First Semester Report Card

With the players taking ten days off to concentrate on exams, Friar Insider has decided to issue its own report card. After all, the first semester is over, PC is nine games into its schedule… what better time to take a look at how things have gone so far?

One of the interesting things in assigning grades to players and coaches is to decide first what the expectation for each is. For example, a freshman who might not have been expected to play much shouldn't be graded as harshly as an upperclassman who was expected to be one of the cornerstones of the team.

With that in mind, Professors Coren and Hartnett have included comments along with their grades for each player as well as the coaching staff (no one gets off easy here at Friar Insider). Take a look at the grades… and you can decide whose class you might want to avoid next semester.

Geoff McDermott
Hartnett's Comments: Outstanding in stretches, but too passive in others, McDermott has had a lot on his shoulders in the absence of Curry. Much is expected of him. More consistent quality play can make him an All-League player by March. Grade: B+
Coren's Comments: Geoff has had his moments this season, but has been far too inconsistent. While much is expected of him, especially with Curry out, as a junior, McDermott has to put this team on his shoulders in every game. The Friars can't afford many more 4 point, 3 rebound efforts from him. Grade: B-

Weyinme Efejuku
Hartnett's Comments: Has played very well in some key spots, but has continued to struggle with consistency issues, including maintaining defensive intensity. Grade: C+
Coren's Comments: Weyinmi has been an enigma this year. Defensively he's struggled in man, and offensively sometimes he's there, sometime's he's not. Again, as a junior, one would have hoped that by now, Efejuku would bring it in every game. Grade: C-

Jonathan Kale
Hartnett's Comments: Started off the season struggling at both ends, but has shaken off nagging injuries and has improved as of late, particularly on offense. Needs to defend better. Grade: C
Coren's Comments: It may be that injuries have slowed Kale, but he's been a major disappointment this season. Even in his most recent game against Brown, Kale was a no-show. And even his energy and enthusiasm, which was outstanding off the bench last year, is down. Grade: D+

Randall Hanke
Hartnett's Comments: Has not played enough to merit a grade. Recovering from year off, showed signs of progress against South Carolina and particularly vs. Brown. Must catch up to live game speed. Grade: Incomplete
Coren's Comments: Can't give Hanke anything but an incomplete at this point. Against Brown, he looked like the Randall of old, so if he's rounding back into shape, that's great news for the Friars. The next few games will tell the tale. Grade: Incomplete

Jeff Xavier
Hartnett's Comments: Has played excellent defense and had some strong shooting games. Athletic teams have shut Xavier down from outside and limited his effectiveness. Grade: B
Coren's Comments: Xavier may be the best on the ball defender at PC since John Linehan. Offensively, he's had his moments but has had problems getting his shot against more athletic backcourts, which might be problematic come Big East play. Grade: B

Charlie Burch
Hartnett's Comments: Has shown some solid defense and good screening, but needs to do more as the lone senior. Grade: C
Coren's Comments: Injuries have really limited Burch, but he's had a few games, like against Boston College, where he's had an impact, especially defensively. Will he be able to contribute more or is this all we can expect from Charlie this year? Grade: C-

Brian McKenzie
Hartnett's Comments: Earned a starting spot and has been the leading scorer on the team. Defends well and rebounds. Needs to look for his shot more. Grade: A
Coren's Comments: Brian may have been the first semester MVP. His shooting is greatly improved, he rebounds and he looks much more comfortable on the floor. Defensively, he's not bad, but he gets beat and reaches too much. Grade: A-

Dwain Williams
Hartnett's Comments: Has done a good job limiting turnovers at the point and has shot well at times. Needs to set up others better and learn to drive and kick for outside shots when going to the basket. Grade: C+
Coren's Comments: Williams started the season on fire, but his shot has cooled dramatically. Filling in for Curry at the point, Dwain has been asked to run the offense, and as of late, he's looked a lot more like what he truly is – a shooting guard in a point guard's body. Grade: C+

Ray Hall
Hartnett's Comments: Limited opportunities to play have produced little production on the court. Needs to earn more playing time in practice and contribute when put in the game. Grade: C-
Coren's Comments: At a time when PC desperately needed size upfront, Hall was not ready to give it. Decent hands, but slow overall and a liability in man defense. Ray needs to continue working to improve and overcome some natural shortcomings. Grade: D+

Jamine Peterson
Hartnett's Comments: Generally making the most of his minutes for a freshman, scoring points and rebounding. Needs to learn to work on finishing around the basket better and gain a better understanding of moving without the ball. Grade: B+
Coren's Comments: Greedy is an explosive athlete who would be a stud if he were three inches taller. He's effective around the hoop, but often gets stuffed going back up after grabbing a rebound because he's undersized for his game. At his most effective in an open court. Grade: B

Alex Kellogg
Hartnett's Comments: This freshman has come in shown good court sense. Needs to rebound more aggressively and must shoot the ball more when given a good look at the basket. Grade: C+
Coren's Comments: Kellogg plays solid defense, handles the ball well and is a good passer. He needs to improve his offensive repertoire, but he's got a great body and is excellent fundamentally. As of late, he hasn't played much. Grade: C-

Marshon Brooks
Hartnett's Comments: Shows a lot of potential with some very athletic plays. Has to get more comfortable handling the ball under pressure and must force more turnovers in the press. Grade: C
Coren's Comments: Marshon has long arms and huge hands and is obviously an athlete. In limited time, he's handled the ball decently, passed well and attacked the rim. He's a player with a world of upside and with more time he'll only get better. Grade: C+

Coaching Staff
Hartnett's Comments: Handled adversity of Curry injury well this year and have improved the team defense overall. Have not used M2M defense enough and need to improve team ball movement and spacing on offense. Grade: C+
Coren's Comments: Playing without Curry and Hanke has hampered the staff's ability to do some of the things that they would like to do. There have been some good wins over Arkansas and Boston College, but some bad losses against Miami, South Carolina and URI. Still, the willingness to play on the road is a plus. Another plus is the improved defense. The negatives? Nine games in and the rotation is still in flux as the staff continues to search for winning combinations… have relied on and stayed in the zone too long when the m2m is clearly improved. Need to be quicker at adjusting… a lack of intensity in several games. Grade: C+

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