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At the football game.

A large contingent of men's basketball players, coaches and support staff took in Princeton's football game against Colgate yesterday evening. Some, like junior forward Kareem Maddox, were armed with signs of support for the TV cameras.

Assistant coach Brian Earl and new Director of Basketball Operations Martin Bahar, with Zach Finley and Nick Lake in front of them.

Finley, Marcus Schroeder, Lake, Maddox and (all the way at the bottom of the frame) Dan Mavraides.

Assistant coach Scott Greenman, Earl & Bahar.

Also in the stands, out of shot: John Comfort, Douglas Davis, Bobby Foley.

Craig Robinson previews the season.

The Oregon State head coach talks to in advance of his second season coaching the Beavers.

Tuesday News:

ESPN has published a College Basketball Encyclopedia that (among many other things) ranks all eligible teams from 1-330. Princeton is #85 overall, the #25 program of the 1960s.

The Providence Journal has a piece about the divergent paths of Armond Hill and Brown star Eddie Morris.

Judson Wallace shares a new blog post on the Euroleague web site.

A visit to Mercer practice.

Division I schools aren't allowed to hold their first official practices of the 2009-10 season until October 16th, but practice for Region XIX schools like Mercer County Community College starts up two weeks sooner, beginning last Thursday afternoon.

I had a chance to sit in on the Vikings' first practice, thanks to the invitation of head coach and former Princeton assistant Howie Levy.

Last year Mercer finished Levy's initial campaign as head man with a 13-15 record, falling by a point to Manor in the first round of the Region XIX tournament.

In the middle of the day on the first of October, I arrived at Mercer's gym to find 16 young men wearing a random assortment of short sleeve t-shirts, muscle Ts and basketball shorts working on their two-handed passing skills at center court under Levy's watchful eye.

Nondescript waves of players wearing everything from blue shorts with yellow trim, to gray sweatshorts and red mesh workout gear went baseline to baseline for four minutes at a time, trying to show variety bringing the ball up and down the floor, with a focus on improving their weak hand.

At one point a player was challenged by Levy to "do something else!" with the basketball. A behind-the-back move went awry and Levy immediately said with a chuckle "not that!"

This drill was replaced by a three man full court weave, similar to the five man weave shown on the Joe Scott "Princeton Offense" DVD here, with the ball rarely hitting the floor and no passes allowed traveling backwards behind the man with the ball.

After having sprinted from one end of the gym to the other repeatedly, a steady blur of red socks, white socks, black socks and gray socks, the challenge became to make three pointers as a team from three different positions on the court - top of the key, right corner and left corner - in a limited amount of time. Levy stressed the importance of making your first shot, and if you missed that shot, you better make your second shot. That advice didn't help the ball go through the basket often. The first shot was true. Few followed. When time expired, the team had connected 38 times.

The attention moved from dribbling and passing to team communication. In a series of different drills, the Mercer players were instructed how to protect the basket and stop the ball on the break - screaming (after much encouragement from their coach to increase their volume) "I've got the basket!" and "I've got the ball!" as loud as they could in the near-empty gym.

The size of the drill grew slowly. 2-on-3 defense became 3-on-4 defense and developed eventually to a 4-on-5.

While this group of players appeared to have played together during limited unofficial workouts and some had seen time for Coach Levy last season, all of the drills worked on what many of these freshmen and sophomores had taken for granted in high school. Levy was looking to turn this group into decisive players who made smart decisions.

At one point the play fell apart and Levy was left at midcourt with one of his most improved players, Marcus Jimenez, someone who had stood out to me watching the practice because he was both the smallest on the court and the most vocally enthusiastic of the bunch, constantly cheering his teammates on.

"Who was your high school coach?," Levy asked him.


"Who was your high school coach?," Levy asked again.


"I want you to tell that man over there who your high school coach was," Levy said, pointing in my direction as I sat in front of the bleachers.


"Dave Orlandini."

I smiled, recognizing the name of a former Princeton standout.

The action resumed.

