Category Archives: College Sports

Hawks in the pros: 2009-2010 season

With the NBA playoffs entering the second round, we figured it would be a good time to catch up with some St. Joe’s basketball’s most illustrious alumni who are continuing their careers on the professional hardwood.

The conversation—much like just about any other discussion of St. Joe’s basketball—starts with its most famous alumni, Jameer Nelson.

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The Orlando Magic point guard had to contend with injuries again this season and saw his numbers drop from last year’s career season. He finished the regular season averaging 12.6 points and 5.4 assists in 28.6 minutes per game over 65 games; all three totals were slightly above his career average.

He was slowed by torn knee cartilage in November that caused him to miss 17 games. But he averaged 13.8 points per in the 47 regular season games since returning to action on Dec. 19 and has assumed his usual role as a vital cog in the sixth-highest scoring offense in the league for the Southeast Division Champs. Continue reading

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Who wants to punch Urban Meyer?

For those of you who didn’t see Urban Meyer’s tirade against Orlando Sentinel reporter Jeremy Fowler last week, we can fill you in. (Also, make sure you adjust the video clip to reflect ESPN’s pro-Florida stance just in case they ever have to enter this piece of Gator protection into talks to purchase more SEC games from CBS.)

Anyway, it’s the classic story that brings two people together. Players says something dumb to reporter. Reporter does his job. Coach gets pissed and rants to preserve his gridiron domain.

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Let’s pass out some blame here. First of all, Deonte Thompson has to be more aware of what he’s saying. Yes, it’s probably a simple misunderstanding, but as a journalist, it’s not Fowler’s job to affix meaning to an interviewee’s words. Fowler presented them with plenty of context and the offending sentence came at the end of a long quote. If Urban’s going to be mad at someone, maybe it should be at the player who apparently sleep-walked through his media relations briefings.

That brings me to Urban, who absolutely confronted the wrong person in this situation in the wrong way and, thankfully for the rest of us, at the wrong time near a video crew that could broadcast his childish tantrum to the world. If he was going to take it out on someone, maybe it should have been Thompson for spilling the secret that Meyer spent countless hours diagramming offenses to try to hide. Surely, most everybody attending NFL workouts knows it, as does any wideout running a 20-yard out route off a five-step drop.

And finally, there is some blame that has to go out to Fowler himself. Not because he did his job wrong; he absolutely didn’t. As far as anyone has reported, he obtained the quote properly and followed all due diligence in the process with the lone exception of checking the “Urban Meyer Manual of Self-Service” which should be located next to his AP Style guide. The major mistake he made was not dropping Meyer like a bad habit right then and there. Yes he would have lost his job, but he would have entered the halls of infamy forever, and become something close to the next Jim Rome.

I also have to say that I’m disappointed with Fowler’s interview with media after Big Bad Urban found it in his heart to be told to apologize. Of all people to give a meaningless interview which tells people nothing and is full of lip service and cliches, you’d think a journalist would shy away from it for karma’s sake, if nothing else. I understand he has to cover his ass and try to patch the bridge which Meyer just fire-bombed for the good of his career, but from the outside, it just looks like acquiescence to the Gator machine.

-Matthew De George ’10

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Oh, when we were young! Revisiting our preseason predictions

Ok, I’ll take the blame: I was responsible for ranking the men’s Atlantic 10 basketball field in our Basketball Preview way back when in November. With the A-10 Tournament looming, what better time than the present to simultaneously pat myself on the back while kicking myself  over the path taken by my prognostications? All comments, insults, and compliments (especially compliments) are welcomed.

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Dayton

Our prediction: 1

Final place: 7

It’s hard to figure where Dayton’s season went awry. They started out 13-3—with a win over a ranked Georgia Tech and two narrow losses at other ranked opponents in New Mexico and Villanova. But the Flyers stumbled down the stretch, going 6-8 in their final 14 games, including losses in five of their last seven outings. Defense’s penchant for keying in on Chris Wright successfully has limited his ability to take over games. He hasn’t been the superstar he’s needed to be, and the supporting cast has been unspectacular.

