Mattyoshow’s PC Friars Mumbles: 2.20.24 Edition

For all of the Oshow followers out there, I’m going to give you a heads up before you start reading this post. I’m not happy with what’s been going down in Friartown lately, so if you’re ready to read some crap about how the Villanova loss didn’t matter because they played hard than you’re in the wrong place. Here’s what’s been running through my head about the PC Friars over the past few weeks…

-Here’s one way to start a post: Bryce Cotton is overrated. Yup, I said it. He may go unnoticed nationally, but he’s overrated locally. Yes, Bryce can score, but so could Marshon. Yes, Bryce made the Sportscenter top 10 a couple of nights ago, but so did Rob Sanders back in his day. As a point guard, Bryce Cotton just isn’t that good. When the offense runs through him, it’s stagnant. When we need to convert a big bucket, he rarely makes the right decision. When we should work the ball down low, he takes a deep three. When we need a deep three, Bryce forces a pass down low. Yes, there are more problems on this team than Bryce Cotton, but in my eyes, he is one of them.

-I really started to think that Josh Fortune was turning a corner. He has been much more efficient offensively over the past several games. He was making better decisions with the ball, and working harder to get open off of the ball. He was even asserting himself defensively. And then Josh Fortune committed 7 turnovers in Tuesday’s game against Villanova, threw away two critical passes in double overtime, and officially earned himself a permanent spot on my shit list…right next to Marshon Brooks and Joe Young.

-Tyler Harris should have his scholarship revoked. All I keep hearing from Scottie and his other bandwagon buddies is that Harris is still young and he’s essentially a freshman because he didn’t really play in his first season at NC State. Guess what…I don’t care. His basketball IQ is about as good as Scottie’s knowledge base about anything sports related (which is essentially 0)! The kid just can’t make a good decision. I’m sick of his juvenile shit. Revoke the scholarship and get him outta town!

-Kadeem Batts is the best NBA prospect on this team. The guy battles down low. He’s finally learned how to utilize his body and girth underneath. He has a pretty good mid range jumper which has only improved over the past 4 years. Kadeem is the real deal and I hope he starts to get some looks in the league.

-Lee Goldsbrough is about as useful as a piece of gum on the bottom of your shoe in the middle if August.

-Brice Kofane isn’t much better.

-I don’t really understand Carson Desrosiers’ lack of playing time. I know he gets himself into foul trouble on occasion. However, you can’t tell me that he isn’t more useful than Tyler Harris. At least Carson tries to play defense. I say we put Desrosiers in the starting 5, bump everyone down a spot and really start to limit Tyler Harris’ minutes.

-If the Friars want any shot at the tournament they need to win out and then make some waves in the Big East tournament. However, with how PC plays on the road, it’s much more likely that they shit their pants over the next 4 games and miss the NIT.
-I’ve always considered myself and optimist when it came to the Friars. Ask anyone. Talk to Scottie. Talk to my fellow friar faithful CV. I’ve always thought that the Friars could win every game that they’ve played. Yet, this team has sucked the life outta me. I’m done with PC basketball. The constant crushing defeats have worn me out. I just can’t do it anymore…

Scottie’s 2014 NBA Draft Big Board: Edition 1

Despite the recent run of wins for the Celtics (outside of their loss to the Mavericks), it is clear they are going to be in the draft lottery this season.  Going into the season, I realized the Celtics were headed into the lottery.  With that knowledge I decided I would watch more college basketball (more than just Providence and Texas) than I would watch the Celtics.  I’ve occasionally watched the Celtics to see the development of players like Jared Sullinger and Kelly Olynyk.  I’ve watched to see how Rajon Rondo’s comeback from knee surgery has gone.  Danny Ainge will have multiple first round picks in the NBA Draft this season.  He may have more by the time the trade deadline comes and goes.  With all of that in mind, here is my “Big Board.”  This is the order I would select the projected draft pool as if the Celtics had 30 first round picks.  I will reserve comment on each player in this article.  In future articles, I may comment where I feel necessary.

Please understand, I do not watch International basketball.  The foreigners I have listed are listed because of what I have read about them. I have never seen Dante Exum or Dario Saric play.  I am going by what I have read.  I have also loaded the list with front court prospects.  I believe Rondo is in Danny Ainge’s master plan for the Celtics’ future.  You will see I have guys like Tyler Ennis and Zach LaVine further down the list than most draft “experts.”

1) Jabari Parker, Dukencb_g_jabari-parker_mb_400

2) Joel Embiid, Kansas

3) Andrew Wiggins, Kansas

4) Julius Randle, Kentucky

5) Noah Vonleh, Indiana

6) Dante Exum, Australia

7) James Young, Kentucky

8) Rodney Hood, Duke

9) Marcus Smart, Oklahoma State

10) Gary Harris, Michigan State

11) Doug McDermott, Creighton

12) Aaron Gordon, Arizona

13) Jerami Grant, Syracuse

14) Jordan Clarkson, Missouri

15) Kyle Anderson, UCLAKyle+Anderson+Arizona+v+UCLA+ehlGZY_tppMl

16) Willie Cauley-Stein, Kentucky

17) Zach LaVine, UCLA

18) Adreian Payne, Michigan State

19) Tyler Ennis, Syracuse

20) Dario Saric, Croatia

21) TJ Warren, North Carolina State

22) CJ Fair, Syracuse

23) Semaj Christon, Xavier

24) James McAdoo, North Carolina

25) Montrezl Harrell, Louisville

26) Markel Brown, Oklahoma State

27) Glenn Robinson III, Michigan

28) PJ Hairston, North Carolina (D-League)

29) Johnny O’Bryant, LSU

30) Chris Walker, Florida

ON TWITTER: @SCOTTIENTCF

Mattyoshow’s PC Friars Mumbles – 1.26.14 Edition

I’m stealing a little bit of Scottie’s style here.  Actually, I’m completely jacking one of Scottie’s classic posts.  I have a lot of thoughts on what’s been going on in Friartown lately, but don’t really have time to review every single game like I did in my younger years.  Therefore, when the thoughts start piling up and I get some free time, I’m going to throw out some Friars mumbles to clear my mind.  Let’s do it…

