Archives For Keno Davis

I’m not happy about writing this. I want to make that very clear right now. I – like most of my fellow Friar journalists – didn’t even want to write about Ledo in the draft this year. If we could have it our way we all would’ve been watching Ledo next season in a Friar uniform. Obviously that didn’t happen, so instead we all wanted to write about Ledo beating the odds – to be the exception to the proverbial rule – and get drafted in the first round. Shake the commissioner’s hand, put on the hat, having highlights of…some game he was in play while all the analysts say their bit.

This was a particularly good highlight of Ledo's ball handling skills.

This was a particularly good highlight of Ledo’s ball handling skills.

There might’ve been some sort of redemption in that story, right? But instead we’ve ended up with the brilliant kid in high school who could get into Harvard no problem if he just was patient and applied himself, but instead chose to believe he was a shoe in based on what he was told.

Guess what? He didn’t get in. He got called at 43 overall, with talent that people have barely heard of going well before him. He’s going to be playing on the Bucks next year (or the Mavs. Or the Sixers. Or the Hawks. Look I have no idea honestly, it’s chaos right now. But I think it’s the Mavs.) and that’s assuming he makes the team. We all know the story of second round picks.

But you know what? I want to look at this from a different perspective. All we’ve heard since April 15 is “Ledo, Ledo, Ledo, Ledo, Ledo, Ledo…Ledo.” What about us? The fans? The coaching staff? The program? The Ricky Ledo saga is officially over, but what’s this mean for everyone else?

Let’s talk about it.

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Friartown News and Notes 10.2.12

dave@friarblog —  October 2nd, 2012 9:44 PM —  Comments

All the notable news, links, pictures, and video in and around Friartown and college basketball all in one digestible, tasty place

picture Bad Marvin’s Time Machine Tumblr

Eric Murdock rocking the classic uni’s.


link BIG EAST Pinterest: 2012-13 MBB Player of the Year Candidates

This doesn’t appear to be an official list or anything, but Vincent Council is one of 9 players listed as candidates for BIG EAST preseason Player of the Year. I’m guessing Peyton Siva gets it here, mainly because Louisville is the #1 team. I am eagerly awaiting their matchup in the BIG EAST opener.

Shabazz Napier, UConn
Gorgui Dieng, Louisville
Otto Porter, Georgetown
Vincent Council, Providence
Petyon Siva, Louisville
Jack Cooley, Notre Dame
Sean Kilpatrick, Cincinnati
Branon Triche, Syracuse
D’Angelo Harrison, St. John’s

notes Missed this on Sunday, but Rodney Bullock (who visted PC last weekend) tweeted that he will make a decision after two more visits. Where could be looking to check out? He has other offers from UMAss, NC State, Virginia Tech, and Miami. You think he would have checked out UMass while in New England, so probably assume they are no longer involved. All three ACC schools could be in play here.

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Friar Fans: Get to Know Keno!

dave@friarblog —  October 2nd, 2012 8:09 PM —  Comments

Friar fans around the country had their afternoons simultaneously ruined after they all received a shiny new Coach Keno Davis newsletter in their inboxes. Call me crazy, but when you get fired for running a program directly into the ground, and through to the other side of the earth, wouldn’t you want to attempt to spare those fans from hearing from you ever again?

Here is a screen shot


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The Friar Daily 9.21.12

dave@friarblog —  September 21st, 2012 9:53 PM —  Comments

All the notable news, links, pictures, and video in and around Friartown and college basketball all in one digestible, tasty place

picture Kevin Love Instagram

Look at our Doris, hanging out with Kevin Love and Magic.


link Rant Sports: Big East Player to Watch: LaDontae Henton (Providence)

Ryan Gomes freshman year: 13.8 ppg, 7.8 rpg
LaDontae Henton freshman year: 14.4 ppg, 8.6 rpg

Ryan Gomes sophomore year: 18.4 ppg, 9.7 rpg
LaDontae Henton sophomore year: ???