Xavier

Our prediction: 2

Final place: 2

Bull’s-eye! I’ll take any victory I can get. It didn’t look that way early on, with the Musketeers stumbling out of an extraordinarily tough nonconference slate with an 8-5 record. But this young squad, led by A-10 scoring champ Jordan Crawford and the rapid maturation of Jason Love into a premier big man, has meshed down the stretch. They’ve crept into the Top 25 thanks to a seven-game win streak, and could end up with a high seed in the Big Dance if they can buck their trend of poor showings in the A-10 Tourney in recent history. Continue reading

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Saint Joe’s Hawks vs. Temple LIVE Game Blog

2:40 Looking back at the game, the Hawks put out one of their best efforts on the court this season, both offensively and defensively. In the second half, they came out firing on all cylinders defensively, with Phill Martelli not waiting around for players to warm up. “In the first half I was waiting for guys to play,” said Martelli, “I didn’t wait for guys to play in the second half.” Both Williamson and Govens led the offense today with 20 and 21 points, respectively. The problem for the Hawks, however, was Ramone Moore, who had a career-high 24 points and a team-high nine rebounds. Martelli admitted, “Every guy gave us something, but we didn’t do enough with Ramone Moore”. Despite finding a way to tighten up their inside defense, the Hawks couldn’t stop Ramon Moore and Juan Fernandez in Overtime, which ultimately led to heir demise today. Looking ahead, Phil Martelli summed it all up, “We have to be better on Monday than we were today. We have to go on the road an be an impact team.” If the Hawks want to have a chance to make it to Atlantic City, this will have to be the case: they’ll need to play well against Charlotte and later George Washington on the road if they want a chance to play in the conference tournament.

Well, that about wraps it up from the Palestra. This is Tom Hagan signing off after a rough loss for the Hawks by a score of 75-76 in Overtime.

2:15: With a Govens miss, it’s now foul time. Prescott misses a 3 and Fernandez gets fouled by Williamson. He makes one  and another Williamson miss seals this loss for the Hawks. Temple wins, 75-67. More postgame to come soon. Continue reading

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Hot Reads: February 1, 2010

After a brief, one-week hiatus thanks to three St. Joe’s men’s basketball games in five days, and the subsequent wrist exhaustion, we’re back to give you the best articles in brief.

After a distinctly underwhelming Pro Bowl (hey, at least Mario Williams managed two sacks in that defensive masquerade) that did somehow squeak out strong ratings, it’s Super Bowl week! Bring on the lame coverage over-dissecting each angle, and created several erroneous ones of their own, until you’re so nauseated you don’t even care who wins!!

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In the way of interesting coverage, this year’s BCS Championship Game has opened up the now obligatory questioning of back-up quarterbacks heading into each big game from here to kingdom come (thank you Marcell Dareus). I’m sure Colt McCoy is thrilled that his lasting legacy to this point is as the moniker for quarterbacks injured in big games. Of course, no coverage of Super Bowl XLIV would be complete without delving into the Manning family lineage. Continue reading

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Ford, Prim spur Hawks to victory at La Salle

The St. Joe’s women’s basketball team traveled to La Salle last night where they looked to get back to .500 against a struggling Explorer team. After a second half comeback and an outstanding performance by Brittany Ford, ’10, the Hawks (10-10, 3-2 A-10) managed to leave La Salle with the victory by a score of 45-39.

In the first half of play, the Hawks could not find any semblance of an offensive rhythm. After 20 minutes, the Hawks had scored only 11 points, seven of which were scored by Ford. What saved the Hawks from being left with an insurmountable deficit was that the Explorers (5-16, 0-6 A-10)weren’t able to find rhythm themselves, with the exception of a late 11-1 run to end the half that gave La Salle a 19-11 lead.

