Taking over a new
program is never easy. But for Fran McCaffery, his second
season at Siena might be harder than the first. Besides
losing leading scorer Antoine Jordan to graduation, the Saints
must also deal with the tumultuous transfer of star guard Kojo
Shawn Siegel (CHN): How hard will it be to deal with
all-league senior Antoine Jordan?
McCaffery (FM): Antoine Jordan was a major factor to
the teamís success last season. Jordan led us in scoring and
rebounding and was a leader on and off the court. He spent the
summer playing for the Washington Wizards Summer League team and
recently signed a professional contract to play in Italy. As a
First team All-League performer, he will be difficult to
replace. We feel we have tried to address his loss through
recruiting and we have great depth at that (small forward)
CHN: How does this year's schedule stack up
to recent years?
FM: This yearís schedule is filled with difficult
games on the road. We play at Stanford to start the year (they
will return the game at Pepsi Arena next season). We are also
at Maryland and Buffalo. All three teams have advanced to the
postseason the last three years. We also host defending America
East champion Albany as well as Colonial power Hofstra. We will
additionally host an ESPN Bracketbusters game. The schedule is
more challenging than last year.
will the strengths and weaknesses of
this yearís team to be?
FM: Strengths: Athleticism and depth. This will be
my second year as head coach, and we have 10 letterwinners
returning. Therefore, I expect there to be a shorter learning
curve. Last year we played primarily a seven player rotation.
With the return of fifth year senior Mike Haddix (Second Team
All-MAAC in 2005, 1,000-point scorer who red-shirted last season
after rupturing Achillesí Tendon) and the addition of five
talented freshmen, we should have a deeper rotation and be able
to run more set plays on offense. We can also pick up the tempo
with more quality reserves available to substitute.
Weakness: Inexperience at point. Either
sophomore Kenny Hasbrouck (MAAC Rookie of the Year) or freshman
Ronald Moore will run the offense. Hasbrouck played primarily
off guard as a rookie and Moore will have to make a quick
adjustment to the college game.
CHN: Talk about one or two of your guys that stands out
as being an unheralded leader and contributor?
Fifth-year senior David Ryan has been a steady contributor
throughout his career. He is a versatile forward who was asked
to play the center position last year due to our lack of depth
in the post. With the return of Haddix, Ryan will create
mismatches at either forward spot. He also brings great
leadership to the team.
CHN: What should
we expect out of the incoming players. Who will make the biggest impact?
are excited about the addition of five newcomers. Highly touted
Edwin Ubiles (St. Thomas Moore, Conn.) is an explosive athlete
who could make an immediate impact as one of the top freshman in
the league. Alex Franklin (Central Catholic, Pa.) is another
long, athletic forward who can score in a variety of ways. 6-10
center James Carr (Wings Academy, N.Y.) adds much needed depth
in the post and is a proven shot blocker. Ronald Moore
(Plymouth-Whitemarsh, Pa.) comes from a winning program and is a
fundamentally sound point guard with great quickness. Corey
Magee (Fairport, N.Y.) is a physical power forward who can
rebound the basketball. We are also excited about the addition
of transfer Josh Duell (Vermont), who averaged over 22 minutes
in 25 games played last season, but will have to sit out this
year per NCAA rules.
CHN: Are you pretty well settled with your
starting lineup? If not, what should we expect to be the biggest
battles for a starting position?
There will be heated competition at several positions, and
several players are versatile enough to play a variety of
positions. One potential rotation would be:
Kenny Hasbrouck (1), Tay Fisher (2), Edwin Ubiles (3), David
Ryan (4), Michael Haddix (5)
Realistically, what should we expect out of your team this year?
FM: We feel a winning non-conference record and a top-3
league finish are realistic. The goal is to be playing our best
basketball of the season at Tournament time. If this happens,
and we stay healthy, we have the talent to compete for a league
CHN: Thanks coach. Good luck.
For complete information on Siena's team
camps and up-to-date information on the team, please visit
More 2006 College Preview: Head Coach