-I’ve been seeing a lot of negative stuff on social media over the past several weeks about Ed Cooley, stemming from the Brandon Austin and Rodney Bullock suspension.  Some people were even going back to last year and throwing Ricky Ledo into the mix.  People were knocking coach Ed Cooley for recruiting these guys that don’t even end up playing for the team.  Let’s get one thing straight here.  Ed Cooley is the best thing that has happened to Providence since Ryan Gomes was leaving his shoes at half court.  Cooley has recruited more talent over the past 3 years than Providence has seen in over a decade.  Providence didn’t rule Ricky Ledo ineligible, the NCAA did.  Ed Cooley’s job is to recruit really good basketball players, give them the tools to succeed as basketball players and as students, and then hope that these kids follow through.  It isn’t Ed Cooley’s job to babysit 24/7.  He holds them accountable. That’s all.  Be happy we can be excited about the recruits that he brings in, because we are a long ways from getting excited about recruits like Alex Kellogg and Brice Kofane.

-The student section at PC absolutely sucks.  How can you not come out to support your team when the coach basically begs you to come watch them play, but then complain that your best player isn’t getting any love from the national media?  It doesn’t make sense.  If you want to be a Friar faithful, and jump on the bandwagon come tournament time, SUPPORT YOUR TEAM ALL SEASON!  I live in Boston and have been to more games than 99% of these scrubs!

-I can’t decide who pisses me off more, Tyler Harris or Josh Fortune.  Combined, their basketball IQ is around 85.  When 100 is the norm, you know there are issues.  Scouting report on Tyler Harris:  Gets the ball and either shoots or drives left.  If you stand in front of him he will run you over and you’ll draw the charge.  If you pressure him, he’ll make a bad pass or take a bad shot.  Scouting report of Josh Fortune: has no idea what he is doing on a basketball court, can get hot from 3, but if he has the ball in his hand he will throw it away 95% of the time.  Watching these guys play is painful.

-Kadeem Batts is a man, and might be a more interesting NBA prospect than Bryce Cotton.

-Bryce Cotton was left off the Wooden Award (best college basketball player) mid-season list.  Do I think that he should have been on there? Yes, absolutely.  Do I care that he was left off?  No, absolutely not.  I don’t care if Bryce gets recognized for what he is doing for this team, I just care that we are winning games.

-Side note: when Bryce is our best player in a game, we aren’t nearly as good as when guys like Batts and Henton are getting the job done.

-Kris Dunn deserves a medical hardship waiver for missing nearly the entire season this year and nearly half of the season last year.  For the Friars’ sake, seeing Dunn around for another three years would be much nicer than him leaving in two.

-Ever since the Villanova game, the Friars are doing a much better job of moving the ball offensively.  I think that is a huge key to the team’s success.  When they go big (Batts and Desrosiers down low), they have a size advantage over nearly every team in the Big East.  They need to exploit that advantage.  Working the inside out game is much more effective for the Friars than passing it around the three point line until something opens up.

-Speaking of Desrosiers, is it just me or does it seem like

he doesn’t get enough consistent playing time.  I don’t get it.  Why is Cooley throwing Desrosiers in there for like 3 minutes at a time and then pulling him for Goldsbrough, or putting Batts back in?  Leave the big man in there and let him get in a rhythm.  If we want Carson to be a more consistent offensive player, he needs to actually play!

-Every good basketball team needs a Ted Bancroft.

-Every good basketball team needs to rid themselves of useless big men (Goldsbrough and Kofane).

That is all for this edition of the Friars mumbles.  Stay tuned for more in the future!

Brother to Brother: Episode 3

In this edition of Brother to Brother, I present the topics, and Big Bro responds.  My comments will be in regular font.  Steve’s will be in italics.  Please note: My comments were made January 21.  Steve took some time responding.  His comments were made January 23.

In this edition we talk about the Patriots season, top 10 Friars we have seen play, Jeff Green, and various other topics!

1) The Patriots have no reason to be upset with the season they had.  They lost to the better team on Sunday.  To be honest, I expected them to get walloped to the tune of 42-24 or so.  I still believe the Patriots can make another run next year because there is no clear cut team in the AFC ready to make the next step.  Keep in mind the Pats will be healthy coming into next season.  All in all you might be able to say the Pats overachieved this season.  Still hurts to lose to Peyton though.untitled

Pats –  Great season.  Something very difficult for NE fans to keep in perspective.  The Pats have been to the AFC Championship 8 times and 6 Super Bowls in the last 20 years, plus amazing winning percentage.  Pats fans are spoiled because of all the success.  Think of the following teams:  Browns, Bills, Jags, Texans, Cowboys, Lions, Dolphins, Bengals, Raiders, Bucs, Redskins, .  Cowboys have not won a playoff game in 20 years.  Think about that.  They had a great season and the future looks bright.  You could make the argument that their off-season acquisitions will be the return of injured players (Wilfork, Kelly, Armstead, Mayo, Talib, 3 rookie receivers, full season of Vereen, Gronk, Amendola at full health).  I read they were the second youngest team in the NFL.  Health was the biggest factor for them.  I also saw that Amendola should have been on season ending IR in Oct, maybe people will give him a break, he must be tough.

2) Everyone is bashing Richard Sherman.  You know I like to stick up for the guy everyone hates.  Let’s be honest, his cough adrenaline cough was flying high after the biggest play of the season to send his team to the Super Bowl.  You interview him 10-15 minutes after that play on the field?  He is still emotional.  Everyone knows his history.  Of course that outburst was going to happen.  He was jacked up.  And I have no problem with it.  I like seeing emotion a lot more than the usual “yes man” athlete.  I thought it was fantastic to see the unadulterated emotion.

 Sherman – Ehhh, an example of a non-story becoming a story.  Wow, an NFL player talked trash, gee I never saw such a thing.

