Monday, August 31, 2009

Prepping for Ivy League Play

Above, the game program from the November 1986 Sun Met Classic, a doubleheader in Fresno, California which featured Fresno State, Cornell, McNeese State and Texas Pan American.

When scheduling the nonconference games each season, Cornell Head Coach, Steve Donahue attempts to get the Big Red into some in-season tournaments where his squad can simulate the grueling back-to-back, Friday-Saturday night scheduling environment of Ivy League play.

During 2009-2010, Cornell will get tested in a pair of such tournaments. During November, Cornell plays three games in three days as part of the Legends Classic. Later in December, the Big Red get a double-header in Madison Square Garden. Below are some of the recent in-season tournaments in which Cornell participated.
  • 2001-2002- Richmond Invitational (Richmond, James Madison, also included VMI)
  • 2004-2005- Marist Pepsi Classic (Marist, Northeastern, also included Birmingham Southern)
  • 2005-2006- Coaches vs. Cancer Classic (Syracuse, St. Francis Pa., also included Bethune Cookman)
  • 2006-2007- William & Mary Classic (William & Mary, VMI, also included Jacksonville State)
  • 2008-2009- NIT Season Tip-Off (St. John's, Loyola (Md.), E. Michigan, Loyola IL, also included B.C.)
  • 2009-2010- Legends Classic (UMass, Vermont, Drexel, Toledo) and Madison Square Garden Holiday Festival (Davidson, St. John's, Hofstra)

Big Red Rankings

Several college basketball websites are publishing preseason rankings in the form of a daily or weekly countdown to No. 1.

CollegeHoopsNet.com (CHN) is counting down the Top 144 teams in Division I in 144 days. Last season, CHN ranked Cornell No. 89 . Cornell was the only Ivy to crack the ranking. Thus far, CHN has ranked some of the following teams, many of which come from major conferences.

???: Cornell

95. St. Joseph's (Cornell '09-'10 opponent)
96. Alabama (Cornell '09-'10 opponent)

98. Providence
100. Houston
103. Texas Christian
107. Nebraska
109. Indiana
110. Binghamton
114. Rutgers
115. Temple
117. Southern Illinois
119. NC State
120. USC
123. Iowa
126. Charlotte
129. Wyoming
130. Texas Tech
131. Holy Cross
133. Vermont (Cornell '09-'10 opponent)
134. Rhode Island
139. South Florida
141. Washington St.

In other rankings, Bleacher Report's George Barnette is counting down 65 Teams in 65 Days, as the nation's best teams headed into 2009-2010. Cornell is ranked No. 52 on the Bleacher Report.

MidMajorMadness.com (MMM) is counting down and ranking the nation's 344 Division I teams for the 2009-2010 season. Thus far, MMM has ranked teams Nos. 344 to 254. Potential Cornell opponents on the 2009-2010 schedule already ranked include:

330. Toledo
329. Dartmouth
308. Bryant
307. Brown
291. Columbia
283. Bucknell
262. Penn

Cornell Basketball in the News

Below, the story from the Ithaca Journal reporting the news that Cornell men's basketball will return to WVBR this year. We posted the Cornell press release last week.
WVBR to air Cornell basketball

Cornell University men's basketball games will be broadcast live on 93.5 WVBR-FM this season, the athletic department announced Friday.

All 31 of the Big Red's regular-season games and any postseason games will be called by longtime announcer Barry Leonard. The broadcasts are also available as part of the RedCast subscription service.

"Cornell basketball has a long tradition of being heard in the Ithaca area on WVBR-FM, and we're excited that the campus will have that opportunity again this season," coach Steve Donahue said. "We look forward to an exciting season and continuing this partnership."

The men's basketball team returns the core of players that have led the Big Red to consecutive Ivy League championships. Two-time first-team all-league selections Louis Dale and Ryan Wittman, reigning conference Defensive Player of the Year Jeff Foote, senior starters Geoff Reeves and Alex Tyler and 2008-09 Ivy League Rookie of the Year Chris Wroblewski highlight Cornell's returners.

The Big Red had a 21-10 record last season. This year's schedule includes Alabama, Syracuse, Seton Hall and Kansas.

WVBR-FM broadcasts classic and modern rock as well as local news, sports and entertainment. The station reaches seven counties in Central New York. Broadcasts also are available at www.wvbr.com.

Cornell Basketball in the News


All tangled up: Senior forward Alex Tyler drives to the hoop in the Red’s 83-59 win over Penn to clinch the 2009 Ivy championship.

M. Basketball Schedule Features Matchups at Kansas, Syracuse

By Keenan Weatherford
Cornell Daily Sun
August 31, 2009

The two-time defending Ivy League champions will have their work cut out for them in 2009-10 — men’s basketball head coach Steve Donahue announced the team’s schedule on Friday, and it appears to be possibly the toughest non-conference schedule in Cornell history. Donahue has a history of challenging his players before the Ivy season begins — the Red has played Syracuse in four of the last five seasons, and took on powerhouses like Duke in 2007-08 and Indiana and Minnesota in 2008-09. With all five starters returning, Cornell (21-10 overall in 2008-09, 11-3 Ivy League) might just be up to the challenge. Senior duo Ryan Wittman and Louis Dale will be the Red’s playmakers, and reigning Ivy League Defensive Player of the Year Jeff Foote will continue to make his physical, 7-0 presence known around the basket.

The marquee matchup on Cornell’s schedule is against no less than Kansas, a potential preseason No. 1 team, on Jan. 6. The Red will take on the Jayhawks, who return all five starters from last year’s 27-8 Big 12 championship squad, at the famous Allan Fieldhouse in Lawrence, Kan., where the team has the longest win streak at home in the country at 41 games. The Red is tied with Siena for the third-longest home win streak, 21 games.

Cornell’s home streak might end quickly, however. For its home opener on Nov. 20, the Red hosts Seton Hall, which finished seventh with a 7-11 Big East record in 2008-09, and 17-15 overall. The Pirates will be the first school from a BCS conference since Georgia Tech visited in 2003-04 to play at Newman Arena.

Cornell’s next game will be against another Big East foe, conference champion and eventual Sweet 16 participant, Syracuse. On Nov. 24, the Red will visit the Carrier Dome to mount another shot at an upset that was nearly achieved last year. On Dec. 3, 2008, Cornell nearly knocked off No. 20-ranked Syracuse on the strength of a career night from sharpshooting forward Ryan Wittman, then a junior. Wittman put up 33 points, draining 9-of-13 3-pointers and 12-of-28 overall. At one point in the first half, Cornell led by 16 points, but the Orange’s full-court press caused a few Red turnovers and quick shots, and Syracuse cut the deficit to five points by halftime. The Orange went back to its size and athleticism in the second half, causing nightmares in the lane for the Red and drawing 14 fouls for 15 points from the charity stripe, and came away with the 88-78 win.

