Thanksgiving Top 5 (11/25-12/2)
1. SI Love – It was nice to see Sports Illustrated show us some love in its NCAA B-Ball Preview this year. SI, which ranked us No. 47 in the country, has the Pirates going to the Big Dance for the first time since 2006. Of course, this was pre-Jeremy Hazell hand injury. If the Hall can go at least go 7-5 (like Jerry Carino noted on Hoops Haven) without Hazell then SI's prediction has a chance of ringing true. Then again, they also picked the New York Mets to win the 2009 World Series.
2. I must break you – Did anybody else hear Patrik Auda’s "Your listening to WSOU" commercial on the radio this weekend? He sounded exactly like Ivan Drago (Dolph Lundgren) in Rocky IV. You know the guy. "If he dies, he dies". Please make a point to listen for it. It’s pretty amazing.
3. Swing and a miss – When the news broke that Rice University beat us out for the services of Point Pleasant Beach wing Jarelle Reischel I contemplated heading straight for the, "Neon Lights". Granted I’m a bit bias because I reside in the Point Pleasant-area and I’ve seen Reischel play a handful of times, but I believe he would have been a great get for the Hall. At 6’6’’, 208 Ibs., Reischel, who plays like a typical European style swingman has a well rounded skill-set and high basketball I.Q. Lakewood Senior Jarrod Davis, who once claimed he committed to Seton Hall (without an offer) also plays in the lakeshore conference. He's currently drawing interest from Tennesse and Georgia Tech.
4. Ke-off – After scoring 1 point on 0-4 shooting (and committing 4 turnovers) in 36 minutes through the first two games of this weekend’s Paradise Jam, Coach Willard decides to start Keon Lawrence against Clemson on Monday. Why? To commit 5 more turnovers and score 3 points on 1-3 shooting in an extended 28 minutes of play? My question is where is the guy that averaged 11.0 points, 3.3 rebounds and 2.4 assists as a sophomore at Missouri? Where is the guy once nicknamed the "Human Pogo Stick" for acrobatic dunks and freakish athleticism? These questions have remained over the course of two seasons and it's quite clear, this is the player that Keon is now. Nothing more, nothing less.
5. Record saved by a De-hair – With Hazell missing up to six weeks, it’s pretty safe to say that Pirate legend Terry Dehere’s school career-scoring record of 2,494 points will not be touched. When Dehere (1989-1993) retired he not only held the school’s career-scoring record but he also held the Big East’s career-scoring record (1,320). I was present at the then Brendan Byrne Arena in March of 93’ when Dehere surpassed Chris Mullin (1,290 points) as the conference’s all-time leading scorer in a game against St. John’s (I even the ticket stub to prove it). Lawrence Moten (Syracuse, 1991-95), Troy Bell (Boston College, 1999-03) and Luke Harangody (Notre Dame, 2006-10) have since cruised past Dehere on the career Big East scoring list. Don’t think Dehere was popping bottles of Dom Perignon when Hazell went down with injury that would sideline him for a little over a month. Like the class-act he’s always been, Dehere was, in fact, rooting for the Pirates sharp shooter to break his record.