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Men's Basketball » Hima in Portal » 4/28/2022 12:30 am

Duques102
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levon1975 wrote:

It's funny how people took shots at Spears for being a "ball hog" and hunting for his shots at times; but failed to see his incredible ability to elevate over defenders, bury his mid-range shots, get to the basket with ease, and also handle pressure and get the ball into the frontcourt.  He was the only player on the team who could break pressure and get the team into its offense.  Literally, when Spears had to rest they were fortunate to even get the ball across half-court and even more fortunate to I think you'll see what level of interest there is in each player's services for next season.  

Primo down to 3: Oklahoma, TCU, and Maryland. Power 5, power 5, power 5. I feel like a broken record.

https://twitter.com/336edits/status/1518390165592489984?s=21&t=wk_bClKmiSFhjbti5V4tpw

Men's Basketball » Hima in Portal » 4/27/2022 3:02 pm

Duques102
Replies: 63

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levon1975 wrote:

I knew that Hima was a favorite of many on this Board, so I wasn't surprised the weeping and gnashing of teeth when Hima was announced as a portal entry; but frankly I don't understand it from a basketball perspective.  Hima blocked a few shots; but mainly looked confused and seemed to have to pause and think before reacting.  I'm sure he had a significant lack of basketball experience to overcome; but I just didn't see him becoming a vital part of a winning team.  It's funny how people took shots at Spears for being a "ball hog" and hunting for his shots at times; but failed to see his incredible ability to elevate over defenders, bury his mid-range shots, get to the basket with ease, and also handle pressure and get the ball into the frontcourt.  He was the only player on the team who could break pressure and get the team into its offense.  Literally, when Spears had to rest they were fortunate to even get the ball across half-court and even more fortunate to get a decent shot.  Yet, he was chastised on this Board for shooting too much and not sharing the ball; while Hima was embraced for blocking a few shots to wake up the crowd.  Well now that both are gone, I think you'll see what level of interest there is in each player's services for next season.  

Great points and agree 100%. People may be confusing height with ability and potential. Darius Lewis and Mamadou Datt were project bigs. One stayed four years to improve to an average player and one dropped down to D2 after a short period. To me, Hima is more raw than both. Definitely way behind the curve in terms of knowledge and skill because of his background.

Not his fault, but he’s going to need a hell of a lot more than 4 years to become a solid college player. His numbers were rough and yeah, you can project them out to a full 40 minute game and the numbers look better. 2 problems with that:

1. Players don’t usually play every single minute of a game and ;
2. He was

Men's Basketball » Ayers Into the Portal » 4/21/2022 3:31 pm

Duques102
Replies: 19

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A common point made across many sports is that the best coaches don’t try to fit the players they have into a specific system, they assess the talent they have and play to the teams strengths.

I couldn’t really tell you what KD’s “system” is outside of man to man d 100% of the time, but I feel he could do a lot better in this area. Too many guys leaving and being successful elsewhere is a big part of what makes me feel this way.

Men's Basketball » Ayers Into the Portal » 4/21/2022 1:10 pm

Duques102
Replies: 19

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levon1975 wrote:

El Presidente', in regard to changing coaches after this season; I can certainly understand that we all feel the  frustration.  The Portal has caused extreme upheaval in the game, and coaches have had to take a crash course in how to function in this new environment.  Some of the most successful coaches just "threw in the towel" and aren't interested in building a roster annually. What assurances do we have that the guy they would hire to replace KD would be any better at managing the new portal environment?  The Duquesne staff took their lumps last year; let's see if they learned some lessons and can apply what they have learned to annually constructing a new roster.  It's really like a glorified AAU team being built each year.     

I’ll always preach patience and agree with some of this but the sample size is no longer small. KD has lost his best or group of best players most years due to public fall out. These guys have gone on to bigger or similar programs and had success in most cases (we don’t need to run through the track record again). This is not acceptable, and we can never expect to have continuity and positive momentum, much less success, with this now having been the theme of his entire tenure.