3)Eddie Cooley has the Friars at “first 4 out” in the latest Bracketology.  Amazing he has the team this competitive with the adversity the team has faced this season.  He is basically playing 6 guys.  Bryce Cotton has played 50 minutes twice this season.  Cooley has said he will come out of the game when he graduates.  Cotton has crept into the 10 top Friars I have ever seen.  I know my list will vary greatly from yours but here it is.  1) Eric Murdock 2) Austin Croshere 3) Eric Williams 4) Ryan Gomes 5) Michael Smith 6) John Linehan 7) Bryce Cotton 8) Dickey Simpkins 9) MarShon Brooks 10) Jamel Thomas.untitled

Friars – In no particular order – Billy Donovan, Eric Murdock, Soup Campbell, Otis Thorpe, Eric Williams, Ryan Gomes, Austin Croshere, Ron Jackson, Joe Hassett, Michael Smith.  Ask Dad if he remembers Ron Jackson.  They very best were before my time:  Ernie D, Marvin Barnes and Jimmy Walker.  Special note to Marty Conlon, became a solid NBA player, but no one saw that coming.  And special note to Harold Starks, the greatest energy, defense first guy they ever had.

4) The Longhorns had a big win over #8 Iowa State the same day PC beat #20 Creighton.  Our squads are looking up?  Frankly, Iowa State is a one and done candidate come March.  I don’t think they get out of the first round.  After PC beat Creighton, Creighton turned around and smacked #4 Villanova by 30.  Too bad the transitive property doesn’t pertain to college basketball. Keep in mind Nova smashed PC by 30.

Longhorns & Barnes – Crazy program.  It is obviously a football school, but he has built a great basketball program.  The team is 2-3 recruits away from being very, very good.  Problem is when they get the talent, they are not around long.  But something to think about, here is a list and again in no particular order of the guys UT/Barnes has placed in the NBA.  TJ Ford, Kevin Durant, LaMarcus Aldridge, Avery Bradley, Cory Joseph, DJ Augustin, Daniel Gibson, Jordan Hamilton, Dexter Pittman, Royal Ivey, Damion Jones, Tristan Thompson, PJ Tucker, Chris Mihm.

5) It is time to explore trade options for Jeff Green.  The Celtics are in a complete rebuild mode.  Green is a fringe player.  He has shown signs of being a top dog in the NBA, other times he completely disappears.  I don’t see him as a guy that can lead a team anywhere.  Remember the old line Bobby Knight used referring to Steve Alford?  That applies to Green.  The Celtics should rebuild around Rondo and Sullinger.  I compare Sullinger to Charles Barkley.  Both are undersized power forwards, who have a knack for cleaning the glass.  Sullinger is trying to develop some range similar to Kevin Love.  As long as his back holds up, Sullinger can be a great guy to build around.  Remember he was supposed to be a #1 overall pick after his freshman year but he stayed in school.  Time to trade Green for a first round pick somewhere.untitled

Jeff Green – Dropped 39 last night.  I still go back to my comments last year during the playoffs.  This is a guy who has been Option #3 for most of his career. He is an outstanding athlete, but does not have the instinct for selfish play and may not be a natural leader.  That is not a bad thing, when you think of the alternative, which is someone who wants to lead but can’t or sends the wrong message.  Also, you cannot have a locker room full of so-called self-appointed leaders, then you have nothing, sometimes having no drama guys who follow is a great thing to have.  Ainge actually did a good job with him from a contract standpoint.  He did not overpay.  I would rather have Green and his contract than Wallace and his contract.

6) Now that the Patriots season is over, the focus in the region will be the Bruins.  The Bruins are in second in the Eastern Conference, 5 points behind Pittsburgh.  They could be in trouble come playoff time because they lost Dennis Seidenberg for the season to an ACL injury.  The defensive pairing of Chara and Seidenberg has completely shut down high-flying offenses in years past.  Seidenberg might be the most underrated athlete in Boston.

Bruins – I have to do a better job following hockey.  My lack of hockey knowledge is apparent.

7)The Olympic break is one of the more interesting conundrums in sports.  Hockey owners must hate sending their best players to Sochi.  The beauty of the Olympic hockey is hockey players are a different breed. Cam Neely said it best when asked why the hockey players compete in the Olympics and do everything they can to win (as opposed to NBA players who coast through these competitions) “because they don’t know any better.”  The Olympics will serve as the true All Star Games fans want to see.

Olympics – Ehhh, used to love it, now it just feels like a pre-cursor to Campbell’s soup commercials and Wheaties boxes for the lucky winner.

8)Not much news on the Red Sox.  I am praying the Mets sign Stephen Drew so Xander and Middlebrooks will not have to look over their shoulder and have their development stunted by Drew.  The Grady Sizemore deal is reminiscent of when the Red Sox signed Rocco Baldelli.  Low risk/ high reward.  He offers competition for the center field spot with Jackie Bradley Jr.  I can’t honestly say I am expecting anything from him.imagesCAUU54PH

Red Sox –  Grady Sizemore!  Way to go all out Cherrington.  Reminds me of when Sinden ran the Bruins knowing they would always make money so never signed the talent to get to the Cup.  Although, I think the Sox really learned their lesson with Crawford/Gonzo signings.  They saw the burden those contracts might present, the animosity of the fans when they don’t perform.  Boston fans would rather have guys killing themselves to prove themselves, than guys who get  paid a lot to demonstrate apathy with W-L.  Boston fans can handle losing, if they know the players hate losing.  If they think the players are rich guys who could care less, it gets ugly.

Peter Vescey follows me on Twitter and you should too @ScottieNTCF.

Friars First Half Recap

The Providence College Friars men’s basketball team has reached the midpoint of their 2013-2014 campaign.  Their record stands at 11-5 overall and 1-2 in conference play.  For what seems to be the norm around Providence, the main stories of the season are what’s going on off the court instead of on.

Top recruit Brandon Austin and Rodney Bullock were suspended for the season shortly before the new year for an off campus untitledincident the school has tight-lipped about.  Austin promptly transferred to Oregon joining another ex-Friar top commit  that never played a game for the Friars in Joseph Young.  If Friar fans want a glimpse of what could have been, keep an eye on the Oregon program.   Bullock has stayed at Providence and will likely let the suspension play out and be eligible to play in games next season.

