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2013-14 Atlantic 10 Post-Mortem

by - Published May 22, 2014 in Columns, Conference Notes
atlantic10

Admit it: you thought the Atlantic 10 was never going to match the success it had in 2012-13, especially with one of its signature programs (Xavier) and a newcomer that gave it a big boost in that historic year (Butler), plus another one on the rise (Charlotte), off to another conference.

Don’t worry. You were hardly alone. And now that the Atlantic 10 has outdone itself, you can give the conference credit and now look at it in a different light going forward.

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Rhode Island is experiencing the predicted growing pains

by - Published December 30, 2013 in Columns, Your Phil of Hoops
rhodeisland

SOUTH KINGSTON, R.I. – As non-conference play winds down, Rhode Island is experiencing what many could have predicted they would before the season: growing pains. Their 77-64 loss to Southern Miss is perhaps a microcosm of the season, and it’s not surprising that it left head coach Dan Hurley musing about the state of his team as Atlantic 10 play approaches.

Rhode Island certainly had their moments. They responded to an early blitz by the Golden Eagles, leading for stretches in the first half and tying the game early in the second half. But once Southern Miss scored eight unanswered points to break the tie, the Rams were playing catch-up the rest of the way. They rallied to within 64-62, but the Golden Eagles then scored the next 11 points to seal it.

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Providence and Rhode Island show what we can expect from each

by - Published December 6, 2013 in Columns
author_kasiecki

SOUTH KINGSTON, R.I. – Thursday night was everything you could want in a rivalry game. The atmosphere was what you would expect with a packed Ryan Center. The game was close throughout, with some swings for both teams although one had the lead more often than the other. It was a slug fest, and at one point things got heated, including between the coaches. It came right down to the buzzer.

And in some ways, Providence’s 50-49 win over Rhode Island, their fourth straight in this rivalry, will define the two teams going forward as well.

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Rhode Island bounces back, though it took some time

by - Published November 16, 2013 in Columns
rhodeisland

SOUTH KINGSTON, R.I. – The road to wins and ultimately improvement will not be a smooth one for Rhode Island this season. It won’t be a success-only journey. The first week has shown that, and Friday night’s 72-59 win over North Carolina A&T was perhaps a microcosm of the journey thus far.

Earlier in the week, the Rams were blown out at SMU 89-58. It was quite a reversal of last season, when SMU came into town with a nice record against a weak schedule and were blown out of the Ryan Center. Although the Rams were now on the road, the personnel is much better, so one would have figured that if nothing else it would at least be a competitive game, although winning on the road would be tougher. SMU is also better this season, and the Mustangs ran out to a halftime lead and ran away in the second.

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URI will be improved but something of a mixed bag for now

by - Published November 2, 2013 in Columns, Your Phil of Hoops
rhodeisland

SOUTH KINGSTON, R.I. – You could excuse anyone last year for wanting to look ahead to this season at Rhode Island. There was probably some of that among the fan base, although those in the program didn’t do that. “Next year” is now here, and while expectations are certainly higher for Dan Hurley’s team, in all what they look like is a mixed bag at this point, and that was reinforced in their 93-77 victory over Southern Connecticut State University in an exhibition game on Friday night.

Last year, things got so bad that the Rams had to cancel a scrimmage due to a lack of available scholarship players. That was one more hit to their preseason preparation. This year, there is no such issue.

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Fordham 66, Rhode Island 63: A second look

by - Published January 28, 2013 in Columns
author_floriani

BRONX, N.Y. – A game decided by a possession invariably tells you one made the plays in the stretch while the other team did not. In Saturday’s 66-63 Fordham victory over Rhode Island, you can say that was the case. A much closer look, specifically under the glass, tells us where the game was decided: the offensive boards. In raw numbers Fordham held an 18-6 advantage. In the offensive rebounding percentage Fordham held a 44-19% edge. That basically told the tale.

The possessions:

Rhode Island 68
Fordham 68

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Defense carries Rhode Island until the offense wakes up

by - Published January 5, 2013 in Columns, Your Phil of Hoops
rhodeisland

SOUTH KINGSTON, R.I. – One thing we knew about Rhode Island from early on this season was that defense is going to be this team’s calling card. That’s a change from past years, when the “Runnin’ Rams” could score with anyone and run teams off the floor but were not much to write home about defensively. On Friday night, their defense came in handy, as offense was hard to come by for much of their 59-47 win over Brown.

The first half was about as ugly as it gets. Both teams shot below 26 percent from the field, and if you need proof that it wasn’t just good defense on the part of both teams responsible for those numbers, Brown was 4-11 from the foul line and URI was 2-5. The teams combined for 19 turnovers, and Rhode Island led by just a touchdown, 21-14.