Listening to 93.7 the fan this morning they were discussing Jay Wright stepping down and whether he may have got tired of the changing landscape and transfer rules and had enough. Lots of people arguing this has ruined the college game. Know who isn’t saying that? The Texas Techs and Arkansas of the world who have parlayed these transfer rules into deep tourney runs. There are other examples but these are the first two that come to mind (I think Houston possibly too).

You are correct though, outside of bringing in someone who has been successful with this at a lower level over the last two years, we have no way of knowing who would be successful in the new model, even the example I’m mentioning wouldn’t be a sure thing

Men's Basketball » Players own the college game. » 4/18/2022 5:42 pm

Duques102
Replies: 9

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Wildwood13 wrote:

All I have to say, is Duques 102, I have no idea what you are reading into, but you are missing a lot and coming up with crazy conclusions. I would break it down but really isn’t worth my time. By the way your solutions were very helpful.

 
Not reading into anything, you literally asked for thoughts on your points, that’s what I put down. That was the point of my post, I don’t have a solution. If you read my thoughts, I agree with your premise that the game is ruined for the mid majors, I just completely disagree the players are to blame.

Funny you have time to write out a post and ask for thoughts, but when met with disagreement on your points suddenly your time becomes too valuable for a response.

What am I missing? What “crazy conclusions” am I making? I directly quoted three of your paragraphs and addressed your points directly. Funny your time is now too valuable for a response (even though you responded).

Maybe next time just say don’t respond unless you are going to lap up my thoughts as gospel.

Was really looking forward to discussion on the counter points and direct questions posed to you, but alas your time is just too valuable.

Men's Basketball » Players own the college game. » 4/18/2022 4:34 pm

Duques102
Replies: 9

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Wildwood13 wrote:

The college players own the game of college basketball. They can come and go as they please, wether it is through the transfer portal or electing to go pro. It is totally ruining the college game. These players have all the rights and no accountability. The NCAA is too stupid to know how to fix it. I will give them a few suggestions.

They now have considerably more influence and leverage in the situation, as they should in my opinion. The NCAA and the universities and coaches have been raking in the dough for years from the product these kids put on the field. I’m just talking football and basketball here btw. Why shouldn’t they be able to benefit financially and have a say in their future?

College coaches (not all) have a used car salesman tone to the things they say. They preach loyalty and commitment, and are out the door as soon as a bigger paycheck comes knocking. How about them having all the rights and no accountability? And at the highest levels of sport you have coaches who are the highest paid state employee, while the kids (again, the ones producing the product on the field) should be happy with a meal pass and a place to stay while they make these universities Fortune 500 level revenues year in and out. Really easy to blame the players for getting a tiny slice of the pie, when in reality all along the powers that be have been getting richer and richer off their sweat and hard work, and can come and go as they please. In a lot of cases leaving their current school and players high and dry sneaking out in the middle of the night (Bryan Kelly).

I don’t disagree that the transfer rule doesn’t help with program continuity, especially at our level and below, but the entire system is crooked and broken. Those at the top want to make as much as possible, and give back as little as possible. I agree with the overall premise but the players are the smallest part of the problem that exists today.

Last point, these kids, just li

Men's Basketball » Jackie Johnson III Hits Transfer Portal » 4/11/2022 2:39 pm

Duques102
Replies: 26

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Yet another gut punch. One of the few players I had hoped we would keep, but not surprised to see him go and figured he would for awhile given how his minutes and role on the team was handled throughout the season. 

I get that in this landscape guys will transfer every year, but seeing guys like Baker, Williams, and now Johnson transfer out recently after a falling out with Dambrot and ending up at a higher level when Dambrot acts like he can’t work with these guys is unacceptable to me. Losing Carry mid season is also not a good look, another guy who played great all year and almost led his team to a tourney bid.

