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Monday News:

Will Venable's weekend went as follows: Friday, 1-4 at the plate in a 1-0 loss to Midland. Saturday, a 1-2 performance as part of a 2-1 San Antonio victory. Sunday, 3-4 slugging as the Missions move into first place in the South division of the Texas League. Venable is now batting .341 for the season.

Over in Germany, Venable's former teammate Judson Wallace scored 17 points and grabbed 12 rebounds, but Bremerhaven lost 82-64 to Ludwigsburg on Sunday. The Eisbaren are 21-11 on the season and currently tied for fourth place with Koln.

6'8", 250 lb forward Phillip 'Tree' Thomas has signed to play basketball for Idaho. In the article about his signing, Princeton is listed as one of the "other schools that recruited Thomas."

Friday News:

C. Young (2-2) - 5.1 IP 6 H 5 ER 3 BB 3 K 4.33 ERA. 105 pitches, 62 strikes.

The Padres lost to the Diamondbacks 7-4 last night in Arizona. Chris Young pitched into the sixth inning before leaving down three runs. Young had two wild pitches and an error during his outing.

Joe Scott has completed his staff at Denver, hiring Colorado native and former Princeton Director of Basketball Operations John Fitzgerard for the same position with the Pioneers.

Frisco over San Antonio 8-5. Will Venable was 2-4 with a run scored. Venable played all three outfield positions in the series versus the RoughRiders.

Thursday News:

Georgetown head coach John Thompson III was named 2007 National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame Coach of the Year by the NABC.

The Town Topics writes following Monday afternoon's Sydney Johnson press conference.

Chris Young heads to the hill for San Diego against the Diamondbacks in a NL West clash tonight. 9:40 pm ET first pitch.

Will Venable was 1-5 with his fifth double of the season, San Antonio wins 8-5 over Frisco to pull within 1.5 games of first place.

Wednesday News:

Former Princeton recruit Jeff Peterson signs the dotted line on a Letter of Intent to play basketball at Iowa.

The Daily Pennsylvanian has some thoughts on Princeton's hire of Sydney Johnson.

Frank Deford visited Princeton yesterday for a lecture entitled "Sports: The Hype and the Hoopla."

Your daily Texas minor league baseball update: Will Venable 0-4 at the plate, Frisco bests the Missions 5-4.

Tuesday News:

Stephen Goldsmith/

Many articles below about yesterday's press conference with Sydney Johnson.

Princeton Athletic Department

Trenton Times

The native of Towson, Md., said assistant coach Tony Newsom will remain on staff as his No. 1 assistant and he has candidates in mind for the two other spots, not giving specifics on the futures of Mike Brennan and Howard Levy. It's possible Brennan will get the coaching spot that Johnson vacated at Georgetown.

Associated Press

The Star Ledger

Princeton Packet

The Tigers players also are feeling more connected the more they get to work with Johnson. Mike Strittmatter went through his first workout Monday afternoon.

"Coach Johnson was there and 10 minutes into it, Brian Earl showed up," said the junior forward. "I've heard that Coach Scott was a good player, but I've never seen game film of him. I've seen game film of Coach Johnson and Brian Earl. They looked like they could play with us now and at least hold their own. It's impressive for us. It's not like we wouldn't listen to them if they hadn't played here, but it lends more credibility."

Daily Princetonian


Princeton introduced Sydney Johnson as its new basketball coach on Monday.

Johnson takes over for Joe Scott, who resigned last month to take the head coaching position at the University of Denver. Before Johnson took the job, however, someone else also was in the running: former 76ers coach Larry Brown.

Multiple sources told Comcast SportsNet that Brown met with Princeton officials last week regarding the head coaching position.

Dana Pennett O'Neil -

The Hoya

Princeton recruit Jason Liberman will receive the The Jules D. Mazor Award - given to the Outstanding Jewish High School Scholar Athlete of the Year Award - on April 29th at the Suffolk YJCC in Commack, NY. This award will be presented by the National Jewish Sports Hall of Fame and Museum

Will Venable picks up two more hits and San Antonio returns home with a 2-0 win over Frisco.

Sydney Johnson named Princeton head coach.

Stephen Goldsmith/

Sydney Johnson was officially introduced as the 28th head coach of the Princeton Tigers at a press conference earlier today. Full audio from both the formal press conference and a conversation with the media is available for subscribers.

Audio - Sydney Johnson press conference - 39:28

Audio - Sydney Johnson interview - 13:39

Matt "787" Sargeant.