Before moving on to basic instructions about his offense, Levy had the team repeat the team three point shooting exercise they had struggled with earlier in the afternoon. This time they made 52, not breaking the goal of 60 threes their coach had set, but improving.

As I prepared to leave, Levy walked his team through two basic principles of his offensive scheme - setting up a back cut out of a feed to the post off the wing and then re-feeding the post from the opposite wing if the back cut isn't available. The variety of options the offense held was clear, as was the fact that things that are open in practice aren't always there as easily when playing against another team.

Well-executed plays earned a "not too bad" from Mercer's head coach, and anything less meant the team set up from the halfcourt line and started from scratch.

By the time I headed out the door and back into the crisp October air there were starting to be more and more "not too bads."

Mercer plays three scrimmages late this month before kicking off their season at home on November 7 with the MCCC Classic.

Monday News:

The season came to a close for Will Venable and the San Diego Padres yesterday. Venable finished the year in a 1-22 slump, dropping his average from the mid-.270s down to .256. In 293 at bats over 95 games, Venable hit 14 home runs, drove in 38 runs, scored 38 runs and struck out 89 times.

TexasHoops has a story about new Princeton recruit Daniel Edwards.

The Mercer County C.C. basketball schedule has been published.

Craig Robinson will preside over the Washington County Museum’s 20th annual fundraising gala on October 17th.

Judson Wallace and Benetton Treviso have begun the qualifying rounds for Euroleague. After dropping their first game to BK Ventspils 78-73, Benetton won the return match 88-76 to advance on aggregate. Wallace had 12 points and nine rebounds. Their opponent in the next round is Entente Orleanaise Loirest.

It has been six weeks since Chris Young had shoulder surgery. He will resume a throwing program in November.

Enjoy the transcript of this 2005 interview with Pete Carril.

Princeton's first opponent in 2009-10, Central Michigan, has been named the favorite to win the MAC West by both Lindy's and Blue Ribbon.

Penn is the sixth Ivy school to release their men's basketball schedule. The Quakers open with games at Penn State and Villanova.

Former Cornell assistant Zach Spiker is the new head coach at Army.

SportsProf has some nice things to say about this site!

New Recruit - Ben Hazel.

As the month of September came to a close, Princeton may already have completed their 2010 recruiting class. The Tigers have received a verbal commitment from talented DC-area lefty guard Ben Hazel.

The 6'4"+ 185 lb Hazel is in his senior year at Our Lady of Good Counsel in Olney, MD. Good Counsel is a member of the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference, one of the top basketball leagues in the country and part of the same conference that produced current Princeton freshman Ian Hummer.

Late this afternoon I heard from Good Counsel head coach Blair Mills, who told me all about this important piece of Princeton's class of '14.

Exclusive quotes, links to video highlights and excerpts of articles about Hazel can be found after the jump.

For full profiles on all of Princeton's 2010 recruits, click here.

Read the rest of this entry »

2009-2010 Princeton Roster.

03 - Jimmy Sherburne - G - 6-3/195 - Fr - Whitefish Bay, WI. (Whitefish Bay)
11 - Bobby Foley - G - 6-5/195 - Jr - Richmond, VA. (Godwin)
12 - Will Barrett - F - 6-10/200 - Fr - Hartsville, PA (Central Bucks South)
14 - Nick Lake (C) - F - 6-6/200 - Sr - Rancho Santa Fe, Calif. (The Bishop's School)
15 - John Comfort - G - 6-7/185 - So - La Grange, Ill. (Fenwick)
20 - Douglas Davis - G - 5-11/155 - So - Philadelphia, Pa. (Hun School)
21 - Marcus Schroeder (C) - G - 6-3/180 - Sr - Concord, Calif. (De La Salle)
22 - Patrick Saunders - F - 6-7/200 - So - Gilford, N.H. (New Hampton)
23 - Kareem Maddox - F - 6-8/225 - Jr - Oak Park, Calif. (Oak Park)
24 - Zach Finley - C - 6-9/230 - Sr - Rapid City, S.D. (St. Thomas More)
33 - Dan Marvraides - G - 6-3/205 - Jr - San Mateo, CA (Phillips Exeter)
34 - Ian Hummer - F - 6-7/225 - Fr - Vienna, VA (Gonzaga College HS)
40 - Gus Gabel - F - 6-7/195 - Fr - Paradise Valley, AZ (Chaparral)
41 - Mack Darrow - F - 6-7/225 - Fr - Lake Barrington, IL (Barrington)
52 - Brendan Connolly - C - 6-9/270 - Fr - Brentwood, TN (Father Ryan)
55 - Pawel Buczak - C - 6-11/220 - Sr - Moorestown, N.J. (Moorestown)

