All the notable news, links, pictures, and video in and around Friartown and college basketball all in one digestible, tasty place
Well done, students.
Next year the PC / URI clash at the Ryan Center is going to be a national story. Great, now the whole country will see the Friars beat the Rams for the 4th time in a row!
Bryce Cotton quote via Woonsocket Call
“Coach, I’ll give whatever I can today. We’ve got to try and get us a win to get to the finish line”
I LOVE ICE COTTON
Kris Dunn is officially scheduled to play on December 18th according to his father. I CAN’T WAIT UNTIL THE COLGATE GAME. That has to be the first time anyone has uttered those words.
In John Rooke’s Thinking Out Loud column, he posted that Vincent Council told ScoutFriars he was going to play on December 18th. There’s been a lot of rumors swirling about the severity of his leg injury, so this would be a welcome surprise.
ESPN College Basketball Nation Blog: Numbers to know: Thursday recap
Recognized by the WWL!
Stat Sheet Stuffer I – LaDontae Henton, Providence
He may be playing in a small state, but LaDontae Henton showed a pretty big game on Thursday. The sophomore went off for 21 points and a career-high 17 rebounds as Providence beat URI 72-57 in the battle for Ocean State pride.
It’s no surprise to see a Friar putting up big numbers, given their depleted bench. The Friars had only six scholarship players suited up on Thursday. Three Providence players rank in the top five of the Big East in minutes. Freshman Josh Fortune has played all but 13 minutes this season.
The Friar staff simply does not rest. Earlier in the week, PC staff visited Christ Presbyterian Academy in Tennesse to once again check out highly rated guard Jalen Lindsey (2014). Lindsey is the 14th overall player in the class according to ESPN. Just another Ed Cooley target.
ESPN College Basketball Nation Blog: Conference Power Rankings: Big East
9th place, not too shabby. How’s the weather down there, Nova?
9. Providence. Freshman Kris Dunn is still out with a shoulder injury, but the Friars keep winning. With seven scholarship players — including a hampered Bryce Cotton — Providence beat Rhode Island easily Thursday. And every day is closer to Dunn returning.
YouTube: LaDontae Henton Interview from CollegeChalkTalk
Friar signee Rodney Bullock played his third game for Kecoughtan High School tonight. The team split their first two as they got routed against Oak Hill Academy on Thursday night. Bullock had 11 points in the losing effort. Tonight they beat Phoebus 65-59 to improve to 2-1, while Bullock scored 21.
Rush the Court: The Freshman 10: The Best And Worst Of Big East Newcomers
Joshua Fortune (Providence)
Fortune wasn’t supposed to find himself playing 39 minutes per game to kick off his college career. He was supposed to be buried on the depth chart behind a slew of more highly touted freshmen and core of steady veterans. But injuries and ineligibility have forced coach Ed Cooley to lean on the Virginia native harder than he would probably like to, and Fortune has responded by showing flashes of his talent mixed in with plenty of freshman mistakes as well. At 6’5″ and nearly 200 pounds, Fortune is an athletically gifted and physically blessed guard who has the ability to fill the stat sheet in multiple categories. On the season he is averaging 8.8 points, 4.0 assists, 3.0 rebounds, and 1.1 steals per game even though he is playing fourth banana behind Bryce Cotton, LaDontae Henton, and Kadeem Batts.
The question now becomes whether he can keep it up because his game has not been without its warts and eventually the backcourt will get more than one talented player back from injury. Fortune is turning the ball over at an alarming rate (3.5 TOPG), but that can be explained in part by how often he is asked to handle the ball. Also, his true shooting percentage (43.6 TS%) is the lowest among players using more than 10 percent of possessions meaning that his shot selection is not ideal and one wonders what that will mean for his playing time when Vincent Council and Kris Dunn inevitably return from injury.
2014 target guard Kaleb Joseph, who the Friars are recruiting hard. Joseph has visited PC many times already.
Woonsocket Call: URI’s Hurley opens up about Friars’ Johnson
I did not realize that URI coach Danny Hurley coached Sidiki Johnson in his high school days. He says some great things about the kid Friartown will finally see in their next game.
Recalling his dealings with Hurley, Johnson mentioned that the coach spoke to him more about off-the-court matters than about actual basketball.
“(Coach Hurley) made me mentally strong. He told me that a lot of the game is mental and to always be tough and strong,” Johnson offered.
Hurley was arguably the only person on hand at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center who could vividly recall seeing Johnson get after it in a competitive environment. The first opportunity for PC fans to see what Hurley already knows about the 6-foot-10, 240-pound Johnson will come Dec. 18 against Colgate.
“Real rugged rebounder and an aggressive guy around the basket. He really played hard,” was how Hurley remembered Johnson at St. Benedict’s. “He was a highly touted top 50 kid with Arizona and Texas after him hard.”