NU Coaches Caravan Notes

Northwestern held their first of two Coaches Caravan dinners on Tuesday at Ditka's Restaurant in Chicago. Pat Fitzgerald, Bill Carmody, Joe McEwon, and Jim Phillips were all on-hand for questions. Here are a few notes from the event.

• As expected, the first question directed to Pat Fitzgerald was about senior quarterback Dan Persa. Fitzgerald immediately said, "He's fine." Later, Fitzgerald added that he is worried about Persa overworking himself during his road to recovery.

• Coach Fitzgerald said 13 of the 17 incoming freshman are on campus for summer school. Interestingly enough, Fitzgerald added that he recommends they stay home for the summer and enjoy.

• Fitzgerald talked about the strength of the Big Ten this season. He said, "The winner of our league is going to play for the national championship."

• NU head basketball coach Bill Carmody touched on Alex Marcotullio and Jershon Cobb as candidates to be the starting point guard. Also had said he believes David Sobolewski and Tre Demps are college-ready athletically.

• Coach Carmody also said the biggest concern of John Shurna among NBA scouts was his ability to guard an NBA small forward. Carmody was told Shurna would be a mid-second round selection.

• Carmody also said Baylor and Temple could each be potential non-conference home games for the Wildcats next season.

Northwestern athletic director Jim Phillips said they hope to completely avoid 11:00 a.m. start times for football games. "Any chance we can get to move off 11:00, we're all for."

• Phillips talked about his tour of facilities across the country. He said Northwestern is working to establish whether it's best to improve the "Saturday facilities" or the "Sunday through Friday facilities."

• As for contract talks between Phillips and Northwestern, the athletic director said, "I promised I would not comment on it at this particular time."

Stay tuned for more from We will have more coverage from the event including a look at the football team's summer and how the position battles look for the basketball team.

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