Princeton has released its 2009-10 roster.

Zane Ma and Max Huc did not return to the program for their sophomore seasons.

For his senior season, Zach Finley has switched from #30 to his high school number, #24.

Touted freshman Ian Hummer will wear the same number his father did.

New Recruit - Chris Clement.

Photo: Jamie Harms

A second high school senior from Texas in as many weeks has verbally committed to play basketball at Princeton. Joining Highland Park big man Daniel Edwards is 6'0" guard Chris Clement from Round Rock, who told the Tiger coaching staff on Monday that he wanted to be a part of Sydney Johnson's program.

Earlier today I talked on the phone with Stony Point High School boys basketball coach Brian Route. He shared his thoughts with me about his poised point guard.

Exclusive quotes, video highlights and links to articles about Clement can be found after the jump.

For full profiles on all the members of the 2010 Princeton recruiting class, click here.

Read the rest of this entry » Fall 2009 fundraising email.

I'm bumping this back up to the top for people who may have missed it the first time around. - JS

Welcome to this year’s fundraising message. We’re gearing up for covering another season of Princeton Tigers basketball!

Over the past twelve years has continued to evolve. As the network has grown, we’ve brought our donors more content each season to keep them informed about the extended Princeton basketball family and the Ivy League.

First, the straight-up boasting. has covered the last ONE HUNDRED AND TWENTY-SEVEN CONSECUTIVE IVY LEAGUE GAMES in person. There is only one individual who can say they have seen each of these 127 conference games: editor Jon Solomon. What other reporter or web site can say that? None. We’ve also been on-hand for every Princeton postseason game since 1983.

With you’re reading a source you can count on for consistent, knowledgeable coverage that puts current events in a historical context. continues to be your best location for keeping track of the Tigers that many of you know as your sons, brothers and grandsons, your friends and your classmates.

If you have given to the site in the past, I hope you will renew for another season! Old memberships will expire on October 1st. Don’t get locked out of your old account.

I understand first-hand that times are tight and you may be reluctant to sign up for our subscription content. As the editor of this site, all I can do is promise you, as a fan of Princeton, the Ivy League and/or one of the many schools we report on, that I will work tirelessly to bring you the most comprehensive news and insight available. I'll cover more Princeton games in person than any other beat reporter. I'll stay up late crunching numbers and doing research to answer your statistical questions. I'll go see recruits in person to provide first-hand observations on their skill sets. I'll spend hours cutting audio and editing photographs to bring you exclusive multimedia content all year long. I'll even make restaurant recommendations and hotel suggestions off-site (if asked). For less than $1/game you're going to get thorough coverage of the entire Carril Cradle of coaches.

What does your donation go towards? Well, in 2008-2009 brought you…

Daily News: Each morning a post appeared on the site with links to that day’s articles from local and national papers. If it has been published on-line, we’ve found the article and passed it along to you. Since last year and now we wrote 482 posts - an average of more than one a day and sixty more than in 07-08! March 2009 was our most prolific month ever with a site-record 79 original posts.

Premium Postgame Content: This past season provided you exclusive on-site postgame audio from Coach Johnson and select players after all twenty-seven of last season’s games, including all fourteen Ivy contests. This is information that was not available anywhere else. You could also read detailed same-night recaps of all of the season’s games, along with full box scores and cumulative team and player statistics. We’re planning to cover a minimum of 27 of this season’s games in person, with statistical previews for each opponent on game day.

