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After an ugly season that saw the Knights go 7-24 and just 2-16 in NEC, Fairleigh Dickinson has made the decision to fire head coach Greg Vetrone.
The news was first reported by CBSSports.com.
Vetrone was an assistant with the program in 2008-2009 and took over in an interim role in 2009-2010, leading the team to an 11-21 record. But in the past three seasons, Vetrone managed all of 15 wins.
“I feel the time has come to look for a new direction for the men’s basketball program,” FDU athletic director David Langford said in a statement released by the university. “I would like to thank Coach Vetrone for his time and service to the University, the athletic department and the men’s basketball program.”
It wasn’t just the losing, however. Brendan Prunty of the Star-Ledger explains:
Fairleigh Dickinson had 100-plus points scored on it three times this year and lost by 25 or more points nine different times throughout the season. There were also a number of personnel problems plaguing the team during the course of the year, beginning with the dismissal of senior point guard Lonnie Hayes before the first game of the season at Xavier.
Four other players were also suspended for that game.
Also during the final road trip of the season to Robert Morris on Feb. 23, the Knights’ leading scorer — Kinu Rochford — quit the team in the middle of a timeout, walking off the floor.
Yeah, that sounds like a pretty miserable season to endure.
You can find Rob on twitter @RobDauster.
Not only is Wyoming senior guard Josh Adams the lone returning starter from a team that won the Mountain West tournament last season, but he’s also one of college basketball’s best dunkers. And if anyone may have forgotten about his jumping ability, Adams put it on display Saturday during the Cowboys’ win over Montana State.
After splitting two Montana State players at the top of the key Adams attacked the basket, dunking with two hands over a late-arriving help-side defender. If you’re going to rotate over, have to do it quicker than that.
Video credit: Wyoming Athletics
Even with the coaching change from Fred Hoiberg to Steve Prohm, No. 4 Iowa State remains one of the nation’s best offensive teams. Given their skills on that end of the floor many teams find it tough to go score for score with the Cyclones, and that’s what happened to Illinois in Iowa State’s 84-73 win in the Emerald Coast Classic title game.
Georges Niang scored 23 points and grabbed eight rebounds, with Monté Morris adding 20, nine rebounds and six assists and Abdel Nader 18 points as the Cyclones moved to 5-0 on the season. The three-pointers weren’t falling in the second half, as Iowa State shot 0-f0r-12, but they shot 19-for-24 inside of the arc to pull away from a team that lost big man Mike Thorne Jr. late in the first half to a left knee injury.
Illinois’ loss of size in the paint opened things up offensively for Iowa State, and the Cyclones took advantage. But where this group grabbed control of the game was on the defensive end of the floor, and that will be the key for a team with Big 12 and national title aspirations.
Nader took on the responsibility of defending Illinois’ Malcolm Hill (20 points) in the second half and did a solid job of keeping the junior wing in check, with that serving as the spark to a 12-2 run that put the game away. There’s no denying that the Cyclones can put points on the board; most of the talent from last season is back and the productivity on that end of the floor hasn’t changed as a result. Niang’s one of the nation’s best forwards, and both Morris (who now ranks among the country’s best point guards) and Nader have taken significant strides in their respective games.
Iowa State will add Deonte Burton in December, giving them another option to call upon. Front court depth is a bit of a concern, as Iowa State can ill afford to lose a Niang or Jameel McKay, but there’s enough on the roster to compensate for that and force mismatches in other areas.
But the biggest question for this group is how effective they can become at stringing together stops. Illinois certainly had its moments in both halves Saturday night, but Iowa State also showed during the game’s decisive stretch that they can step up defensively. The key now is to do so consistently, and if that occurs the Cyclones can be a threat both within the Big 12 and nationally.