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Throwback Thursday: A previously unpublished essay.

It is "Throwback Thursday!" once more on the site.

Let's open with some backstory...

When Scott Cacciola interviewed me last December for a Wall Street Journal piece on first year head coach Mitch Henderson, he reminded me that 10 years previous he had sent a six page essay my way on Princeton basketball that he wrote while in graduate school at Columbia.

I had only a vague recollection of this, so I was delighted when a hard copy turned up during this summer's mammoth garage/basement reorganization project. I checked with Scott and he said I could run it - though I neglected to mention Pete Carril's name is misspelled throughout...

All kidding aside this is an interesting, previously unpublished look at Princeton basketball in the early aughts using interviews with John Thompson III, Jamie Mastaglio, Gabe Lewullis, Mitch Henderson and others to drive the narrative.

Thanks for letting me share this, Scott!

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Stephen Goldsmith's Penn pictures.

Tried something we've never done before on the site. Both Stephen Goldsmith *and* Robert Solomon shot tonight's game. I've split these images into two batches and SG is up first. Enjoy!

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More classic Princeton photos.

I'm delighted to share with you 11 additional photographs from the collection of David Zeft, the majority of which are from mid-1990s games at The Palestra. Some in this set do also date from the early 1980s.

Click any and all to enlarge. Above, a driving Jamie Mastaglio with Pete Carril, Bill Carmody, Armond Hill and Joe Scott watching from behind the referee on the bench.

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1996-97 team photo.

A reader was kind enough to scan and send over this photo of the 1996-97 Tigers, a squad that would go 24-3 in the regular season with an unblemished Ivy record before falling 55-52 to Cal in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.

Front row: Jason Osier, Brian Earl, Alex Karlsen, Sean Gregory, Gabe Lewullis, Phil Belin, Mitch Henderson, J.R. Gillern, Jose Ramirez-Del Toro

Back row: Jim Brenner, Joe Scott, Jay Galloway, Sydney Johnson, James Mastaglio, Steve Goodrich, Jesse Rosenfeld, Nate Walton, Mason Rocca, John McCann, Darren Hite, John Thompson III, Bill Carmody, Mike McDonnell

22% of those pictured have been the head basketball coach at Princeton.

Click to enlarge.

2011 Summer Reading (and listening too).

In addition to this site's weekly in-season interviews with John Thompson III, Joe Scott and Sydney Johnson, has produced numerous pieces with former Princeton players over the past decade+.

The summer struck me as a good time to collect the archived links to all of the Q&As, transcripts, email correspondence and audio files into one post for newer members who might have missed some of these when they originally ran.

I believe this is a complete list, but if I'm missing anyone let me know!

-Bill Bradley
-Mike Brennan
-Pete Carril
-Scott Greenman
-Kyle Koncz
-Nick Lake and Noah Savage
-Jimmy Lane
-Howie Levy
-Kevin "Moon" Mullin
-Ed Persia
-Craig Robinson
-Mason Rocca
-Judson Wallace
-Chris Young and Will Venable

Want more? There's also an interview with "Outside The Limelight" author Kathy Orton.

Finally, from back in the "Catching Up With..." listserv days - conversations with Mitch Henderson, Sean Jackson, Sydney Johnson, Jamie Mastaglio, Frank Sowinski and Mike Stephens.

When Sydney met Calipari.

"No one plays Princeton unless you're a psycho or a drug addict...I'm not a drug addict, so I must be a psycho." - John Calipari, March 1995.

Sydney Johnson has not gone up against Kentucky’s John Calipari during his four seasons as Princeton head man, but the two met under different circumstances during Johnson’s sophomore year – when the Tigers (3-3) visited fifth-ranked, Calipari-coached UMass (3-1).

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Reunions 2003 montage.

I completely forgot that I shot and edited this montage for the Friends of Princeton Basketball from Reunions 2003 of the alumni basketball games at Jadwin Gym.

Pictured at different junctures: John Thompson III, Kyle Wente, Ray Robins, Pete Hegseth, Steve Goodrich (with platinum blonde hair!), Jerry Price, Ahmed El-Nokali, Chris Doyal, Jim Lane, Frank Sowinski, Nate Walton, Stu Orefice, Jason Osier, Stan Adleston, Sean Gregory, Gabe Lewullis, Rich Simkus, John Trubee, Christopher Kilburn-Peterson, Jamie Mastaglio, Brian Earl and many others I can't as easily ID.

Seniors on a Stick: 1998.

There are lots of reasons to go to Shabbat dinner at my parents' house. Have you tried my mom's challah, for example? Besides spending time eating and laughing (and eating) with family and loved ones, there's also slowly but surely bringing classic Seniors on a Stick home, taking photos of them and putting those snapshots on-line.

On the eve of the start of Ivy League play, with a month of Friday nights spent at basketball gyms instead of around the dining room table forthcoming, enjoy these posters from the final home game of the 1997-98 season.

Steve Goodrich.

James Mastaglio.

Darren Hite.

Sean Gregory.

Mitch Henderson.

All Seniors on a Stick printed and distributed by The 14 Club.

Honoring the 1997-98 team.

Pictures courtesy of Stephen Goldsmith.

Princeton honored the Ivy League champion 1997-98 Tigers team at halftime of the Manhattan game. Pictured from left to right are: team manager Mike McDonnell, James Mastaglio, Gabe Lewullis, Chris Kilburn-Peterson and Darren Hite.

In the above photo you can see Kilburn-Peterson, Hite, Mitch Henderson, Sean Gregory and C.J. Chapman.

Not pictured, but also on hand for the celebration: Brian Earl, assistant coach Howie Levy, Phil Belin, Terence Rozier-Byrd and team manager Corey Riley.


Congratulations to Jamie Mastaglio, who finished yesterday's New York City Marathon in under four hours and raised a lot of money for the Dave Nee Foundation in the process.

Catching up with...Jamie Mastaglio.

Former Princeton Tiger James Mastaglio was a crucial part of a senior class that won three Ivy League titles and two NCAA tournament games. He was a starter on the 1997-1998 Princeton team that finished the season 27-2. James has been playing in Europe and coaching high school basketball since his graduation in 1998. James took the time to answer a wide variety of questions questions from list members. Here are his responses.

This interview originally ran in August 1999.

What have you been doing in the year since your graduation?

Following graduation I was invited to attend a free agent combine in Treviso, Italy. I played very well there, making the All-Star team, and I was able to attract some interest from some of the top clubs in Europe, specifically Italy (they loved the last name). I signed a deal with a second division Italian team in Montecatini, Italy, in the same conference as Sydney Johnson. Unfortunately, the contract required me to obtain dual citizenship from Ireland, similar to what Syd has from France, and Jesse from Israel. I wasn't able to obtain that, so after about 6 weeks the contract was basically terminated and I came home.

Following my release I decided try my hand as a varsity basketball coach at my high school in Garden City, Long Island, about 30 minutes from NY. The experience turned out better than expected, as the team jumped from 5-13 the previous year to 15-3 this year, including a 12-0 conference record and a conference championship. The season ended abruptly with a first round playoff loss, but personally it was a great success.

Since the end of the season in March I've basically been trying to keep myself in shape in the hope that I get another shot in Europe, but at this point it doesn't look like that's going to happen. I've been down to school a number of times to work out with the coaches and current players, and I've tried to keep playing in spring and summer league games several times a week as well. However, the rigors of the real world seem to be on the horizon.

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