The roster turnover rate has been insanely high, especially with the guys who are the better players on the roster every year, also unacceptable to me. Something has to change with this dynamic or this program will not be successful. Large enough sample size now to say maybe the players aren’t the only part of the equation here.

Not to mention starting out the year saying this was your best team ever and also saying your probably 6’6” PF is the best center you’ve ever had, and then going on to criticize your players week in and week out with no mention of these hyperbolic statements that he made.

I did not like how Johnson was handled at all. He was the most talented player we have got in a long long time. Sorry, you find a way to make it work with a guy like that, especially when your getting your ass kicked every night anyway.

UNLV, which has won a freaking national title, has made 4 Final Fours, 5 Elite Eights, 10 trips to the Sweet 16, and has made the tournament 6 times in the last 15 years jumped on Johnson right away. He was a super talented guy who would have been playing for a top 25 program had he been 2 inches taller, and he liked Duquesne enough a year ago to come here. How does it go so wrong for him in one season here? UNACCEPTABLE

Things need to change in a big way next year. I was a season ticket holder for years before m

Men's Basketball » Game Thread - Richmond Spiders » 2/03/2022 3:08 pm

Duques102
Replies: 27

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the professor1108 wrote:

There is a bright side to this mess.  Betting against Duquesne is better than a treasury bond.   

So disparaged haven’t even watched the last few games, but this gets my vote for post of the year so far.

Men's Basketball » Game Thread - University of Massachusetts Minutemen » 1/11/2022 12:30 pm

Duques102
Replies: 41

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El Presidente wrote:

coffee wrote:

Nice win. We’re one big man away from a solid team.

Absolutely agree. We will be competitive as is but we will not ever win an A-10 championship without that big. Doesn't have to be a superstar. Just protect the rim, get some rebounds and score 10 points a game. 
Has to be our top priority for next year.

Was saying this all summer. We could have easily been exposed by UMASS with Williams foul trouble. Rotroff  definitely stepped up in this one and helped plug the gaps.

Imagine Bayley Steele on this team.

Men's Basketball » Jackie Johnson III A10 Rookie Of The Week » 1/11/2022 12:14 pm

Duques102
Replies: 10

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We’ll deserved. Primo and JJ starting to look comfortable and like things are slowing down for them.

The dribble move he put on Kelly to go through the legs, shot fake hesitation move on the 3 point shot, and corresponding drive and high floater was absolutely vicious. Broke Kelly’s ankles and that shot was the dagger that put the game away.

Ditto on Primo’s turnaround move on the baseline jumper a couple minutes before. These guys are super super talented.

Men's Basketball » Covid updates? » 12/30/2021 6:56 pm

Duques102
Replies: 24

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El Presidente wrote:

To my way of thinking if you haven't done everything possible to improve a given situation, you haven't done enough. Let's go athletic department. And LETS GO DUKES!!

My comments were centered around non AD coverage for the record. They have definitely been disappointing, but no shock there on my part.

Men's Basketball » Covid updates? » 12/30/2021 4:45 pm

Duques102
Replies: 24

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RedandBlueRUs wrote:

I had emailed Craig Meyer from the PG last year about why there are hardly ever any stories about the Dukes.  He said he is assigned to Pitt and it is his role to cover them.  And that he does.  Stories with pictures often every other damn day.   Apparently no one is assigned to cover the Dukes on a regular basis.  As you say, there are and have been a number of possible stories.  But at the end of the day, the athletic department needs to be promoting and ensuring update articles.  Pathetic.  Go Dukes

This is the unfortunate reality, there is no outside, casual fan interest in the program (RIGHT NOW). There is enough in place now for coverage to elevate if we get hot. It happened two years ago. We were one of the last teams left undefeated, receiving top 25 votes for a few weeks. Attendance was up, local coverage was way up, hell we were on sports center mentioned more than a couple times.

