Romar Talks UW’s Future, Cougs Lose Three
According to Lorenzo Romar in Monday’s season wrap up press conference, Quincy Pondexter will not be playing in the NABA All-Star game this weekend at the Final Four in Indianapolis IN. The UW official site, Go Huskies, provided the entire press conference as a free download.
Romar was asked what he meant when he said, “For the first time in a long time, we’ll have three seniors and three or four juniors” and he said that it did not mean that he felt that there is a chance that one of the prospective juniors would be leaving, more that he was not sure at the time how many juniors were on the roster.
According to Draft Express, as NBA Draft speculation web site that projects who will be drafted at where over the next few years, Quincy was going to play along with Cal’s Jerome Randle, Houston’s Aubrey Coleman and St. Mary’s Omar Samhan. Romar said that Quincy was asked but declined and that his focus is on preparing for the NBA draft.
Draft Express picks Quincy to be drafted this June at #23, while the other major site that does this NBADraft.net picks Quincy at #30, the last pick in the 1st round. Andy Katz of ESPN quoted an anonymous source that he stated was an NBA personnel director, who said that Quincy will be chosen in the early 2nd round.
Quincy was also rather unfairly not named to the AP All-American Team, other than to be awarded honorable mention.
The Pondexter story is a good one for him and for Washington, despite the ridiculous snub by the AP. He stuck it out, amid a lot of criticism and what some felt were failed expectations after being such a highly rated recruit, to become the best player in what was an underrated Pac-10 last year. Yes, he was the best player in the conference in my opinion, despite the fact that Randle won the Player of the Year award. Q was named the Player of the week a record 5 times.
Now the question for Husky fans is what will the Dawgs do without Q? One major factor that made this past year’s team good over the last 17 games, during which they won 14, was the addition of a solid 3rd scoring option in Matthew Bryan-Amaning. Matt, incidentally will play on Great Britain’s national team this summer, which can’t hurt his development. When others started to gain some traction, like Justin Holiday hitting open looks from the perimeter and Elston Turner hitting his shots, UW became an even better team.
Venoy Overton also has been a consistent force on both ends this past year and has improved with the ball in his hands, but no one ever talks about him as an offensive option because much of what he does is opportunistic scoring off the transition game and the occasional and often clutch open three. He reverted a bit too much against West Virginia to playing out of control and not choosing his spots to kick it in to that crazy high gear that he has, but you might say that he was a solid factor this year scoring as well as his obvious defensive prowess.
The problem for UW is that Quincy was that one go-to-guy that was the most completely independent. If you say that Isaiah is your go-to-guy, that makes some sense, but I think that Quincy can manufacture more points with put backs, once he does get an isolation play set up. Thomas is great one on one, but Quincy’s ability to create that fall away jumper or jump up high enough in the lane without it easily getting blocked is something that Isaiah just can’t do as well.
Isaiah is best served to continue to work on his long range shooting and passing out of his impressive ability to penetrate and score. Matt on the other hand has not been able to score from the perimeter. He has really only been able to score with his back to the basket or close in, as impressive as he has been able to do that. Matt feels that he can make improvements though in that area by next year.
“I’ve been doing well in the post, and with these guys they’re going to want to get the ball in the post. But if I really want to make an impact, I’m going to have to expand my game a bit more to the perimeter. That’s going to be one change you’ll see in me next year.”
UW needs someone that can do what Quincy did or Brandon Roy, for instance, which is to take the ball from the perimeter and create a shot that includes a mid-range game with a six-foot-eight guy in his face. Whatever improvements that Matt can make, I believe there are reasonable doubts as to whether there is a guy on the UW team that is currently scheduled to be here next year that can do that to the level UW needs to improve on this past year’s effort or even duplicate it.
Desmond Simmons is probably the guy who does that the best of anyone that is definitely going to be there. If UW can get Terrence Jones and/or Terrence Ross, I believe that between those three freshman, one guy (we know that Simmons be there, barring injury, but the other two are still yet to be confirmed) could step up and fill that need for UW, hopefully early enough to make a big splash next season. One player that I think would like to be mentioned in that group is Elston Turner.
Turner has been more of a three-point guy off the bench for UW in his career this far, but he understands that going aggressively to the hole and getting to the free throw line is what the team needs him to do for him to play everyday starters minutes. Turner talked about that, as well as some back ground about his growing up with an NBA dad on a Sacramento sports talk show prior to the WVU game.
Whether Romar can land a recruit like Ross or Jones, find a diamond in the rough like Simmons or get enough help from Turner, Matt and the rest to move the UW team further than they have been so far in his tenure, upper campus is certainly sold that he is the man for the job. Athletic Director Scott Woodward told the Seattle Times that they will be discussing a contract extension.
I think that this is a wise move by Woodward. Romar is arguably the best coach that Washington has had in the modern era, with plenty of respect shown to Marv Harshman (Lorenzo’s coach in 1978-1980) and fellow national coaching hall of fame coach Tex Winter (who only lasted three years at UW.
As far as Washington has come under Romar and as far as they could go, if he continues to make progress like he has at Washington, he couldn’t stop the Dawgs from having a 5 hour stop over in the Midwest on their way back from Syracuse NY, making their trip after the game a total of 15 hours from the time they arrived at the airport to the time they got home.
