A-10 Media Day Quotes Blog

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Andrew Albert (@andrewjalbert01)

On Tuesday, October 8, the Atlantic 10 men’s basketball coaches held their annual media day from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. Here are some interesting quotes by coaches from around the league:

On the conference shakeups in recent years and where the A-10 falls:

“On the face of it, it doesn’t seem like it makes much sense. We all know what drives it all. We understand that. It makes it interesting. Kids want to know about it more so than they need to, to tell you the truth. It gets a little too much play. But that’s what’s great about the A-10. It’s a basketball league. Most of (the shakeups) are all driven by football, so that is positive for the A10.”- Saint Louis Coach Jim Crewes

“I’ll be honest, this is not any offense to any league, but the guys that we recruit are not coming to play in the Atlantic 10, they are coming to play at Dayton. There are different stages, there are different places to be on, and I feel like we are on our own two feet if we are in a league or not in a league. We have a great program and great tradition with great support, and a great institution. When we recruit, we are recruiting the experience to come play for us.”- Dayton coach Archie Miller

“I’m going to put Phil Martelli out there, and he is going to get mad at me. We were at a recruiting event in July, and we were talking about some quirks in the recruiting schedule and he said we might have to move one of our weekends to May. I said that the league meetings might get in the way. He turned to me and asked when my league meetings were. I was like Phil, we’re in the same league now.”- George Mason coach Paul Hewitt

“The league has survived the shake. I’m not convinced that the shaking is done, but I think that you not just a quality program, but the quality people that run that program, and then you add a Paul Hewitt, who is a deep thinker, wonderful coach, final four coach, national championship game coach, I think it is a very healthy league from the top down. I think because of Bernadette McGlade, the Atlantic 10 is at the grown up table so to speak.”- Saint Joseph’s coach Phil Martelli

On the depth of the league in 2013-14:

“I think parody has cost us some years in the past because you have a bunch of teams that are pretty good, but it would be better to have five great teams and a few really bad teams. I think there are opportunities for everybody. With Temple and Xavier being gone, there is opportunities for everyone to have good seasons. I don’t think there’s a huge difference between the top and the bottom.”-Richmond coach Chris Mooney

On leaving VCU:

“I’m spreading the word today. VCU is the place to be. Come down, spend some time around there and you’ll see. I really enjoy it there. My family enjoys it there. Number one reason that I love it at VCU is because everyday I come to work, and I am just so excited and eager to be around our players and be around our coaching staff. I think that’s what any of us look for in a job.”- VCU coach Shaka Smart

On Brad Stevens taking the Celtics job:

“Yeah but he left me. I was not shocked. Not at all. He and I had talked. He had talked and I had listened about the NBA several times in the past, and that is something that has intrigued him for a while. Brad is a basketball guy. He loves coaching. He loves the X’s and O’s. He loves studying his team and finding ways to make it better. He’s excited about the challenge at that level to do those things. It was sad to see him go. He was one of the best coaches in the country, and certainly a guy I really admire. He’s still coaching, he’s just not in college basketball.”- Smart

What would the lure be to go to the NBA:

“For myself, I haven’t really thought about it. It is such a different level. I’m a fan of the NBA. I have always enjoyed following the NBA and watching the best players in the world play basketball. But it is just so very different. Somebody asked me if I was ready for a new challenge. We have a new challenge every year. Every year it is a new challenge with a new team and new personnel. This is a very challenging job, being a college basketball coach. The NBA is the highest level of basketball, but this is challenging too.”- Smart

On the Atlantic 10:

“When I was at Villanova, we used to kid around and call this league the steak sauce conference, it was the A-1. It was Temple, and nobody else. When I was in the Big East, that’s what we would tell all the recruits. Now we have good teams up and down the board.”- Hewitt

On La Salle’s coach Dr. John Giannini:

“I couldn’t be happier for La Salle. John Giannini is such a good guy, there is no way he should be a college basketball coach. I’ve been telling him that for 25 years. Now that team has a swagger about them.”- Fordham head coach Tom Pecora

On the difficulty of scheduling non-conference games:

“It is very important to build your program up to a high level of respect. To get some name recognition, build a brand, have a high RPI. I think it is easier for VCU right now than it would be for us to get those types of games, not that it is easy for them. I would say we are in no man’s land because people think we are going to be good, but we don’t have that name recognition in the last couple of years to make it a attractive series.”- Rhode Island coach Dan Hurley

On NCAA transfer rules:

“There is no black and white guidelines with the transfer rules. Nobody knows who is going to be eligible and who is not. It has been enlightening in the past. If you play one second of one game, that’s a year of eligibility. I don’t think one second of one game equals a year, so I think it is something that should be rationally looked at.”- La Salle coach Dr. John Giannini

“If you think 400-500 transfers are a lot, you haven’t seen nothing yet. If a kid can go wherever he wants and play right away, you haven’t seen nothing. It would not be good. That’s my opinion. The coaches can move, you hate to restrict the kids. All I’m saying is you think free agency in baseball is something, you’re going to see 50 percent turnovers of rosters annually. You won’t know who is going to be on your team. If a kid has a good year, oh my. You don’t have to contact the kid illegally to have him know that there might be opportunities at your school. All you have to do is tell a friend of a friend of a friend and the kid will get the message. The tampering and recruiting of kids already at schools would be off the charts. It would be incredible.”- Giannini

On keeping track of the members of the A-10:

“I’m going to admit to you, I don’t know who we play twice.”- Martelli

On George Washington’s improved offense:

“I definitely think we will be better offensively. Partly because of experience. Partly because we can’t really shoot much worse than last year. Three point shooting, and even our free throw shooting was brutal, and it’s contagious.”- George Washington coach Mike Lonergan

 On the term Mid-Major:

“I think the Mid-Major term is from who has football and who doesn’t, from people that are just in a different world in the way they talk about it. The reality of it, in our league, if it is a Mid-Major league that had five NCAA tournament teams and 10 teams in the top 100 of the RPI, what are the leagues that have football that are below us considered? What is the name for that?”- UMass coach Derek Kellogg

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