Another of Ed Cooley’s highly touted recruits, Kris Dunn  is also out for the season with a shoulder injury.  Dunn injured his shoulder before the start of his freshman season last year.  He missed 10 games last season.  Dunn played in just four games this season and should be eligible for a medical red-shirt, allowing him to not lose a year of eligibility.  There is concern, however, about Dunn’s status with the school overall because he has not been seen with the team over the winter break.  He has chosen to stay at home in New Haven over the break.  If Dunn had been healthy, I strongly believe the Friars beat UMASS and Seton Hall.  The Kentucky game also would have played a bit differently.

On the court, the Friars have put forth solid effort in every game this season with the exception of the 30 point loss to Villanova.  Coach Cooley has referred to that game as the worst game he has had at Providence.  He will not find an argument from me.  I have been encouraged by the play of the Friars, especially with the realization they are undermanned night in and night out.  Losing three guys in half a season puts a lot of strain on the active roster.

Bryce Cotton is averaging 38.6 minutes a game.  He has played 6 games where has played 40 minutes or more.  He has scored in untitleddouble figures in all but 1 game this season, and put up at least 20 points in 10 games.  He is without question the team MVP.  Kadeem Batts has struggled most of the season.  The 5th year senior seemed to have lost his shooting touch.  He has also been bullied on the defensive end of the floor in a few games this season.  I was encouraged with how he played against Georgetown.  If he can start getting back to the way he was playing his junior season, the Friars season may not be lost after all.

Transfers Tyler Harris and Carson Desroisers have played pivotal roles for the Friars this season.  Harris is a poor man’s Tayshaun Prince with a massive wingspan.  He is averaging 13 points and 5 boards a night.  Harris has become the 2nd option in the offense behind Cotton.  I am excited to see Harris develop as he is only a sophomore.  I expect to see big things from this kid before his career in Providence comes to a close.  Desroisers has been a game changer on the defensive end of the floor.  I can’t remember anyone that protected the rim better than Carson wearing a Friar uniform since Karim Shabazz and Marcus Douthit.  He is averaging nearly 3 blocks a game.

LaDontae Henton has been the unsung hero of this season.  Henton has been a glue guy for Ed Cooley’s Friars.  He will never be untitledmentioned with why the Friars would win a game.  He hasn’t had any outstanding games this season but he goes about his business.  He has improved his rebounding and is getting rebounds in traffic amongst bigger opponents.  He is the team’s leading rebounder.  A year after his three-point shot disappeared, Henton is shooting 43% from deep.

As a season ticket holder, I was disappointed in not seeing Austin, Bullock, and Dunn this season. After seeing Ricky Ledo on the bench in a suit all of last season, I thought this would be the year the Friar Faithful’s patience would be rewarded.  I was wrong.  the familiar mantra of “wait ’til next year” rings true yet again.

Fortunately the guys who have taken the floor night in and night out have been fun to watch.  Saying the team plays hard is an understatement.  Credit Cooley with fielding a competitive team.  These kids will run through a wall for him.  I believe the Friars have a chance of finishing in the top half of the new Big East behind Villanova, Creighton, and Xavier.  A four seed in the Big East would put the Friars squarely on the bubble for the NCAA tournament.  If that were to happen with the amount of adversity the team has faced all year, I would consider 2013-2014 a success.

I can be followed on Twitter @ScottieNTCF

2013-2014 Providence College Friars: Season Preview

One of my favorite times of the year is finally upon us…the start of the college basketball season!  As with most years, there is a ton of hype surrounding this Providence College team.  Another infusion of young talent, combined with a couple of transfers becoming eligible, and finally the continued development of some familiar names all have PC fans excited for the season to get started.  What am I most excited about? PC kicking of Fox Sports 1’s coverage of college basketball.  PC hasn’t played under the national spotlight in some time and I think that a lot of curious college basketball fans will be tuning into Fox Sports 1 tonight, and stumble across the PC vs. BC game.  Here I’ve provided my preview for the 2013-2014 season for the Providence College Friars.  You need not look elsewhere, as ntcf.wordpress.com is the one and only source for quality PC basketball news, information, and opinions from the biggest PC fan around.  Let’s do it…

The Returning Players:

#3 Kris Dunn (SO.) – 6’3″, 197 lbs [Guard]

#4 Josh Fortune (SO.) – 6’5″, 205 lbs [Guard]

#10 Kadeem Batts (SR.) – 6’9″, 245 lbs [Forward]

#11 Bryce Cotton (SR.) – 6’1″, 165 lbs [Guard]

#13 Brice Kofane (JR.) – 6’8″, 210 lbs [Forward]

#21 Lee Goldsbrough (SR.) – 6’9″, 230 lbs [Forward]

#22 Ted Bancroft (SR.) – 6’6″, 215 lbs [Guard]

#23 LaDontae Henton (JR.) – 6’6″, 215 lbs [Forward]

I do not remember a season when Providence was returning this much talent and experience.  As PC fans, we have become accustomed to seeing players finally develop as seniors, and the move onto the next level.  If we were fortunate enough to see guys develop sooner than that, they usually either did something stupid to get kicked off of the team, or leave school early for some reason.  My expectations for this group are high, some (Scottie) may even describe them as lofty.  I’m not as big of a Bryce Cotton fan as most.  Yes, the dude can shoot.  He’s proven that he can be clutch.  But I never agree with the entire offense revolving around a perimeter shooter.  I would love to see Bryce use his athleticism more often and attack the rim.  Kris Dunn has the talent to be an All Big East First-Team performer.  However, in classic PC fashion, Dunn hurt his surgically repaired shoulder in the Friars final exhibition game against RIC.  From the reports I’ve read, it seems like Dunn subluxed his right shoulder.  That doesn’t worry me.  If there is labral damage, then I’m worried, but subluxations can be addressed with some stabilization exercises and taping.  If Kadeem Batts can become a little more consistent with his mid-range jumper, he could make himself into an NBA prospect.  My focus is on LaDontae Henton.  He didn’t have a very good 2012-2013 season.  His shooting percentage (especially from 3-point territory) was bad.  He didn’t play with the same swagger and heart that he displayed as a freshman.  Unlike most seasons, Henton has someone behind him coming for his starting spot (Tyler Harris).  Henton needs to prove that he deserves to keep his starting spot.