And remember, Henton is already a surprisingly good three point shooter. Ryan Gomes didn’t make a three until his All-American junior year!

Henton also has a nose for the ball. Especially on the glass, he simply knows where to be, a skill that cannot be taught. The fact that he is the Big East’s No. 3 returning rebounder can at least partially be attributed to his understanding of location — the rest, obviously, to his ability to gain position.

And then there’s his smoothness and versatility on offense. Whether he’s down low, on the go, or pulling up from mid-range or deep, Henton is a threat to score. He can even make things happen with the ball in his hands in transition. With his size and versatility, Henton will be the benefactor of many a mismatch. And that trend will only become more prevalent in his game as he hones his already impressive skill set.

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The Friar Daily 9.20.12

dave@friarblog —  September 20th, 2012 8:59 PM —  Comments

All the notable news, links, pictures, and video in and around Friartown and college basketball all in one digestible, tasty place

picture Ricky Ledo Instagram

Look at that form. Next year. *Deep breath*.


link Severe, Martin to Visit Rhode Island Friday (UPDATED)

Hassan Martin, 2013 forward, has Providence in his final 3 according to his AAU coach. Iowa State was nixed apparently. He is visiting URI this weekend, but not sure why he wouldn’t also hit up PC. Lots of recruiting battles going on between Cooley and Hurley! They both are also in the mix for 2013 guard E.C. Matthews.

Martin is a 6-7, 190-pound power forward from Curtis on Staten Island who visited Rhode Island unofficially in June.

“I think he’s down to Rhode Island, Providence and St. Joe’s,” said Chris Alesi, Martin’s AAU coach with New Heights.

Alesi said “he’s going to be a kid that has a chance to be a high-impact player depending on where he goes. He’s got the potential to be a wing down the road. He’s skinny but real, real athletic. He’s a real big-time athlete.”

notes Got confirmation that Coach Cooley was in Indy yesterday meeting with 2013 guard Ron Patterson’s parents. Not sure how it went yet, but I bet the rents want him to come east!

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So the Sports Network posted up their Big East “preview” today. It’s hard to tell if they don’t know what they are talking about in general, or just didn’t pay any particular attention to Providence over the past several years. If anyone is looking for a good Friday laugh, there is this little game in the Friars Preview

Head coach Keno Davis was made the fall guy and after his dismissal the Friars brought in Ed Cooley, who had recently finished five years with the Fairfield Stags not too far down the road

Sorry if you were happen to be drinking a beverage as you were reading those words, as surely the contents of said beverage are all over your screen and keyboard.


Oh I’m sorry, so whose fault was it exactly that the team was run directly and repeatedly into the ground? It was those damn voices in his head! I honestly don’t even have any other words other than pure laughter for this one. If that’s what someone thinks happened to this team it’s pretty hard to take the rest of the article seriously.

Oh and there’s this:

Sticking around are Vincent Coleman (13.7 ppg) and Gerard Coleman (10.3 ppg), but without a major senior presence this group is again bound to struggle

The Coleman brothers! As @raphellej replied to me on Twitter. “Does this Vincent Coleman throw firecrackers out of moving cars like the Mets’ one did? He’d be a character concern.”

Because that’s exactly what the team needs right now.

Anyways, here is the full “preview”

