Tag Archives: Isiah Thomas

McDonald’s thoughts on key games of 2009-10

Coach Ken McDonald spent a few minutes talking to the Herald about the 2009-10 men’s basketball schedule, which was released on Saturday. Here are the highlights:
— McDonald said he made the team’s “real aggressive” out-of-conference schedule with fans in mind, mentioning home match-ups against Southeastern Conference member Mississippi State and Conference USA opponents Tulane and Houston as games he thought fans would be excited to attend.
— McDonald said he’s especially looking forward to the game against Mississippi State, who won the 2009 SEC tournament, on Jan. 4.
“We feel like Mississippi State will be an electric game,” McDonald said. “For them to be willing to come to our place, that says a lot about their program, and we’re pretty excited for that one.”
— The Toppers will face South Carolina and former coach Darrin Horn on Dec. 2, the first time the teams have met since Horn left Western in 2008. McDonald said that he and Horn have spoken when they’ve seen each other at tournaments or other events on the road.
“I have a lot of respect for coach,” he said. “He left me some good players, and he’s done some special things down there, but there won’t be a whole lot of talking on the sidelines. It’s just another game.”
— Western will host Florida International on Jan. 16, and McDonald said he looks forward to facing coach Isiah Thomas for the first time.
“I’m just glad we don’t have to play one on one,” he said. “But he’s done a good job of recruiting, and I’m sure he’ll be organized and ready to go once the season rolls around.”

Coach Ken McDonald spent a few minutes talking to the Herald about the 2009-10 men’s basketball schedule, which was released on Saturday. Here are the highlights:

  • McDonald said he made the team’s “real aggressive” out-of-conference schedule with fans in mind, mentioning home match-ups against Southeastern Conference member Mississippi State and Conference USA opponents Tulane and Houston as games he thought fans would be excited to attend.
  • McDonald said he’s especially looking forward to the game against Mississippi State, who won the 2009 SEC tournament, on Jan. 4. “We feel like Mississippi State will be an electric game,” McDonald said. “For them to be willing to come to our place, that says a lot about their program, and we’re pretty excited for that one.”
  • The Toppers will face South Carolina and former coach Darrin Horn on Dec. 2, the first time the teams have met since Horn left Western in 2008. McDonald said that he and Horn have spoken when they’ve seen each other at tournaments or other events on the road. “I have a lot of respect for coach,” he said. “He left me some good players, and he’s done some special things down there, but there won’t be a whole lot of talking on the sidelines. It’s just another game.”
  • Western will host Florida International on Jan. 16, and McDonald said he looks forward to facing coach Isiah Thomas for the first time. “I’m just glad we don’t have to play one on one,” he said. “But he’s done a good job of recruiting, and I’m sure he’ll be organized and ready to go once the season rolls around.”
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Sun Belt coaching thoughts

So by now every major media outlet knows what and where Florida International is with the addition of Isiah Thomas as their new head coach. Thomas doesn’t have a sterling reputation recently in coaching, but since that was in the NBA, maybe being at a program with a lot of great talent (i.e. Sun Belt freshman of the year Freddy Asprilla) and the potential to go somewhere with it will cause him to succeed. Basically, he can’t run the team into the ground worse than they already are, given five straight losing seasons and only one NCAA Tournament bid in the program’s history.

Recently, the Sun Belt has made a lot of great coaching additions. Obviously, WKU coach Ken McDonald made a splash as a rookie head coach, but with former St. John’s coach Mike Jarvis taking over at Florida Atlantic and former LSU coach (and Final Four participant) John Brady becoming the head man at Arkansas State, the Sun Belt is starting to look promising.

It’ll be interesting to see how well Thomas does. Look for more on this topic later.

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Coming to a Sun Belt arena near you: Isiah Thomas?

Yes, you read that right, and now ESPN.com is reporting that it’s pretty much a done deal for the former Pistons star and New York Knicks coach to become the next head coach at Florida International.

FIU fired Sergio Rouco yesterday, after he went 55-94 in five years at the helm of the Panthers.

We’ll have more on this and how it could affect the Sun Belt later today.

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