The reality is we sucked last year, and we have sucked so far this year, so there goes casual fan interest. Of course the PG don’t have a full time person. Based on our level of success, they will “flex” someone into coverage as appropriate. Have 10% of the success of Pitt has had over the last 30 years, and maybe you get some regular coverage. I know the guy who runs PSN and have asked why Pitt coverage is like 5-1 Dukes coverage on his site.

Clicks. Article reads……It’s that simple. If there is interest they will increase coverage. These are all companies trying to make a profit. That’s why none of them are covering Point Park Basketball or Carlow tennis, no one cares! Winning can change that though.

Wake me up when we are playing basketball again.

Men's Basketball » What Conclusions Can You Draw From TDM's Performance at FGCU? » 12/07/2021 11:34 am

Duques102
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1. Lower level
2. Starting his time there on one of his hot streaks, still a tiny sample size.

Not like TDM didn’t have many awesome performances here to go with a lot of inconsistency. Would be interesting to revisit this at seasons end.

Men's Basketball » League is topsy turvy » 11/30/2021 10:35 pm

Duques102
Replies: 12

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Jamari Wheeler starting PG as a super senior for Ohio state against Duke tonight. That last Ferry class was loaded, and he was an absolutely limited basketball coach who was out of his league here and needed to go. Both things can be true.

Men's Basketball » Game Thread - American Eagles » 11/30/2021 10:25 pm

Duques102
Replies: 38

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Didn’t like:

-Giving JJ 9 minutes despite not the best performance again. This kid is the most talented player on the roster, and will adjust to the college game. Don’t want to lose him mentally in the meantime. That said he needs to play more within the offense a.k.a. Not having the ball getting stuck in his hands and not just looking for his shot every time he touches the ball.

-JJ defense. Only one not improving, and it has been rough against every opponent. Has to be why he was stuck on the bench.

-Not giving Hima minutes at the end when it’s out of hand. Why the hell not? He’s not going to cost you the game and give Williams a breather. Don’t get that.

-Perimeter defense still awful.

-Williams played well today. Only thing I would criticize is it shows when he doesn’t play like he did today. Need to make sure he is playing with a more consistent motor. We need him to be impactful every night with the current utilization of the bigs.

-Who is our alpha dog? Who is our undisputed leader? That needs to be figured out as the same is happening with the overall team identity. Yes, there is talent and scorers throughout the top 5, but have we seen that from Ayers, Easley, or Williams who to me would be the most likely candidates? No, haven’t seen that enough yet from anyone. Mike and Marcus were those dudes. You need those guys that can take a game by the scruff of the neck and take over when you need it. We have a lot of guys who could be one of the few, need someone to step up and assert themselves there for long term success this season.

Men's Basketball » Game Thread - American Eagles » 11/30/2021 10:17 pm

Duques102
Replies: 38

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What I liked in this one:

-Everyone continuing to assert in the post/paint area. Seeing more from guys like Acuff, Okani, Easley, Ayers, and Williams. Driving creates easy looks, foul shots, and open looks on kick outs. Like the Steelers, we can’t be one dimensional and effective.

-The balance and ability to get double digit point outputs from 3-5 guys on a given night (a staple of DU Dambrit teams). There is definitely scoring up and down the roster.

-Acuff and Okani looking better improving and finding that glue guy role, effective on both sides of the ball.

-58% fg, 40% 3 pt

-team defense continuing to improve.

-Shortening the bench. Bekelja and the other guy are a liability.

-Actually running offensive sets and integrating some zone defense as an adjustment to change up looks!!!! Welcome to organized basketball!

Basketball Recruiting » Recruiting Level » 11/30/2021 4:53 pm

Duques102
Replies: 15

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I get what others are saying about post depth. That was something I highlighted as a major concern personally in the off-season, and at this point that is still the biggest question mark to me with this roster. The freshman guards will hopefully continue to improve, but there is depth and talent there. Williams and Easley are good enough (maybe really good), but Rotroff? Hima? Hima obviously a flop not getting any minutes and sorry, but Rotroff is not an A10 player. It hasn’t been 1 or 2 years. There is a large enough sample size to come to the conclusion the William and Mary debut game was an aberration rather than his true ceiling.