Weekly Interviews with Coach Johnson: produced a weekly interview program that featured a new in-depth discussion with Coach Johnson fifteen times over the course of the season, looking back at the previous week’s games, previewing upcoming contests and talking about the state of Princeton basketball. This show also offered you a forum to ask Coach Johnson your questions. We look forward to taping similar interviews again this season.

Exclusive Audio: In addition to postgame interviews and our weekly interviews with Coach Johnson, also had bonus streams of Coach Johnson's portion of the Ivy League's preseason and midseason media teleconferences plus sideline-to-sideline coverage of Princeton’s annual Media Day available only for our donors. We sat down with Scott Greenman to talk about his experiences in Israel coaching at the Maccabiah Games and for the site's 1000th post, unearthed lost interviews with Pete Carril and Bob Scrabis taped in the days before Princeton's 1989 NCAA game versus Georgetown. Expect similar bonus audio to be available in 2009-10.

Recruiting News: Here at we tracked the incoming Tigers on a daily basis. We provided pictures and video of players you had only heard about, provided quotes from their high school coaches and were able to confirm rumors of commitments long before this news reached print media. We went to see Will Barrett play in person to form our own opinion and wrote observations of two televised games Ian Hummer played in.

Articles: In addition to the daily news, there were numerous interviews and features written for the site. American University assistant coach Mike Brennan talked with us before the Eagles played Villanova in the NCAA Tournament. When Director of Basketball Operations Dan Connelly left the Tigers for Memphis, he had a statement to share with readers of this site. When Lincoln Gunn departed the Princeton program, he had a statement he wanted people to read. We reported on the Princeton JV game against Mercer County and wrote two pieces for Princeton Alumni Weekly, one midway through the Ivy season and one after the season finale against Penn. When one of our favorite Jadwin regulars, Jack Platten, passed away, we brought you his story. We also let you know dates and opponents for five of Princeton’s games this season before the official press release came out.

Seniors On A Stick: We continued this Jadwin Gym tradition for the final home game of the season, honoring last year’s seniors. Did you wave a poster saluting Jason Briggs or Michael Strittmatter? Another production. We also scanned as many old Seniors On A Stick as we could find in our collection from the past two decades.

Carril Court Coverage: I've been proud of few things on this site like I was of the content created around the naming of the basketball court at Jadwin Gym after Coach Carril. Subscribers of read coverage of eight games in nine days, the centerpiece of which was photos from the Carril Court reception, photos from the Carril Court halftime ceremony and audio from a 25:00+ roundtable Q&A with Coach Carril.

Alumni Updates: You’ll always be kept up-to-date on the professional basketball (and baseball) careers of former Tigers through, even those players playing in foreign ports of call. This summer tracked Judson Wallace and Mason Rocca in Italy, Spencer Gloger in Spain and Konrad Wysocki in Germany as well as Sean Gregory's work for Time Magazine - plus Chris Young’s pitching performances with the Padres, Will Venable’s time in Portland before being called up by San Diego and David Blatt’s coaching successes on the international level. In April we went to Citizen's Bank Park to speak with Chris Young and report on the Padres' come-from-behind win over the Phillies.

All in the Family: Not only has covered Princeton and the Ivy League this past season, but we were able to provide extensive information on Coach Thompson’s Georgetown Hoyas, Coach Mooney’s Richmond Spiders, Coach Scott’s Denver Pioneers, Coach Robinson's Oregon State Beavers, Coach Carmody’s Northwestern Wildcats and Coach Levy's Mercer County Community College Vikings. will feature games from these teams in our daily news and offer bonus postgame coverage when scheduling allows.

