Sunday, March 27, 2011

News and Notes: Sunday Edition

Below, some Sunday news and notes and a weekend recap...
  • Ryan Wittman ('10) and his NBA D-League team, the Ft. Wayne Mad Ants are making their push for the franchise's first ever spot in the D-League Playoffs. The Ants host Albuquerque tonight and the game is free to view online at the NBA D-League website. From the Ft. Wayne Journal Gazette previewing tonight's game, "'Witt’s played well. Give the young guy credit. I think he’s deceptive because he’s a little bigger than people think at 6-5. He helped us on the defensive board and played better defense than you think,' [said Ft. Wayne coach, Joey Meyer.] Wittman, who joined the team in early February, has been on a tear lately. The former Cornell standout scored 11 points against the BayHawks and has averaged 12 points in his last four games. He has also given the Ants another outside shooting threat, having hit 13 of his last 23 three-point attempts." From the Ft. Wayne News Sentinel, "Wittman is counted on for the instant offense he can bring from long range. 'His confidence keeps growing as each game goes on,' [said Meyer]." See more alumni news further down below.
  • In the March 21, 2011 issue of Sports Illustrated, Tim Layden writes, "whatever the issue, the sport [of college basketball] is inevitably (if temporarily) rescued by March Madness. In 2010 ninth-seeded Northern Iowa eliminated top-seeded Kansas on the first weekend of the Midwest Regional, and St. Mary's, a 10 seed, took down No. 2 Villanova in the South. Buzzers were beaten. Favorites fell. Cornell advanced to a Sweet 16 matchup with Kentucky, and while the Wildcats won that game, they played immaturely two days later and lost to West Virginia to fall short of the Final Four. (Sigh of relief.) And no team better represented the healing powers of the Dance than Butler."
  • Long time Penn basketball fan and alum, Jon Tannenwald, interviewed Ivy League Executive Director, Robin Harris for Below is an excerpt from the Q&A.

    Q: How are the athletic directors around the league that you’re hearing from reacting to the exposure that the Ivy League is getting?

    A: It’s great. It’s just good for the league. Just like Cornell’s success last year was good for the league as a whole. And that’s what makes our league special. Other leagues have this too, but we recognize that there are certain things that benefit a school or a couple of schools, but they’re also good for the league.

    I’m sure there are other schools that would want to be here, but given that they can’t be here, they’d just as soon have this publicity.

  • Throughout the season we will provide periodic updates on Cornell's eight (8) overseas alumni playing professionally. Below, some updates:
-John McCord ('97) (SIG Strasbourg, Pro A France)-Through March 27, the 6'6" forward and long time veteran of the European leagues is averaging 10.8 points and 5.7 rebounds per game. Strasbourg sits at 10-13 and in 10th place in the 16 team league. During his roughly fifteen year pro career, McCord, a former 1st Team All Ivy League selection, has played in France's pro leagues and in England.

-Jeff Aubry ('99) (Halcones, LNBP Mexico/Puerto Rico Basketball League, Arecibo Capitanes)-Jeff Aubry splits his time in both the Mexican and Puerto Rican professional leagues. He played several seasons in the NBA D League in the early part of his career with the Fayetteville Patriots and Florida Flame. During his more than a decade of pro experience, Aubry has also played professionally in the ABA and abroad in Poland, Argentina, Uruguay and Peru.

-Cody Toppert ('05) (Forli, LegaDue Italy)-Through March 27, Toppert, a 6'4" shooting guard is averaging 9.9 points and 2.3 rebounds per game for Forli. Forli is 6-18 and in 15th place out of 16 teams. Toppert previously played this season with the Plymouth Raiders of the British Basketball League before moving to Italy. Like Aubry, Toppert is a veteran of the NBA D League, a former Albuquerque Thunderbird. During his pro career, Toppert has also played in the CBA as well as in Germany, Portugal, and New Zealand.

-Jason Hartford ('08) (Ginasio, LPD Portugal)-Through March 27, the 6'9" Hartford is averaging 15.1 points and 6.5 rebounds per game. Ginasio is 7-12 and in 9th place in the 12 team league. During his career, Hartford has played professionally in Finland and Africa (Mozambique).

-Louis Dale ('10) (Gottingen, Bundesliga Germany)-Through March 27, Dale is averaging 8.1 points, 2.4 rebounds and 2.1 assists per game. Goettingen is 13-14 on the season and in 11th place out of 18 teams in the Bundesliga. Goettingen also advanced to the quarterfinals of the EuroCup and will face Benetton (Italy) on March 30 in game 2 of the quarterfinals which features former Milwaukee Buck, Brian Skinner.

-Ryan Wittman ('10) (Ft. Wayne Mad Ants, NBA D-League)-Through March 27, Wittman is averaging 5.9 points and 2.0 rebounds in 16.1 minutes per game. Ft. Wayne is 22-25 and in 3rd place in the Eastern Conference. Before moving to the D-League during January, Wittman averaged 14.5 points, 4.2 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game for Forli in Italy's LegaDue this season.

-Jeff Foote ('10) (Maccabi Tel Aviv, Israel Winner's League/Melilla, Spanish 2nd Division)- Through March 27, Foote is averaging 8.0 points, 6.6 rebounds and 2.0 blocks per game. (leading the the league in blocks). Melilla is 14-16 and in 11th place out of 18 teams. Foote is on loan to Melilla from Israel's Maccabi Tel Aviv.

-Jon Jaques ('10) (Ashkelon, Israel Winner's League)-Through March 27, Jaques is averaging 3.0 points and 1.9 rebounds per game. Ashkelon is 5-17 and in 10th place in the 10 team Israeli league.
  • Below is an updated directory listing of some Twitter feeds associated with the Cornell basketball program. You can also follow The Cornell Basketball Blog on Twitter.
-Josh Wexler ('88)
-Steve Cobb ('05)
-Andrew Naeve ('07)
-Jason Canady ('08)
-Khaliq Gant ('09)
-Conor Mullen ('09)
-Ryan Wittman ('10)
-Pete Reynolds ('10)
-Jon Jaques ('10)
-Louis Dale ('10)
-Alex Tyler ('10)
-Geoff Reeves ('10)
-Jeff Foote ('10)
-Andre Wilkins ('10)
-Max Groebe ('10)
-Aaron Osgood ('10)
-The Cornell Rebounders Club
-Andrew Ferry ()
-Peter McMillan ()
-Errick Peck ()
-Dominick Scelfo ()
-Jake Mathews ()
-Dwight Tarwater ()
-Manny Sahota ()
-Dave LaMore
-Shonn Miller
-Assistant Coach Ricky Yahn ()
-Assistant Coach Mike Blaine ()
-Assistant Coach Marlon Sears ()
-Brian Delaney, Ithaca Journal ()
-Cornell Daily Sun Sports ()
-Slope Sports ()
-WVBR Sports ()
-Former assistant coach, Jay Larranaga ()

And a few reminders....

Visit The Cornell Basketball Blog's Community Forum and Message Board to interact with other fans of Cornell and Ivy League basketball. Membership is free! You may also follow us on Twitter.

Blueprint for Success, the yearbook commemorating Cornell's 2009-2010 season is now on sale and available for delivery. Visit the Cornell Athletics website to order your copy today! Or pick up a copy sold in the Cornell Store on campus.

Fans of the basketball program in the Ithaca area should not miss the opportunity to join the Cornell Rebounders Club.

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