Regarding talent and recruiting, I have already seen this come to fruition in my opinion. This years performance aside, the two freshman guards were both true 3 stars, which is what power 5s bring in as a baseline recruit basically. I think Johnson was rated somewhere in the neighborhood of the #35 PG nationally coming into college hoops this year. That is a big get for a program like us, and way better than anything we have had recently.

We were TJ and Sincere’s only D1 offers, the two best guards we have had in the last 11 years at the program.  Those were the type of guys we were getting at baseline less than 5 years ago. That was lucky, not good. These guys prospect profiles were light years ahead of those guys coming in. Easley was a power 5 transfer. The only other ones I can think of were the Memphis and Mizzou head cases we brought in, and you could still see the talent they had in the minuscule amount of time they spent here. Dambrot brought them in. Who was the last power 5 transfer before that? Achara?

I think Ayers is the best wing we have had here since Ovie Soko, might have been playing at a lower level but he was a great get as well. Similar story on Williams.

I’m happy with the improvement in talent level (excluding post depth, the hardest commodity to come by in college hoops, especially at mid major level).

Men's Basketball » League is topsy turvy » 11/19/2021 5:36 pm

Duques102
Replies: 12

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Weber state beat UMASS by 13 last night too.

Men's Basketball » No media coverage prior to Dukes season opener » 11/11/2021 2:21 pm

Duques102
Replies: 12

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“Just win baby”

“If you build it, they will come”

Men's Basketball » Game Thread - Rider Broncs » 11/11/2021 1:31 pm

Duques102
Replies: 56

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Also would love to hear counterpoints to mine if others have them, that’s why I posted my thoughts here! If I’m giving up too early on Larson happy to hear why. We are all on the same side here!

Men's Basketball » Game Thread - Rider Broncs » 11/11/2021 1:18 pm

Duques102
Replies: 56

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I am not trying to specifically criticize any players, just generating discussion on what we saw. I thought people wanted to talk about the team and wanted more discussion around the players? I didn’t hear any calls for “reserving judgement” if a post is 100% positive about players? Now that the season has started, everything is fair game to discuss.

I personally was super encouraged by what we saw Tuesday, I thought I made that pretty clear with a lot of the player breakdowns and overall assessment of the game/players and stick by what I said. If it wasn’t obvious enough Larson wasn’t a D1 player based on the fact that he wasn’t even on the roster until a full blown emergency happened, Tuesday night was proof positive that he is emergency cover. I don’t even understand why that is harsh or offensive.

That kid is probably pumped he is getting the opportunity to play at this level and I’m happy for him and his contribution, but that doesn’t mean I have to think he is going to go out there and start dropping 10 Pts a night with a couple of games under his belt. He is what he is.

CLK, 100% with you on Johnson. I would argue what limited amount we saw from him was more encouraging than not despite some freshman mistakes. I more so expected him and Primo to look more like that. Primo blew me away, and largely led this team to a victory in his first college game! That cannot be underestimated, best freshman debut game since….? Primo looked like an upperclassman out there. While Johnson didn’t, you could see the athleticism, talent, and explosiveness in flashes, just has to get adjusted to the speed.

Go Dukes!

Men's Basketball » Game Thread - Rider Broncs » 11/10/2021 2:02 pm

Duques102
Replies: 56

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Some quick hit thoughts on the guy's play last night (would love a little discussion on what we saw on guys):

Easley: 27 mins, 16 pts, 2 rebs 
Really liked what I saw from this guy. Major D1 size and strength, and you can tell he has played a lot of college basketball. Defended and passed the ball well in addition to shooting 50% from the floor including 4-8 from 3, he has a sweet stroke. Going to be a leader on the court IMO. Only knock is I would have liked to see him "bang" in the interior a little more on both sides (scoring around the hoop and getting more than 2 rebs). Also think we didn't see him fully "unleashed" last night as a lot of guys got some run, he will definitely get more minutes later in the season. 

