Monday, June 14, 2010

News and Notes: Monday Edition, New Assistant Hired

Above, Manny Sahota, an incoming Cornell recruit, suits up tonight in the All-Canada Classic All-Star Game. refers to Sahota as a "gem" headed to Cornell. Below, some news and notes for Monday...
  • Cornell has reportedly filled its third and final assistant coaching slot. Sources tell the The Cornell Basketball Blog that George Mason video coordinator, Ricky Yahn will join Bill Courtney's staff. Yahn began his playing career in high school where he played at Wheeling (West Virginia) Central. He was named First-Team All-State and his team won the state championship his senior season. He played under Dave Wojcik, now an assistant coach at Wake Forest. After the successful high school career, Yahn went on to play college basketball at Division II Wheeling Jesuit University and later professionally in England. As a two-year captain at Wheeling Jesuit, he led the team to the NCAA Tournament twice, including the conference championship in 2005. He was named first-year All-WVIAC and the team MVP. His college coach, Jay DeFruscio, is currently an assistant coach in the NBA with the Indiana Pacers. After graduating from Wheeling Jesuit in 2007 with a degree in psychology, Yahn joined the staff of Saint Vincent College as an assistant coach.
  •, a Seton Hall blog writes, "when your most impressive non-conference game is a win over Cornell, that's one weak S.O.S (strength of schedule), even though the Big Red competed with the likes of Kentucky in the NCAA Tournament." Cornell will face Seton Hall in New Jersey during the 2010-2011 season.
  • The Ithaca Journal notes, "The Rebounders [Club] will hold an open house to introduce the new Cornell men's basketball coaching staff. It will be held from 5-7 p.m. Tuesday, June 22, at the Country Club of Ithaca.
  • evaluates the additions and subtractions to the Virigina Tech Basketball program and writes, "Bill Courtney, Assistant Coach - After just one season in Blacksburg, Bill Courtney left to become the head coach at Cornell University. It is definitely a job where success is possible, as the Big Red made the Sweet 16 just this past season. It is probably the best job in the Ivy League, and Courtney landed it thanks to strong recommendations from both Seth Greenberg and Jim Larranaga, his boss at George Mason. Courtney never was in Blacksburg long enough to really establish any strong ties between Virginia Tech and a region, so the recruiting impact was minimal. On the bench, the Hokies should have more than enough knowledge to make the adjustments between experienced coaches Dennis Wolff, James Johnson, and of course Greenberg."
  • The Flat Hat, the students newspaper of the College of William & Mary references the commitment of Minnesotan Tom Schalk's to attend W&M. He drew some interest from Cornell.
  • Former Penn forward, Brian Fitzpatrick continues to bash Penn's coaching staff for overstocking the Penn roster. As a result of Penn's overcrowding, Fitzpatrick left Penn and transferred to Bucknell, while his classmate, Carson Sullivan, also transferred earlier in the season. Penn currently projects to have a roster of 22 players next season. Below some additional quotes from Fitzpatrick. The quotes were given to the Daily Pennsylvanian, which did a fair job of allowing a player to speak his mind:

On why he chose Bucknell:

"There’s gonna be 14 kids on the basketball team; you don’t have to deal with 24 kids. I think at one point, Penn had nine kids coming in next year. If me and Carson [Sullivan] were still here, there would be 25 kids on the basketball team with one senior. I just don’t understand that. What are you gonna do if the coaches threaten us that they’re gonna cut half the team? If I was a junior or sophomore, I’d probably stay, but I’m a freshman. I had other places to go, schools that would take me."

"I feel like at Bucknell, they recruit more. They find guys that are the right fit, whereas at Penn, they’re like, 'Let’s bring them all in. Let’s see what happens. We don’t really need him, but bring him in, and see if he works hard, he might pass the other guy that we thought was better at one point.' I just don’t agree with that ... It’s just good that I found a better fit for me, and Jerome [Allen] can go get somebody else or whatever. I don’t know."

On the expanding roster:

"I wouldn’t be surprised if they kept the roster at 20-something guys; I wouldn’t be surprised if they cut kids; I wouldn’t be surprised if kids transfer; I wouldn’t be surprised if kids quit. That’s the way it’s gonna work."

On whether the other freshmen felt the same way he did:

"Carson left mid-year for similar reasons. … They [the freshmen] thought they deserved a chance too. We didn’t really have a backup point guard, so I think Malcolm [Washington] sometimes felt like he deserved a shot."

  • Curious to see some Cornell Big Red highlights? Check out some of the following videos produced by SlopeMedia
-Cornell Big Red 2009-2010 Season Highlights
-Jeff Foote's Career Highlights Video
-Louis Dale's Career Highlights Video
-Ryan Wittman's Career Highlights Video


Anonymous said...

What does it mean that Footie is have TWO workouts with the Knicks?

Anonymous said...

.. oops, "is hav-ING two workouts", excuse my conjugation.

Anonymous said...

It is not hard to imagine Foote being drafted even if he is not currently NBA ready and would need to play for several years in europe getting stronger and continuing to develop offensive moves facing the basket. (There are many precedents of guys with his size playing a few years in europe and then turning into solid role players later in the NBA. Whether he is drafted or not, he may get a shot down the road. (Chris Dudley of Yale was able to make it and he was imo less skilled than Foote at this juncture in his career.) I think Witman is harder to figure - his shot is already NBA ready but will a team believe he can defend in the league such that he could carve out a niche spot up shooter role? It is always much harder to project whether additional time in Europe can add to the athleticism of a player. No matter how this turns out, kudos to both of them. It is just amazing and great that there is discussion speculating whether the two of them will have a shot at the big stage.