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Turnovers become a new issue for Rhode Island against Providence

by - Published December 7, 2012 in Columns, Your Phil of Hoops
rhodeisland

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Last year, Rhode Island looked like they may have hit rock bottom when they played arch-rival Providence. In an 80-61 loss, the Rams were not very competitive and the game didn’t seem as close as the final score. This time around, the Rams looked better and were more competitive, but they lost to a Providence team that suited up six scholarship players, one of whom had a very gimpy knee. The Rams also looked like a team that has notable shortcomings and struggles.

Turnovers haven’t been a big problem all season, but they certainly were on Thursday night, especially in a key stretch. URI was staying close, but inside of ten minutes Providence scored ten unanswered points to open up a 52-39 lead. The Rams finished the night with a season-high 20 turnovers.

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2012 Hall of Fame Tip-Off Tournament Notes

by - Published November 20, 2012 in Columns, Your Phil of Hoops
author_kasiecki

UNCASVILLE, Conn. – The 2012 Hall of Fame Tip-Off concluded on Sunday with four games.  Two champions were crowned in the Springfield and National Brackets, with Loyola (Md.) beating Albany in the former and Ohio State taking home the latter with a win over Washington.

Here are some quick hitters from Sunday’s games.

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Harvard’s path to the elusive NCAA Tournament bid just got tougher

by - Published February 26, 2012 in Columns, Full Court Sprints
hoopguy-orange

Harvard is the nation’s oldest and most prestigious institution of higher learning. Many of the brightest young people grow up dreaming of attending the school, unless you’re like me and dreamed of going to MIT (or Cal Tech) because of engineering. The university has produced a number of high achievers in just about every field imaginable.

On the hardwood, it’s been a different story. Harvard has had seasons of 20 or more wins, and they’ve been to the CollegeInsider.com Tournament and NIT the past two seasons. But they have yet to get to the holy grail of college basketball, the NCAA Tournament. That has eluded them, including last year when they went to a one-game playoff against Princeton and lost on a buzzer-beating jumper in New Haven. And after Saturday night, they might be on a path to such a game once more, as Penn came to Lavietes Pavilion and stunned Harvard 55-54 on Senior Night.

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Simply put, Syracuse needs to improve offensively

November 22, 2014 by

syracuse

Jim Boeheim didn’t have many things to say about his team’s offense, but that said it all. It’s at that end of the floor that Syracuse’s fate this season will be determined.

Growing pains are here for talented Brown team

November 20, 2014 by

brown

Brown has good talent and should be a factor in the Ivy League, but with three sophomores starting on the perimeter, growing pains are in the foreseeable future

New season, same challenge for New Hampshire

November 15, 2014 by

newhampshire

It’s a new season at New Hampshire, and while the Wildcats look like they will defend, they also appear to have the same challenge they have had for a long time now: scoring.

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2014 Prep School Tour

Missed a recap of an open gym workout? We have them all right here for you.

Sept. 9: Putnam Science Academy
Sept 10: Commonwealth Academy
Sept. 11: St. Andrew's
Sept. 12: Northfield Mount Hermon
Sept. 16: Brewster Academy and Phillips Exeter
Sept. 17: Brooks School
Sept. 21: Holderness School
Sept. 23: St. Thomas More and Marianapolis Prep
Sept. 24: South Kent School and Kent School
Sept. 25: Williston Northampton
Sept. 28: Wilbraham and Monson Academy and Suffield Academy
Sept. 30: New Hampton
Oct. 5: Worcester Academy
Oct. 7: Brimmer and May
Oct. 8: Cushing Academy
Oct. 9: Tilton
Oct. 12: Tabor Academy and Rivers School
Oct. 14: The Master's School
Oct. 16: Vermont Academy

You can also find them all right here.

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Recruiting Coverage

New England Prep Schools 2014-15: looking back and looking ahead

November 3, 2014 by

nepsac

With a series of prep school open gym visits in the book and the season not far away, here’s a look back at open gyms and a look forward to the season in the New England prep school ranks.

Marianapolis Prep will battle in Class AA

October 20, 2014 by

marianapolis

Marianapolis Prep is far from loaded with talent, but they have enough perimeter talent to be dangerous. As is usually the case, they will battle and be a tough out in Class AA.

New Vermont Academy coach has put together a contender

October 17, 2014 by

vermontacademy

Vermont Academy has a new coach for the second year in a row, but they shouldn’t skip a beat. They have enough talent to win a lot of games and make a deep run in NEPSAC Class AA.

The Master’s School has good students and talent

October 15, 2014 by

mastersschool

The Master’s School has a number of good students, and they will continue to head to college later. This time around, they also have some talent on the hardwood and should win a few more games.

Rivers will try to build on a breakthrough season

October 13, 2014 by

riversschool

The Rivers School had a breakthrough season last year, winning the Independent School League. They will try to build on that with a team that loses a lot but also returns a lot from last season’s team.