A weekly round-up of Atlantic 10 men’s basketball.
Harris, McKoy Ink National Letters of Intent to Attend Rhode Island
KINGSTON, R.I. — Head coach Jim Baron announced that Rayvon Harris and Dominique McKoy have signed National Letters of Intent to continue their academic and athletic endeavors at the University of Rhode Island, beginning with the 2011-12 academic year.
Rayvon Harris is a 6-4, 200 lb. guard/forward from Raleigh, N.C. This past season, he averaged 18.0 points, 9.0 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 3.0 steals for Flora MacDonald Academy in Red Springs, N.C.
The Cougars, under head coach Darrick Bond, finished the 2010-11 season with a 20-6 record. Flora MacDonald advanced to the second round of the 2011 NCISSA playoffs, falling to United Faith, 61-57.
He is one of two NCAA Division I signees from Flora MacDonald this season.
“Rayvon has an excellent body and will give us depth at the wing position,” said Baron. “He is a very physical, athletic player who is good on the offensive glass. Rayvon can really attack the basket and rebound, which will be an asset in our uptempo style of play.”
From Projo.com: Rams land 6-foot-8 McCoy
SOUTH KINGSTOWN — The recruits keep on coming for the URI basketball team.
The Rams have added their sixth new player for next season — Dominique McCoy, a 6-foot-8 forward from Atlanta.
An athletic wing with good outside shooting range, he played for South Atlanta High, a power in Georgia. His team finished 28-3 each of the last two seasons. McCoy averaged 20 points and nine rebounds.
He is a friend of Andre Malone, who also is from Georgia. Malone transferred to URI from Auburn in December and will begin playing for the Rams in the second semester of next season.
UD lands Georgetown transfer
Vee Sanford, a 6-foot-3 guard who is leaving Georgetown University, will transfer to the University of Dayton to play basketball, he said late Wednesday.
Sanford, a Lexington, Ky., native, spent Tuesday and Wednesday on the UD campus and said the school and the area reminded him of his hometown.
“It was a nice feeling being there,” Sanford said Wednesday night while still in Dayton. “It really seemed comfortable, it’s a nice city.”
Towson transfer to visit UD
Towson University transfer Isaiah Philmore, a 6-foot-7, 230-pound forward, is traveling to Dayton tonight for an official visit this weekend and has narrowed his list to four schools: UD, Missouri, Xavier and Delaware State, according to his coach.
Philmore, a native of Bel Air, Md., near Baltimore, averaged 15.4 points as a sophomore last season, the sixth-best mark in the competitive Colonial Athletic Association, to go along with 7.0 rebounds. He shot 49 percent from the field and 80 percent from the foul line.
Xavier’s Pat Kelsey steps down as Associate Head Coach for personal reasons
“For a long time I have struggled internally with this decision but I have decided to step away from college coaching at this time,” said Kelsey. “Four years ago, I witnessed first-hand Coach (Skip) Prosser’s death in the basketball office at Wake Forest. That day, my perspective on the profession and life was forever altered. My role as a father and husband is everything to me and the rigors of this business can make that challenging. My family and my health come first. I have allowed time to pass following the season to be sure of my decision. I am currently evaluating opportunities outside of coaching.
“I want to thank everyone at Xavier as it is truly a special place,” Kelsey continued. “Chris Mack is one of America’s elite coaches. He has done a phenomenal job the last two years and the future is bright under him.”
Rising star Kelsey quit for all the right reasons
Pat Kelsey’s retirement from college coaching received a decent amount of attention in the world of basketball this week, but beyond that almost nothing. It wasn’t a headline on any of the nation’s biggest websites; I don’t think it made SportsCenter, either. But the development might have been the most interesting retirement in coaching this offseason because it involves a 36-year-old rising star who simply decided he had had enough.
Enough long days in gyms.
Enough lonely nights in hotels.
GW seniors’ lives changed in the paint
The Smith Center isn’t just the building where Jabari Edwards and Joseph Katuka played basketball during their undergraduate careers. For the two seniors, it’s representative of so much more: the sport that changed their lives.
