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Atlantic 10 Notebook

January 16, 2003 Conference Notes No Comments

Atlantic-10 Conference Notebook

by Chris Roddy

Double fresh. Double smooth. Double delicious to chew.

David West continued his dominance of LaSalle and turned in a stellar double-double performance as the Chalmer-less Musketeers won back-to-back games for the first time since 2002. West racked up eighteen points and fifteen rebounds in the 80-47 win. LaSalle hasn’t been able to slow down West; he has scored 31 and 25 points the last two times these teams met.

The Explorers, winners of four of their last five, never were in contention as Xavier got out to a 19-2 run to start the game. West also became Xavier’s career block leader midway through the game, bringing his current total to 197.

Easy Prey

Sure, Xavier has been in the Hoopville Top 25 all season and has a pre-season All-American selection in David West on their squad. Yet, if you peruse the Atlantic-10 standings, you might just notice that a certain St. Joeseph’s team is doing pretty well. The Hawks are 12-1 overall and undefeated in league play as they lead the Eastern half of the A-10.

The RPI Report has St. Joe’s ranked higher than Dayton and Xavier (10th) with some marquee victories over Gonzaga and most recently, Temple. Of course, St. Joe’s also would like to let it be known that they have a West of their own, sophomore guard Delonte West. He’s averaging over thirteen points a game and five boards, not too shabby.

Mark your calendars now for March 5th when St. Joe’s will play host to the Musketeers. Will this be just another game or perhaps a little something-something more?

Another Really Good A-10 Team

ESPN.com went out on a limb saying that the Atlantic-10 simply didn’t have the talent to produce any viable NCAA tourney threats. Sure, they made exception for the likely league champion (again, they predicted Xavier), but criticized many of the schools inability to recruit and mature as programs. How about Dayton as a solid contender?

Just some highlights from the Flyers schedule:

W 75-69 vs. then No. 19 Cincinnati
W 71-67 vs. Old Dominion
W 80-78 vs. Villanova
W 92-85 vs. No. 22 Marquette
W 77-72 vs. Duquesne
L 85-74 vs. Duke (ok, this one was a loss, but it was on the road against the number one team in the country!)

Dayton looks to take over sole possession of first place in the A-10 West in an upcoming showdown against rival Richmond University.

Oliver Purnell to Help Guide 2003 USA Basketball’s Team

The University of Dayton’s head coach Oliver Purnell was named an assistant coach to USA Basketball’s National Team. The head coach is Philadelphia 76ers head coach Larry Brown, and the team will play in the 2003 Olympic Qualifying Tournament and potentially represent the United States in the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Greece. Gregg Popovich of the San Antonio Spurs and University of Kansas coach Roy Williams were also named as assistants.

Oliver Purnell has been head coach at Dayton for the past nine years. He is 141-113 with the Flyers, Purnell was an assistant coach for the 2001 Goodwill Games U.S. team. He has also been named USA Basketball Developmental Coach of the Year, Atlantic-10 Coach of the Year and was a finalist for NABC National Coach of the Year.


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