Princeton Tigers

Three-star power forward trims list to five

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After attending the NBPA Top 100 Camp in late June and playing on a Utah Prospects team that included five-star guard Frank Jackson, 6-foot-7 power forward Yoeli Childs has been on the receiving end of increased attention recruiting-wise in recent weeks. Saturday it was revealed that Childs has trimmed his list to five schools, with two SEC programs making the cut.

Auburn and Vanderbilt, two programs that will have some key front court personnel losses to address after the 2015-16 season, remain under consideration for Childs as do Boise State, BYU and Princeton. While Childs, who attends Bingham HS in South Jordan, Utah, has yet to take an official visit he has unofficially visited both Boise State and BYU.

According to, Childs hopes to wrap up his recruitment in time for the early signing period in mid-November.

From a personnel standpoint Auburn will lose three front court players at the end of the 2015-16 season in Cinmeon Bowers, Jordon Granger and Tyler Harris (grad student by way of Providence). The Tigers have just three scholarship front court players who will have eligibility beyond the upcoming season in sophomore Trayvon Reed and freshmen Horace Spencer and Danjel Purifoy (who’s more of a wing than an interior player).

As for Boise State, the Broncos don’t have a scholarship senior in their front court but they do have two juniors in Nick Duncan and James Webb III. Accounting for those eventual departures is a key for head coach Leon Rice and his staff. BYU is in a similar situation as Boise State, however the Cougars will welcome back multiple front court players from their respective LDS missions in 2016-17 including Eric Mika and Payton Dastrup.

Princeton has just one senior in its front court heading into 2015-16 in Hans Brase, but he’s an important player for the Tigers whose departure will need to be accounted for. And while Vanderbilt has just one scholarship senior in the front court in center Josh Harrison, both Damian Jones and Luke Kornet will be juniors.

Pregame Shootaround: No. 6 Arizona looks to avenge lone conference loss, ‘Ivy League Friday’

Siyani Chambers, Anthony Thompson
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GAME OF THE NIGHT: Harvard at Princeton, 6:00 p.m. (ESPNU)

This is one of two games in the Ivy League matching an undefeated team (in conference play) with one that already has suffered a loss, with Tommy Amaker’s Crimson looking to rebound from their home loss to Dartmouth last weekend. And while Wesley Saunders has been Harvard’s leading scorer, the key to slowing down the Crimson is to keep point guard Siyani Chambers in check.

Dartmouth was able to do that, as Chambers scored 13 points but did so on 3-for-11 shooting to go along with three assists and two turnovers. Princeton, which beat Penn in its league opener, is led by forwards Spencer Weisz and Hans Brase. And given the influence that Chambers has on the action for Harvard, this sets up to be quite the opportunity for Princeton freshman guard Amir Bell as well.

KEEP AN EYE ON: Oregon State at. No. 6 Arizona, 10:00 p.m. (Pac-12 Networks)

Sean Miller’s Wildcats have just one conference loss thus far, a 58-56 defeat suffered in Corvallis just under three weeks ago. Since then Arizona’s won five straight, with four of the five wins being by double digits. Stanley Johnson’s begun to assert himself as the offensive weapon many expected him to be upon his arrival on campus, and point guard T.J. McConnell continues to lead the way for a group that has shot 49 percent or better from the field in four of their last five games. Oregon State was able to slow down the tempo and use a matchup zone to fluster the Wildcats in their first meeting, but they’re going to need that and an exceptional performance from junior guard Gary Payton II to pull off another upset.

WHO’S ON UPSET ALERT?: Buffalo (-6) vs. Kent State, 10:00 p.m. (ESPNU)

The oddsmakers have the Bulls listed as a six-point favorite for their home game against Kent State, which is sitting atop the MAC East standings with a 6-1 record. But Rob Senderoff’s team already has wins over Ohio and Central Michigan (both at home), and they’re currently on a six-game win streak. This is a game Bobby Hurley’s Bulls need if they’re to factor into the division race, as they’re already two games out of first, and they’ll need to slow down Kent State’s Jimmy Hall in order to get the win. Hall scored 32 in a win over Ball State last weekend, and he followed that up with 15 points and 15 rebounds in a win over Central Michigan Tuesday night. Buffalo will counter with Jarvis Moss, who’s averaging 18.5 points and 9.8 rebounds per contest.