Gameday Photographs: Thanks to your donations, we were able to bring photographer Stephen Goldsmith into the fold three years ago, providing readers with exclusive photographs of the Tigers in action that helped further enhance the Princeton basketball experience for those who were unable to see the games in person. Photo essays were made available after every home game, select road games and the Bill Bradley/Dick Kazmaier "42" retirement reception. Stephen was the only photographer at Jadwin taking pictures of Princeton's Senior Night ceremony and saw his work for featured in Sports Illustrated.

Schedule Sync: We’re the only web site to offer an iCal schedule you can sync with your computer’s calendar that has details on every Princeton, Georgetown, Northwestern, Richmond, Oregon State, MCCC and Denver game. Select which teams you want to follow or subscribe to them all!

Social Networking and New Media: While many web sites and publications have resisted progress, we've fully embraced new forms of communication. This season we held two live chats during the postseason, used Facebook and Twitter as ways to enhance site content and alert you to updates on the site. We listened to your requests, adding the ability to get email updates when people respond to your comments on the site and utilizing an email alert system that informs you when a new post goes live on the site.

From the Vaults: As princetonbasketball covers the present and looks to the future, we made sure that the past was not forgotten. We scanned old schedule cards from over the years, shared an amazing 1990 Recruiting Wrapup, some Jim Nantz Princeton basketball promos, the story of the orange jumpsuits, great photos taken by a band member in the late 1980s/early 1990s and a picture showing the chaos in Indianapolis right after Princeton knocked off UCLA in 1996.

Going the Extra Mile: When readers complained about a lack of scorecards in Jadwin, we made a printable .pdf you could bring to the games. Subscribers in the Boston area were offered discounted admission to the reception Bob Ruxin puts on after the Harvard game. We answered your questions at games and responded in great detail to subscriber observations and comments off-site.

Twelve years in,’s basic level of access continues to remain free, but it costs money for us to operate and manage this web site on a daily basis. To make all of this possible, relies on your donations to cover our expenses of web hosting and reporting on the games we all care about so much. How much you choose to give is up to you. Every dollar helps and is greatly appreciated.

This season continues to expand donor-only content on our web site. All postgame audio, all archived video and all weekly interviews are available only to donors. You also need to be a donor to comment on articles, read full recaps, read full posts, contribute to Q&As and access daily news links.

Anyone making a contribution of $30.00 or more this season is entitled to a season-long password for access to donor-only content. Those of you who have donated since August 1st, 2009 have already had your accounts extended through next September 30, 2010.

Current students can gain access to’s donor-only content at the reduced rate of $15.00 for the season. Contact us directly for this student discount. Renewing now will assure a smooth transition for last year’s donors. You don’t want to miss out on any of the coming season’s premium offerings.

This year, we're adding a special "thank you" for many of our donors. All donors who contribute $50 or more are entitled to an amazing "Prince Ton Basketball" silkscreened t-shirt designed by Bucks County artist Jay McPhillips (pictured at the top of this post). If you attended the Friends of Princeton Basketball event at Reunions, this is the same shirt Coach Johnson was wearing. Just let me know what size shirt you would like!

To sign up on-line and become a new donor using our secure payment portal, click here.

If you are already logged in and want to renew a subscription using your old login/password combination, click here.

Please email us if you are more comfortable paying by check.

Another easy way you can support is by ordering things through Amazon using our referral ID. Start your Amazon search by clicking on one of the links on the right side of our site and a percentage of everything you order will go to the site. You don’t even have to choose one of the items we’re advertising!

I welcome your comments, suggestions and ideas about what you would like to see on in the future.

Being part of this community and the extended Princeton basketball family remains my genuine pleasure.

Is it November yet?


Jon Solomon

Craig Robinson Heart Disease PSAs.

The Oregon State head coach encourages viewers to "Take Charge of Your Heart Health" as part of the Close the Gap campaign.

Thursday News:

Congratulations to former Princeton forward Kyle Koncz, who was inducted into the Strongsville (Ohio) High School Hall of Fame.

Ed Persia is the latest Tiger alum to get into coaching. Persia has joined the SMU Mustangs staff.

North Carolina prospect Akil Mitchell has chosen Virginia as his school instead of the Ivy options he was considering.

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