Cornell will start the season with one of the tougher matchups on its schedule — the Red plays its first game on Nov. 14 against Alabama, which finished fourth out of six teams in the Southeastern Conference west division in 2008-09.

Just four days later, the Red starts play in the Legends Classic tournament, taking on UMass-Amherst. Regardless of the result against UMass, the Red will advance into a round-robin and face Drexel, Vermont and Toledo from Nov. 27-29.

The Legends Classic is one of two tournaments on the team’s 2009-10 slate. The other is the ECAC Holiday Festival at Madison Square Garden, to which the Red will return for the first time since 1970-71. Cornell will tip-off at the Garden on Dec. 20 against Davidson, then play either St. John’s or Hofstra the next day.

Sandwiched between the two festivals are games against Bucknell and a home game against St. Joseph’s, another upset that got away in 2008-09. On Dec. 22, 2008, Cornell held a 13-point lead in the first half, but St. Joseph’s came back to win, 71-67.

After the non-conference gauntlet Donahue has lined up, the Red will return home for five of its first six Ivy League matchups. Cornell will look to get its momentum rolling at Newman Arena in search of a third consecutive Ivy League championship banner. The team will have to be road warriors starting in mid-February; six of its last eight games are on the road. The Red will return home to face Princeton and Penn on Feb. 26-27 to close out its home schedule, then hit the road for one last trip to Brown and Yale, the site of one of the team’s three Ivy losses last year, on March 5-6 to end the regular season.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Recruiting News

Below, some recruiting news from around the Ivy League.

New England Recruiting Report notes that Burlington, Vermont's Joe O'Shea, a 6'4" guard has narrowed his list to four schools. “I’m going to take officials to Brown, Princeton, and Yale next month,” O’Shea told us. “I’m also going to visit Vermont, but it’s so close I’m not sure if that will be an official or unofficial.” O'Shea is not considering any other programs at this time.

Tim Douglas, a quick 5'9" point guard from Mayfair High School in Lakewood, California has scholarship offers from Cal-Riverside and Lehigh. When asked about his recruitment by Scout.com, he responded, "Lehigh has been one of the heaviest." He continued, "Portland State, Northern Arizona recently and Cornell. Cal Poly said they will come see me in September and I'm also hearing from St. Mary's." Douglas said he doesn't have a favorite at the moment and remains open. When asked what he's looking for in a school, he said, "A good relationship with the coach and a place where I can contribute right away." He is also received attention from St. Mary's of California.

Minnehaha (Minnesota) Academy senior Taylor Hanson, a 6'6" 225 pound forward participated in the Yale Elite Camp this summer according to MinnesotaPreps.com. His 29 on the ACT and 4.0 GPA makes him somewhat attractive to Ivy schools. "At the Yale camp I was able to compete against other recruits and also players already committed to Yale. It showed me where I need to improve, but also that I can compete with them and that is the level I want to play at. I left the weekend knowing that I belong academically in the Ivy league and would be honored to be able to play basketball there also." When asked about his recruitment he said, "The schools that I have been talking to the most would be [Yale], Columbia, Connecticut College, NYU, Washington Lee University, Wheaton college, Stone Hill University, St. Olaf, Middlebury, and Lawrence. I am hoping that I am able to find a school that fits both my athletic ability and is a great academic institution." Hanson is also receiving recruitment in football from Princeton.

Below are some related recruiting links:

Ka' Ron Banres ('03): "playing ball, I love it... I’ll play anywhere, any time.”

Cornell alum, Ka'ron Barnes ('03) is particpating this weekend in the 17th annual Osgood Shootout at New Britain High School in New Britain, Connecticut. Particpants include former and current college and NBA players. Below is an excerpt from a story reporting on the event as appearing in The Herald of New Britain.
For first-timer Ka’Ron Barnes, a 20-point scorer in his senior year at Cornell University five years ago, the competition was right up his alley.

“I’m from Buffalo, but I work at ESPN,” said Barnes, who works as a production assistant. “This is my first time playing in this tournament. I actually came here last year, I watched it but I didn’t play.

“Any time it’s an atmosphere like this, just playing ball, I love it. I’ll play anywhere, any time.”

Saturday, August 29, 2009

The Madness is Almost Upon Us...

Sensory overload. Get ready for the madness of Cornell Big Red Basketball's 2009-2010 season. But first, one last look below at some of our favorite photos from '08-'09.


Also check out Cornell Basketball's Official 2008-2009 Ivy League Championship Season Highlights Video Clip, just down below.

Big Red at Crimson Tide

ESPN's Summer Shoot Around SEC edition gives a bit of a glimpse of Cornell's season opening opponent, the Alabama Crimson Tide.

CORNELL BIG RED 2009-2010 SCHEDULE

Friday, August 28, 2009

Cornell Basketball in the News: Local Media on the Cornell Schedule


A Jim Boheim autographed game ball from Cornell's 88-78 defeat at Syracuse last season. Cornell led the game by as many as 16 points. Below, some local media reactions to Cornell's announced 2009-2010 schedule.

From the Ithaca Journal:
A game at Kansas University, a home date with a Big East opponent, and a pair of games at Madison Square Garden highlight what may be the most challenging non-conference schedule in Cornell men's basketball history.

Coach Steve Donahue announced the 2009-10 slate on Friday.

The two-time defending Ivy League champions will open the season Nov. 14 at Alabama, will host Seton Hall on Nov. 20 and travel to Syracuse on Nov. 24. The Big Red will visit Kansas on Jan. 6 and will play games at Madison Square Garden on Dec. 20-21.

The Big Red will put its 21-game home win streak -- currently third-longest in the country -- on the line against Seton Hall when the Pirates become the first major conference school to visit Newman Arena since eventual national runner-up Georgia Tech opened the 2003-04 campaign on East Hill.

Other teams on the schedule include Massachusetts, Saint Joseph's, Davidson, St. John's and Vermont.

Cornell also will renew rivalries with Drexel (first meeting since 1988-89) and Toledo (first meeting since 1976-77), and is scheduled to meet independent Bryant and Division III opponents Penn State-Behrend and Clarkson.

Last season, the Big Red posted a 21-10 mark, claiming its second straight Ivy League title with an 11-3 record and becoming the first Ivy League school other than Penn or Princeton to earn the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA tournament in consecutive years.

