- Steve Donahue is the new head coach at Penn. The Inquirer broke the news as follows:
Penn is set to announce that Steve Donahue will become the next head basketball coach, sources told the Daily News. A former Quakers assistant on the some of the best teams in school history before going on to be the head coach at Cornell and Boston College, Donahue, a Delaware County native who went to Ursinus, finished off a great run at Cornell in 2010 with three straight Ivy League titles and a Sweet 16 appearance. He parlayed that into the Boston College job, but, after some initial success (21 wins his first season), was let go after the 2013-14 season. He did not get to coach his initial recruiting class as seniors.
Cornell was 72-21 in his final 3 seasons. Donahue spent this season analyzing some games on television, but has always been anxious to get back into coaching. So the next coach knows the Ivy League, knows Penn, knows the Big 5 and knows Philly basketball.
A news conference will be held Tuesday at the Palestra to introduce Donahue.
- On Donahue, see a report from the Post Standard. The Standard writes, "Steve Donahue, who took his 2010 Cornell basketball team on an improbable ride to the NCAA's Sweet 16, will become the new head coach at Penn, the Philadelphia Daily News is reporting.Donahue left Cornell for Boston College after guiding the Big Red to three straight Ivy League titles. His teams went 72-21 in his final 3 seasons in Ithaca.Despite his reputation as a solid, some said brilliant, strategist, Donahue's success did not spill over into his Boston College era. He was fired after four seasons at BC, where his teams compiled a 54-76 record. The Daily News story said Donahue will be introduced at a news conference in the Palestra on Tuesday. He will replace Jerome Allen, who resigned last week. The Quakers were 26-61 over the past three seasons."
- On Donahue, NBC Sports notes:
According to the Philadelphia Daily News' Dick Jerardi, former Boston College coach Steve Donahue has been named Penn basketball's next head coach.
Donahue started his coaching career at Cornell, posting a 146-138 record and making three straight NCAA Tournament appearances — including a Sweet 16 trip in 2010.
He was then hired away by Boston College, posting a 54-76 record in four seasons on Chestnut Hill. Donahue was fired following an 8-24 campaign in 2013-14.
Donahue's top assistant coach, Nat Graham, is currently on staff at Penn as an assistant coach. While Donahue spent the 2014-15 season working as a TV analyst, Graham chose to coach under the now-departed Jerome Allen.
The Quakers finished 9-19 in 2014-15, occupying sole possession of last place in the Ivy League for the first time in school history. They have not won an Ivy title since 2007.
According to Jerardi, Donahue will be introduced at a press conference at the Palestra Tuesday.
- The Daily Pennsylvanian writes on the Donahue hire:
Steve Donahue is the next Penn basketball head coach, according to Dick Jerardi of the Philadelphia Daily News.
If hired, Donahue will replace Jerome Allen, who spent five and a half seasons at the helm and had a 65-104 record as coach. A press conference is scheduled for Tuesday afternoon at the Palestra.
The hiring does not come out of the blue because of Donahue's connections to the Red and Blue. He spent 10 seasons as a Quakers assistant under former coach Fran Dunphy, helping Penn win five Ivy League titles in eight seasons in the 1990s, three of which came with Allen as the Quakers' star player. Additionally, Nat Graham — one of Allen's top assistants in 2014-15 — was Donahue's assistant at Cornell and Boston College.
Donahue left Penn to become the head coach at Cornell in 2000, where he also spent 10 seasons. In his final three seasons at Cornell, Donahue won three straight Ivy titles. It was the first time in Ivy history that a school other than Penn or Princeton won three consecutive Ancient Eight championships, a mark since replicated by Harvard over the course of the past five seasons.
In 2010, Donahue led Cornell to the Sweet 16, the farthest any Ivy team has made it in the NCAA Tournament since Penn's 1979 Final Four squad. Still, he had an opportunity to return to the Quakers before his Big Red squads established themselves as an Ancient Eight powerhouse from 2007 onward.
Following Dunphy's hiring at Temple in 2006, Donahue was considered one of the leading candidates to replace his former mentor. However, then-Athletic Director Steve Bilsky opted to hire then-Brown head coach Glen Miller as Dunphy's successor, passing over Donahue for a different individual with Ivy League head coaching experience.