The New Players:

#1 Brandon Austin (FR.) – 6’6″, 185 lbs [Guard]

#5 Rodney Bullock (FR.) – 6’7″, 215 lbs [Forward]

#12 Casey Woodring (FR.) – 6’2″, 180 lbs [Guard]

#25 Tyler Harris (SO.) – 6’9″, 215 lbs [Forward]

#33 Carson Desrosiers (JR.) – 7’0″, 250 lbs [Center]

Brandon Austin is going to be a stud.  From what I’ve heard, he has looked very good this off-season.  When I took a look at some of his tape, he reminds me of a Tyreke Evans-type of player.  He has the ability to handle the ball, while also demonstrating the size and quickness to get to and finish at the rim.  Sadly for the Friars, Brandon Austin and fellow freshman Rodney Bullock “failed up uphold the responsibilities of student athletes.”  They are both suspended indefinitely for, what sounds to me like some academic violations.  Transfers Tyler Harris and Carson Desrosiers both become eligible this season.  These two are going to have a profound impact on the Friars this season.  I expect Desrosiers to start at center.  He is a big presence that can block shots, score from inside and outside, and is known as a very good passer.  Harris is an athletic forward with the ability to shoot the three and attack the rim.  His skill set allows him to play every position from shooting guard to power forward.  Casey Woodring is a recruited walk-on that is known as a lethal outside shooter.  I don’t see many minutes for him available this year.

The Transfer (Not Eligible until start of 2014-2015 season):

#32 Junior Lomomba (SO.) – 6’5″, 195 lbs [Guard]

Lomomba is a Cleveland St. transfer (originally from Canada) that will become eligible next season.  He will benefit from a year of practice with the team, and will hope to help soften the blow of losing Bryce Cotton next season.

Predicted Starting 5 and Rotation (considering all players are healthy and eligible):

PG – Kris Dunn

SG – Bryce Cotton

SF – LaDontae Henton

PF – Kadeem Batts

C – Carson Desrosiers

#6: Tyler Harris

#7: Josh Fortune

#8: Brandon Austin

#9: Rodney Bullock

#10: Lee Goldsbrough

#11: Bryce Kofane

#12: Ted Bancroft

#13: Casey Woodring

Predictions:

As you probably could have assumed from what I wrote above, I have really high hopes for this team.  I think that their combination of experience (Batts, Cotton) along with talent (Dunn, Austin, Harris) will propel Providence College to finish within the top four of the new look Big East (behind Georgetown, Marquette, and Creighton).  I expect the Friars to make the NCAA Tournament.  I expect the Friars to get an NCAA Tournament win for the first time since 1997.  Ed Cooley finally has a team full of primarily “his guys”, so for Cooley and the boys, it’s time to make some moves in the right direction.  GO FRIARS!

Record: 22-6 (13-5)

Statistical Leaders: 

  • Points: Bryce Cotton
  • Rebounds: Kadeem Batts
  • Assists: Kris Dunn
  • Steals: Kris Dunn
  • Blocks: Carson Desrosiers
  • Field Goal %: Carson Desrosiers
  • Free Throw %: Bryce Cotton
  • Three Point %: Bryce Cotton

Bold Predictions:

  • 1st Team All Big East: Kris Dunn
  • 2nd Team All Big East: Bryce Cotton
  • 3rd Team All Big East: Tyler Harris
  • Big East All Defense Team: Carson Desrosiers

FRIARTOWN…LET’S GO!!!!!!!!!!

Seth Davis Says Stupid Things

I have never really been fond of Seth Davis.  I disagree with most everything he says when it comes to college basketball.  UnknownBasically, I think he is an idiot.  Last night he tweeted, ” I know we are all hoping Nerlens Noel is ok. College hoops needs him.”  I do not disagree with the first sentence of that particular tweet.  It sucks the kid went down with a very serious knee injury.  I do
hope he is able to recover and get back to full strength.

My real problem comes with the second sentence.  College hoops needs Nerlens Noel? Why? Doesn’t Noel need college basketball more than college basketball needs him?  I highly doubt Noel was going to come back to Kentucky for a second season.  He is the 2013 version of Andre Drummond, one year in college and done, off to the NBA to make his millions.  What did Andre Drummond do for college basketball?  He auditioned for the NBA with UCONN for 1 season and left the second he had the chance.

These guys aren’t going to school to go to class.  They are going because college basketball is their marketing agency.  Without college basketball, these guys don’t have a venue to promote themselves.

College basketball is always going to be great.  Take last Saturday night’s five overtime Louisville-Notre Dame game for example.  Yes, the first 39 minutes of that game would never be described as beautiful basketball.  But the final 26 minutes were mind Unknown-1blowing.  The kids left everything on the court.  Compare that game to the Celtics-Nuggets triple overtime game.  The Nuggets absolutely gave up at the end of the third overtime.  Andre Miller fired up a three out of a time out that was ill advised and then pretty much handed Jason Terry the ball on the next possession.  Denver quit.  They didn’t want to keep playing.  That is the exact opposite of what happened at Notre Dame.

Saying college basketball needs Nerlens Noel is a problem.  It’s because of statements like this that essentially worship Noel, enabling an 18 year old kid to believe he is more important than he truly is. Kentucky will get its next big recruit and Noel will be forgotten. It is unbelievably unfair to an 18 year old kid.  I will put this in a local perspective.  I don’t think Ricky Ledo will ever step on the court in a Providence Friar uniform.  He is surrounded by people that are telling him how great he is.  Now I am not naive.  Ledo is important to Ed Cooley’s Friars.  But guess what? If Ricky leaves Providence will move on.  They have Brandon Austin and Rodney Bullock as incoming freshman already committed for 2013-2014.  Transfers Carson Desroisers and Tyler Harris will eligible to play as well.  Providence will move on.  They pretty much already have.

College basketball has the best postseason of any sport, yes even hockey.  The tournament is glorious.  Everyone looks forward to filling out their brackets.  Everyone loves it when they pick the big upset and detest it when their team is upset all the same.  The NBA is predictable.  Last year Oklahoma City played Miami in the finals.  LeBron vs. Durant.  Spoiler alert: That will be the case in the 2013 NBA Finals as well.  Upsets don’t happen in the NBA like they do in college basketball.  15 seed Lehigh beat Duke last season.  Charlotte doesn’t beat Miami in the NBA.

