Wednesday, October 27, 2010

News and Notes: Evening Edition

Below, some news and notes for the evening...

  • USA Today published a feature on Cornell's No. 1 nationally ranked wrestling team. "We're not like basketball and football, where they're fully funded and then some. We've got to raise a lot of money every year just to pay the bills. And if we didn't do that … we would certainly not be where we are today," said Cornell wrestling coach Rob Koll. He added, "Our women's hockey team was No. 1 in the country and … our men's lacrosse team's great and obviously our basketball team is great."
  • On the subject of the Ivy League Media Conference and Preseason Poll, The Trentonian writes of Cornell:
    "Courtney assumes the head post of the three-time defending Ivy League champions after Steve Donahue moved on to Boston College. Last season Courtney served as an assistant to Seth Greenberg at Virginia Tech.

    The trio of Louis Dale, Jeff Foote and Ryan Wittman that led the Big Red to the Sweet Sixteen also moved on due to graduation.

    'It’s a team full of unknowns,' Courtney said. 'We only return about 20 points a game from last year’s group.'

    The lone returning starter for Cornell is junior guard Chris Wroblewski. He is the top returning scorer (8.9 ppg) for the Big Red.

    'With losing those guys who were three of the best players in school history, if not the three best, (Wroblewski) would have to take on a lot more of that leadership role.'

Princeton picked to win Ivy League; Cornell tabbed third

ITHACA -- What, or who, is going to decide the 2010-11 Ivy League men's basketball championship? This season, there seems no simple answer. A theory from Yale coach James Jones indicates as wide-open a race as there's been in his 12 years.

"It's the team that, when it comes down to crunch time, that is able to make the right decisions consistently," Jones said. "I think a lot of the games in the league are going to come down to the last five minutes. How you handle that last five minutes is really going to be important."

The early pick is Princeton, which was tabbed No. 1 in the preseason media poll released Wednesday by the league. The Tigers received 12 of 17 first-place votes; Harvard received four and was picked second, followed by three-time champion Cornell -- which received one first-place vote -- Penn, Yale, Brown, Columbia and Dartmouth.

Princeton finished 22-9 last season, one of three 20-win Ivy teams along with Cornell and Harvard, and returns its top five scorers. The Tigers, who were Division I's top-ranked defense, won two games in a postseason tournament, the College Basketball Invitational.

"I'm looking at our league and trying to size everything that's going on and I think that Pennsylvania is going to be a very, very strong team this year," Princeton coach Sydney Johnson said. "I think they will right the ship immediately."

Penn returns the bulk of its roster from a team that underachieved last season, but handed Cornell its lone league loss. Point guard Zack Rosen is a strong player of the year candidate.

Cornell graduated eight seniors, including six regulars in a rotation that finished 29-5 and reached the Sweet 16 last season. Head coach Steve Donahue left to take over Boston College's program, and former Bucknell star Bill Courtney was tabbed by Andy Noel as Donahue's replacement.

Courtney acknowledged his is a "team full of unknowns."

"It's all new," he said. "Even a guy like Chris Wroblewski, who started for the team last year, will have to take on a leadership role and be one of the main guys. I still think we have a chance to be competitive. I love the guys, and love their work ethic."

Cornell opens its season on Nov. 12 at Albany.

The Ivy League will feature four new full-time head coaches: Columbia's Kyle Smith, Cornell's Courtney, Dartmouth's Paul Cormier and Penn's Jerome Allen. Allen was named interim coach last season when Glen Miller was fired, and was promoted during the offseason.
  • Below are excerpts from each of the press releases issued the Ivy League schools commenting on the Ivy League Media Poll released earlier today:
--Columbia Athletics Department -"The 2010-11 Ivy League preseason poll has been released and the Lions have been picked seventh in what could be the most wide-open Ivy League race in years. Four teams, including Columbia, have first-year head coaches and three-time defending champion Cornell returns just one starter from last year's team that reached the Sweet 16... Cornell notched the last remaining first-place vote and came in third."