Nine years later, following Allen's dismissal at the end of this season, Director of Athletics Grace Calhoun quickly moved to bring Donahue back into the fold at Penn. After informing Allen on March 2 that he would not return in 2015-16, Calhoun hired Donahue as Allen's replacement less than a week after the former's final game with the Quakers, a 73-52 loss to Princeton.
The success at Cornell propelled Donahue to a job at Boston College in the Atlantic Coast Conference in 2010. After a successful first season in which the Eagles went 21-13, the squad fell on hard times, finishing with a losing record in three straight seasons. He was fired after the 2013-14 season and spent last year as a broadcaster for ESPN.
Despite his struggles at BC, Donahue remained a popular option to fill Allen's spot on the Palestra sidelines among former players and the program's board members. In speaking with The Daily Pennsylvanian last week, Tim Krug — Allen's former teammate and a player with the Quakers while Donahue was with Penn in the 1990s — emphasized a significant amount of alumni support for Donahue.
"I think a lot of the former players and people close to the program ... I think it's common to have Steve Donahue's name close to the top of those people's lists," Krug said at the time. "I don't see how you can have a list that doesn't have Steve Donahue's name in big bold letters at the top. He coached here under two outstanding coaches ... and went on to do phenomenal things at Cornell. He won three Ivy titles at a school that had never competed for Ivy titles.
"To me, it's a no-brainer who the next coach should be.
- An Ivy Hoops Online contributor is against a conference tournament and writes:
"The best Ivy team will have the opportunity to represent itself and the league against teams traditionally considered (sometimes for good reason) to be athletically superior. Cornell’s deep run into the Sweet Sixteen in 2010 was thrilling only because the Big Red were the best Ivy team and had a chance against teams like Temple and Wisconsin, ranked 12th and 16th in the country respectively, even though no one thought they did. They were outmatched in name alone, not necessarily in talent. The ability to actually compete with larger schools will be ceremoniously shot into the sun with the implementation of an Ivy League tournament."
- CBS Sports writes:
Saturday's 53-51 win over Yale at the Palestra gave the Crimson a fourth straight NCAA Tournament appearance under Amaker. That's amazing, considering where this program was when he arrived in 2007. Before that, Harvard hadn't been in the Big Dance since 1946. Now, The Crimson are a symbol of Ivy League excellence. Princeton and Penn dominated the league in the 1990s and Cornell had a strong run under Steve Donahue from 2007-10. Now, Harvard is this league's flagship program. Keep this in mond when filling out youre bracket: Harvard has won Round of 64 games in consecutive years.
- Lafayette's Zach Rufer said he had an offer from Cornell in high school.
- The Washington Post on the firing of Paul Hewitt at George Mason writes, "This season began ominously with a home defeat to Cornell and six losses in the first eight games."
- Here is another look at Cornell's incoming 7-member frosh class for next season:
Stone Gettings (Loyola HS) Los Angeles, CA, 6-8, F
Matt Morgan (Cox Mill HS) Concord, NC, 6-2 G
Troy Whiteside (Webb School) Knoxville, TN, 6-4, G
Joel Davis (Wayne Country Day School) Goldsboro, NC, 6-3
Donovan Wright (Blair Academy) Blairstown, NJ, 6-6, F
Joseph Ritter (Woodrow Wilson HS) Dallas, TX, 6-8, F
Xavier Eaglin (Dayton HS) Raymond, TX, 6-7, F
Jack Gordon (St. Mark's School) Dallas, TX, 6-4, G
Matt Morgan was selected to the Carolinas All Star Classic, pitting the best of North Carolina against South Carolina. Below are the rosters:
Kentrell Barkley Northern Durham Jacque Brown East Carteret Clarence Bryce North Mecklenburg Luke Maye Hough University of North Carolina KiShawn Pritchett Norman Jerome Robinson Broughton Boston College Matt Morgan Cox Hill Cornell Hunter Seacat Lake Norman William & Mary Jaylen Stowe Hickory Ridge Mercer Jaquan Wooten South Lenoir
Andrew Brown Travelers Rest Furman Malik Dunbar Spring Valley Karl Gamble Jr. AC Flora Middle Tennesee State Deion Holmes Chesnee USC Upstate Tyler Hooker Hillcrest East Tennesee State Emarius Logan White Knoll Appalachian State Tevin Mack Dreher VCU Matthew Pegram Wando Wofford Jaywaun Washington Cross Jalen Williams Wade Hampton Furman