Tuesday, November 5, 2013

News and Notes: Tuesday Edition

Get all the information you need about the Cornell Big Red's season opener at Syracuse, Friday, November 8, 2013 (TV: ACC Sports Network) with The Cornell Basketball Blog's Game Preview Center. Below, news and notes for Tuesday...

Above, a Date in Cornell Basketball History, a 1930 Cornell at Syracuse ticket stub.

  • Cornell Athletics tweeted this photo last night from the Big Red's photo shoot.

PREDICTED ORDER OF FINISH: 1. Harvard, 2. Princeton, 3. Yale, 4. Penn, 5. Brown, 6. Cornell, 7. Dartmouth, 8. Columbia


CORNELL: The Big Red have fallen a long way since being crowned three-time Ivy League champions from 2008-10, culminating in a disappointing 13-18 season (4-10 Ivy) in Bill Courtney's third season as head coach in 2012-13. They will need to overcome the loss of several key players, including Johnathan Gray (10.0 ppg) and Errick Peck (9.7 ppg), but the good news is that they welcome back one of the league's best forwards in Shonn Miller, who not only put up 11.5 points per game on 47.6 percent field goal shooting, but contributed across the board with 6.8 rebounds, 1.9 blocks and 1.9 steals per contest last year. Nolan Cressler (9.3 ppg) drained 40.3 percent of his 3-point attempts in mostly a bench role last season, and will be expected to carry a larger portion of the scoring load as a starter. Devin Cherry (6.2 ppg) and Dominick Scelfo (5.1 ppg) are also back in the mix for Cornell.
  • Student Sports ranks the top 50 high school teams in the country and writes:
48. (NR) Gonzaga (Washington, D.C.) 27-5
Key Players: G Bryant Crawford 6-2 2015 (No. 50 Hoop Scoop Top 100), F Sam Miller 6-8 2015 (Penn State, Rutgers offers), F Jordan Abdur-Ra’oof 6-7 2014 (2nd team All-WCAC, Cornell commit).
Why This Ranking: Although DC Area Player of the Year Kris Jenkins has departed for Villanova, coach Steve Turner’s team will be led by Crawford, one of the most dynamic point guards in the nation. Miller and Abdur-Ra’oof are more than solid on the interior. Besides Crawford, another reason to like Gonzaga is its depth at forward. Plus you can’t leave a WCAC team out of the national rankings picture that went 18-0 in league.
The Skinny: The Eagles also have some promising younger players, such as 2016 Nigel Stewart and 2017s Chris Lykes and Eddie Scott. If one or more of those players steps up, then they become a bigger threat to two FAB 50 ranked clubs for WCAC supremacy. Even though legendary DeMatha (Hyattsville, Md.) is a bit down, the WCAC is as tough as ever.
  • The Indianapolis Star writes from last night, "Purdue found its way back to playing Boilermakers basketball by following one of its newest teammates. Senior forward Errick Peck scored seven points in the first 4 minutes en route to a game-high 16 points, and Purdue used improved defensive intensity to fuel a 91-58 exhibition victory over Wayne State, Neb., at Mackey Arena on Monday.  Peck, a fifth-year senior transfer from Cornell, made his first seven shots, including a dunk for the game’s first basket. The Indianapolis native also collected six rebounds, five steals, two assists and a block without committing a turnover."  See also the Post Tribune which writes in the headline, "Errick Peck Dominates" and notes:
WEST LAFAYETTE — Purdue will head into Friday’s season opener against Northern Kentucky feeling pretty good about itself.  The Boilermakers overwhelmed an overmatched Wayne State 91-58 in Monday night’s exhibition at Mackey Arena, setting the tone from the outset with an active defense, paced by Errick Peck.  They didn’t get carried away with their positive vibes, though.  Purdue clearly was sharper and more aggressive — while adjusting to the new rules — than in its exhibition opener against Indianapolis, but the Wildcats clearly were not as strong an opponent as the Greyhounds.  Peck had 16 points on 7-of-8 shooting, six rebounds and five steals (including two in the game’s first two-and-a-half minutes, and four in the first 10-plus minutes). His dunk opened the score a little more than a minute into the game, as Purdue scored the first 11 points and led by as much as 87-48.“I got an early dunk and that kind of got me going a little bit,” Peck said.  “Just go out there, rebound and play hard, and do what the team needs me to do,” the graduate transfer from Cornell added when asked about his role. “If you need me to score on a given night, I’ll do that. If you need me to rebound, I’ll do that. Play defense, do that. I don’t necessarily have a pegged role, but they have me in a starting spot, and I’m appreciative of it.”
    • The Purdue Exponent writes, "Peck holds the record at Cornell, where he hit eight baskets without a miss during a game."


    Anonymous said...

    we are gonna get our sh&t pushed in by Syracuse.

    This isn't even going to be funny

    The Cornell Basketball Blog said...