College Basketball Preview – Big East Conference

The Friars cleaned up during the early, non-conference portion of their 2010-11 schedule, starting the season an impressive 9-1 and 11-2 before the kickoff of the Big East slate. Providence may have fooled a few people by showing so much success against the likes of Morgan State, Prairie View A&M and Sacred Heart, but the rest of the Big East knew better and called the Friars on it. What transpired was a disappointing 4-14 league effort and a spot near the bottom of the conference standings. Head coach Keno Davis was made the fall guy and after his dismissal the Friars brought in Ed Cooley, who had recently finished five years with the Fairfield Stags not too far down the road. A fiery competitor, Cooley is expected to promote a little more energy from his players as they try desperately to get off on the right foot. Unfortunately, the new regime begins only after Marshon Brooks, the Big East scoring champion (24.6 ppg), has moved on and is supposed to be part of the NBA, if that league ever gets its act together. Sticking around are Vincent Coleman (13.7 ppg) and Gerard Coleman (10.3 ppg), but without a major senior presence this group is again bound to struggle. With Council having handed out a team-best 189 assists, most of which probably went to Brooks, he clearly can orchestrate the offense, but his 39.3 percent shooting from the floor is not an encouraging stat for those times when he can’t find an open teammate. Kadeem Batts, one of only two players to have started all 32 games last season, could be a three-point threat (47-of-152), but he too had issues from the floor overall at just 35.4 percent, the team near the bottom in the Big East with a collective 42.4 percent accuracy from the field.

Lesson Learned

@FriarFrenzy —  August 18th, 2011 5:02 PM —  Comments

With the new season still a couple of months away and as we are forced to tolerate the quiet while eagerly anticipating whether or not Christmas will come early with a big 2012 recruiting class, let’s discuss a tale of two coaches and take a look at the state of the Friars.

Certainly Keno Davis’ brief and tumultuous tenure can be referred to as ‘the worst of times’. Apologies for bringing up the “K” word but think of it as therapy. You need closure and this is it. Not going to seep back through the gory details of the last three years and cause you to be reunited with your breakfast, lunch, dinner, beer, coffee…whatever you were enjoying before you decided to read this…but do want to focus on the primary reason for the Keno debacle, and how Fr. Shanley, Bob Driscoll and company proved they learned this valuable lesson by hiring Ed Cooley and building toward what they, and all of us in FRIARTOWN, hope will be ‘the best of times’.

The main issue with Davis is he did not understand what it took to lead a program. Nice guy and all, and some (OK one guy from Iowa) might even muster up an argument that Keno had a good offensive basketball mind, offered an entertaining brand (of offense) that could be attractive to players and that perhaps he could even coach a little (tougher one but entertain me here). However the trick in finding a good college head coach is to realize that actual coaching represents a minority portion of the role, especially for coaches at the high major D-1 level. Northwestern Head Coach Bill Carmody made reference to this point as he sat on the same stage as  Coach Cooley on Monday’s ‘Katz Corner College Basketball Coaches Special’ with Andy Katz when Carmody estimated the coaching portion of the job to be about 30%.

The process and pressure failed Providence in the search that brought Davis


In reality a Big East head coach is the CEO of the corporation that is his program. Meaning that in addition to his ‘on the floor’ responsibilities, he is responsible for establishing and executing the program’s brand and vision. He is a boss, not only of his players but of his staff, and managing people in and of itself can be a full time job. Further he is a fund raiser, strategic planner, salesman, mentor, parent, teacher, public relations manager and media personality……the list goes on and on.

Point being, it is plausible to believe that Keno presented enough of the ‘on the floor’ qualifications to receive consideration from PC, especially given the context during that search where candidates were turning down the job left and right, those involved with the search had to feel as though the walls were closing in. That said, grading on a 100 point scale, even if PC was extremely generous under pressure and gave Keno credit for the full 30 ‘on the floor’ points (30% of the job), that left the remaining and all important 70% where he could (should) have been graded at zero very easily! Davis operated a program as Head Coach for only one season. There was no track record of leadership, management experience, player/person development, academic oversight or ability to work with an administration. In short, no proof that Keno Davis was CEO material.

Ed Cooley, on the other hand, exemplifies a basketball program CEO. The ‘on the floor’ chops are there. In addition to his extensive assistant coaching resume, most notably at Boston College under Al Skinner, Cooley’s head coaching record in a tough league speaks for itself (92-69, increased win totals each year, back to back 20 win seasons). In terms of track record as a leader, Cooley held the head job at Fairfield for five years which is more than enough of a sample size to evaluate his ability to develop and guide a program. Not to mention he left the cupboard full at Fairfield, handing over an NCAA tournament caliber team with a cherry on top in newcomer and former Boston College and St. Andrews (RI) star, Rakim Sanders.


