T.G.I.F: Thank God It’s Friartown 12.21.12

@FriarFrenzy —  December 21st, 2012 10:17 AM —  Comments
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Thoughts and prayers continue to be with all impacted by the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

Wish it never had to be, but the Providence College community should be proud of the tribute paid to the fallen on Tuesday night. Classy, on point and not overstated.

There were some damp eyes in the house during the very heavy moment of silence following the well stated video remarks of Ed Cooley and Bob Driscoll.

I know I was looking at it all through a pair.

Appeared to affect the players coming out of the gate as well. How could it not have? The game was way down on the list for everyone in the building at that point.

Eventually the focus turned to Providence versus Colgate and, from a basketball standpoint, hope was tangible in Friartown.

Kris Dunn infused energy into his team, not to mention the crowd.  The game took on a different tempo when he was in there.

Here's what happened at The Dunk when Kris Dunn entered the game

Here’s what happened at The Dunk when Kris Dunn entered the game

And wait until Vincent Council, a jet in his own right, gets back into the mix.

Dunn struggled with his shot, and that could continue, but the good news is that the Friars do not have to rely on him to score given the abilities of Bryce Cotton, LaDontae Henton, Kadeem Batts, Josh Fortune and Council when he returns to fill it up.

I like the idea of Dunn, with his length and passing skills, inbounding the ball during tough side or baseline situations.

Sidiki Johnson exhibited his brand of energy and athleticism as well.  He has a distinctive air of confidence about him that could be infectious.

And when the action stops watch him walk around on the floor.  He’s got a great gait.

Could have sworn I read somewhere leading up to Colgate that Ed Cooley was quoted as saying Sidiki is a great passer.  That Cooley, what a card.

Or maybe Colgate knew this and did such a great job closing down the passing lanes when Sidiki got the ball, he just had to shoot it every time.

Thought it was a great display of coaching when, after Bryce Cotton got off to a tough start shooting long jumpers, they worked to get him a couple of rhythm shots coming off curls at the elbow.  Ice made both of them of course and settled in en route to a game high 21.

Tweeted it during the game, but for those who did not see the Tweet or were not at The Dunk (you can explain yourselves for this later) Cotton was clearly moving around much better on Tuesday than versus URI.

It was just one game and there will be bumps in the road but it was great to see the Friars play fast.

That said, the bigs will have to avoid getting sped up by the overall approach.  When the game settles into the half court they don’t want to rush.

Exams are over but the tests continue as the Friars look to experience their first true road tests of the season.  Three straight away from home, capped off with a big one against Rick Pitino, Peyton Siva and Louisville on January 2.

12/21/12: If you are reading this it means the world has not ended.

So we’ve got that going for us….which is nice.

If Xavier joins the new Catholic league as widely speculated, not only do we get a high quality hoop program but we hold on to that vital Cincinnati market to boot.

Plus you have to figure that would further rile up an already fever-pitched rivalry with the cross-town Bearcats.

This year’s installment from the Queen City was fight-free but a bit of a dud, especially given that Xavier had key people limited by cramping and injury.

If Mike Aresco wanted good TV he should have kept a camera running in Big East offices since he took the job.

And maybe one on Jim Calhoun when he heard the news of the Catholic split.

To be clear and fair, none of this is Aresco’s fault. He was dealing with a ticking time bomb inside a hornet’s nest from the get go.

The real guilty party in all of this is greed, and I think the beginning of the end was the day Boston College left the Big East for the ACC.

The reason this new league will thrive is that it will stay true to its core identity, insulated from the pressures of putting a subpar product out there only because there is crazy money attached to mediocre football.

That said. Don’t let anybody fool you. It’s ALWAYS about the money.

But appreciate the intangibles. For they have tremendous value.

A bathrobe and gloves?  What’s next, slippers and a pipe?

Merry Christmas Friartown.  Be Safe.

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  1. Edwin says:

    Nice article. I think as PC fans we all love to hate on BC, but I think some in the Northeast forget that the real beginning of the conference chaos was when Miami and Virginia Tech left the the Big East a year or two before BC. That was the snowflake that got the avalanche rolling.
    I think eventually some group of mammoth schools from the SEC are going to get sick of the NCAA’s nonsense rules and enforcement, and just say, “See ya later NCAA” and forge off under their own rules, which may shape the future of college atletics.

    1. FriarFrenzy says:

      Thanks Edwin. Miami & VT were the first dominoes but a case can be made that those moves made sense in that both are essentially southern football schools…although the Big East took Miami when they were way down, and got a heck of a thank you for it. SEC defection…wouldn’t be surprised, which makes the ‘Sacred Seven’s ‘ release from the shackles of football that much more attractive long term. Thanks again and happy Holidays. -Pat