The Big Red returns all five starters, including two-time first-team all-league selections Louis Dale and Ryan Wittman and reining Ivy League Defensive Player of the Year Jeff Foote, as well as eight of the team's top nine scorers.

The Big Red opens competition at the Legends Classic when it visits regional host Massachusetts of the Atlantic 10 on Nov. 18 at the Mullins Center. Regardless of the result, Cornell will move onto a pod that features a three-day round-robin against Drexel (Nov. 27), Vermont (Nov. 28) and Toledo (Nov. 29) at Drexel's Deskalakis Athletic Center in Philadelphia.

Cornell also will be looking to snap its 31-game losing streak to Syracuse on Nov. 23. The Big Red led Syracuse last season by as many as 16 points in the first half before falling 88-78.

After a two-week break for final exams, the Big Red will play in the ECAC Holiday Festival for the first time since the 1970-71 season. Cornell will play mid-major power Davidson on Dec. 20 at Madison Square Garden and either St. John's or Hofstra the following day.

Cornell will close out the calendar year with games at La Salle on Dec. 29 and at home against Penn State-Behrend on New Year's Eve in Newman Arena. Cornell opens the 2010 portion of its schedule at home Jan. 2 against Bryant.

The trip to Kansas' Allen Fieldhouse may be the stiffest test of the season. The Jayhawks return all five starters, including All-Americans Cole Aldrich and Sherron Collins from a team that went 27-8, won the Big 12 with a 14-2 conference mark, and lost to eventual Final Four participant Michigan State in the Sweet 16. The Jayhawks enter the year with the longest home court win streak in the country (41 games).

The Big Red opens its Ivy League schedule with five of its first six games at home, including the conference opener against Columbia on Jan. 16.

Cornell also will play consecutive road weekends, including the annual to trip to Penn and Princeton on Feb. 12 and Feb. 13. The following weekend the Big Red travels to Harvard and Dartmouth.

The Feb. 27 contest against Penn will mark the final home game for seniors Louis Dale, Jeff Foote, Jon Jaques, Geoff Reeves, Pete Reynolds, Alex Tyler, Andre Wilkins and Ryan Wittman.

The regular season will end the following weekend when Cornell takes on Brown and Yale.
From WBNG CBS News (Binghamton):

ITHACA - Trips to the Carrier Dome and Allan Fieldhouse highlight the 2009-2010 Cornell basketball schedule released late this afternoon.

The two-time defending Ivy League champs play their most challenging non-conference schedule in the 10-year run under Steve Donahue.

Big names are all over the Big Red schedule including preseason number one Kansas, plus other road games at Syracuse, Alabama, Umass and neutral site games against St. John's, Davidson, Vermont, Toledo and Hofstra.

And for the first time since 2003, Cornell will host a BCS conference school when Seton Hall comes to Newman Arena.

Here's the entire Big Red schedule:
11/14/2009 at University of Alabama

Legends Classic
11/18/2009 at University of Massachusetts

11/20/2009 Seton Hall University
11/24/2009 at Syracuse University

Legends Classic
11/27/2009 at Drexel University
11/28/2009 vs University of Vermont
11/29/2009 vs University of Toledo

12/2/2009 at Bucknell University
12/6/2009 Saint Josephs University

Holiday Festival
12/20/2009 vs Davidson College (at Madison Square Garden)
12/21/2009 vs at St. John's/vs. Hofstra (at Madison Square Garden)

12/29/2009 at La Salle University
12/31/2009 Penn State Erie- The Behrend College
1/2/2010 Bryant University

1/6/2010 at University of Kansas
1/8/2010 at University of South Dakota

1/11/2010 Clarkson University

1/16/2010 Columbia University
1/23/2010 at Columbia University
1/29/2010 Dartmouth College
1/30/2010 Harvard University
2/5/2010 Yale University
2/6/2010 Brown University
2/12/2010 at University of Pennsylvania
2/13/2010 at Princeton University
2/19/2010 at Harvard University
2/20/2010 at Dartmouth College
2/26/2010 Princeton University
2/27/2010 University of Pennsylvania
3/5/2010 at Brown University
3/6/2010 at Yale University

Cornell Basketball in the News

From Zach Klitzman over at the Daily Pennsylvanian:
Cornell officially released it’s M. Hoops schedule, and the Big Red certainly do have their work cut out for them. They play at least four “BCS” schools: at Alabama in the season opener, versus Seton Hall in the home opener, then at two of the most well-known stadiums in the country in Syracuse’s Carrier Dome and Kansas’ Allen Field House (the potential fifth team is St. John’s in the Holiday Festival). They also play three City Six teams beside Penn: at Drexel, versus Saint Joseph’s and at La Salle. However, their schedule isn’t all tough games, as they play Division III schools Clarkson University and Penn State Erie, Behrend College (yes that’s one school) as well as Bryant University and University of South Dakota, both of which joined D-I last year.

Over at Cornell Basketball Blog, some Big Red fans are scared the team will start 0-4 (@ Bama, @ UMass, vs Seton Hall @ ‘Cuse) while others believe “we are good enough to win all four of those games.”

This now makes Penn one of just three Ivy schools not to have released their schedule yet ( Harvard, Yale, Brown and Princeton previously released theirs). I guess Glen Miller’s still trying to find the one more team.

Cornell Men's Basketball Returns to the Airwaves on WVBR-FM


ITHACA, N.Y. -- The Cornell University Department of Athletics and Physical Education will join forces with 93.5 WVBR-FM to broadcast the upcoming 2009-10 men's basketball campaign. With longtime announcer Barry Leonard back on the radio call, WVBR will broadcast all 31 regular season games, plus any possible postseason contests. Leonard's call will also be available as part of the RedCast subscription service as part of video for home games and audio for road contests.

"Cornell basketball has a long tradition of being heard in the Ithaca area on WVBR-FM, and we're excited that the campus will have that opportunity again this season," said Steve Donahue, The Robert E. Gallagher '44 Head Coach of Men's Basketball. "We look forward to an exciting season and continuing this partnership."

"We're thrilled that WVBR has become Cornell's exclusive broadcast partner for men's basketball. It's a perfect fit for the WVBR brand, especially apt in light of the fact that our call letters once stood for 'Voice of the Big Red.' We anticipate that it will be a great way to connect with our student fanbase," said Dan Powers '10, President and General Manager of WVBR-FM.