Husky Recruiting Corner
2010 UW forward recruit Terrence Jones is getting a hard push from Kentucky. We are hearing from a source in consistent contact with Jones whose opinion is that Terrence really likes the recruiting attention fest and that he is most likely going to end up at Washington, but Jones refuses to confirm anything like that. Rivals Kentucky site did an update on Jones where Terrence talked about the loss to Kentucky and how he could have helped with his outside shooting.
More pertinent to the Washington situation, Jones talked about playing with Terrence Ross at the next level. We have heard that Jones and Ross are very interested in playing together in college if at all possible and nothing Jones told Rivals really contradicted that.
“Yeah, we’d love to play together if that’s what works best. He and I are just going to do what’s best for each other and if it happens to be the same school, that’s what it’ll be. Right now he’s just working on getting better, focused on getting ready for college (and) being really disciplined.”
ESPN reported that Jones, “Is put together like an NFL defensive end” in its coverage of the McDonalds game.
The Oregonian reported that Jones was named a 1st team Parade All-American.
In an update on Scout UW 2010 post recruit Aziz N’Diaye was listed as, “leaning toward Washington, Oregon State, Kansas and Oklahoma”. Up until now not much mention has been made of Kansas by Aziz’ coaches at CSI, but I have heard that he was getting looks from the Jayhawks. With Cole Aldrich announcing his intention to enter the NBA draft, as expected, N’Diaye could provide some additional depth for the factory school.
UW commit Kevin Davis has been getting more media scrutiny. Since the Twin Falls ID daily Magic Valley News reported that he will reclassify to 2011 and attempt to gain his Associate degree in 6 quarters, thus becoming hopefully eligible to gain admission to Washington, quite a bit of stuff on him has surfaced. Montlake Madness posted a small video clip of him dunking.
Alex Akita at Seattle Sports Net did a feature back in February detailing his high interest in UW. The Federal Way Mirror did a feature in February 2009 that talked about the fact that Kevin is the father of a two year old girl. It has been reported that being close to her is a high priority for him. Perhaps if things don’t work out with Washington, Seattle U may also be a good fit as it was for Charles Garcia.
2012 UW guard recruit Kevin “Yogi” Ferrell missed two late three point attempts on the last possession as his Park Tudor IN team lost to Wheeler in the Indiana State 2A Championship game. An Indiana High School blog had a short game story, as well as a glowing analysis of Ferrell’s game.
Cougs Lose Three Players
After the news that DeAngelo Casto was arrested and charged for fourth-degree assault, according to McClatchey News Services. We have heard that Casto will likely be back at WSU, but there may be some disciplinary action taken for his actions. Nothing official has been confirmed by WSU other than to say that, “Coaches will gather more information before making a decision on possible disciplinary measures”.
KXLY, a Spokane TV station reported that police confirmed that the incident involved drinking. It was also reported that the incident happened at a private residence.
It doesn’t sound like Casto is going anywhere, but it does appear that freshman guards Xavier Thames and Anthony Brown are. Scout reported that both players will transfer and Hoopmasters additionally confirmed that Thames was looking to transfer. Scout also reported that guard Michael Harthun will also transfer, according to his father Steve.
With the loss of these three guards, Scout also hypothesizes that Coach Ken Bone will go after needed post help this spring. The update on Monday named 4 notable post players still on the market including UW 2010 recruit Aziz N’Diaye.
Gonzaga Assistant Coach Hired as Bronco Head Man
Leon Rice, longtime Gonzaga assistant has been hired as the new Head Coach of Boise State.
According to our sources Rice is looking for high school coaches that can recruit to help him rebuild the BSU program.
On a sad note GU legend Frank Burgess has passed due to cancer, according to numerous reports. The Seattle Times did an informative story on the Bulldog great that after a pro career served as a judge and rose as high as to serve in U.S. District Court.
Pac-10 Round Up
The rumors continue as the Oregon coaching search trudges onward. What do you do when you want to hire a college basketball coach and money is no object? That could be the theme of this vignette, as KEZI in Eugene OR reports that Oregon has offered Final Four coach Tom Izzo of Michigan State the richest contract ever, surpassing even that of infamous Kentucky Head Coach John Calipari. :
Where does all of that money come from down in the Willamette Valley? As if on cue, it was announced that Nike (are you surprised kids?) extended their deal with the Oregon Athletic Department through 2018, according to the Oregonian.
The Oregonian also reported that both Tubby Smith of Minnesota and Mark Turgeon of Texas A+M have passed on the gig.
Cal’s D.J. Seeley has also announced his intention to transfer,
According to Hoopmasters Seeley was, “Recruited by Duke, Memphis, UCLA, USC and every school you could imagine”.
Cal does not need this. Next year they will return Jorge Gutierrez, Omandi Amoke and Harper Kamp, neither of which are known for their offensive prowess. Seeley is a shooting guard in the mold of Patrick Christopher and Theo Robertson, who could have grabbed the spotlight in Berkeley next year. The Bears will now have much more room for minutes for freshmen Allen Crabbe and Alex Rossi, both of whom are highly thought of, but you always have an advantage playing a junior over freshmen in my opinion. Cal’s point guard will also likely be freshman Gary Franklin.
Another returning player, seven-foot-three center Max Zhang is looking at the possibility of turning pro in his native China, according to sources. Markhuri Frison-Sanders, who was very effective this season in the post and started a lot of games, will also be returning.
‘Zona got a commitment from Jesse Perry, a six-foot-eight JC transfer post from Illinois. Perry was also being recruited hard by UCLA.
Perry could have been replacing D.J. Shumpert on the ‘Cat roster, as he announced that he will be transferring.