Down eight points to the Atlantic 10 basement dweller, the Hawks would need a serious turnaround to get the victory. With a combination of Ford and key scores by Mariame Djouara, ’10, the Hawks quickly gained the lead in the second period. With less than nine minutes left in the game, the Hawks pulled a complete 180, leading the Explorers by 10. In the final minutes of the game, the Hawks were able to prevent another Explorer run and win by a final score of 45-39. Ford finished with a team-high 15 points and two blocks while Ashley Prim, ’13, finished with 8 points and seven rebounds. Up next for the Hawks will be an afternoon matchup against George Washington at 2 p.m. Saturday at the Hagan Arena.

-Tom Hagan ’11

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St. Joe’s-Towson men’s basketball live game blog

9:50- That’s it for tonight, as the Hawks escape the Hagan Arena with a hard-fought win. Join us on Saturday night at 6 p.m. from right here with all the action as the Hawks take on conference foe Dayton. Goodnight everybody!!

9:45- You’d hope it would be more comfortable for the Hawks, but in the end they were able to escape with a win tonight over Towson thanks to a strong second half. They outscored the Tigers 41-28 in the second stanza to reverse a six-point halftime deficit. The shooting effort was much better from St. Joe’s, who went 10-23 (43.5 percent) from the field, and five of 10 from three-point land. They also hit their free throws down the stretch, converting on 16 of their 19 trips to the charity stripe in the second half.

Idris Hilliard led the way for the Hawks with 20 points, 12 of which came in the second half. Justin Crosgile chipped in 13, the second straight game he has hit three threes, while Garrett Williamson, who played all 40 minutes, joined them in double-figures with 12. Darrin Govens managed nine points to go along with six assists despite a woeful shooting night (3-15 from the field, 2-10 from three), and Carl Jones had eight.

Todd O’Brien led the way on the boards, with 11 rebounds for a St. Joe’s team that held a 19-14 edge on the glass in the second half. St. Joe’s also committed a season-low tying eight turnovers.

“The players deserved to have something good happen to them because they really did a terrific job yesterday,” said Martelli, whose team held up nicely after a long Sunday that started at 4 a.m. when they arrived back from Olean and continued until past 11 p.m. thanks to academic meetings, video study, and practice. ” They needed something good to happen. When the ball didn’t drop in the first half, we sagged.”

The Hawks also stepped up the defensive effort after halftime, limiting the Tigers to just seven made field goals on 26 attempts (26.9 percent). They held Josh Thornton in check, who had just seven points in the second on 2-10 shooting and 1-6 from behind the arc. He finished with 23, while Jarrel Smith ended up with 17 points, 15 of which came in the second half. The Towson bench accounted for 44 of their 57 points, and no one other than Smith and Thornton topped four points on the day. Robert Nwankwo had 14 rebounds in the losing effort, while leading scorer Calvin Lee was held to just three points (1-7 shooting) and no rebounds in 28 minutes.

Martelli credits Prescott for a lot of that defense, as he helped quiet Thornton’s first half onslaught. But it was the offensive adjustment that also helped turn the tide. The Hawks had open looks in the first and struggled to connect, but four quick threes to open the second half created some gaps in the Towson zone defense, and with a little patience, gave Hilliard the room he needed to operate.

“It wasn’t really a change, but in the first it just felt like we were passing around the zone too much and not attacking it, so we came in at halftime said we had to attack the zone more, and we did that,” said Hilliard. “Once a couple guys started hitting threes, I caught the ball a couple times and was surprised I was so wide open.”

“I was pleased with the patience that we showed,” Martelli said. “We’re a team that wants to play obviously quicker, and I had a fear when we came in that with all that matchup that they do that we would just rely on jumper, jumper, jumper. In the second half, we made a concerted effort to put the ball in the lane. Idris had some good finishes in the bucket area.” Continue reading

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