Archives For Big East

As the final days of summer begin to wind down it is time to start turning our attention to Friar Basketball and the 2013-14 season. We will be taking a closer look at the teams in the Big East and we focus on St. John’s. Last season St. John’s finished at 17-16 (8-10) and did not make postseason play. For a look at this upcoming season, and what we can expect from the Red Storm, we have two St. John’s bloggers helping us out for this edition.

Quinn Rochford: Editor/Writer, Rumble in the Garden; @QSTJHoops

Norman Rose: Editor-in-chief, Rumble in the Garden; @ecoastbias

1. In 100 words or less describe St. John’s 2012-13 season.

Quinn: If you were to ask me to do it in one word, I would have said “chaotic.” Aside from the up-and-down season on the court, where the Red Storm found themselves losing its final four conference games after starting 8-6, St. John’s endured a lot off the floor as well. Between Steve Lavin’s father, Cap, passing away in February, Orlando Sanchez’ legal fight for 2013-14 eligibility and D’Angelo Harrison’s season-ending suspension, the Johnnies lit enough fireworks to light the sky. So, when you look at the body of work that culminated in an NIT berth, the result wasn’t terrible but still shy of expectations.

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cooleyinterviewEvery year at BIG EAST Media Day, Jalen Daly of “A Daly Dose Of Hoops” always compiles a great list of quotes from all of the coaches around the conference. Also, he is kind enough to allow me to post his list of Ed Cooley quotes in order to share with Friartown. You can follow him on Twitter @DalyDoseOfHoops.

Here are Coach Cooley’s quotes:

“I thought we accomplished a lot of great things last year, even in some of the games we lost.”

“If you don’t tell your team you’re going to be tough on the road, you have no chance.”

“I love the ‘us against the world’ mentality. I want guys that are edgy, pissed off…those are my kind of guys.”

on Kris Dunn: “I won’t rush him back until he’s 100 percent.”

“I want to make sure I’m a realist when it comes to building a program.”

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BIG EAST Media day is today in NYC, and all the preseason awards and predictions are being given out.

First the good news. Vincent Council was named to the All-BIG EAST First team!

2012-13 BIG EAST Preseason Player of the Year
Peyton Siva, Louisville

2012-13 Preseason All-BIG EAST First Team
Sean Kilpatrick, Cincinnati, G, Jr., 6-4, 221, White Plains, N.Y.
Otto Porter, Georgetown, F, So., 6-8, 205, Sikeston, Mo.
Gorgui Dieng, Louisville, C, Jr., 6-10, 225, Dakar, Senegal
Jack Cooley, Notre Dame, F, Sr., 6-9, 244, Glenview, Ill.
Vincent Council, Providence, G, Sr., 6-2, 180, Brooklyn, N.Y.

I need to look into it, but I’m pretty sure the last Friar to be on the pre-season first team was Ryan Gomes back in 2004. Marshon Brooks and Herb Hill ended up on the first team at the end of the season, but did not show up in the preseason ones.

Now the bad news. The Friars were picked to finish last in the coache’s poll, well behind Seton Hall and DePaul.


Photo by @FriartownMayor

Well, if that isn’t extra motivation heading into the season, I don’t know what is. At least we can’t do worse then expected? Amirite?

You can follow along with all of the press conferences and commentary starting at 10:00 on Our own John Rooke will be your host.

Report: Jim Calhoun to Retire

dave@friarblog —  September 12th, 2012 6:23 PM —  Comments

According to NBC Connecticut:

Jim Calhoun Expected to Retire: Source

Calhoun told NBC Connecticut’s Kevin Nathan Wednesday that nothing official has been finalized.

“Don’t be surprised by anything, even this week,” Calhoun said.

It is a matter of Calhoun and his agent “dotting the ‘i’s’ and crossing the ‘t’s',” according to the source.

Update: Kevin Ollie will be named interim coach.


(AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

The BIG EAST conference announced their All-BIG EAST teams today, and two Friars found themselves getting recognized.