Two days, two Princeton victories in dunk contests. "787" wins the crown at the 4th Annual Princeton Charity Streetball Tournament! He is very fortunate he was not judged on his dancing skills.

Monday News:

Former Princeton basketball player Chris Thomforde was officially inducted as Moravian College's 15th president on Saturday.

The only apparent glitch in the ceremony was during the official induction. He had to kneel and stoop over so the chairman of the board of trustees could place the presidential medallion around his neck. Priscilla Payne Hurd barely cleared the top of the podium during her speech, whereas Thomforde is taller than Michael Jordan.

The Daily Princetonian expands their original article on the hiring of Sydney Johnson, adding quotes from several current Tigers players.

"I think I speak for the whole team when I say that I am very excited about the hiring of Coach Johnson," freshman center Zach Finley said. "He seems to bring the type of leadership our team needs to keep getting better, and I think everyone in the program is excited to get a fresh start and begin working for next year."

Will Venable was 1-5 in the San Antonio Missions' 9-8 slugfest over Midland.

Sunday News:

Princeton recruit Kareem Maddox scored 20 points and snatched 9 rebounds for the West team, but it was the East that won the Battle of the Valley Senior All-Star Game. Maddox did take home the slam dunk contest title.

San Antonio puts another one in the win column, 3-1 over first place Midland. Will Venable was 2-5 at the plate. Venable also threw out a runner at home.

Saturday News:

Jack Dempsey/AP

C. Young (2-1) - 7.0 IP 4 H 1 ER 0 BB 7 K 3.32 ERA. 101 pitches, 72 strikes. 1-3, RBI.

An aggressive, commanding performance by Chris Young in an 11-1 Padres victory.

"I had to get my confidence back" said Young. "I was out of sync in L.A. and their hitters made me pay for it. In L.A. I wasn't able to throw strikes. Tonight, I was."

Yesterday's news about the hiring of Sydney Johnson produced a number of articles, most of which used only the quotes and facts provided in the Princeton Athletic Department press release. Exceptions include the Daily Princetonian, who talked to former Tiger Sean Gregory '98 about Johnson, the Trenton Times and the Washington Post, who each provide brief quotes from Georgetown coach John Thompson III.

"It's going to be an unbelievable boon to the program," Gregory said. "When Sydney Johnson walks into your home and you're an 18-year old kid, it's going to make an impression."

"I'm ecstatic," said Thompson, who was an assistant at Princeton when Johnson played there. "As John Thompson, Princeton class of '88, this is a really exciting time."

Other articles: The Trentonian, Princeton Packet, Associated Press.

Finally, we head to Texas, where San Antonio dropped a 2-1 decision to Midland. Will Venable was 1-4 in the game.

Bill Bradley video blog.

Guess now I know what the guy who was filming my interview with Bill Bradley was using the footage for. Look for some clips from my discussion with Senator Bradley at the end of this piece. Watch more of these short films (including Jon Stewart and Bradley discussing playing at Dillon Gym) here.

It is official. Sydney Johnson coach of Princeton.

The speculation is over.

A press release was just sent to me from the Princeton Athletic Department...


PRINCETON--Sydney Johnson ’97, who as a player was named Ivy League Player of the Year and as a coach helped lead a team to the NCAA Final Four, has been named the Franklin C. Cappon-Edward G. Green ’40 Head Coach of Men’s Basketball at Princeton.

Johnson, 32, will be formally introduced as head coach at a press conference on Mon., April 23, at noon in the Class of 1956 Lounge at Princeton Stadium. A free live video stream of the press conference will be available at

“As a player at Princeton, Sydney Johnson was the embodiment of heart, passion, class and dignity,” says Gary Walters ’67, Princeton’s Director of Athletics. “We are delighted that he will bring those same qualities back to Princeton as our head men’s basketball coach.”

“I had a lot of excitement and nervous energy when I accepted the position,” says Johnson, “but that has quickly turned into a feeling of relaxation of knowing that this is the right place to be. It’s great to be here, and the challenge now will be to move forward.”

Johnson, the only three-time captain in Princeton history, was the 1997 Ivy League Player of the Year and a 1996 and 1997 first-team All-Ivy League selection. He has most recently been an assistant coach at Georgetown, where he helped lead the Hoyas to the 2007 Final Four.

Johnson played professional basketball for seven seasons in both Italy and Spain before joining John Thompson III’s coaching staff at Georgetown in 2004. In his three seasons as an assistant coach at Georgetown, the Hoyas had a 72-30 overall record and advanced to postseason play each season.

