The morning after the BIG EAST Conference’s Media Day, there are typically quite a few articles from hoops beat writers covering the conference foes of the Georgetown Hoyas. Today is no different.
Here are some more links:
It wasn’t tight in the predictions for just the top two teams. Only seven points separated third through seventh place. Xavier was third, with Marquette and Providence tied for fourth. Georgetown, Creighton, Butler, St. John’s and DePaul round out the poll.
“It definitely is very close from top to bottom,” Georgetown coach Patrick Ewing said. “It makes the conference more exciting.”
Georgetown coach Patrick Ewing acknowledged UConn’s role in helping build the original Big East and said their return “helps the conference,” but looked like he ate a bad oyster as he talked about it. “It is what it is,” he said. “They’re here and they’re here to stay . . . We have to deal with it.”
The Pirates edged out Villanova by a single vote — each received five first-place votes — while Xavier was picked third and Marquette and Providence followed in a tie for fourth. In a slight surprise, Georgetown was picked sixth – most experts believe Patrick Ewing’s team is top-25-caliber after returning stellar sophomores James Akinjo, Mac McClung and Josh LeBlanc, and adding N.C. State transfer forward Omer Yurtseven. Creighton was picked seventh and Butler eighth.
I think Omer Yurtseven is getting overlooked in terms of all-Big East honors. If the transfer from NC State essentially drops right into Jessie Govan’s spot in the Hoya rotation, he’s going to put up some serious numbers. Govan was an all-league caliber player without even a hint of a doubt, so the opportunity is there for Yurtseven.
Seton Hall, with four returning starters from an NCAA Tournament team, edged out defending regular-season and conference tournament champion Villanova by one point for the top spot in the preseason coaches’ poll.
Seton Hall’s selection marks the first time in five years that Villanova hasn’t been the preseason choice to win the Big East.
Marquette and Providence tied for fourth in the preseason poll, followed by Georgetown, Creighton, Butler, St. John’s and DePaul....
Georgetown’s 7-foot center Omer Yurtseven was also honorable mention with Scruggs.
Butler finished last — tied for eighth, actually — in Big East basketball last season. So the 2019-20 preseason poll should not come as a surprise.
The Bulldogs were eighth in the poll announced Thursday at Big East media day in New York. In fact, their 21 points put them closer to ninth-place DePaul (19) than to seventh-place Creighton (45)...
Senior guard Kamar Baldwin of Butler was chosen to the preseason All-Big East first team. Last season he was seventh in the Big East in scoring (17.0) and third in free throw percentage (.850).
The Hall, meanwhile, brings back four starters and the entire bench from a 20-win squad that came within a bucket of beating Nova in the Big East Tournament final. Chief among the returnees is Powell, who averaged 23.1 points last winter and outplayed backcourt rival Howard in two head-to-head meetings down the stretch. Howard ended up winning Big East Player of the Year, but Powell’s impressive finished spilled into the offseason, when he helped the Big East represent Team USA with a bronze medal in the Pan American Games.
Anderson’s first season in Queens figures to be a long one. On paper, this roster is devoid of proven talent. Additionally, this team is compromised almost entirely of newcomers. For sure there will be some growing pains.
Nevertheless, two bright spots on this Red Storm team figure to L.J. Figueroa and Mustapha Heron. Each player was a significant piece of coach Mullin’s last team. Figueroa is coming off a season in which he averaged about 14 points, 6 rebounds, and 2 assists per game. His long frame combined with his athleticism makes him very tough to defend. As for Heron, he averaged around 14 points, 5 rebounds, and 1 assist per game. He also was one of St. John’s better shooters, hovering around the 40% mark from deep.
There’s a new preseason No. 1 in the Big East, breaking a five-year long streak that the Villanova Wildcats had as the projected top team heading into the season.
The Seton Hall Pirates were voted No. 1, with the defending conference champions Villanova coming in at No. 2.
Despite both Seton Hall and Villanova receiving five first-place votes each, the Pirates were able to edge the ‘Cats by a one-point margin.