Seth Davis is sadly mistaken. College basketball doesn’t need Nerlens Noel.  Noel will never be considered a college basketball great.  Kentucky will move on with or without Nerlens Noel. Georgetown moved on from Mike Sweetney, BYU moved on from Rafael Araujo, and North Carolina moved on from Marvin Williams.

Will Nerlens Noel be able to move on without college basketball?

I can be followed on Twitter @ScottieNTCF

Gambo & Scottie’s 2012 NBA Mock Draft

It’s hard to believe that the NBA Draft is already upon us but tomorrow night it all goes down, starting with the consensus No. 1 pick Anthony Davis. The “unibrow” is that good and proved it, helping Kentucky to a National Championship. This class is stocked with talent as there are potential starters into the 20’s. The Celtics pick back-to-back at 21 & 22 thanks to the trade of

“Fear the Brow”

Kendrick Perkins. GM Danny Ainge has already confirmed they are looking for size but could also be in position to take the best player still on the board with one of the selections if someone slips as this is probably the best draft class since 2003.

Scottie & I broke up the draft going pick-by-pick (of course I get the first; I always win) and gave some insight on each player.

Here, we, go:

1) New Orleans Hornets- Anthony Davis F/C, Kentucky (Gambo)

The only sure-fire pick to go to a team is the Unibrow himself. Davis has the potential to be a Kevin Garnett type player and will help transform a New Orleans team desperate for resurgence. If you didn’t like this kid before, the fact that he has already trademarked “Fear the Brow” and “Raise the Brow” should make you a believer.

2) Charlotte Bobcats- Michael Kidd-Gilchrist G/F, Kentucky (Scottie)

MKG is dropping like a rock on many other mock drafts that I have seen.  I can’t understand why.  I saw a fair share of Kentucky games this season and I saw a kid with boat loads of talent.  The Bobcats need anything and everything to get their franchise going.  In my opinion they should play it safe and go with the closest to a sure thing they can.

3) Washington Wizards- Bradley Beal SG, Florida (Gambo)

I’m with Scottie on the MKG pick, but could understand MJ taking Beal or Robinson there if he doesn’t trade. Beal is a sure-fire pick for the Wiz and makes for an intriguing backcourt combination with John Wall; one that could be a force in the league for years if the mesh well over the first few seasons.

4) Cleveland Cavaliers- Thomas Robinson PF, Kansas (Scottie)

Many people have Robinson going behind Davis in this year’s draft.  The kid does have an incredible skill set and did put Kansas on his back on their way to the National Championship.  Watching him and Kyrie Irving play together just may help those Cleveland fans that are bitter about that someone who left town 2 years ago.

5) Sacramento Kings- Harrison Barnes G/F, North Carolina (Gambo)

The Kings are rumored to be pedaling Tyreke Evans and Barnes could be a perfect replacement for him. Harrison has been stated by numerous media members as being the type of player that is better as a pro than in college and the UNC product has the potential to produce.

6) Portland Trail Blazers- Andre Drummond C, UConn (Scottie)

Drummond was a consensus number 1 pick most of the season.  Then he was everyone saw exactly

Will the “motor” be there in the NBA?

what he was.  He is a freakish athlete but extremely raw when it comes to basketball.  He can jump through the roof, run the floor, and block shots.  After that he is very much a work in progress.

7) Golden St. Warriors- Jeremy Lamb SG, UConn (Gambo)

The Drummond pick is the first one that I disagree on with Scottie. Portland is rumored to be salivating over Damian Lilliard and should be the pick at six. As for the Warriors, a two-guard to replace Monta Ellis should be on their list. Lamb looked disinterested at times this season, but should get motivated and put up points as a better “Marshon Brooks-type” player.

8) Toronto Raptors- Austin Rivers G, Duke (Scottie)

Most people have Damian Lilliard ahead of Austin Rivers in their drafts.  Toronto needs a point guard and I think Doc’s kid is the best one in the draft.  He has a great basketball pedigree.  He has an uncanny ability to get to the basket and can also bury his jump shots.

9) Detroit Pistons- John Henson PF, North Carolina (Gambo)

With the trade of Ben Gordon the Pistons could target Lamb or Rivers if they fall, but they could still use a shot-blocking and rebounding presence to team with Greg Monroe. Henson was intimidating near the basket and if he can add some size to his frame, Detroit would have an impressive one-two combo down low.

10) New Orleans Hornets- Damian Lilliard PG, Weber State (Scottie)

The Hornets also need a point guard and Lilliard is right behind Rivers in my opinion.  Lilliard comes from Weber St. I am not big on guys coming from small schools at all.  It is probably the wrong prejudice to have but I feel that Rivers has more big game experience and more exposure.

11) Portland Trail Blazers- Dion Waiters G, Syracuse (Gambo)

Depending on what the Blazers do with the first pick getting size or a point guard, they will most likely draft the opposite here, but if a player like Waiters is still on the board they could go after him, especially if they are serious about trading Jamal Crawford. Waiters played off the bench at Cuse, but when he was on the floor he often took over as the most dynamic scorer on the court. He could instantly contribute in the same way this coming season.

12) Milwaukee Bucks- Terrence Ross G, Washington (Scottie)

The Bucks need a 3 to play with Brandon Jennings and Monta Ellis.  Ross handles the ball very well and would be able to find Monta and Jennings on the break.  At 6’7 he would be an oversized 2 that could come off the bench as well.  The Bucks are a team that would like to run and Ross is a terrific rebounder for a guard.

13) Phoenix Suns- Kendall Marshall PG, North Carolina (Gambo)

It’s hard to believe but Steve Nash may not be in a Suns jersey next season. Time for Phoenix to find “who’s next.” Marshall was fantastic for UNC before injuring his wrist and should be back to form in no time. The deft-passing, good-sized point should fill in nicely for the former MVP.

14) Houston Rockets- Tyler Zeller F/C, North Carolina (Scottie)

I once was a Tyler Zeller hater.  That changed this year with each game I saw him play.  I attribute a lot of his success to playing on a stacked team with Henson, Barnes, and Marshall.  But Zeller was no slouch either.  The kid doesn’t miss around the rim and has a deadly hook shot.