  • Another Ivy League matchup to keep an eye on is Yale’s trip to New York City to take on Columbia (8:00 p.m.). The Bulldogs are 2-0 in league play, and the Lions are looking to rebound from their home loss to Cornell.
  • Oregon looks to bounce back from a highly disappointing effort in their 90-56 loss at Arizona on Wednesday by beating Arizona State in Tempe (8:00 p.m., Pac-12 Networks). The Sun Devils took care of Oregon State Wednesday night, with Shaquielle McKissic leading a balanced effort with 17 points.
  • Friday is a key night in the MAAC, with Siena’s trip south to take on Manhattan (7:00 p.m., ESPN3) being one of the games on the slate. If the Saints are to win they’ll have to buckle down defensively, as Jimmy Patsos’ team is ninth in the MAAC in field goal percentage defense (45.5%) and 11th in three-point percentage defense (40.0%) in conference games.
  • Monmouth’s just a game behind Iona in the loss column at 7-3, and they’ll need a win at Fairfield (8:00 p.m., ESPNU) to make sure that remains the case. Sophomore guard Justin Robinson is averaging 16.4 points per game in conference play for the Hawks. Fairfield is led by Marcus Gilbert, who’s scoring just over 17 per game.
  • Another Ivy League team to keep an eye on is Cornell, which begins a stretch of four straight home games tonight against Brown (7:00 p.m.). Senior forward Shonn Miller (16.7 ppg, 8.1 rpg) has played very well for the Big Red, and he accounted for 18 points, nine rebounds and four blocks in their 57-47 win at Columbia last weekend.

2014-2015 Ivy League Preview: Is this the year someone catches Harvard?

Siyani Chambers and Tommy Amaker (AP Photo)
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Siyani Chambers, AP Photo

Beginning on October 3rd and running up until November 14th, the first day of the season, College Basketball Talk will be unveiling the 2014-2015 college hoops preview package.

Today, we will be previewing the Ivy League.

MORE: 2014-2015 Season Preview Coverage | Conference Previews | Preview Schedule

The favorite to win the Ivy League, as has been the case for the last three or four years, is Harvard. The Crimson are coming off of a second straight trip to the NCAA tournament in which they won a game (No. 3 seed New Mexico in 2013, No. 5 seed Cincinnati last year) and return the two best players from that team in Siyani Chambers and Wesley Saunders, both of whom have a strong argument to be named Preseason Player of the Year. The Crimson will also boast a deep and talented front court, headlined by Steve Moundou-Missi and Zena Edosomwan, but their perimeter depth will be a concern. An injury to either Chambers or Saunders would be a major blow.

Harvard went 13-1 in league play last season, with their one loss coming at home against Yale. The Elis have a chance to put together a truly special season, as junior big man Justin Sears, our Preseason Ivy Player of the Year, is flanked by a pair of all-league caliber guards in seniors Javier Duren and Armani Cotton. Yale is big and they are physical and they love to attack the glass at both ends of the floor, but until they find a way to shoot the ball consistently from the perimeter, the game plan to beat the Bulldogs is fairly straight forward.

MORE: Tommy Amaker’s unprecedented success at Harvard | Harvard is No. 23 in our top 25

source: AP
Steve Moundou-Missi guarding Justin Sears, AP Photo

There are some other good teams in the league, as the Ivy should once again be one of the toughest mid-major conferences in the country. Columbia is the sleeper, as the Lions bring back everyone from last year’s 8-6 campaign. Kyle Smith’s club controls tempo, is loaded with dangerous perimeter shooters, has a handful of big-and-slow-but-tough front court pieces and a pair of big-time scorers in Maodo Lo and Alex Rosenberg.

Princeton loses T.J. Bray, which would hurt anyone in the conference. They bring back some pieces up front and landed a terrific recruiting class, headlined by high-major prospects Amir Bell and Alec Brennan. Brown, Dartmouth and Penn should all fight for that fifth-place spot, while Cornell looks like it’s destined for the cellar once again despite getting Shonn Miller back.