The men's basketball team returns the core of players that have directed the Big Red to consecutive Ivy League championships with a combined 25-3 conference record. Two-time first-team all-league selections Louis Dale and Ryan Wittman, reigning Ancient Eight Defensive Player of the Year Jeff Foote, senior starters Geoff Reeves and Alex Tyler and 2008-09 Ivy League Rookie of the Year Chris Wroblewski highlight the returning talent from a team coming off a 21-10 campaign a season ago. This year's schedule is highlighted by several high-profile opponents, including Alabama, Syracuse and Kansas. Click here for the full schedule.

93.5 WVBR-FM is Ithaca's only live and local rock radio station. For over 40 years, WVBR-FM has broadcast the best classic and modern rock, as well as local news, sports, and entertainment. WVBR reaches seven counties in central New York from our transmitter in Tompkins County and the rest of the world from WVBR.com. WVBR-FM is owned and operated by the Cornell Radio Guild, Inc., a local, not-for-profit corporation.

Two-time Defending Ivy League Champion Men's Basketball Announces 2009-10 Schedule


* 2009-10 Cornell Men's Basketball Schedule

ITHACA, N.Y. – Games against preseason No. 1 Kansas, as well as a pair of games at MadisonSquareGarden, highlight what may be the most challenging non-conference schedule in Cornell history as head coach Steve Donahue announced the 2009-10 slate on Friday afternoon. Including possible tournament opponents, Cornell has six non-conference foes that won at least 20 games a season ago and seven that earned at least 10 conference triumphs. Five opponents earned postseason invitations, including two NCAA tournament foes, and three claimed at least a share of their conference's regular season titles.

The Big Red will play eight of its 17 games against teams from BCS conference schools and the Atlantic 10, while 12 of the team's potential opponents earned winning records in 2008-09. Cornell will spend plenty of time on the road, as only five of the team’s non-conference games will be played at Newman Arena, though Seton Hall will become the first BCS conference school to visit Newman Arena since eventual national runner-up Georgia Tech opened the 2003-04 campaign in Ithaca. In all, the team will play 10 of its first 13 games away from home, including four against postseason teams with eight of those 10 road games against teams with winning records a season ago.

Big names litter the schedule, with contests against Alabama, Massachusetts, Seton Hall, Syracuse, Saint Joseph’s, Davidson, St. John’s, Kansas and Vermont. Additionally, perennial foe Bucknell, 20-game winners Hofstra from the Colonial Athletic Conference and independent South Dakota will challenge Donahue’s two-time defending Ancient Eight champion. Cornell will renew rivalries against Drexel (first meeting since 1988-89) and Toledo (first meeting since 1976-77), and will also meet independent Bryant and Division III foes Penn State-Behrend and Clarkson.

The 2008-09 Big Red posted a 21-10 mark, claimed its second straight Ivy League title with an 11-3 record and became the first Ivy League school other than Penn or Princeton to earn the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA tournament in consecutive years. Cornell set team records for points (2,281), 3-pointers (241) and blocked shots (121) this past season. The Big Red will return all five starters, including two-time first-team all-league selections Louis Dale and Ryan Wittman and reigning Ivy League Defensive Player of the Year Jeff Foote, as well as eight of the team's top nine scorers for the 2009-10 campaign.

Cornell will open the 2009-10 season by visiting Alabama of the powerful Southeastern Conference on Saturday, Nov. 14. The Crimson Tide went 18-14 a season ago, finishing fourth in the SEC West with a 7-9 mark.

The Big Red will open competition at the Legends Classic when it visits regional host Massachusetts of the Atlantic 10 on Wednesday, Nov. 18 at the MullinsCenter. Regardless of the result, the Big Red will then move onto a pod that features a three-day round-robin that will see Cornell meet Drexel (Nov. 27), Vermont (Nov. 28) and Toledo (Nov. 29) at Drexel’s Deskalakis Athletic Center in Philadelphia.

In between the UMass game and the remainder of the Legends Classic schedule, Cornell will play a pair of high-profile Big East squads. The Big Red will host Seton Hall on Friday, Nov. 20, as Cornell will put its 21-game home win streak on the line in front of the Newman Nation fans. That mark enters the 2009-10 campaign as the third-longest in the country.

Next up will be the team’s annual game against Syracuse. The Big Red will attempt to snap a 31-game losing streak to the Big East power and Central New York rival in the process when it visits the Carrier Dome on Nov. 23. Last season, Cornell led by as many as 16 points in the first half before dropping an 88-78 contest to a team that eventually went to the NCAA Sweet 16.

With seven games in the rearview mirror before December begins, the Big Red will close out the first semester contests with games at Patriot League foe Bucknell on Dec. 2, followed by another big on-league home matchup, this time with Saint Joseph’s. The Hawks went 9-7 in a tough Atlantic 10 conference a year ago and 17-15 overall.

After a two-week break for final exams, the Big Red will accept an invitation to compete in the ECAC Holiday Festival for the first time since the 1970-71 campaign when it battles mid-major power Davidson on Dec. 20 at MadisonSquareGarden. Depending on the result of the first contest, Cornell will play either St. John’s, the tournament host, or Hofstra the following day in either the consolation or championship game. It will be the Big Red’s fourth appearance in the historic tournament.

Another week break for Christmas, this time an eight-day hiatus, will end when the two-time defending Ivy champs close out the 2009 calendar with games at La Salle on Dec. 29 in Philadelphia and at home against Penn State-Behrend on New Year’s Eve in Newman Arena.

Cornell opens the 2010 portion of its schedule at home when it meets Bryant on Jan. 2 at Newman Arena. The Big Red won the first-ever meeting with the Bulldogs a season ago despite playing without head coach Steve Donahue, who was attending a family funeral. Ryan Wittman had 18 points in the 69-46 triumph.

A visit to Allen Fieldhouse in Lawrence, Kansas will provide Cornell its stiffest test of the year. The Big Red will face a team many have ranked No. 1 in various preseason polls. Returning All-Americans Cole Aldrich and Sherron Collins and national title-winning head coach Bill Self return all five starters from a team that went 27-8, won the Big 12 with a 14-2 conference mark, and lost to eventual Final Four participant Michigan State in the Sweet 16. The Jayhawks enter the year with the longest homecourt win streak in the country at a robust 41 games.

The team will close out non-conference play when it visits South Dakota on Jan. 8 in the team’s first-ever visit to the state, then turns around looking to extend its win streak over non-Division I opponents when it meets Clarkson on Jan. 11 at Newman Arena.