LaDontae “Buckets” Henton made the All-Rookie Team for one of the best seasons for a Friar freshman – 14.3 points per game, 8 rebounds per game, 9 double-doubles, and several ONIONS shots among his many buckets. As Cooley’s only recruit to play this season, Henton has emerged as a huge part of the foundation of this team going forward. Vincent Council was the last Friar to make the rookie team two years ago. Here are the others:

Ricky Tucker (1980)
Otis Thorpe (1981)
Eric Murdock (1988)
Michael Smith (1992)
Michael Brown (1993)
God Shammgod (1996)
Ryan Gomes (2002)
Donnie McGrath (2003)
Sharaud Curry (2006)
Geoff McDermott (2006)

Some pretty good company there.

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Remember that post from his afternoon in which I said Providence was playing UConn in the first round? Yeah, that was incredibly wrong. Since Seton Hall lost to DePaul by TWENTY EIGHT points and St. John’s lost to Rutgers, UConn ended up getting the No. 9 seed because of some wacky tie breaker scenarios. So, Seton Hall is the 10 seed and the Friars first round opponent on Tuesday. They might be playing for an at large bid, but it may not matter since they just lost to DePaul by TWENTY EIGHT points. That’s automatic removal from the bubble territory, and they may even be kicked out of the BIG EAST altogether.

With West Virginia’s win over USF this afternoon, Connecticut finishes up as the No. 10 seed in the conference (even if Seton Hall were to lose to DePaul tonight, the Pirates hold the tie breaker by beating UConn). They will play Providence at 7PM on ESPNU, 7 days after the Friars came back to beat the Huskies at the Dunk.

Looks like PC will have another chance to end UConn’s NCAA Tourney hopes. This time, Jim Calhoun will be on the sidelines, and he will be angry.

UPDATE: I’m an idiot. Seton Hall lost to DePaul, now I have no idea what’s going on. If St. John’s win, PC gets Uconn. If Rutgers wins, we get Seton Hall. I think.

Villanova defeated Rutgers last night, leaving three teams one game ahead of Providence in the standings at 5-12. Two of those teams are Villanova and Pittsburgh, who would have a tie breaker advantage over PC by virtue of beating them should they end up tied after each plays their final game this weekend.

If the Friars lose at Notre Dame tonight, they would end up the 15th seed and play the 10th seed (as of right now, it’s UConn!) at 7PM on Tuesday night at the Garden.

If Providence can pull off the massive road upset, they would need St. John’s to beat Rutgers at the RAC tomorrow night forcing them into a 5-13 tie. Cooley and PC would hold the tie breaker since they beat Rutgers at the Dunk on February 1st. In that case, PC gets the 14th seed and plays No 11. at 9PM Tuesday night.

Now that the times are set, who’s going to NYC? There’s a pregame alumni event from 4-7PM at the Session House. Time to leave work early!

After a great performance on national TV last week, two Friars were named in BIG EAST weekly honors.

LaDontae Henton was named BIG EAST Rookie of the Week after putting up 17 and 9 against Holy Cross (including some big crunch time points to help withstand the Crusaders’ comeback) and 18 and 8 against South Carolina on Thursday. It’s hard to imagine that Buckets is only a freshman with the performances he’s had so far. As the only Ed Cooley recruit playing for PC this year (Kiwi Gardner is still in limbo), Henton is playing big minutes and has shown toughness, a high basketball IQ, and an incredible knack for the coming up with the ball.

Gerard Coleman shed his role as sparkplug off the bench and has grown more confident in his play offensively. Coleman put up 18 points in both games last week, including a terrific 10-13 at the line on the road against the Gamecocks. To help out on the rebounding front, GC totaled 12 boards in those two contests, including 5 offensive rebounds against Holy Cross. He also dished out 10 assists and got 4 steals. Providence Freshman LaDontae Henton Named BIG EAST Rookie of the Week


Here is the Ed Cooley interview video from the site.

Ed Cooley (Providence) Interview at 2011 Media Day


Some notable quotes:

“Trust. We have to build our program on trust. We have to build it on a sense of urgency to recruit quality young men, student athletes, kids that want to share in a vision and a dream that we are going to try to bring to our city and state, and ultimately compete for what its all about, and thats the National Championship.”

“The more these young men are together away from the court the better bond they are going to have on the court.”

“We lack a lot of things, but the one thing we won’t lack is intensity.”