Harvard is the most talented team in the Ivy, and while Siyani Chambers and Wesley Saunders are both deserving of consideration for Preseason Player of the Year, neither does as much for their team as Sears does for Yale. The Elis are built around their ability to attack the glass and control the paint, and Sears (16.9 ppg, 6.9 rpg) is the reason why they’re able to do that. A physical, 6-foot-8 forward, he rebounds, blocks shots and can step out and beat a defender on the perimeter. The rising junior will be the focus of every opponent’s game-plan again this season.


  • Siyani Chambers, Harvard: There have been very few Ivy League point guards that are capable of doing what Chambers (11.4 ppg, 4.6 apg) has done in his first two seasons. His influence goes well beyond his stat line.
  • Wes Saunders, Harvard: A 6-foot-5 wing, Saunders is the leading scorer (14.2 ppg, 4.6 rpg, 3.8 apg) and most talented player on the best team in the conference.
  • Shonn Miller, Cornell: Miller missed the 2013-2014 season, one in which the Big Red went 2-26. But he’s a beast that will put up numbers (11.5 ppg, 6.8 rpg, 1.9 spg, 1.9 bpg in ’12-’13).
  • Alex Rosenberg, Columbia: A 6-foot-7 forward, Rosenberg is the leading scorer (16.0 ppg, 43.2% 3PT) for a Columbia team that has an outside chance of winning the league.



1. Harvard
2. Yale
3. Columbia
4. Princeton
5. Penn
6. Brown
7. Dartmouth
8. Cornell

Washington, Xavier among teams in 2014 Wooden Legacy field

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Thursday morning the full field for the 2014 Wooden Legacy was announced, with 2014 NCAA tournament participants Western Michigan and Xavier among the eight teams. Also in the field is Washington, which is looking to return to the NCAA tournament after missing out in each of the last three seasons, and Long Beach State will serve as the “host” team in the event that annually features a Big West program.

Princeton, San Diego, San Jose State and UTEP round out the eight-team field, with the event being played November 27 and 28 (Thursday and Friday) at Cal State Fullerton and November 30 (Sunday) at the Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif.

Of the eight teams five participated in postseason play last year, with San Diego playing in the Tournament and Princeton and UTEP landing in the CBI field. As mentioned above, Western Michigan (MAC tournament champions) and Xavier (at-large from the Big East) reached the NCAA tournament with the Broncos losing to Syracuse and the Musketeers falling to NC State.

From a wins standpoint UTEP and Western Michigan were the most successful teams in 2013-14, with each winning 23 games. San Jose State, in its first season as a member of the Mountain West, won just six games last season.

Friday’s Pregame Shootaround: MAAC showdown, two Big East games on slate

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GAME OF THE NIGHT: Manhattan at Canisius, 7:00 p.m. (ESPNU)

The preseason favorite to win the MAAC, the Manhattan Jaspers currently find themselves two games behind first-place Canisius in the race to win the regular season title. With that being the case, it’s safe to say that this one is of high importance to Steve Masiello’s squad. Individually speaking two of the best scoring guards around will be on display, with Manhattan’s George Beamon (18.5 ppg, 7.1 rpg) and Canisius’ Billy Baron (23.7, 4.8, 4.7 apg) both having the ability to light up the scoreboard.

The same can be said of the teams, with both averaging just over 77 points per game and having an affinity for getting out and running. The key: turnovers. Manhattan’s forcing nearly 16 per game, and at times the Golden Griffins have struggled with turning the ball over. If Manhattan’s to make a run at the MAAC title, this is a game they need to win.

WHO’S GETTING UPSET: Princeton (-8) vs. Columbia, 7:00 p.m.

Yes, a team that’s 0-3 in Ivy League play is the pick here thanks to the lines makers. Princeton was at one point expected to be Harvard’s greatest threat in the Crimson’s quest to make a third consecutive NCAA tournament appearance, but three losses to start the year have likely ruled the Tigers out. Tyler Bray’s leading the way offensively with an average of 17.8 points per game, but the problem for Mitch Henderson’s team has been its defense. Opponents are shooting 45.4% from the field, and this is an issue Columbia’s Alex Rosenberg (14.1 ppg, 3.4 rpg) and Maodo Lo (14.0, 4.1) can take advantage of.


1) No. 6 Villanova hosts Seton Hall (7:00 p.m., Fox Sports 1), with the Pirates looking for their first win at Villanova since February 26, 1994. A good individual matchup to watch: Seton Hall’s Fuquan Edwin vs. Villanova’s James Bell.