The Big Red will have a chance to get off to a great start in conference action, as it will play five of its first six league contests at Newman Arena. Cornell will open defense of its Ancient Eight title against Columbia on Saturday, Jan. 16. A return trip to New York City on Jan. 23 is followed by consecutive home weekends against Dartmouth and Harvard on Jan. 29-30, and Yale and Brown on Feb. 5-6.

Consecutive road weekends will test the Big Red, starting with the annual trip to Penn and Princeton on Feb. 12 and 13. Cornell will attempt to sweep the weekend for the second time in three years after never sweeping the duo on the road previously. Harvard and Dartmouth will host Cornell the following weekend.

February will end with Cornell’s final home weekend and the final home games for seniors Louis Dale, Jeff Foote, Jon Jaques, Geoff Reeves, Pete Reynolds, Alex Tyler, Andre Wilkins and Ryan Wittman as Princeton and Penn challenge the Big Red on Feb. 26-27. The regular season will end the following weekend when it meets Brown and Yale on the road to open March competition on March 5-6.

Big Red Rankings

"Dwight" from NBC's The Office is quite the Cornell fan.

Several college basketball websites are publishing preseason rankings in the form of a daily or weekly countdown to No. 1.

Bleacher Report's George Barnette is counting down 65 Teams in 65 Days, as the nation's best teams headed into 2009-2010. Cornell is ranked No. 52 on the Bleacher Report.

CollegeHoopsNet.com (CHN) is counting down the Top 144 teams in Division I in 144 days. Last season, CHN ranked Cornell No. 89 . Cornell was the only Ivy to crack the ranking. Thus far, CHN has ranked some of the following teams, many of which come from major conferences.

#???: Cornell

#98 Providence
#100 Houston
#103 Texas Christian
#107 Nebraska
#109 Indiana
#110 Binghamton
#114: Rutgers
#115: Temple
#117: Southern Illinois Salukis
#119: NC State Wolf Pack
#120: USC Trojans
#123: Iowa Hawkeyes
#126: Charlotte 49ers
#129: Wyoming Cowboys
#130: Texas Tech Red Raiders
#131: Holy Cross Crusaders
#133: Vermont Catamounts (Cornell '09-'10 opponent)
#134: Rhode Island Rams
#139: South Florida Bulls
#141: Washington St. Cougars

MidMajorMadness.com (MMM) is counting down and ranking the nation's 344 Division I teams for the 2009-2010 season. Thus far, MMM has ranked teams Nos. 344 to 254. Potential Cornell opponents on the 2009-2010 schedule already ranked include:

330. Toledo
329. Dartmouth
308. Bryant
307. Brown
291. Columbia
283. Bucknell
262. Penn

A Look Back at the Incoming Recruiting Class from the 1998-1999 Season

Above, former Cornell coach, Scott Thompson huddles with Wallace Prather ('02, left) and Jake Rohe ('01) right.

With the news of Penn's recent pair of commitments from the same high school team, we got to thinking, when was the last time Cornell had a pair of incoming recruits originating from the same high school squad? The answer is the Cornell recruiting class of 1998. Former Cornell coach, Scott Thompson signed 6'10" Trevor Tarpley and 6'6" Luke Vernon out of Englewood, Colorado's Cherry Creek High School. Although Tarpley was considered the much higher profile recruit, he never played a single game for Cornell, opting not to pursue playing collegiate basketball.

The 1998 recruiting class also notably included players such as Wallace Prather, a 5'9" point guard and 6'5" A.J. McGuire.

Prather graduated in 2002 and had a stellar career with the Big Red. He is now a successful agent representing multiple NBA players.

McGuire, the grandson of the late legendary Marquette coach, Al McGuire, tore his ACL in his second game of his senior year at Phillips Exeter Academy before enrolling at Cornell.

Bill Bradley Returns to Cornell

Bill Bradley, Princeton ’65, and Ken Dryden, Cornell ’70 – will discuss “Lives on the Run: Sports, Service & Leadership” at Cornell University on Sept. 10. Jeremy Schaap, Cornell ’91, the Emmy award-winning ESPN journalist will moderate the event.

Sen. William “Bill” Bradley
Bill Bradley was a three-time, All-American basketball player at Princeton University and graduated with honors in 1965 with a degree in American History. Bradley went on to become a star professional basketball player for the New York Knicks from 1967 to 1977. He is currently a U.S. Senator from New Jersey.

Hon. Ken Dryden, P.C.
Ken Dryden holds a degree in history from Cornell University and a law degree from McGill University. He also has received honorary doctoral degrees from the universities of Ottawa, Windsor, York, McMaster, St. Mary’s, Niagara and British Columbia.

At Cornell, Dryden led the Cornell Big Red to the 1967 National Collegiate Athletic Association hockey championship and three consecutive ECAC tournament championships. He was a member of the Sigma Phi Society and vice-president of the Quill and Dagger society.

Dryden was goaltender for the Montreal Canadiens hockey team from 1971 to 1979, during which time the team went on to win six Stanley cups. Mr. Dryden is a proud member of the Hockey Hall of Fame, the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame and the International Scholar-Athlete Hall of Fame and his jersey number 29 was retired by the Canadiens in Jan. 2007.

Dryden was first elected to the House of Commons as the Member of Parliament for York Centre in 2004 and was re-elected in 2006 and 2008. From 2004 to 2006, he served as Minister of Social Development. He is the author of four best-selling books: The Game, Home Game, The Moved and the Shaken, and In School. In 1984, he was appointed Ontario’s first Youth Commissioner. Before entering politics, Dryden served as president of the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Jeremy Schaap
Jeremy Schaap, a correspondent for ESPN's primetime newsmagazine E:60, received anEmmy award for his work as the host of Outside the Lines. He also is a regular contributor to Nightline and ABC World News Tonight and has been published in Sports Illustrated, ESPN The Magazine, Time, Parade, and the New York Times.

A native and current resident of New York City, Schaap is the author of Cinderella Man: James J. Braddock, Max Baer, and the Greatest Upset in Boxing History, a New York Times best-seller, and Triumph: The Untold Story of Jesse Owens and Hitler's Olympics.

Schaap is the son of the late journalist and broadcaster Dick Schaap. Like his father, Schaap is an alumnus of Cornell University and a former editor of The Cornell Daily Sun and a member of the Quill and Dagger society. He won the Dick Schaap Award for Outstanding Writing at the 2005 Emmys, an award named after his father, for an Outside the Lines feature entitled "Finding Bobby Fischer."

See CornellBigRed.com for more details.

Recruiting News

Above, a January 3, 1988 Cornell at N.C. State game program. Below, a brief recruiting note.