The Hoyas won both the BIG EAST tournament and regular-season championships in 2007 before reaching the program’s first NCAA Final Four since the 1984-85 season. Georgetown finished 30-7 overall and won 19 of its last 21 games before falling to Ohio State in the national semifinals.

Georgetown reached the NCAA Sweet Sixteen in 2006, defeating Northern Iowa and Ohio State before falling to eventual national champion Florida 57-53 in the third round. In Johnson’s first season as an assistant coach, 2004-05, the Hoyas won 19 games and reached the quarterfinals of the National Invitation Tournament.

“Sydney is a star as a person and as a basketball coach,” says Thompson, who also was an assistant coach at Princeton during Johnson’s junior and senior seasons.

“I’m not sure I have enough words to describe how much I learned in three years at Georgetown from Coach Thompson,” said Johnson. “He’s not only a mentor and a role model both on and off the court but a great example of the kind of person I hope to emulate and the kind of person that makes Princeton proud.”

At Princeton, Johnson was a four-year starter who is considered one of the finest all-around players in team history. He ranks in the top five at Princeton all-time in steals, assists and three-point shots and is also one of 26 1,000-point scorers in team history.

Johnson was the 1997 Ivy League Player of the Year after leading the Tigers to an undefeated Ivy League season and a 24-4 overall record. Johnson, who averaged 9.3 points and 4.1 rebounds per game as a senior, is the only player to ever win the award while averaging fewer than 10 points per game.

In 1996, Johnson led the Tigers to an Ivy League championship and was a key part of Princeton’s 43-41 upset win over defending national champion UCLA in the first round of the NCAA tournament, hitting three second-half three-pointers in that game and leading the team with 11 points. In the Ivy League playoff game against Penn five days earlier, his three-point shot with 51 seconds left in overtime put the Tigers ahead for good.

The program’s all-time leader in steals with 169, Johnson was a two-time first-team All-Ivy League selection. He finished his Princeton career with 1,044 points, now 24th on the team’s all-time list, though he was perhaps better known for his defensive ability than for his offensive prowess.

“Sydney was the best defensive player I ever coached at Princeton,” said Northwestern head coach Bill Carmody, who was an assistant coach at Princeton for 14 seasons and then Johnson’s head coach in 1996-97. “He was a tremendous player and a great leader, and he worked as hard every day as any player I’ve been around.”

“I always thought from the very beginning when I recruited him that he had excellent leadership qualities,” says Naismith Hall of Fame coach Pete Carril, Johnson’s head coach at Princeton for three seasons and a member of the advisory committee that helped select Johnson as head coach. “As a coach, you apply all of those qualities and your experiences. He will do a fine job for Princeton.”

Johnson, who also ranks fifth all-time at Princeton in both three-point shots (162) and assists (280), was also a two-time Academic All-Ivy selection and the winner of an NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship in 1997.

He also holds the school record with 11 consecutive three-point shots, which included a team record 6-for-6 performance from behind the arc against Columbia on Feb. 28, 1997.

Professionally, Johnson had a fine career in Europe after graduating from Princeton with a degree in history in 1997. In 1998, he was a starter for Gorizia Pallacanestro in Italy and helped his team capture the Italian Second Division championship. The following year, he won another league title while playing for Reggio Calabria, and he concluded his playing career in 2004 by winning a league title with Siena.

A native of Towson, Md., outside Baltimore, Johnson attended Towson Catholic High School before spending a postgraduate year at Fork Union Military Academy in Virginia in 1992-93. At Towson Catholic, he was the MVP of the Baltimore Catholic League tournament in 1992.

Johnson’s older brother Stephen also played Division I basketball for the University of California at Berkeley.

He and his wife, Jennifer, have two children, a two-year old son Jalen and an infant daughter Julia, who was born in February.

Johnson will begin his duties at Princeton immediately. He replaces Joe Scott ’87, who resigned March 20 to become the head coach at the University of Denver.


The Sydney Johnson File

Name: Sydney A. Johnson

Age: 32 (born April 26, 1974)

Hometown: Towson, Md.

College: Four-year starter at Princeton, graduating in 1997 with an A.B. degree in history.

Coaching Experience:
2004-07: Assistant Coach, Georgetown University

Playing Experience:
Seven professional seasons in Italy and Spain; teams won three league championships

Notable: The only three-time captain in Princeton men’s basketball history … the 1997 Ivy League Player of the Year … a two-time first-team All-Ivy selection … the program’s all-time leader in steals (169) … fifth all-time at Princeton in both three-pointers (162) and assists (280) … ranks 24th all-time at Princeton with 1,044 points.

Family: Wife Jennifer, son Jalen (2), daughter Julia (two months)


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