Williams: 38 mins, 14 pts, 6 rebs, 4 asts, 3 blks, 1 stl
Had to do a double take a couple of times as I thought I was watching Mike Hughes out there. Really came on in the second half, wasn't blown away with him in the first. Despite him being short for a center, you did see the touted 7 foot wingspan on some of the plays he made on offense and defense. That wingspan and his strength will be important going against more physical bigs in the A10, but his all around game and ability was really encouraging to see. The Mike Hughes baby hook he scored on really showed an ability to create alot of space for his shot in the interior, he looked really skilled there. Another guy that looked very comfortable on a college court, new but experienced is much better than just new. The 3 point shooting is an added bonus, Tre went 2-3 from behind the arc and neither were lucky. This kid looks like a steal to me and will only improve and benefit from added depth of the returning guys.

Primo Spears: 27 mins, 14 pts, 3 rebs, 7 asts, 2 stl
This kid may have been the most impressive, given he was playing in his first career college game and defending against a savvy, veteran all-conference guard that will be playing overseas next year. He contro

Men's Basketball » Game Thread - Rider Broncs » 11/10/2021 12:14 pm

Duques102
Replies: 56

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Hard not to be happy with a double digit win with a brand new team in a brand new building. Glad the students showed up and hope they come back. That gym is pretty electric when loud and full. Pitt puking on themselves against Citadel should help get a couple of the casual hoops fans in our seats if they are choosing next time.

Hard to say a lot about the game plan at this point, it would be like prognosticating about the Steelers game plan for the season based on the first pre season game. With guys out and a brand new team, we will see a lot of different looks over the pre season. Fundamentally I thought Primo and others handled the press well and generally defended well (while staying out of foul trouble).

The team also moved the ball very very well to find some of those open looks from 3 which was very encouraging. There was a lack of post and interior presence and offense but as Dambrot pointed out, they just don’t have the horses right now. Should get better with Rotroff and Gunn back though.

Hofstra should be a tough opponent. Planning on watching that game back against Houston on ESPN+ to see how that all happened.

Men's Basketball » Article on Davis Larson » 11/06/2021 10:38 am

Duques102
Replies: 3

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Nice story but consider me worried if the plan is now for a kid who played at a lower level and came here as a GA to now be a significant contributor.

Men's Basketball » I dont understand the silent treatment Duquesne fans deal with » 10/28/2021 5:06 pm

Duques102
Replies: 26

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I guess my feelings on this will go a little against the grain as to what seems to be the consensus feeling regarding marketing/promotion of the basketball program.

Do we have an A1 marketing and promotions team as it relates to coverage of the day-to-day operations? No. Did we hire a coach with a resume and a bigger name and pay him big time money? Yes. Did the school invest $45mm+ to make Palumbo light years better than it previously was and now an advantage as it relates to recruiting and visibility of the program both within the conference and beyond? Yes. Do we have a more than competent AD in place who has made a lot of this happen in conjunction with a University president who sees the value successful athletics programs can bring to the other areas of the university? Absolutely yes. To me, at this point everything is in place for this program to be successful, for the first time since I got to Duquesne.

With that being the case what are we really talking about? Twitter videos and redundant articles about practice? How can you continue to write and come up with new content about guys we have never seen play or play together? I also don’t understand the feeling of entitlement that this program SHOULD be covered. There is a hell of alot going on in the Pittsburgh sports world at the moment, including Pitt having the first relevant season in a decade with a QB that is a legit Heisman candidate. Regardless of the Steelers performance on the field, everything going on with the team on and off the field has resulted in the Steelers being discussed probably more than ever in the local media. Outside of our bubble, we are viewed as having been irrelevant for 35+ years. The hype will come when the team really starts performing.

Overall point is winning and results on the court are now going to be the catalyst to get us from where we are to where we want to be. I truly believe we will have full attendance, full student participation, and full pep band participat

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