According to the Springfield News-Sun, Vandalia Butler High School’s (Vandalia, Ohio) A.J. Pacher, a 6'9" forward committed to Wright State. Citing a desire to stay close to home, he had reported offers from Cornell, Bowling Green, Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Central Michigan, and Eastern Kentucky.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

News and Notes: Around the Ivy League

Above, a December 4, 1986, Cornell at Notre Dame game program. Below, notes from around the Ivy League:

Recruiting News

NJHoops.com is reporting that Cornell, Columbia, Lafayette,and Lehigh are recruiting Ryan Lubreski, a 6'2" guard from Blair Academy in Blairstown, New Jersey.

CrownMagOnline.com discusses Manny Sahota's verbal commitment to attend Cornell. The article notes:

Sahota is a 6’6 forward from St. Marguerite D’Youville in Brampton, Ontario. After much consideration, he has signed on to play for Cornell in the NCAA Ivey League. Sahota will be a welcome addition to the program, as he is a versatile forward... Sahota plays for CIA Bounce.

CIA Bounce Coach Tony McIntyre is extremely pleased... “Manny has worked hard to expand his game from the inside-out, and should do well at Cornell. Manny is a really solid player. He is also very serious about his school, just like he is about basketball, so Cornell is a good choice for him.”

We Got Next.

Due to the departure of six seniors from last season's roster, there are available minutes up for grabs during 2009-2010 in Cornell's regular playing rotation.

The graduates include:

Jason Battle, a 6'4" shooting guard appeared in 29 games last year and averaged 7.8 minutes per game. During Cornell's last five Ivy League games, Battle played at least 10 minutes in each game.

Also at shooting guard, 6'0" Adam Gore appeared in 12 games and averaged 8.1 minutes.

At power forward, Brian Kreefer appeared in all 31 games for an average of 12.7 minutes per contest.

Who will replace Battle, Gore and Kreefer? Let us know who you think is going to step-up in the rotation in the upcoming season by leaving a comment to this post, sending us an email (CornellBigRedFan@gmail.com), or posting a message on The Cornell Basketball Blog's Community Forum (click here).

Fan Websites/Blogs Take Some Heat


Interesting article today appearing in the Washington Post about blogs and websites run by fans of college athletic teams. NCAA rules explicitly state that fans (boosters) of college teams cannot communicate with recruits or their families. This rule applies to fans utilizing websites, blogs and message boards.

Here at The Cornell Basketball Blog, we are in full compliance with all NCAA rules. We note that we have never communicated (either directly or indirectly, verbally or in writing) with a prospective Cornell athlete or members of their family.

As we have repeatedly noted on this site, prospective high school players interested in playing basketball for Cornell should contact the Cornell coaching staff and not the editors of The Cornell Basketball Blog.

Schedule Update: U. South Dakota Corrects Date of Cornell Game

As we have posted previously, Cornell's schedule is tentatively complete for 2009-2010. The University of South Dakota Athletics Department confirmed today in a press release that the Big Red will visit USD on January 8. The game is part of road trip that will also take the Big Red to Kansas on January 6. USD Athletics writes, "The Coyotes' game against Cornell has re-scheduled for Friday, Jan. 8 at 7:30 p.m. at the DakotaDome. Cornell has made back-to-back appearances in the NCAA Tournament."

Alumni News: Esdaile ('69) Elected To New England Basketball Hall of Fame



ITHACA, N.Y. -- Former Cornell basketball player Walt Esdaile '69 has been elected to the New England Basketball Hall of Fame in the Scholar-Athlete category. Esdaile will be inducted at a dinner and ceremony on October 9 at the Mohegan Sun in Uncasville, Conn. Information regarding tickets and other aspects of the program can be found at www.internationalsport.com/basketball.

Esdaile led the team in scoring (414 points) as a senior, and led the squad in rebounds as both a sophomore (315) and junior (294). He graduated ranked sixth on Cornell's all-time career scoring list (1,014 pts.) and fourth in both career rebounds (840) and career rebound average (11.4). He was an All-Ivy second-team selection in 1967 and 1969. He ranked among the national rebound leaders as sophomore and junior. Esdaile was named team MVP and honorary team captain in 1969.

Rather than holding small induction ceremonies every year, the New England Basketball Hall of Fame executive committee determined to hold larger ceremonies every few years. Starting in 2006, elections commenced every three years.

Rebounders Club Welcomes Back Big Red Basketball


* Photo Gallery from the Rebounders Welcome Back Dinner

ITHACA, N.Y. -- The Cornell men's and women's basketball players return to class today, but not before they were officially welcomed back by the Rebounders Club on Wednesday evening at a dinner at the Ithaca Country Club. The night gave the supporters of the Big Red basketball programs a chance to meet the teams' newcomers and welcome back returning student-athletes with a meal consisting of hamburgers, hot dogs and grilled chicken.




The Cornell Rebounders Club welcomes the men's and women's basketball teams back to campus with a welcome dinner on August 26, 2009.

Recruiting News: Is Harvard's Recruiting Cooling Off?

Success in Ivy League basketball recruiting is assessed by stepping back and examining the big picture. Successful recruiting is not defined by who you choose to recruit and the hype and buzz around your program's efforts. If the players don't choose to enroll, the effort amounts to nothing. And even then, it only matters if the new recruits eventually win basketball games and do it in the right way.

Harvard could be learning this tough lesson.

After all of the summer hype and buzz in the national media, this week highly touted-guard, Pe'Shon Howard of Oak Hill Academy in Virginia seemingly backed out of his verbal commitment to attend Harvard. Then yesterday, Rod Odom of the Middlesex School in Massachusetts told AZCats.com that his list of upcoming college visits may not include Harvard. Odom visited West Virginia last weekend and said "My next visits I will take are Arizona and Boston College. I will be at Arizona on September 18th and then onto Boston College on October 3rd." He added, "I'll make my decision around late September or early October," said Odom. "I doubt that I use all of my visits." Odom previously told members of the media that he might visit Harvard on September 25. There is no public confirmation if the visit was cancelled. Additionally, Keala King, a 6'5" wing from Compton, California also told Rivals.com that he intends to play in the Pac 10. In all three cases, Harvard was hoping to land a commitment.

Harvard could still pull off a surprise and assemble a strong recruiting class. But from the looks of the above developments, it has not been a good couple of weeks in Cambridge.

Cornell Roster Update

We have some roster news.

