Cooley

Friar Notes

Bryce Cotton (Photo: draftexpress.com)

Bryce Cotton (Photo: draftexpress.com)


Cotton reportedly to sign free agent deal

It has been reported (ProjectSpurs) that Bryce Cotton is currently weighing offers from the reigning 2014 NBA Champion San Antonio Spurs and the Dallas Mavericks in regards to a free agent contract. As it stands, Cotton is set to play for San Antonio’s Las Vegas Summer League team, which will hit the court July 11-21.

Cotton went undrafted in last week’s NBA Draft, despite drawing attraction from a number of teams around the league. Only a few days before the draft, Cotton worked out for the Sacramento Kings and dropped jaws when the generously listed 6’1” Cotton recorded a vertical leap of 46 inches, tied for the highest out of any player in pre-draft workouts.

Obviously reports can change, but more than one reputable source broke the same news over the weekend. It looks like Cotton will at least get the shot that we all know he deserves.

Batts to play for Magic in summer league

Kadeem Batts has agreed to play for the Orlando Magic’s Summer League team, which is set to play in the Orlando league from July 5-11.

Like Cotton, Batts worked out for a number of NBA teams prior to the draft, with the hopes to be given a shot to prove himself in the summer league.

Batts averaged 12.3 points and 7.4 rebounds per game last season during his senior year with the Friars.

Friar recruit Mitchell visits Providence

Brewster Academy shooting guard, Donovan Mitchell, visited Providence on Friday and everything seems to have gone well.

A native of New York, NY, Mitchell has interest from a number of schools including Connecticut and Florida and is ranked 74th in ESPN100 for the class of 2015. Though there is some competition in the recruitment of Mitchell, Ed Cooley and his staff has been pursuing him for quite some time and has made him a top target.

Just a day later, Mitchell was on the campus of Boston College for a recruiting visit with the Eagles and their new staff.

Cooley Setting Recruiting Trail Ablaze

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(photo: collegebasketballtalk.nbcsports.com)

By Chris Metcalf 

For about the last decade, Providence College basketball fans have adopted the phrase: “just wait until next year.” It has been a tough stretch of years filled with mediocrity and disappointment for the Friar faithful. In a time when talent and depth inside the Big East Conference was at an all-time high, it seemed like Providence would play a Top 25 opponent every night. They simply have not had the size, team depth, or overall talent to compete with those rosters stocked with future NBA players on a consistent basis. It was as if the Friars were banished to the basement every season in this unforgiving conference.

Then, Providence College made one of their most important coaching hires in former Fairfield head coach, Ed Cooley, who was born and raised in the Providence area. A strong hire was necessary to right the ship after a less than stellar three year experiment with Keno Davis at the helm. Cooley claimed in his first press conference that “not only will we win here, we’re going to win and we’re going to win big.” That is a powerful statement that could be a very distinct possibility in the coming years. “We will set this place on fire” Cooley said. The one proven thing that he has set on fire thus far has been the recruiting trail.

 After several Top 100 recruits and transfers his first couple of years, Ed Cooley is in the midst of assembling his most impressive recruiting class for 2014. Providence now has verbal commitments from 6’7 small forward Jalen Lindsey and 7’1 center Paschal Chukwu, both unanimous Top 100 recruits from all scouting services. For Friar fans, this kind of talent and length seems like a dream. I assure you it is not, however, as no coach in America has outworked Cooley and his staff over the past two years when their tenure began. Their hard work is paying off and these players that Providence never had any business recruiting in past years want to come here and play for this tight unit. They want to be part of something special, and Friar fans from Rhode Island know that there is nothing like the buzz around the state when their team is relevant and winning games. The fans got a small taste of it last year when PC made a run to the NIT quarterfinals, which shows the progress.

 Expectations are even higher this upcoming season, as they return all of their top players, aside from Vincent Council who has graduated. They have also added a Top 100 versatile guard in 6’6 Brandon Austin, as well as two talented transfers in 6’9 forward Tyler Harris and 7’0 center Carson Desrosiers. These are the types of players who will certainly contribute immediately and create the kind of depth and length that PC teams have not had in recent years.

 The die-hard Friar fans deserve this excitement around their program, and furthermore, they better get used to it. Ed Cooley is a force to be reckoned with on the recruiting trail, and soon to be, on the hardwood. The news also gets better as Friartown anxiously awaits the announcements of two more prized Top 100 recruits in Expressions Elite duo Abdul-Malik Abu and Jared Terrell on September 7. They both have Providence in their final four schools, the lone school that they have in common. These two players have the chance to round out a hypothetical recruiting class being called the “Friar Four.” With Cooley and the staff securing verbals from Lindsey and Chukwu, they are already halfway to that goal. Abu and Terrell have an opportunity to add fuel to the fire that Ed Cooley has ignited. The only question that remains is whether they want to be a part of it.

Cooley Continues to Prove He’s One of the Top Recruiters in the Country

Ed Cooley is flat out getting after it on the recruiting trail this summer. The Friars already got a commitment from Jalen Lindsey, a Tennessee native who’s ranked 32nd in the ESPN100 for the class of 2014.

Lindsey’s commitment seemed to be a good sign of things to come and it’s certainly looking that way. On Thursday night, Providence was listed in Abdul-Malik Abu (ranked 44th) and Jared Terrell’s (ranked 76th) top 10 schools, potentially setting up the current Expressions Elite tandem to continue their dominance in Providence uniforms.

The good news in Friartown kept coming last night when point guard Kaleb Joseph (ranked 51st) announced that Providence is in his final three schools, alongside Syracuse and West Virginia.

With Providence also listed as one of the favorites to land 7’1″ center Paschal Chukwu (ranked 58th), the big question is: will there be a fab five of Joseph, Terrell, Lindsey, Abu, and Chukwu coming to Providence? It may be a long shot but it’s a definite possibility thanks to Cooley.

Cooley Signs Extension!

Ed Cooley is here to stay. Today Cooley signed a four year extension in addition to the six year deal he signed in 2011, keeping him in Friartown through the 2021 season. In relation to his extension, he will get a pay raise that will bring his average annual salary to $2 million.

Cooley’s extension is well deserved, after a season in which he brought a Friar team that struggled early in the season all the way to the NIT quarterfinals. Additionally, Cooley has added five top 100 recruits in just two years.

This is great news for Friar fans, who were greeted with the unfortunate news just yesterday that Ricky Ledo would officially declare for the NBA Draft. However, Kadeem Batts also announced that he would be officially returning to Providence to finish his college career, delivering another piece of good news for Friar fans.

Ultimately, the loss of Ledo will hurt, but the program looks to be in great shape in the long term under Cooley.