Wednesday, November 19, 2014

News and Notes: Wednesday Edition

Below, news and notes...

  • 843 Sports previews Cornell for the Charleston Classic:
All this week, we will be previewing the Charleston Classic, which tips off on Thursday and runs until Sunday at the TD Arena. Want more coverage? Check out our page dedicated to the event.
Cornell Big Red
Coach: Bill Courtney
Last season: 2-26 (1-13 Ivy)
Postseason: None
It’s basically been Harvard and everyone else in the Ivy League for the past several years, but at the other end of the totem pole last season was Cornell. The Big Red fell in all but one of their games against the rest of their Ivy counterparts (Dartmouth was their victim) and saw their only other win come against Division III Cornell. That’s a pretty significant dropoff for a team that went 13-18 (5-9) the season before that but is probably to be expected when your leading scorer and rebounder (Shonn Miller) misses the season with a shoulder injury, your other leading scorer (Johnathan Gray) graduates, and your starting point guard from the year before (Galal Cancer) doesn’t play.
All that aside, things seem to be looking up for the Big Red in 2014-15. Miller and Cancer have returned along with second-leading scorer Devin Cherry to make up a strong senior nucleus. They’re joined by sophomore Robert Hatter, who as a freshman performed nicely with Miller and Cancer out before falling ill in the late stages of the campaign, and big man Robert Onuorah, an immediate contributor on defense in his rookie season. You’d be hard pressed to believe that this go-around shouldn’t turn out much better than last year’s trainwreck of a season.
  • Zach Spiker's Army team is looking to start 3-0 and its SID notes it would be, "the first time the Black Knights started 3-0 versus current Division I opponents since Bob Knight opened the 1968-69 season with consecutive wins over Lehigh, Cornell and Temple."
 A Cornell comeback within a Cornell comeback

After Colgate’s Damon Sherman-Newsome scored the first eight points of the game against Cornell, the Big Red looked a lot like the 2-26 Big Red of 2013-14: sluggish and ineffective. Later, a 23-6 Big Red deficit had them looking like a carbon copy of that 2013-14 squad.
Then Devin Cherry kicked his game into high gear, turning in a career performance and almost single-handedly turning the game around for Cornell. Cherry finished with 21 points, five assists, four boards and three steals while shooting an efficient 8-for-15 from the floor. He scored 20 of Cornell’s first 49 points and made sure the Big Red didn’t fade completely in the first half. He played with passion and he was consistently rewarded for it.
To put Cornell’s win into proper perspective, the Big Red lost to Colgate by 23 last year. Cornell is making sure we all know this is not last year.

Do you believe in the power of transitive property? Cornell beat George Mason, who beat Princeton, who beat Rider, who blew out Penn. The Big Red now look to be a middle-of-the-pack Ivy team whose stock is rising fast. What’s perhaps most encouraging (and intriguing) about Cornell’s comeback victory over Colgate is that Shonn Miller wasn’t the driving force behind it. Miller was just 2-for-9 from the field for seven points and the Big Red still won thanks to timely scoring from JoJo Fallas (!) and offensive efficiency from Galal Cancer (zero turnovers).
This isn’t Shonn Miller and a bunch of guys. It’s a team.
And it’s a suddenly confident team with two very early wins and counting. The upcoming Charleston Classic, in which Cornell will play several power conference schools, including South Carolina, will be very challenging. But at least this program – and coach Bill Courtney – appear to have their legs under them again

1 comment:

millertimeatnewman said...

I guess 843 Sports is really looking forward to seeing "Robert Onourah" in action. :)