Fresh off their fifth straight NCAA Tournament appearance, Providence College head coach Ed Cooley sits down with basketball analyst Adam Finkelstein. Cooley gives his insights on why the Big East is better than ever, how family is more than just a buzzword in Providence, and the one thing that college basketball coaches have to do to be successful.
Later in the podcast, Adam looks at the impact some of the recent coaching changes will have on college basketball, specifically if UCONN’s hiring of Rhode Island head coach Dan Hurley can turn the Huskies around right away, whether URI can keep their recruiting class intact after that move, and how Memphis’s hiring of Penny Hardaway has already paid dividends on the recruiting trail.
Providence’s Exit from the NCAA Tournament (1:45)
“It’s always tough when it’s over but I think when you look at the big picture of the up and down season and then getting consistent at the right time to get to the tournament…I’m really proud of our young men and what we were able to do in New York and then compete against Texas A&M. I think we ran out of gas.”
Friars’ 5th Consecutive Year in the NCAA Tournament (8:15)
“We’re 1 in 5 in those tournament games. We just haven’t been fortunate. There are a lot of teams that get to the tournament and don’t have success. We’ll keep knocking at the door.”
Taking the Program to the Next Level (11:00)
“I think we still have to continue to recruit on a national level. We’ve got to get young men that fit our philosophy here and our culture. We have to start winning some games in the tournament to be recognized as an elite basketball organization. And we’ve got to compete for championships of which I think we will do.”
— PC Men’s Basketball (@PCFriarsmbb) March 16, 2018
Growing Up in Providence (12:30)
“I think it’s shaped me a lot. I’m somebody who’s appreciative, grateful and I want our players to be that. I want to teach our guys life skills by having basketball. But at the same time…moving on to your next segment in life when the ball doesn’t bounce anymore…who are you? When all is said and done, did we here at Providence College do the job we said we would do? Not from a basketball perspective but from helping you become a young, educated man. I think we do a pretty good job of that.”
New Memphis Coach Penny Hardaway (17:30)
“His presence and roots in the city will impact the Tigers recruiting efforts. His ability to branch out from Memphis is something that I’m very interested to see but I don’t think there’s any denying that he will make an immediate impact in that local area. And the commitment from Alex Lomax is the primary example of that.”
“For Wichita State, they’re not losing any time. They’re going to go after James Akinjo who had previously signed with the University of Connecticut. And Kevin Ollie, he requested his release just a couple weeks ago after the coaching change in Storrs.”
Dan Hurley’s Taking Over at UConn (20:10)
“I think Dan Hurley’s going to be at UConn for as long as he wants to be. And is it a rebuilding job? It absolutely is. (I think the issue has been more about retention than it has been recruiting.) It might not take as long as people think.
Public Misconceptions About the Recruiting Class for URI (24:10)
“For David Cox, one of his best weapons going into this process is the reality that not only can he keep the roster intact perhaps better than anyone else, but he can keep this recruiting class intact. Thus, potentially securing the re-commitment so to speak of all four guys who make up the 33rd ranked recruiting class in the country and tops overall in the Atlantic 10 in the class of 2018.”