Onward and Upward


Cooley exudes charisma along with a buck stops here attitude, which is a huge plus on the recruiting, mentor and manager of people fronts…not too bad for fundraising either. He is a quote machine who pulls no punches which further adds to his appeal, persona and media friendliness. As far as vision and brand, Cooley started laying the groundwork on these in his introductory press conference and early remarks with talk about family, playing tough, being good students & citizens, selling out The Dunk and winning championships (focus machine anyone?).

None of us can predict what the end results will be but it is clear the PC brain trust acknowledged there were gross oversights and flaws in the process that brought us Keno Davis, gained the understanding that a true leader of people and a program was essential, decided to make a change and hired the right guy for the job.


follow FriarFrenzy on Twitter @FriarFrenzy

Coach Keno Davis recently participated in the “Shots from the Heart” Free Throw Tournament.

OBJECTIVE: Help to create more awareness for the growing problem of Heart Disease and to raise money to benefit theAmerican Heart Association during the 2010-11-season.

TOURNAMENTS: There will be two 64-coach fields (one for head coaches and one for assistant coaches). Participating coaches will compete in a free throw shooting contest, which will be bracketed in NCAA tournament format.

Coach drew a tough first round opponent in Fred Hoiberg (Iowa State), who hit every single one of his 25 foul shots. Keno did pretty well in only missing 3 shots (but hitting his 3-point money ball at the end). The final score was 31-28.

Here is the full recap

Assistant Coach Kevin Gamble also participated (in the Assistant Coach Bracket), and also got ousted in the first round. He lost 30-27 to Eric Eaton (Quinnipiac).

Maybe Vincent Council should give both coaches some tips!

Give this a sec, it will eventually load.


Ray Floriani on BIG EAST Pace

dave@friarblog —  November 2nd, 2010 3:15 PM

Over at the great blog “College Chalktalk”, Ray Floriani goes over some pace numbers for the BIG EAST, and speculates how fast teams with new coaches coming in will be (Rutgers, SHU, St. John’s, DePaul).  He uses Keno Davis as example of a coach who came in and produced different possession numbers than their previous gigs.

Big East Notebook: Setting a Pace

Providence’s rather brisk pace is notable. In his one year at Drake, PC mentor Keno Davis finished 28-5. His club was 15-3 in the Missouri Valley that year but his possession numbers were quite different than his first two seasons at Providence.

Year: 2007-08; Pace: 62; Offensive Efficiency: 114

Davis’ Bulldogs favored a pedestrian pace but you can’t argue with the results. Judging by the record and an off-the-charts offensive efficiency (points per possession multiplied by 100) of 114.  At Providence, Davis evidently believes the best opportunities are not in a half court game but extending the floor and number of possessions.

Coaching changes often bring about a question of philosophy. Will the new coach employ the same tactics as he utilized at his former school? Very often, the Keno Davis exception aside, that is the rule.

The question of the Friars’ pace heading into this season could be as interesting as those teams with new coaches.  After what transpired last season, one would think that Coach Davis would think twice about his run-and-gun style and how it affects the defense.  However, based on interviews I’ve seen this off season, Keno is going to stick to his (run and) guns and hopefully get a complete 180 on defensive effort.  Keno said it last season controversially as things were crumbling, and again on BIG EAST Media Day — he thought he didn’t have the right personnel to be successful last season.  The young team might still be a year or two away, but I think it’s safe to say we are in for another season of 70+ possessions (the Friars had 73 in Keno’s first two seasons of BIG EAST play).  That style of play is enticing to recruits, and Keno needs to keep slowly upgrading the talent over the next few years to translate his philosophy into W’s.