Through November 12, 2008
Rhode Island hit the century mark in both of their exhibition games: a 123-84 win over Concordia University College from Edmonton, Alberta Province in Canada, and a 109-69 victory over an in-state rival, Division III Rhode Island College from Providence.
Concordia is currently ranked as the number 13 team in Canada with an 8-1 regular season record (their opener was on Oct. 10th). RIC was 23-7 last season, was the Little East Conference regular season champions, and went to the NCAAs for the second straight season.
Senior guard (and the coach's son) Jimmy Baron averaged 23.0 points in the two games. URI outrebounded RIC, 54-37, but was edged by Concordia, 37-36. Junior Connecticut-transfer forward Ben Eaves, who sat out last season, averaged 6.0 boards and sophomore Marquis Jones averaged 8.5 apg.
URI opens the regular season on Friday, November 14th against another in-state-rival, the Ivy League's Brown at BU's Pizzitola Sports Center. Last season, the Bears were 19-10, 11-3 in the Ivy.
- Originally the College of Rhode Island, the school is named after benefactor Nicholas Brown (1804).
- Shawn James's younger brother Delroy, a Hofstra transfer, is a junior with the Rams. He averaged 3.3 points and 2.4 rebounds in 20 games (12.0 mpg) last season.
- Sept. 5, 2008: Former Patterson School (NC)assistant coach Momir Gajic hired as asst. coach with Rams. He's a native of Belgrade, Serbia.
- Nov. 11, 2008: URI announced 13 Rams' games will be televised, 10 with local Cox Communications network.
Richmond didn't play any preseason games this month. The Spiders instead had their exhibition contests in August when they played four games in Europe.
UR came back with a 2-2 mark, winning one game in France against USA Toulogues Perpignan (101-78) and another versus Illescas Toledo of Spain (91-77). More on this trip at RichmondSpiders.com.
- USA in the French team's name doesn't refer to America. It is an abbreviation for the club's French name Union Sportive des Arlequins Perpignanais, roughly translated Sporting Union of the Perpignanais Harlequins.
Richmond opens the season on the road at Big East's Syracuse (21-14). The game will be on ESPN, one of UR's 13 games that will be televised this season.
- A-10 Third-Team junior forward Dan Geriot (6-9, 235) appears lost for the season after suffering a torn ligament in his right knee while playing in a Philadelphia summer league.
- Conor Smith, a 6-foot-9, 210 pound forward, was redshirted last season. He's on the team now.
- May 12, 2008: Richmond held its Third Annual Basketball Signing Party at a local hotel on Wednesday, May 14th. "... A sneak peek at the incoming 2008-09 recruiting classes for the Richmond men's and women's basketball teams ..."
- June 19, 2008: The oldest building on UR's campus, Millhiser Gym, was restored and is now the Spiders' practice gym.
- Aug. 8, 2008: NY Knicks hire UR alum Kenny Atkinson ('88) as an assistant coach; 2nd Spider in NBA coaching ranks, Kevin Eastman ('78) is in his 4th year with the Celtics.
- Aug. 29, 2008: Alum Curtis Blair ('92) is a rookie NBA ref.
- Sept. 26, 2008: Promotions of Kevin McGeehan to assoc. head coach and Rob Jones to assistant and hiring Peter Thomas ('07) as director of operations and Jeff Gray ('08 UMass) as grad asst. Former asst. Carlin Hartman is now with former Duquesne coach Greg Gary at Centenary.
- Ex-Dukes' assistant coach Kim Lewis originally moved to the Gents with Gary last April . But in September, Lewis got an offer to return to his alma mater, and is now an asst. at Tulane.
Former Robert Morris and Xavier coach Mark Schmidt is starting his second season with the Bonnies.
St. Bonaventure won its sole exhibition, 83-63, over Division II Mansfield University from Mansfield, Pa. The Mounties were 17-10 last season.
Four SBU guys hit double figures led by 6-foot-9, 220 pound freshman forward Andrew Nicholson from up north, i.e., Canada, with game bests of 16 points and nine rebounds. JUCO transfer 6-foot-5, 225 pound guard Jonathan Hall topped all players with 7 assists.
The good news for St. Bonaventure: Schmidt's first full recruiting class of 7, plus two DI transfers, has been rated at #26 by HoopScoop(according to SBU release). On the other hand, the team has a five-year, post-welding record of 32-110, lost last year's top three scorers (Michael Lee ... also the top rebounder..., Zarryon Fereti and West Viginia-transfer Tyler Relph) and had a pair transfer out. Another A-10 team with a slew of new players.
The season begins on Friday when RMU visits for a 7 p.m. game. The Colonials, under the second addition of Mike Rice, were 26-8 last season and tripped to the NIT.
- Two D-I transfers sat out last season. Junior guard Chris Matthews (6-4, 205) from Washington State and junior forward Maurice Thomas (6-9, 225) from UTEP are eligible this season. A D.C. area native, Matthews averaged 3.4 points as a freshman and 3.7 in his sophomore year. Thomas, from Philly, was the Miner's third leading scorer in 06-07 with 9.4 ppg. Both played together at Philadelphia Lutheran in 04-05 when the school finished as the #5 prep school in the nation.
- May 9, 2008: Rising sophomores 6-foot-6 guard Hillary Haley (5.6 ppg, 2.4 rpg) and 6-9 forward Matt Morgan (5.4, 2.3 and winner of 2 A-10 Rookie of the Week honors) are moved on. Haley, from the Washington, D.C. area, is at Maryland-Eastern Shore (UMES) and Morgan, also from DC, transferred to Winthrop.
- Aug. 18, 2008: One of those newcomers, 6-foot-8, 210 pound freshman swingman Marquise Simmons will redshirt in 2008-09 because of a family emergency.