By Jeff Goodman
Well, it’s just Jeff Borzello and I this week in this space – since Gary Parrish and Matt Norlander are out gallivanting somewhere.
That means, well, I’m going to have to try and pick it up a bit cause Borzello is busy with recruiting news and also trying to pick out a new wardrobe (I hope).
Anyway, here’s the Big East Offseason Report to get things started:
Big East Offseason Report
Cincinnati – The Bearcats will play in the Global Sports Shootout along with Marshall, Alabama State, Jacksonville State and Northwestern State. Mick Cronin’s team also has a non-league slate that includes contests at Georgia (12-2), at Xavier (12-10) and against Oklahoma.
Connecticut – Andre LaFleur left for Providence and Glen Miller was bumped up from director of basketball operations. Former GW head coach Karl Hobbs was brought on as the director of basketball administration. The defending champs will play in the Battle 4 Atlantis in the Bahamas (Nov. 23-27) and also have non-league games vs. Arkansas (12-3), vs. Harvard (12-7), vs. Fairfield (12-22) and at Tennessee (1-21). Jamal Coombs-McDaniel transferred to Hofstra.
DePaul – The Blue Demons will head to France from Aug, 11-21. Josh Postorino left for Georgia Tech and Andy Farrell was promoted to take his spot as the director of basketball operation. Matt Fleming is the new video coordinator. Oliver Purnell’s team will play in the Old Spice Classic in Orlando and its top non-conference game is at home against Ole Miss (12-1) in the Big East/SEC challenge. Mike Bizoukas (Missouri ) transferred out and freshman Shane Larkin left prior to the start of the season. Donnavan Kirk is eligible this season after transferring from Miami and sitting out last year.
Georgetown – The Hoyas brought former assistant Kevin Broadus back as a special assistant and also added former star big man Othella Harrington in some sort of role. John Thompson III & Co. will travel to China on Aug. 13 and will also play in the Maui Invitational. Georgetown has non-league games at Alabama (12-1) and at home against Memphis (12-22). Jerrelle Benimon (Towson) and Vee Sanford (Dayton) both left the program.
Louisville – Rick Pitino’s staff has a different look. Ralph Willard retired, Steve Masiello got the head job at Manhattan and Tim Fuller left after just one season for Missouri. Pitino brought his son, Richard, back from Florida – and added Kevin Keatts (Hargrave Military Academy) and Wyking Jones (New Mexico). Mark Lieberman is now the director of basketball operations. The Cardinals are heading to the Bahamas from Aug. 10-14 and have a non-league slate that includes games at Butler (11-19), against Vanderbilt (12-2), vs. Memphis(12-17) and at Kentucky (12-31). George Goode (Missouri) left while Luke Hancock (George Mason) transferred in and will sit out this season.
Marquette – The Golden Eagles will play in the Paradise Jam and also face Washington (12-6) in the Jimmy V Classic in NYC. Buzz Williams’ team will also play at Wisconsin (12-3), at LSU (12-19) and against Vanderbilt (12-29) at home in the non-conference schedule. Eric Williams (Sam Houston State) left the program and Jamil Wilson is eligible this season after sitting out last year following transferring in from Oregon.
Notre Dame – The Irish will play in the CBE Classic, will play Maryland (12-4) in the BT&T Classic and will also play Indiana (12-17) in the Crossroad Classic in Indianapolis. Mike Brey’s team will also face Gonzaga (11-30) at home in the non-league slate. Garrick Sherman (Michigan State) will sit out this season after transferring into the program.
Pittsburgh – Pat Skerry left to become the head coach at Towson and was replaced by Bill Barton (Marshall). The Panthers will play in the Hoop Group Classic (11-25/26) and also have a non-league game at Tennessee (12-3). J.J. Richardson transferred to Houston.
Providence – Ed Cooley brought Bob Simon and Brian Blaney with him from Fairfield and added Andre Lafleur (UConn). The final spot is now open after Carmen Maciariello left for BU. The Friars are in the South Padre Invitational and have non-conference games at South Carolina (12-1) and at home against BC (12-8). Duke Mondy and Dre Evans both left the program.
Rutgers – The Scarlet Knights will play in the Cancun Challenge (11-23/24) and also have non-league games at Miami (11-15), against LSU (12-3) and against Florida (12-29). Wally Judge transferred in from Kansas State and will sit out this season.
Seton Hall – Kevin Willard’s team will play in the Charleston Classic (11/17-20) and also have non-league games against Auburn (12-2), Wake Forest (12-10) and at Dayton (12-21). Anali Okoloji (George Mason) left the program while Brian Oliver (Georgia Tech) and Gene Teague (Southern Illinois) both transferred in.
St. John’s – The Red Storm will play in the Coaches vs. Cancer event in NYC on Nov. 17-18 and also have non-conference games at Kentucky (12-1) and against UCLA (2-18) at home. Dwayne Polee II transferred to San Diego State.
South Florida – Steve Roccaforte, the former head coach at Lamar, takes the spot of Jeremy Cox. The Bulls will play in the Hall of Fame Classic (11-19/20) and have non-league games at VCU (11-30), at Auburn (12-15) and at Kansas (1-3). Mike Burwell (Towson) and Shedrick Haynes both transferred out of the program.
Syracuse – Former Orange guard Adrian Autry (Virginia Tech) took the spot vacated when Rob Murphy got the head job at Eastern Michigan. Syracuse will play in the Preseason NIT and also has non-league games at N.C. State (12-17) and vs. Florida (12-2). Dashonte Riley left and transferred back home to Eastern Michigan.
Villanova – The Wildcats already left on a trip to France, Luxembourg and the Netherlands and will return on Aug. 16. Jay Wright’s staff had some movement as Chris Walker (Texas Tech) and Keith Urgo (Penn State) both left and were replaced by a couple of familiar faces: Doug West and Billy Lange (head coach at Navy). ‘Nova will play in the 76 Classic in Anaheim and the Wildcats have a non-league game at Temple on Dec. 10.
West Virginia – Bob Huggins’ team just left on a trip to Italy and will return on Aug. 21. Jerrod Calhoun was promoted to an assistant coach and Billy Hahn was reassigned to the assistant to the head coach. The Mountaineers will play in the Las Vegas Classic (12-22/23) and have non-league contests at Mississippi State (12-3), against Kansas State in Wichita (12-8) and vs. Miami (12-11). Dalton Pepper (Temple) and Dan Jennings (Long Beach State) both transferred out while Juwan Staten (Dayton) and Aaric Murray (La Salle) came into the program. Kevin Noreen (BC) is eligible to play this season after sitting out last year.
Big East Offseason Report
By Jeff Goodman