--Dartmouth Athletics Department - "The Ivy League released the preseason men’s basketball poll today with the Dartmouth Big Green picked to finish eighth. Princeton was chosen as the conference favorite, receiving 12 of 17 first-place votes and 128 points, eight more than Harvard, which garnered four first-place votes. The two-time defending champion, Cornell, was listed third with the other vote for the top spot in the standings."

--Harvard Athletics Department - "The Crimson earned four first-place votes and trails only Princeton (16 first-place votes) in the preseason poll. Rounding out the poll are Cornell (one first-place vote), Penn, Yale, Brown, Columbia and Dartmouth in that order."

--Penn Athletics Department- "Princeton, which went 11-3 and finished second to Cornell a year ago, has been voted to win this year's title. The Tigers received 128 voting points and 12 of the 17 first-place votes. Harvard, which went 10-4 and took third a year ago, has been picked to finish second; the Crimson had 120 points and four first-place votes. Cornell, the three-time defending Ivy champion, received the final first-place vote and had 96 points in the poll."

-- Princeton Athletics Department - "Returning its top five scorers from a group that finished as runner-up to three-time Ivy League champion Cornell in 2010, the Princeotn men's basketball team has been selected by a panel of 17 media representatives as the Ivy League's preseason favorite to win the league in 2011."

-- Yale Athletics Department - "Princeton, which received 12 of 17 first-place votes, is the preseason Ivy League favorite. The Tigers return their top five scorers and top two rebounders. Harvard got four first-place votes and is second followed by Cornell (one first-place vote) and Penn. Brown, Columbia and Dartmouth round out the poll."

-- The full Cornell Athletics Department release on the Ivy Media Poll is as follows:
Men's Basketball Picked Third In Ivy Preseason Media Poll

ITHACA, N.Y. -- Three-time defending men's basketball conference champion Cornell has been picked to finish third in the 2010-11 Ivy League Preseason Media Poll it was announced on Wednesday morning. Big Red head coach Bill Courtney and the seven other head coaches spent the morning on a media conference call previewing the teams and the upcoming season, which begins on Nov. 12 when Cornell visits Albany.

Last season's league runner-up, Princeton, was named the preseason favorite, picking up 12 of the 17 first-place votes and 128 points total. Harvard was picked second with four first-place votes and 120 points, while the Big Red sat third with the final first-place vote and 96 points.

Rounding out the field was Penn in fourth (89 points), Yale in fifth (57 points) and Brown in sixth (55 points). Columbia (48 points) and Dartmouth (19 points) placed seventh and eighth.

Following a 2009-10 season that can best be described as a breakthrough for both the Big Red and the Ivy League as a whole, Cornell will return 10 letter winners to the court, including All-Ivy guard Chris Wroblewski (8.9 ppg.) and top reserves Errick Peck (3.3 ppg.), Mark Coury (2.4 ppg., 2.4 rpg.) and Adam Wire (1.9 ppg., 2.6 rpg.) in the frontcourt and Max Groebe (3.0 ppg.) in the backcourt. Additionally, five newcomers will hit the practice court for the first time for the Big Red and a number of returners will have a chance to earn significantly larger roles.

Coming off a 29-5 season, a third consecutive Ivy title and a Sweet 16 appearance, Cornell will have an obvious new look when it hits the court. Former conference Player of the Year selections Louis Dale and Ryan Wittman are gone, as is two-time Ivy Defensive Player of the Year Jeff Foote. Alex Tyler, Jon Jaques and Geoff Reeves are also gone after combining for 119 career starts, while important contributors Andre Wilkins and Pete Reynolds were also lost to graduation. Probably the most conspicuous loss will be former head coach Steve Donahue, who accepted the head coaching job at Boston College after a successful 10-year run on East Hill.

First-Place Votes in Parentheses

1. Princeton (12) 128
2. Harvard (4) 120
3. Cornell (1) 96
4. Penn 89
5. Yale 57
6. Brown 55
7. Columbia 48
8. Dartmouth 19

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

How could Wright get a B on a midterm, doesnt he know Harvard only gives out A's