2) No. 12 Creighton is also in action, with the Bluejays hosting DePaul (9:07 p.m., Fox Sports 1). Doug McDermott and Ethan Wragge are tough match-ups for any team, and Creighton may welcome back guard Grant Gibbs (knee) back as well. Gibbs injured his knee in the first meeting between the Bluejays and Blue Demons.

3) At this point in the season Brown may be Harvard’s biggest threat in the Ivy League, and the 3-1 Bears get their shot at the 4-0 Crimson tonight in Cambridge (7:00 p.m.). Brown’s limiting opponents to 38.3% shooting, and they’ll need to defend well if they’re to beat Tommy Amaker’s talented squad.

4) Southern Miss looks to keep pace with UTEP atop the Conference USA standings, with the Golden Eagles needing a win over Marshall (9:30 p.m., CBS Sports Network) in order to do so. Guard Neil Watson leads three Southern Miss players in double figures with an average of 12.2 ppg, and they could be in line for a big night against a team allowing opponents to shoot better than 44% from the field.

5) Mercer’s looking to remain atop the Atlantic Sun standings with a win at Kennesaw State (7:00 p.m., ESPN3). The Bears are currently tied with FGCU at 9-2 in league play, and in order to move to 10-2 they can’t afford to take the 4-20 Owls lightly.


  • Iona at Niagara, 7:00 p.m.
  • Yale at Dartmouth, 7:00 p.m.
  • Charlotte at Tulane, 8:00 p.m.
  • Detroit at Valparaiso, 9:00 p.m. (ESPNU)

Friday’s Pregame Shootaround: Bitter rivals meet in New Rochelle

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GAME OF THE NIGHT: Manhattan at Iona, 9:00 p.m. (ESPNU)

Whether or not Canisius has company atop the MAAC standings after Friday’s action will depend upon the result of this contest between schools separated by just over ten miles. Both teams can score, with Manhattan scoring just over 78 points per game and Iona averaging a shade over 83. The difference: defense, with Steve Masiello’s Jaspers using their depth and quickness to force opponents into rushed decisions.

As for the Gaels they can be downright indifferent on that end of the floor at times, and it’s an area Tim Cluess’ group has to improve in if they’re to return to the NCAA tournament. The scoring battle between Manhattan’s George Beamon and Iona’s Sean Armand will be fun to watch, and each team has multiple players capable of stealing the spotlight.

THE OTHER GAME OF THE NIGHT: Princeton at Harvard, 7:00 p.m.

This is the first of two meetings between the prohibitive favorite to win the Ivy League (Harvard) and one of the teams most capable of knocking the Crimson off. This is an incredibly important game for the visiting Tigers, who have already lost to Penn and can ill-afford to fall two games behind Harvard in the loss column at this early juncture in the “14-game tournament.”

If they’re to win in Cambridge, Princeton’s likely going to need a big night from senior guard T.J. Bray, who’s averaging 17.2 points per game. And they’ll also need to slow down Harvard forward Wesley Saunders, who’s accounting for 15.0 points and 5.1 rebounds per game.


1) Murray State looks to move to 8-1 in OVC play as they visit Austin Peay, a team they beat by 22 less than three weeks ago. Dexter Fields led six Racers in double figures with 20 points in that meeting.

2) Rider needs a win at Saint Peter’s in order to remain within striking distance of the leaders in the MAAC, as they’re currently two games out of first place.

3) Mercer is also on the road, visiting ETSU in need of a win to guarantee that they retain sole possession of first place in the Atlantic Sun. Langston Hall scored 19 points to lead Mercer to a ten-point win in the first meeting, a game the Bears won despite allowing the Bucs to grab 14 offensive rebounds.

4) FGCU’s in hot pursuit of Mercer, and they look to continue that with a win over Stetson. The Hatters have struggled defensively, allowing opponents to shoot nearly 46% from the field.

5) Oakland hosts Youngstown State and the focus will be on senior guard Travis Bader, who enters the game eight three-pointers away from the NCAA’s career record.


  • Columbia at Yale, 7:00 p.m.
  • Penn at Dartmouth, 7:00 p.m.
  • Cleveland State at Detroit, 7:00 p.m. (ESPNU)