Despite its location in a city known for its basketball talent, Fordham has found the sledding tough in the Atlantic 10 since joining the league in 1995. Head coach Tom Pecora, who just completed his second season at the school, hopes to change the culture of the program and end the days of the Rams being a perennial doormat in the A-10.
Pecora’s efforts received a much-needed boost on Wednesday, as Brooklyn native Jon Severe announced his decision to attend Fordham in the fall.
Severe, who averaged 21.6 points per game at Christ the King HS last season and was one of the top remaining recruits in the 2013 class, picked Fordham over Pittsburgh, Wake Forest and West Virginia.
“Next year I will be attending Fordham University,” Severe said while putting on a maroon Fordham hat. “I think I can change the whole program around.”
According to multiple reports Rutgers attempted to make a late charge, with new head coach Eddie Jordan meeting with Severe on Tuesday, but their efforts ultimately went for naught.
And there’s a lot of work to be done, as the Rams finished the 2012-13 season with a record of 7-24 (3-13 Atlantic 10) and missed the Atlantic 10 tournament for the fifth straight year. The Rams lose leading scorer Chris Gaston but return rising senior guard Branden Frazier, who averaged 14.2 points and 5.0 assists per game last season.
The Rams struggled on both ends of the floor, ranking at or near the bottom of the Atlantic 10 in many of the major statistical categories both offensively and defensively. In order to change that Coach Pecora and his staff need to raise the level of talent in the program, and the addition of a player the caliber of Severe will definitely help.
“We’re thrilled to have Jon Severe become a part of our basketball family,” said Pecora in a statement released by the school. “He will have a huge effect on the rise of our program over the next four years.
“His ability to score the ball and make other players around him better make him an exceptional athlete. The entire Fordham community is proud to have Jon join us.”