In roster news, the Big Red newcomers have received their new jerseys. Mark Coury will continue to wear the No. 42 he donned while at Kentucky. The rest of the newcomers will wear the following:

No. 5 Errick Peck
No. 11 Max Groebe
No. 21 Pete McMillan
No. 22 Miles Asafo Adjei
No. 34 Josh Figini
No. 55 Eitan Chemerinski

The Cornell Basketball Blog
also learned earlier this summer that senior Marc Van Burck, a 6'11" transfer from the University of Colorado via Salt Lake Community College will not be a member of the Cornell Big Red during 2009-2010. The reasons of the departure are private.

The decision was made last May. Van Burck will remain at Cornell and is expected to graduate with his class in 2010.

Van Burck appeared in six games for the Big Red last season and played a total of 17 minutes. On the season, he collected 2 rebounds and 3 blocked shots.

As a freshman in 2006-2007, Van Burck averaged 6.6 minutes, 0.3 points and 1.0 rebounds in ten games off the bench for the Colorado Buffaloes. He played a season high 32 minutes at Nebraska and 9 minutes against Kansas State. Van Burck missed the majority of his rookie season with a foot injury.

Van Burck's departure brings Cornell's roster down to 19 active players for the 2009-2010 season, 8 of which are seniors in their final year of eligibility.

The Cornell Basketball Blog wishes Marc the best of luck in his future endeavors and thanks him for his contributions to Cornell Big Red Basketball!

News and Notes: Around the Ivy League, Penn Hires Jerome Allen

Penn Basketball has announced the hiring of Jerome Allen as a new assistant coach for the Quakers. Allen is one of the most beloved former Quakers in Penn Basketball history. This move sounds like more fuel for the The Fire Glen Miller website.

Recruiting News: Pe'Shon Howard Backs Out of Commitment to Harvard, Penn Gains 4th Recruit for 2010

Above, Penn coach, Glen Miller watches from the background as Cornell's Louis Dale drives past former Penn guard, Harrison Gaines. Gaines transferred to Cal Riverside during the summer.

The Daily Pennsylvanian breaks the recruiting news on the east coast that Penn received its fourth commitment for the class of 2010 this week, while Harvard lost the verbal commitment of Pe'Shon Howard. See the Daily Pennsylvanian story below:

After Penn nabbed its second 2010 recruit earlier this month, it appears that Glen Miler has grabbed two more recruits.

And just like Austin Kelly, these new recruits hail from the Los Angeles area.

According to the LA Times, Capistrano Valley (Mission Viejo, Calif) teammates Casey James (6-foot-3 guard) and Kevin Panzer (6-8 forward) have both committed to Penn. James originally gave an early verbal commitment to San Diego back in 2007 (according to ESPN insider), but he’s since backed out of that.

ESPN gives James a 76 grade and in December 2007 called him “the most prolific shooter in the west” alongside a Santa Clara signee. But perhaps Panzer is the bigger catch. For one, he definitely is coming to Penn, as ESPN insider, Rivals and CBB all have him listed as a Penn commit (ESPN has yet to change James’ status from the SD verbal). Though he’s just the 164th best forward, Panzer gets a 78 from ESPN, which last September said “At his size there may not be another 4-man around the country that can shoot like him.” He looked at four Pac-10 schools (Cal, Arizona State, Stanford and Washington) as well as San Diego, Colorado and Gonzaga (the last two schools were on his short list with Penn).

If nothing else, check out this myspace video with Panzer and James. It looks like Penn is going to get some more dunkers.

But with the addition of Panzer — will there be Panzer tank-inspired roll outs?– and probably James as well, Penn would have six players from California on its 2010-11 roster: Panzer, James, Kelly, incoming freshman Malcolm Washington (Denzel’s son), and rising juniors Conor Turley and Tyler Bernardini.

Of course, that’s assuming no more Californians transfer away.

* * *

In other Ivy recruiting news, it appears that Pe’Shon Howard has backed down from his earlier statement (see #3) that he’d attend Harvard if admitted. Now, in an email to ESPN.com, he said after discussing the matter, he’s “wide open and considering every school in the country.” In addition to the Crimson, he’s looking at Maryland, Stanford, Arkansas, Xavier and other big conference schools.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

A Date in Cornell Basketball History: Remembering the '96 Massacre at Kansas

Not one of the proudest moments in Cornell Basketball history, but certainly scorched into memory. On January 2, 1996, on a road game visit to the University of Kansas, the Big Red were stomped, 100-46 by the then ranked No. 4 Jayhawks. Jacque Vaughn led Kansas with 16 points while Raef LaFrentz added 13 points and 10 rebounds.

At the time, NBA superstar, Paul Pierce was a freshman on the powerful Jayhawks.

Cornell got 14 points from Eddie "The Sergeant" Samuel in the defeat.

Cornell gets a rematch with Kansas on January 6, 2010.

A 1995-1996 Second Team All Ivy League selection, Samuel came to the Cornell Basketball program through a rather unusual path. Below is an archived story from the Daily Pennsylvanian detailing Samuel's journey.
Air Force sergeant stars at center for Cornell

Eddie Samuel had no plans for college or basketball

Saying Eddie Samuel's route to Ivy League basketball has been circuitous might be the understatement of the year. This 28-year old former Air Force sergeant spent plenty of time in the "real world" before living out his hoop dreams at Cornell.

Samuel has always been a talented basketball player. Although he did not play high school varsity basketball in Pensacola, Fla., it was not for a lack of ability. Back then, he was a guard, going about 5-foot-11 and 145 pounds as a member of the freshman and sophomore team. But come junior year, Samuel had to prioritize.

"I had an opportunity to work in a bank, which would be very helpful to my mother," said Samuel, who did not see any future for himself in basketball.

After graduating from Woodham High in 1985, Samuel joined the Air Force, an institution with which he was already acquainted through a cousin. Although he does not regret his decision in the least, Samuel does call his thinking at the time "naive."

"I felt that the only way to go to college was through sports, and that was out of the question," Samuel said. "I knew I didn't want to sit at home."

First stop was the basic training program, where the 18-year old's guard body began to transform into that of a center. In just nine weeks, Samuel gained 40 pounds and grew several inches, a spurt that did not stop until Samuel was 6-foot-5.

Samuel would spend six years in the military, a time that would take him to places as far-flung as North Dakota and Germany. Upon entering the Air Force, the kid nicknamed "Big Man" for his feats of growth, began to resuscitate his basketball career. At first, that only meant showing up for intramural games, but eventually it took Samuel to the highest levels of the Air Force's complicated basketball hierarchy, which involved spending long periods, up to six months per year, on a touring team.