    Yup. Could be brutal and won't be funny. But it is what it is.

    Anonymous said...

    I'm guessing we lose by 50+. We lost to Duke last year by 40+ with Shonn, Peck, and Gray.

    The Cornell Basketball Blog said...

    I wouldn't take Cuse by 50, but it is is possible. 25 seems safe. Just don't see how Cornell can compete with its Big 3 opponents.

    Anonymous said...

    oh wait...maybe Robert Hatter can summon his inner Adam Gore circa 2005 and keep us in the game and at least make it respectable...

    The Cornell Basketball Blog said...

    Uh, that team had Lenny Collins, Andrew Naeve and Ryan Rourke. Far better team.

    Anonymous said...

    they also had a coach who knew what the hell he was doing

    Anonymous said...

    I don't think I had ever thought we'd have a team in a year > 2006 where someone would say "Boy, they aint as good as that Collins, Naeve, and Rourke team!" Haha, Bill Courtney for President!

    The Cornell Basketball Blog said...

    Right. They had Steve Donahue who guided them to a 13-15 record.

    Unknown said...

    Ok. Season's about to start, and I'm going to think positive, and wish our actual student-athletes luck against the never-going-to-graduate hooligans of Syracuse.

    Enjoy the experience! Play hard! Soak it in, and remember it when you get old and start writing pissy comments on these boards. I may dislike the coaching (not the coach - I hope he learns and improves), but I like the kids and want them to do well (however that may be defined when playing against psuedo-college players like Syracuse).

    It's not win or lose (ESPECIALLY in the Ivy League) its how you play the game.

    The Cornell Basketball Blog said...

    5 players on the 2005-2006 team would go on to win Ivy titles in 2008:

    Jason Hartford
    Brian Kreefer
    Jason Battle
    Adam Gore
    Conor Mullen.

    Four of those guys were in the 2008 rotation. J-Hart and Gore started.

    Anonymous said...

    That's one heck of a first college basketball assignment for Hatter and Onuorah, if they are in fact the starters.

    Remember, our excellent 2010 team lost to Cuse by 20. If we hold the margin to 25, that would be a moral victory in my mind.

    Anonymous said...

    score prediction:

    Syracuse 88
    Cornell 41

    Anonymous said...

    Wow, such negativity, can anyone be positive about this game! how about Cherry and Cressler light it up, David O controls the inside and Hatter distributes to everyones satisfaction. Tarwater navigates down low with Giddeon and Lamore playing very supportive roles.

    Ok , all of that might not happen but some of it really can happen. Lets look forward to what positives we can take out of the game.

    Remember David beat Goliath, there are numerous upsets throughout recent and past history. Lets go BigRed!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Anonymous said...

    Wasn't trying to criticize Collins, Rourke, and Naeve directly, all of whom I saw multiple times in person play and cheered and rooted for. Rourke was actually my first Cornell dunk. Was more trying to say I expected positive momentum and even better than these great guys brought in to the program. If we're going back to a sub 2006 team then we are not going in the right direction. Or, the coaching should adapt to the situation. Worse players need a better team game. Better players can rely on 'making their own shot' and 'pure athleticism'. The sweet 16 team had great talent and played as a team. That is why they were so great. That is why often the mid major teams that make runs in the tourney are senior laden teams. Because they had 4 years with eachother and the team aspect of the game makes up for the lack of Kentucky-esque freshman talent. Last year was a frustrating offense because while we saw strong team defense in many instance, we saw weak team offense and Bill throwing his hands in the air when we couldn't get a shot off. Wrobo was a saving grace because he first learned how team college bball is played and could implement that in spite of Bill's lack of direction. Also, the blog often notes that Bill was loyal to steve's seniors. Maybe the leftover Donahue guys just new how to work as a team better and had remnant offensive cohesion. This is the first season that I'm not hopeful we can somehow win the league. I have always been hopeful. I have always seen the hidden talent and upside. This season, with my lack of expectations, maybe I'll be pleasantly surprised. Or, maybe I'll be throwing my hands up in the air in frustration after every time Bill does it.

    The Cornell Basketball Blog said...

    I would agree this is the first season with no hope. But here is the good news:

    Cherry, Cressler and Onuorah could have special seasons (All Ivy for the former and ROY/DPOY possibilities for the latter).

    We will also return a core of experienced vets: Bunce, Giddens, Lamore, Hatter and Smith.

    Then in the offseason, when everyone of note in the rotation comes back with major experience and returning possessions, we add the league's top player (Shonn) and get one of the league's top 3 rookies in Jordan.

    Cornell could be a sleeper favorite.

    If you ask me--- I think Devin, Shonn and Nolan are 1st Team All Ivy candidates come 2013-2014.

    Anonymous said...

    How is Bunce "an experienced vet(s)?"

    The Cornell Basketball Blog said...

    Typo in my entry. I was referring to 2014-2015, when these guys all return.