Neither player would be graduating from GW if he hadn’t played basketball, the two said. Katuka is the first to graduate from college in his family, a distinction he speaks of with pride, and an accomplishment he attributes to the drive he has found on the court.
“Basketball has changed my life, has turned my life around,” Katuka said. “To get this education, to make friends, to have the opportunity I have right now. To keep dreaming about basketball.”
GW alumni update: Damian Hollis ’10
Colonials men’s basketball alumnus Damian Hollis (’10), is currently playing professional basketball for Albacomp in Hungary. He’s averaging 12.5 points and 5.1 rebounds in his 26 minutes per game. He wrote about his experience in a country he’s never been with a language he had never spoken in a city whose name he couldn’t even pronounce at first.
I am now in Hungary playing basketball for the championship in a couple of days.
The path getting to this point wasn’t all easy or all piece of cake, though. I started out in Belgium but things didn’t go well for me there. The coach wanted me to play a position that I wasn’t good for but it took them about a month to realize. Once they did, I got a call from my agent telling me that I was being released.
As a rookie in Europe, I wasn’t sure what would happen. I knew that I didn’t want to go home because that would mean that I couldn’t play basketball and I would have to get a regular job. A couple of days later I got a call from my agent saying that I am going to Budapest in the morning. I didn’t have a definite job – only a tryout. I understood the situation so I packed my stuff and I was in Hungary where I didn’t know what language they spoke or even how to pronounce the name of the city that I MIGHT be playing for (Szekesfehervar).
Charlotte Signs 6-10 Center Ivankovic
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Charlotte 49ers head men’s basketball coach Alan Major has announced the signing of 6-10, 250 lb. center Ilija Ivankovic of Split, Croatia. Ivankovic, a junior college transfer, spent this past season at Sante Fe College in Gainesville, Fla. He played the previous season at San Jacinto College. Ivankovic will have two years of eligibility with the 49ers.
A graduate of United Faith Christian Academy in Charlotte, Ivankovic averaged a 10 point; 10-rebound double-double for the Falcons.
“We are very excited to have Ilija join the Niner Basketball family,” said Major, who will begin his second year with the 49ers. “He will add to our depth in the post by bringing size, toughness, and a winning mentality.”
Temple recruit Cummings looking forward to playing with Pepper
When he heard the news Monday night about Dalton Pepper’s transfer to Temple, Will Cummings went right to YouTube.
And Cummings, the Owls’ incoming 6-foot-1, 170-pound point guard, liked what he saw.
“He’ll be a great player to get open shots,” Cummings told Philahoops from his Jacksonville, Fla., home Monday night. “I can penetrate and draw the defenses and get it to him.”
Cummings never has crossed paths with Pepper, a Levittown, Pa., native who played at Pennsbury High, also the alma mater of former Temple standout Lavoy Allen.
Temple has not received Pepper’s transfer papers
Folks close to the situation think everyone should push the pause button on Dalton Pepper’s expected transfer.
It has been reported by numerous publications that the sophomore swingman plans to leave West Virginia for Temple. Pepper even reportedly sent text messages Monday night to CSNPhilly.com and the Bucks County Courier Times confirming he’s transferring to be close to his father Jack, who is ill.
But a Temple official said Tuesday that the Owls have not received transfer papers for the 6-foot-5, 230-pound swingman. Frank Sciolla, who coached Pepper at Pennsbury High, acknowledged via a text message that something could happen. It just hasn’t happened yet.
CBS Sports Network to televise Adidas grassroots events
CBS Sports Network will broadcast three Adidas grassroots basketball championship games this summer, including the Adidas Nations finale in early August.
“We’re excited to partner with CBS Sports Network and bring adidas’ elite high school basketball events to millions of viewers across the country on television and online,” adidas vice president of Global Basketball Lawrence Norman said. “Our programs feature the game’s next superstars and we’re thrilled to showcase this high-level of basketball to viewers all across America.”
Stay tuned for the first annual Pickin’ Splinters rundown of the A10′s incoming class. Fans can get an in-depth look at the new student-athletes to play next season in the Atlantic 10.