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August 29, 2004

Connelly talks about his decision



Jay Gomes


6 foot 8 Camden Catholic senior Brian Connelly made an early committment to the University of Albany last week. NJ Hoops spoke with the forward about his decision and recruiting.


NJ Hoops: Why did you decide on Albany?

BC: Mainly because I thought it was the right fit. When I went up there and came hiome I knew it was the right fit.


NJ Hoops: When did you decide?

BC: About a week ago


NJ Hoops: How did you like the coaches there?

BC: I liked them a lot their great guys. They were very interested in me and I wanted to go where I was wanted.


NJ Hoops: Was there one coach recruiting you more than the others? Or was it a group effort?

BC: Mainly Coach Chad O'Donell and the Head Coach Will Brown.


NJ Hoops: Did the coaches come in for a home visit, and or school visit also?

BC: No, actually I went up on an unofficial two or three weeks ago and I'm going my official this Wednesday.


NJ Hoops: When did they start recruiting you?

BC: I think late June or early July.


NJ Hoops: When did they first see you play?

BC: At the ACC Camp, one of the assistant coaches, Coach Edwards came by and saw me there.


NJ Hoops: What did they say your role would be?

BC: A four. A perimeter four, I can step out if I need to. My freshman year they have a returnbing starter but he'll be gone by my sophomore year.


NJ Hoops: What did you do on the visit?

BC: We took a tour of campus, the dorms, the classrooms.


NJ Hoops: How was the campus?

BC: I loved it.


NJ Hoops: Was the location a factor?

BC: It's about three hours away. I liked it was kind of outside a city, but still close so there will be something to do.


NJ Hoops: Was the school's academic reputation a factor?

BC: Yes, I'm kind of interested in business and their ranked like 65th in the country. And their a State School of New York.


NJ Hoops: How does it feel to have the decision behind you?

BC: Good, It took a lot of pressure off. I can play this season and know I have this to fall back on.


NJ Hoops: How tall are you and how much do you weigh?

BC: 6'8 220 lbs


NJ Hoops: What did Coach Crawford have to say about your decision?

BC: He was behind me 100% and said it was a great opportunity.


NJ Hoops: What would you say are your strengths and what would you say you had to continue to improve on?

BC: Strengths, probably post game and ability to step out, have to improve everything to move up to that level.



Evidently he had contact with atleast 3 members of our staff.


His official visit will be tomorrow when he will meet his future teammates.


I guess the staff has told him he will be a 4 who can step away from the hoop, I imagine the 4 mentioned as a senior returning starter during his freshman year would be Levi.


When he comes as a freshman we will have 7'1" Zoellner (Sr), 6'9" Dyson (Soph), 6'8" B. Wilson (soph) and 6'8" Connelly (FR)

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Patch - I want to thank you for bringing this interview to our attention. This is an aspect of message board that I much appreciate.


I think this interview is very interesting in the respect that it shows a change in approach in talking to recruits that is consistent with a more established program. Connelly has apparantly been told that his freshman year he'll mostly sit and learn primarily by practicing against Levi and his opportunity will come on Levi's graduation. I recall last year, a similar interview with the first committed recruit, Bauman, indicated he had been told he would have a shot at playing as much as 20 minutes/game his freshman year. I certainly realize there is a sense of marketing and salesmanship in recruiting, but I read this as the staff's belief that we have turned a corner in that we are no longer recruiting like a start-up program, but more like an established one.

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