Let’s judge some performances by dishing out some pasta (from 1-4, 4 being awesome).
Gerard Coleman – In his first official game wearing the #1 jersey, Gerard was #1 in scoring for the Friars.
Bryce Cotton – Someone just etch his name on the BIG EAST player of the year trophy. For the next three years.
Kinu Rochford – Double double with 15 and 12.
Lonnie Hayes – The points PC scored off of his 7 turnovers slightly took away from his great scoring night.
Ron Giplaye – Packed a 4 bowl performance into 14 minutes. The Gipper was a spark. However, that spark should work on some foul shooting.
Vincent Council – Not very efficient scoring wise, but only 2 turnovers and 5 assists saved him from Bilal-one-bowl land.
Bilal Dixon – If you are only playing 13 minutes on a team that has 7 other scholarship players, you’re doing it wrong. Paging Cooley buy in to aisle Dixon.
George Goode – More like, George BADE. 1-8 from the field.
BOX SCORES FOR THE STATS NERDS!
AROUND THE INTERWEBS
With the win, Ed Cooley became the first PC coach to begin his Friar career with a victory since Pete Gillen in 1994. Under Gillen, the Friars topped another New Jersey team, Rider 72-59 on Nov. 26.
FDUKnights.com: M. Basketball Falls in Season Opener at Providence, 72-61
“For the first game of the season, we gave a great effort,” Vetrone said. “We were in the game most of the way.”
“Lonnie Hayes and Kinu (Rochford) gave great efforts in their first collegiate game. The fact that we played short-handed, I am very excited about the direction this team will be going.”
GoLocalProv: Friars win in Ed Cooley’s PC coaching debut
The Friars began the game in man-to-man defense, but switched to 2-3 zone on several occasions late in the first half, and throughout the second half. Assistant coach Brian Blaney, who had the scouting duties on the Knights, explained post-game that because of depth issues (with only 8 scholarship players at present), the Friars will continue to work on the zone for self-preservation this season, if nothing else…
Friar Basketball: New Look Friars Win Opener
While the offense was far from fluid for the entirety of the afternoon, the Friars played with a patience and continuity that they simply didn’t display a season ago. The offense was markedly better against man to man defense, and while they will suffer without a reliable interior offensive presence in the absence of Kadeem Batts, the improved stroke of Cotton combined with the underrated range of Henton will help to answer the questions many had this season about where the outside shooting might come from.
The Sun Chronicle: Friars Win Cooley’s Debut
“Twenty-three, 24 practices, a couple of exhibition games, I saw some youth and development,” said Cooley. But, “I don’t think our synergy, our chemistry was good and we didn’t rebound well,” that is blocking out, allowing the Knights 19 offensive rebounds on their 38 takedowns.
ESPN: AP Writeup
Discussing the differences in coaching styles between Cooley and Davis, Coleman said, “Last year we pretty much tried to outscore people. This year it’s more about getting stops.”
While some anticipated a slower-paced Providence team this year, Cooley says that won’t necessarily be the case. “I’ve got all kinds of issues going on upstairs,” he said. “I don’t like to play at a slow pace.”
TWEET OF THE GAME
THOUGHTS ELSEWHERE AROUND TWITTER
@RichSlate – Ed Cooley’s debut is a nice one, Friars win 72-61. Coleman 18, Cotton 16, Council 12, Henton 10. At Fairfield on Monday. #pcbb #friars
@FriarFrenzy – Regardless of opponent if PC can pull out a win with Council struggling that’s a positive sign. #pcbb
@raphiellej – I like Goldsbrough’s activity on the glass, especially the offensive end. Giplaye solid as well. Bigs getting #pcbb more scoring opps
@RyanJHolt – Great to be back at the Dunk for another PC Season and the start of the Ed Cooley Era! Go Friars! #pcbb
@This_Is_Jeremy – Good play from Giplaye on both ends of the court to end the first half. #pcbb
@PhillyFriar – Too many turnovers, shoddy rebounding. Coach Cooley’s got his work cut out for him this year. #pcbb
@TMerc3 – Gotta love the 1st game of every season. The #edcooley era begins today! #FRIARTOWN is back! Let’s get this Win and start off right! #pcbb
@BradleyMKelly – Without Kadeem Batts today its “Ruthless” Ron Giplaye time for PC #NewEnglandBasketball
@fobbywobby – The free throw shooting is an absolute joke for the #Friars, I don’t understand what’s so hard about it for this team #PRACTICE #pcbb
@MattOliveira21 – Henton really does just get buckets. Cotton shooting it well early. #PCBB
@PhilKasiecki – Neither team has put on a rebounding clinic today, as both have allowed too many second shots.
@DeansDesk – Wow a #Friar team with ball movement and good shot selection! Doesn’t take talent to at least play the game the right way. #pcbb
@megaman252 – Nothing better than an Irish RI state trooper in full uniform singing the national anthem to start the Ed Cooley era. #who’s house?our house
@fobbywobby – The amount of ball movement from the #Friars is striking and a sight for sore eyes. Cotton looking good early. #pcbb
@davidasalvatore – Nice win #PCFriars Fundamentals will continue to improve. #pcbb
@tflanny23 – Ugly win. But we’ll stride toward improving during the season. #pcbb
@ULhothot – PC guard Vincent Council shot 5 for 19 today in Providence’s 72-61 win over Farleigh Dickinson. That’s Russ Smith #’s.
@corvnation – Good win for the Friars over Farleigh 72-61 #pcbb
@fobbywobby – Friars are getting KILLED on the glass, unfortunately I think this is a theme that will continue the rest of the year #pcbb