Ivy hoops roundup – Aug. 1, 2020

Back on the Jazz 

Miye Oni returned to the Utah Jazz official 17-man roster for the Jazz’s NBA season reopening win over the New Orleans Pelicans in Orlando on TNT Thursday evening, the NBA’s first action since March 11 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Oni did not play but did join the other players in kneeling for the national anthem. Oni wore Power to the People on the back of his jersey, as all of his teammates opted to replace their last names on their jerseys with a message of social justice.

Oni briefly got playing time toward the end of the Jazz’s second game Saturday, a 110-94 loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder in Orlando. In his sixth NBA game, Oni pitched in three points, two rebounds, a steal and a block in just under six minutes of action.

Dartmouth men announce Class of 2024

Dartmouth men’s basketball recently announced its Class of 2024 on Twitter:

  • Rob McRae, a 6-foot-4 guard from Inglewood, Calif., who played at Fairfax High School before a postgraduate year at Kimball Union Academy
  • Izaiah Robinson, a 6-foot-3 guard from Montclair, N.J., who played at St. Mary’s in New Jersey before a postgraduate year at Kent School
  • Dusan Neskovic, a 6-foot-6 forward from Banja Luka, Bosnia & Herzegovina, a member of the Bosnian national team program who completed a postgraduate year at Hotchkiss
  • Jaren Johnson, a 6-foot-5 guard from Lynwood, Calif., where he was a Long Beach Basketball first-team nominee at Lynwood High School

Penn men announce Class of 2024

Penn men’s basketball recently announced its Class of 2024:

  • Matteus Case, a 6-foot-5 four-year starter at Chaminade College Prep from Toronto who played on Team Canada’s Under-16 Boys’ National Team in 2017
  • Colin Chambers, a 6-foot-0 four-year letterwinner at Episcopal Academy from Malvern, Pa. who was a three-time All-Delco honorable mention. Colin’s father Paul Chambers averaged 7.2 points and 4.4 assists per game in four years for Penn from 1988 to 1992, while his uncle Pat is Penn State’s head men’s hoops coach. Colin’s uncle Tim was 1984 Ivy Player of the Year for Penn football
  • Andrew Laczkowski, a two-year captain and two-time team MVP at St. Mark’s School in Dallas who helped his AAU team win the Adidas Gauntlet title in 2020
  • Clark Slajchert, a four-year letterwinner at Oak Park in Thousand Oaks, Calif. who scored 2,833 points in his career, finishing second in Ventura County history and 17th in California history. Slajchert’s older brother Wes is a rising junior for Dartmouth hoops

The Motor moves to Germany 

No one motors like AJ Brodeur, and now the former Penn standout is headed for Germany. Brodeur announced on Twitter last week that he will be heading to Ludwigsburg, Germany to begin his professional basketball career for Riesen Ludwigsburg in the Basketball Bundesliga.

Reynolds heads for Poland

2019 Yale men’s hoops grad Blake Reynolds has signed a one-year deal with Stelmet Enea BC Zielona Gora in Poland after averaging 17.5 points, 7.2 rebounds, 2.8 assists and 1.3 steals in 17 games for Bulgaria’s Chernomorets Burgas before the National Basketball League canceled its season. The Yale Daily News delved into Reynolds’s return to Europe in a story published Friday.

“[Moving to Bulgaria] was a big, big lifestyle change,” Reynolds said, per YDN. “I’d been to a lot of western European countries in the past, but never explored eastern Europe and the differences in lifestyle, in food and just overall culture … You miss your family a lot for sure, it gets lonely at times, you’re kind of questioning like, ‘Man, I’m in Bulgaria. What am I doing?’ But the game is amazing. I love it. I never regret being over there just because I get to wake up and play basketball every day and that’s my job. It doesn’t really get much better than that.”

Antonio of the Azores

Former Penn standout Antonio Woods has signed a pro basketball deal with Azores (Portugal)-based Sport Club Lusitania, according to zerozero.pt.

Sherrod returning to Italy

Former Yale paint patroller and Whiffenpoof Brandon Sherrod signed a one-year deal with Benedetto XIV Cento in Italy, his fifth pro season.