15) Philadelphia 76ers- Perry Jones III F, Baylor (Gambo)

Will he realize his potential?

PJ III had a disappointing return season at Baylor but that does not mean he doesn’t have talent. The Sixers would luck out seeing jones slide to 15 and if they do end up trading Iguodala, he could be a key along with Thad Young in replacing his production.

16) Houston Rockets- Meyers Leonard C, Illinois (Scottie)

Let me start this out by saying I think Meyers Leonard is awful.  Every game I saw him play this year he was softer than a baby’s bottom.  He gets frustrated to easily and turns the ball over way too often.  But as the saying goes, “you can’t teach size” and size is something the 7’1 Leonard has.

17) Dallas Mavericks- Terrence Jones F, Kentucky (Gambo)

The Mavs could be in “best player available” mode and taking a National Champ at 17 is definitely not a bad thing. Jones is a player that could contribute immediately off the bench as Dallas looks to surround Dirk with talent and push for a return trip to the Finals.

18) Minnesota Timberwolves- Royce White F, Iowa State (Scottie)

White was very impressive this past season at Iowa State.  If the Timberwolves do in fact take him they just might become the best passing team in the history of basketball with White, Kevin Love, and Ricky Rubio.  I think this kid might be the most intriguing kid in the draft.  There aren’t many 6’8 guys that can handle the ball like he can.

19) Orlando Magic- Arnett Moultrie F/C, Mississippi State (Gambo)

If the Magic end up dealing Dwight they will need some serious size and shot-blocking. Moultrie flew under the radar this season at Mississippi State but scouts love his frame and wingspan. Orlando is facing some tough decisions across the board, but a defensive presence never hurts.

20) Denver Nuggets- Jared Sullinger F, Ohio State (Scottie)

Sullinger was projected to be the #1 overall pick in last year’s draft but decided to stay in school.  He has been red flagged by doctors because of a back injury and he his stock has plummeted.  Some say he can be another Kevin Love.  I disagree.  But the Nuggets need scoring in the paint and if healthy Sullinger could do just that.

21) Boston Celtics- Moe Harkless SF, St. John’s (Gambo)

Hmmmmm, I’m picking for my favorite team and the best player from my Alma Mater since Ron

This man would look good in Green.

Artest is still on the board? MOE BUCKETS! First, I don’t think he lasts past Denver, but Harkless is an athletic talent that played the 4 and 5 last year but is a true 3 in the League. A chance to learn from someone like Paul Pierce could transform Moe into an impressive player.

22) Boston Celtics- Fab Melo C, Syracuse (Scottie)

One thing that was apparent in the playoffs this season was the Celtics had a hard time defending at the rim.  There was nobody other than Garnett that could contest shots in the paint.  I am not a Fab Mello fan by any means but he is the fit for what the Celtics needs down low.

23) Atlanta Hawks- Andrew Nicholson PF, St. Bonaventure (Gambo)

Nicholson was a stretch-4 at St. Bonaventure and while you may not have heard of him, that doesn’t mean his isn’t good. The Hawks have been rumored to be off the Josh Smith bandwagon and if he ends up switching jerseys, Nicholson could have a sizable role in replacing him.

24) Cleveland Cavaliers- Jeffrey Taylor G/F, Vanderbilt (Scottie)

The Cavs need size and perimeter defense. Having Taylor and Varejao on the floor at the same time may limit the Cavs offensively but they would sure be difficult to score on.  The Cavs are a very young team and Taylor is a 4 year college player.  He would be able to provide some experience and compliment Kyrie Irving and Tristan Thompson pretty well.

25) Memphis Grizzlies- Marquis Teague PG, Kentucky (Gambo)

Memphis has transformed itself into a Western Conference Playoff fixture and is another team that can just go “best player available.” Teague is young but could become an efficient point guard in the league. Jeff’s little brother doesn’t have his size but is a someone who can get up and down the floor and can press the pace with the second unit.

26) Indiana Pacers- Doron Lamb SG, Kentucky (Scottie)

Doron Lamb is the best pure shooter in the draft.  The Pacers’ success revolves around everyone knowing their role and no superstar play.  Lamb fits in perfectly at the 2 alongside Danny Granger and Darren Collison.  Opposing teams would be reluctant to double down on Hibbert leaving Lamb open from the outside.  Lamb could be a steal in this draft.

27) Miami Heat- Quincy Miller F, Baylor (Gambo)

Miller’s injury has pushed him down draft boards but the World Champs would be glad to add an athletic player to their roster who could run with Bron, Wade and Rio. Miller was overshadowed by PJ III and never really found his niche, but could be a solid forward in the NBA for years.

28) Oklahoma City Thunder- Will Barton SG, Memphis (Scottie)

In reality the Thunder really don’t need any additional parts. They really only need to gain experience. Barton is a guy that can come off the bench and give Durant a quick rest.

29) Chicago Bulls- Tony Wroten G, Washington (Gambo)

Wroten could most definitely be gone at this point but with Derrick Rose on the shelf,

It’s a Festivus miracle!

Washington’s 6-foot-6 PG could fill in nicely for the Bulls. Even though his size may throw some people, Wroten is a true point that could run an NBA offense and would fit well with Deng, Boozer an Noah, while also sliding to the two at times once Rose returns.

30) Golden St. Warriors- Festus Ezeli F/C, Vanderbilt

Festivus for the rest of us! Golden State needs a big man to compliment Andrew Bogut, David Lee, and Andris Beidrins.  Plus I just wanted to sneak in a Seinfeld reference, so Ezeli it is.

We can be followed on Twitter @Big3Sports and @ScottieNTCF

Everyone Just Needs to Relax…

Ladies and gentlemen, it feels good to be back!  After a year of grinding through a doctoral program, I figured the best way to spend my summer was to drop some more knowledge on the NTCF faithful.  I realize that due to the lull in new material from NTCF, we may have lost the vast majority of our readers, but for those who stuck with it and for those that have just discovered NTCF, your dedication is appreciated!