But the junior officer's military experience was not all games. During the Persian Gulf crisis, Samuel was shipped off to Ramstein in the former West Germany.

"I remember a lot of 12-hour shifts," said Samuel, who was working in mobile support. "You could feel the tension. We were located where people were going in and out [of the Persian Gulf]."

By the time the war had ended, the then-24-year-old was nearing six years since he had left home. In that time, he had given a lot of consideration to his future.

"I basically had to make a decision between making the Air Force a career or pursuing other avenues," Samuel said.

Finding it increasingly difficult to make rank, and wanting a college degree, Sgt. Samuel decided to trade in the military life for Pensacola Junior College, a national powerhouse in the junior college ranks.

Playing down low, Samuel quickly made use of the skills he had gained in the intramural ranks, where he played with present boxing champion Roy Jones, Jr. As a member of the senior team during the 1993-4 season, the power forward chipped in 7.8 ppg and 5.0 rpg, as Pensacola rode a galaxy of stars -- including players now at Missouri, Saint Louis and Auburn -- to the national junior college championship.

Once his two years at Pensacola were up, he had to pick a new school. Cornell had sent feelers to many junior colleges, looking for talented players with high GPAs. Pensacola coach Bob Marlin had responded on Samuel's behalf. When Cornell got wind of the strong post player with the 4.0 GPA, Samuel had an opportunity he never anticipated.

"I knew that I wasn't trying to make a basketball career, so the only logical thing was to pick the best academic school," said Samuel, who rejected free rides to Southwest Texas State and Furman, among others.

That decision certainly pleased Cornell head coach Al Walker.

"He's a fantastic young man, who made a tremendous decision to come to the Ivy League," Walker said.

But even in the Ancient Eight, a 6-5 player is rarely called upon to play center, but that is just what happened in Samuel's case.

He rose to the challenge, averaging 11.5 ppg, while adding 6.0 boards per outing. Still, it was a frustrating season for a man who had been a national champion just one year earlier. The Big Red, composed mainly of young players, went 9-17, with a scant four Ivy League wins.

This year has been much of the same, as co-captain Samuel continues to function as a veteran leader for the Big Red, who presently sport a 9-14 (5-9 in the conference) mark. Nonetheless, the year has had its thrills such as when Cornell went out Lawrence, Kan., to meet the then-No. 2 Kansas Jayhawks.

"I wanted them to be No. 1 when we played them," Samuel said. "The coach [Roy Williams] came over and talked to us. He told us, 'It's going to be a good game' and apologized for the small crowd, because it was over break. It was packed -- I don't know what it's normally like."

This weekend will be a special one for the Ivy League's oldest player, as he will play his final two college basketball games in front of the home crowd at Cornell's Newman Arena. It's been a long road to basketball glory for the Pensacola native, whose hopes of a college education and a basketball future once seemed dead when he took the job at the bank 12 years ago.

News and Notes

Below, some news and notes on Cornell Basketball.
  • September could be a big month for Cornell Basketball recruiting! Stay tuned to our daily recruiting updates.
  • Speaking of the Legends Classic, how 'bout those lucky Cornell basketball fans in Philadelphia? The Big Red will play an incredible five games in the City of Brotherly Love this season. Between November 27-29, 2009, Cornell plays three consecutive subregional games in the Legends Classic in Philadelphia against Drexel (host), Vermont and Toledo. The order of games and start times in Philadelphia is to be announced at a later date. Cornell returns to Philly on December 29, 2009 with a visit to La Salle, then on February 12, 2010, Cornell heads to West Philadelphia to visit Penn. But New Yorkers get a piece of that Cornell hoops action as well. On December 20, 2009, Cornell goes up against Davidson in Madison Square Garden's Holiday Festival opening round. In a second game in MSG on December 21, Cornell will face either Hofstra or St. John's. Of course, Cornell returns to New York for a third game when the Big Red battle Columbia on January 22.

Jon Jaques Writes for AthleticManagement.com

Below, a pair of articles written this summer by Cornell's Jon Jaques for AthleticManagement.com.
...As a current student-athlete, I can appreciate the tough decisions administrators face when choosing which resources to cut back on. But at the same time, there are certain amenities that an athletic department, and more specifically student-athletes, can't do without. So here's a list of the amenities I've found are essential from a student-athlete's perspective, and a couple of areas I think are okay to cut from.

Don't cut spending on ...

• Locker Rooms: Without breaking the bank, you can also add personal, team oriented decorations to the locker room that increase the room's d├ęcor and the school's attraction to recruits. For example, at Cornell, where our nickname is the Big Red, a small touch that makes a big difference is the red carpet in the locker room. The carpet combined with photos of current and former players and great moments in team history that adorn the walls help build team spirit. Adding a sign with a coach's motto or favorite quote is also a nice way to decorate the room and build team chemistry. These are all ways to design a locker room your players will love without burning a hole in the athletic department's wallet. Too much time is spent on the court or in the weight room to not give your players a place to unwind and relax...

• Athletic equipment: ...at Cornell we have a shooting machine called "The Gun" that rebounds shots and spits the ball back out to the shooter, allowing a player to come in to the gym on his own time and get shots up. This equipment, while undoubtedly expensive, is an invaluable resource since nearly every member of the team uses it and has improved because of it.

• Marketing/Advertising for Games: ... A deafening crowd makes you feel like someone injected a shot of caffeine straight into your bloodstream--you have the energy to do anything and perform at your peak level. When no one is in the gym, it's hard to not feel a little less excited about the game, and more often than not, that carries over to the team's performance on the court. The crazy crowds we've been drawing lately to Cornell basketball games are due in large part to the success of the team, but also our athletic department's efforts to advertise in campus and local media.

It's ok to cut spending on ...
• Plane Travel: ...At Cornell we only fly to a couple of non-conference away games per year and spend a lot of the time traveling by bus. It may surprise athletic administrators to know that those long bus rides are some of the most fun I've had during college, just hanging out, watching movies, or cracking jokes with my best friends. In many ways I prefer road trips because of the time spent bonding with teammates.

• Extra Gear, Clothing: ... I probably have more Cornell basketball t-shirts and sweatshirts than I do any other type of clothing in my closet. And I'm not even at a big time, major conference basketball program that probably gives out free shirts and shoes daily. As great as getting free clothing is, it is probably unnecessary and a good place to start looking for areas to cut back on spending. While it may be free to us players, someone, namely the athletic department, has to pay for it. While players might be upset at first, I'm sure they will understand that it just doesn't make sense to give each player on the team six shirts that look exactly the same.

See also Jaques' article, "Stop the Presses."