Robinson takes the reins

Craig Robinson, two-time Ivy Player of the Year for Princeton and former Brown coach, was selected as executive director of the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) earlier this month. Robinson will succeed 1971 Penn basketball grad Jim Haney in the role. Robinson had served as the Vice President of Player Development and Minor League Operations for the New York Knicks since 2017 and will take over for Haney in September 2021. Succeeding Haney, Robinson will continue a tradition of former Ivy hoops figures becoming NABC executive directors, as Joe Vancisin held the role from 1975 to 1992 following 19 seasons helming the Yale men.

“We are truly fortunate to have Craig as our new Executive Director,” Tommy Amaker said in NABC’s announcement of Robinson’s appointment. “He has many talents – none greater than his integrity and his ability to lead.”

Back in the City 6

Former Penn standout and 2000 Ivy Player of the Year Mike Jordan is joining Drexel’s coaching staff as an assistant after eight years at Colgate, where he coached under fellow Penn hoops alum Matt Langel and with another former Red & Blue hoopster, Dave Klatsky. Colgate finished first or second in the Patriot League standings in four of the last six years, including back-to-back first place finishes in 2018-19 and 2019-20.

Getting into the Wing of things

Bella Alarie did not score in her debut against fellow Princeton alum Blake Dietrick and the Atlanta Dream in the WNBA season opener Sunday (Dietrick contributed five points, five assists and four rebounds in a Dream victory), but Alarie has picked up steam since, going from just three minutes of play in the opener to two points in nine minutes in a win over the New York Liberty and six points, four boards, two blocks and two steals {plus five fouls) in a win against the Indiana Fever Friday. Alarie was a three-time Ivy Player of the Year before the Wings drafted her fifth overall in the 2020 WNBA Draft in April. Dietrick notched 13 points in 27 minutes in an Atlanta loss to the Las Vegas Aces Wednesday before

Springing for Spain

Princeton women’s basketball noted on Twitter Tuesday that former standout and 2018 grad Tia Weledji signed with Spain’s Extremadura Miralvalle Plasencia after being with the Westfield Health Sheffield Hatters in the British WBBL. Weledji played in 109 career games for the Tigers, making 28 starts.

Satter heads south

After a four-year career at Penn, Liz Satter is headed for Florida International as a grad transfer. Satter only played two games at Penn before sitting out the next three years with injury, but the Glencoe, Ill. native made a clear impact as a digital media producer at Penn Athletics.

Minority leadership initiative gets attention  

Harvard men’s coach Tommy Amaker recently joined Kentucky coach John Calipari for a joint appearance on MSNBC to discuss the McLendon Minority Leadership Initiative, a coach-driven initiative will provide minorities a jump-start to their careers through practical experiences and opportunities to build their network. The initiative’s namesake was a legendarily impactful basketball coach and ambassador. Learn more about the initiative here.

Ivy to Big Ten pipeline?

Jenn Hatfield of The Next: A Women’s Basketball Newsroom from the IX wrote a terrific piece highlighting the journeys of former Cornell grinder Laura Bagwell-Katalinich and former Harvard sharpshooter Katie Benzan to their Big Ten grad transfer destinations of Minnesota and Maryland, respectively.

“I definitely like that there’s more than one Ivy transfer in the Big Ten,” Bagwell-Katalinich told Hatfield. “You know, represent!”

“I’m used to waiting” 

Rising Penn men’s basketball senior Jelani WIlliams’s remarkable patience was highlighted in an incisive feature from the Philadelphia Inquirer’s Mike Jensen. Williams was a highly touted prospect from Sidwell Friends in Washington D.C. but has had astonishingly bad injury luck since then, sitting out three straight seasons after three ACL tears. Williams was cleared to play on July 7, one year to the day after his last ligament tear, and discussed attending Black Lives Matter protests “literally every day for two or three weeks” and not being able to get to a workout during the pandemic.

“I know my time is coming,‘’ Williams said. “I feel it.”

Hear Us Now 

Cornell Athletics recently featured the Women of Color in Cornell Athletics (WOCCA) in an in-depth post on the athletic department’s website, from the group’s genesis (and rising Cornell women’s hoops junior Theresa Grace Mbanefo’s role in it) to its Hear Us Now photo campaign on Instagram demanding solidarity in the face of racial inequality.

 

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