UConn returns to the Big East for the 2020-21 season and appears primed to make an immediate impact after gains made on the recruiting trail in the last year. As Willard points out, Hurley will not be hindered by the far-flung membership of the American Athletic Conference any longer. “I can’t tell recruits `you know what it’s like to play at Tulane, East Carolina and those places? That’s won’t work anymore,” he said.
PC’s Cooley was blunt when asked how much of a lift the Big East will give the Huskies.
“I think we gave Connecticut new life. We gave their fan base new life,” Cooley said. “I think they finally came to the conclusion that they are a basketball-centric school. They were pouring all their money into football and, in my opinion, it was going into a hole.”
The Johnnies hope Anderson’s style — based on mentor Nolan Richardson’s “40 Minutes of Hell” pressure — has that kind of effect on the rest of the Big East now that he is at the helm for the Red Storm. Several teams in the league play up-tempo, but nobody employs this kind of system.
“That’s a special preparation,” said Seton Hall coach Kevin Willard, who faced, and lost, to Anderson and Arkansas in the 2017 NCAA Tournament. “When you have to be a special prep team, I think that’s what make him and his teams very difficult.”
The first step is getting into shape to employ the frenetic pace their new coach has made a career of utilizing. The first three weeks of preseason included 6 a.m. conditioning workouts. The next step is “game shape,” as Anderson said, to not only use his system, but excel at it.
“Jeff Green could’ve averaged 30 points a game in college. But I don’t know if we would’ve had the success we had,” said John Thompson III, now vice president of player engagement for the parent organization of the Washington Wizards. “And you’d literally see him having enjoyment when his teammates were playing well.”
Thompson would know better than most about Green’s thought processes, and his style of play. They still talk regularly, he said, and Thompson called his former player “Jeffrey Lynn Green” on first reference. When Thompson arrived at Georgetown, Green — then a “back-to-the-basket center” — was already committed to the Hoyas. But Green didn’t know his new coach, and one of Thompson’s first tasks was to convince him to stick with his pledge.
“It took “some work,” Thompson admitted, but it was worth it. He could tell immediately that Green had a special “feel for the game,” and a chance to transcend his position.
The lead guard from White Plains (N.Y.) Archbishop Stepinac is making his first trip to Chapel Hill - an official visit - beginning on Friday. It’s Davis’s last scheduled recruiting trip as he’s already taken official visits to his three other finalists - Marquette, Pittsburgh, and Georgetown.
Davis picked up an offer from UNC on July 17, a little more than a week after his standout performance at the Nike EYBL Finals at the Peach Jam in North Augusta, S.C. At Peach Jam, a Carolina staff member was at seemingly all of Davis’s games and watched him post 20.6 points (45.1% FG, 42.5% 3pt, 81.6% FT), 4.4 rebounds, 3.2 assists, and 2.1 steals per game.
With the commitment of top-25 guard Caleb Love, North Carolina has accomplished half of its backcourt goals in the 2020 class. Williams has been open with other 2020 perimeter targets - Ziaire Williams, Cade Cunningham, Bryce Thompson, and Davis - that he’s seeking two players capable of running the offense and putting up points in bunches. Sources confirmed to Inside Carolina this week that Davis is entering his UNC visit with a clear mind, and isn’t deterred by other players on the Tar Heels’s recruiting list.
The petition, obtained by The Hoya, was addressed to Reed and signed by 13 students, most of whom were members of Pep Band. Students encouraged the university to reconsider Jackson as the musical act because of the rapper’s criminal history, according to the petition.
“We strongly urge Georgetown to reconsider the message it sends students in booking an act who has a history of domestic violence,” the petition said. “Georgetown Athletics, cancel Fabolous’ performance to condemn his past behavior and maintain the Hoya family as a welcoming and safe space for all.”
The Georgetown athletic department formally disinvited Jackson on Oct. 8 after conversations with students, according to a statement Reed released on the Georgetown athletics website Tuesday night.
“After engaging with students, we have cancelled the musical act for 2019 Hoya Madness,” Reed wrote. “We take domestic violence very seriously and were unaware of the charges against the entertainer when he was booked through a third party entity.”