Now, to the matter at hand, my beloved Providence College Friars.  There is excitement already building throughout Friar Nation with the news the PC and now second year head coach Ed Cooley have brought in the 6th ranked recruiting class in the nation to Friartown for the 2012 NCAA Basketball Season.  Along with the incoming frosh, coach Cooley and staff have enticed a few transfers to sign with PC, further propelling the excitement surround PC basketball.  With all of this news and enthusiasm, I find myself being a bit more pessimistic than most.  What is all this excitement really about, and is it even warranted?  Hear me out…

Rumors have been flying (from multiple sources) that both Kris Dunn and Ricardo Ledo won’t even be suiting up for

the black and white this fall.  Dunn injured his shoulder while working out for the USA under 18 squad, which resulted in him obviously not making the team.  Ledo’s academic struggles supposedly continue, therefore putting his eligibility status in question.  My fellow blogger Scottie took to Twitter over the past day or so to air what he had been hearing, and was met by some pretty severe backlash, with the most criticism coming from PC play-by-play man John Rooke!  Whether the rumors are true or not, I can’t say that I’m 100% confident that Dunn and Ledo will be contributors this season until I see them in uniform.

As for the other two recruits, how much were they really expected to contribute?  Word is that Ian Baker has yet to sign an official LOI (Letter of Intent), and even if he jumps aboard, he will be competing for playing time behind Council, Dunn (if he’s still alive), and possibly Kiwi Gardner.  Fortune has the reputation of being able to put the ball in the hoop from anywhere on the court, but the question remaining is how much court time will he actually see?  The 2-guard spot is loaded, with expected starter Bryce Cotton, and incoming freshman Dunn, and Ledo all competing for time there.  It is also expected that with Dunn working at the point, Council would get some time at the 2-guard spot.  If the rumors prove to be true and Ledo and Dunn are out for 2012-2013, then obviously Baker and Fortune will get some more floor time.  Then, you start running into the same issues it seems PC has faced over the last 3-4 years, how productive are freshman really in the Big East?  Yes, I know LaDontae Henton had a huge season last year, but LaDontae’s don’t come around very often.

As for all of the excitement surrounding the incoming transfers, I think it may be a little overblown.  Sidiki Johnson was a big name guy coming out of high school.  He has size (6’9” 230 lbs) and allegedly a decent post-game.  That being said, if the kid was ready to play why did he only log 7 minutes at Arizona!  He was dismissed for a violation of team policy, so maybe it wasn’t his skill level that limited his playing time and it was off the court stuff.  But, even so, why are we trying to build our program around guys that can’t even last a semester at one school?  Tyler Harris is another guy that presents similar issues.  He doesn’t have the off the court baggage that Sidiki brings, but the kid logged 7 minutes a night for NC State.  Yes, he has size and athleticism, but why couldn’t he be a more consistent contributor on a team that wasn’t very deep last season?

The one transfer I do love is Carson Desrosiers.  This kid is big, has experience, and can protect the rim.  Desrosiers was already 4th all time in Wake Forest history in blocked shots after only 2 seasons!  He will hopefully be someone that Brice Kofane can learn a thing or two from and help improve his game.  The only downside to the Desrosiers commitment is that he can’t play until the 2013-2014 season, along with Harris; while Sidiki can play starting in the second semester this season.

The last thing I wanted to touch upon was the rumors surround Billy Baron and his transfer to Providence.  Baron would probably be able to play this season if he transferred to PC because his dad was fired as the URI coach while he was there (see Trey Zeigler, Central Michigan).  As I mentioned previously, if everyone that is eligible to play this season does play, the backcourt is loaded (Council, Dunn, Ledo, Gardner, Cotton, Fortune, Baker).  PC’s interest in Baron further fuels the speculation that either Ledo, Dunn, or both could be watching games from the bench this season.

The point of this post wasn’t to eliminate your enthusiasm for the 2012-2013 season.  The point was simply to make you take a step back and examine the moves PC make a little more closely.  I love the direction Ed Cooley is taking this team and am a huge fan of every recruit they have gotten commitments from so far.  That being said, the 2012-2013 season could look a little more like 2011-2012 than we all were expecting.

Ultimate Volvo S60: BIG EAST Edition

So if you haven’t heard yet, I am representing my alma mater (twice over), St. John’s University, in the second annual Volvo “Biggest Fan of the BIG EAST” Contest. As part of the competition, the 16 contestants (each representing one of the conference teams) must write challenge posts on their respective blogs which are then judged by the good folks over at Volvo Cars USA. The objective for blog entry No. 4: Create the Ultimate St. John’s Volvo S60. Fans can also build their own Volvo S60 at VolvoCars.com.

The first step in this process is to create the perfect S60. Of course, you would have to pick the “R-Design.” This model includes a six-speed geartronic automatic transmission, 3.0 liter engine, with 325 horses, dual exhaust and 354 lbs. of torque. Along with the usual Volvo bells & whistles, it also includes HD radio & Sirius XM, a bluetooth handsfree system, USB/IPod function, moonroof and 18-inch Ixion alloy wheels.

Time to go all out as available climate, technology and multimedia packages make this a truly “ultimate” S60. Volvo also offers two accessories that would be perfect for a true St. John’s fan. An integrated navigation system helps you find your way through New York City as Johnnies make their way Madison Square Garden, while a rear seat entertainment system allows friends to keep up on BIG EAST basketball.

Now it may seem like a given that a St. John’s automobile would have to be some shade of red, but since 2009, when the Red Storm introduced their alternate black jerseys, the annual “black-out” game has become a huge success, while the jerseys themselves have been a team favorite. With that in mind, black sapphire metallic is definitely the color for this ultimate VolvoS60.

I really contemplated putting a giant STJ logo on the hood and/or lightning bolts down the side, but a more subtle approach to represent the Red Storm may be appropriate for this machine. Although a vanity plate that says “526” (the number of wins recorded by legendary head coach Lou Carnesecca) or “Lavinwood” may be in order.

Instead of the excessive paint jobs, after market body kits and custom spoilers all in red & white, this “ultimate St. John’s Volvo” will have several additions to make it a true Johnnie.

Floor mats

Custom Plates

Good tunes

Lou Carnesecca & Steve Lavin (they come with the car right?)

Metta World Peace?

Perfect.

Please continue to vote for me at MyBigEastVolvo.com, and be sure to follow me on Twitter @BIG3Sports.

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