Providence Friars men's basketball

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Providence Friars
2013–14 Providence Friars men's basketball team
Providence Friars athletic logo
University Providence College
Conference Big East
Location Providence, RI
Head coach Ed Cooley (3rd year)
Arena Dunkin' Donuts Center
(Capacity: 12,500)
Nickname Friars
Colors

Black, White, and Silver

                  
Uniforms
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Home jersey
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Team colours
Home
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Away jersey
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Team colours
Away
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Alternate jersey
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Team colours
Alternate
NCAA Tournament Final Four
1973, 1987
NCAA Tournament Elite Eight
1965, 1973, 1987, 1997
NCAA Tournament Sweet Sixteen
1965, 1973, 1974, 1987, 1997
NCAA Tournament appearances
1964, 1965, 1966, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1977, 1978, 1987, 1989, 1990, 1994, 1997, 2001, 2004, 2014
Conference tournament champions
1994, 2014

The Providence Friars men's basketball team represents Providence College in NCAA Division I competition, in which they are founding member of the Big East Conference. They play their home games at the Dunkin' Donuts Center in Providence, Rhode Island. Since 2011, the head coach is Ed Cooley.

The Friars have made two Final Four appearances in the NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament, in 1973 and 1987. Four former players or coaches—Dave Gavitt, John Thompson, Rick Pitino, and Lenny Wilkens—are enshrined in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. In addition, two-time NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament champion, current Florida Gators men's basketball head coach Billy Donovan, helped lead the Friars (as a player) to the Final Four in 1987.

History

Early years: 1921–1955

Providence Friars basketball can be traced back to 1921, when the four-year old school fielded its first basketball team on an informal basis. This first team only lasted two years, however, and did not return until the 1926–27 season when Archie Golembeski, the school's football coach, led to the team to a win over St. John's before devoting his time to football the next year. He was replaced by Al McClellan, who coached the team to four New England championships – 1929, 1930, 1932, and 1935 – and had an overall winning percentage over .700. In 1938, McClellan left and was replaced by Ed Crotty, who led the team to a 15–5 record in 1942–43 before the team suspended play the next year after the outbreak of World War II. After the war, the NCAA divided its teams into two divisions, the University Division and the College Division; with a smaller enrollment and no home court (the team played in an on-campus auditorium and then local high school gyms), the Friars were placed into the College Division and no longer faced the opponents they once played.

Mullaney era: 1955-1969

In 1949, Vin Cuddy was hired as the team's head coach, leading the team to a 14–9 record in his first season and qualified for the NAIB regional tournament in 1951, behind the school's first 1,000-point scorer, Jim Schlimm. By 1955, Cuddy's record fell to 9–12 and he was replaced by Joe Mullaney; at the same time, the school opened its first on-campus gym, Alumni Hall. In 1959, Mullaney and the Friars defeated ranked Villanova on the road, leading to their first-ever National Invitational Tournament bid.

The Friars reached the NIT Finals in 1960 before winning the tournament in 1961 behind future hall of famer Lenny Wilkens. Two years later, led by another future hall of famer, John Thompson, as well as future Boston Mayor Ray Flynn, the Friars won their second NIT title. With a 24–2 record in 1964–65, the number four ranked Friars reached the Elite Eight of the NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Tournament. In 1966–67, Jimmy Walker led the nation in scoring and became the school's first 2,000-point scorer as well as the first New England player selected first overall in the NBA Draft. That season also marked the last in Mullaney's run of nine consecutive 20-win seasons. Two years later, Mullaney was hired as the head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers of the NBA.

Gavitt era: 1969–1979

Following Mullaney's departure, Dave Gavitt, an assistant under Mullaney who then became head coach at Dartmouth, took over as the Friars' head coach in 1969. In his second year, Gavitt began a string of eight consecutive 20-win seasons. For the 1972–73 season, the team began playing in downtown Providence at the brand-new 12,000-seat arena, the Providence Civic Center (renamed the Dunkin' Donuts Center in 2001). That season was the Friars' best to date; led by Ernie DiGregorio and the troubled center Marvin Barnes, the team went on a 17-team game winning streak that ended in a Final Four loss to Memphis State. The next year, the Friars posted a 28–4 record and made their second straight Sweet Sixteen appearance. The team continued its top-flight status with back-to-back 20-win seasons in 1976–77 and 1977–78, earning NCAA Tournament bids each year, one coming after defeating top-ranked Michigan in 1976. After a 10–16 season in 1978–79, Gavitt left Providence to become the first commissioner of the Providence-based Big East Conference. He finished his 10-year career at Providence with a 209–84 (.713) record.

Mullaney returns: 1979–1985

After spending the first six decades of their existence as an independent, the Friars joined the Big East in its inaugural season, 1979–80. The conference originally consisted of Providence, Boston College, Georgetown, St. John's, Seton Hall, Syracuse, and Connecticut. New head coach Gary Walters led the team to an 11–16 record in 1979–80, and was replaced by Mullaney in 1981. His next stint with the Friars would not be as successful, and consisted of only one winning season (1983–84, behind Otis Thorpe) against three losing.

Pitino era: 1985–1987

In 1985, New York Knicks assistant coach Rick Pitino was hired as the latest Friars head coach. In his first season the Friars compiled a 17–14 record and made their first NIT appearance in a decade. The next year, 1986–87, the Friars posted a 25–9 record behind Billy Donovan and made their second-ever Final Four appearance in the 1987 NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament. After losing to Syracuse, Pitino left the school and re-joined the Knicks as their head coach in 1987. The Friars have not returned to the Final Four since Pitino's departure.

Chiesa, Barnes, Gillen: 1987–1998

Syracuse vs. Providence game in February 2010 at the Dunkin' Donuts Center.

In 1987–88, the Friars posted a losing record under new head coach Gordie Chiesa, who was replaced by Rick Barnes after the season. Behind Barnes and 2,000-point scorer Eric Murdock, the Friars made back-to-back NCAA Tournament appearances in 1989 and 1990, as well as an NIT bid in 1991. Following Murdock's departure and a losing season in 1991–92, the team had an NIT semifinal appearance in 1993 and an NCAA tournament appearance in 1994, while also capturing the school's first Big East Tournament title. Following back-to-back 20-win seasons, Barnes left to become the head coach at Clemson in 1994. He was replaced by Pete Gillen. Led by Eric Williams, the Friars made consecutive NIT appearances in 1995 and 1996. In 1996–97, the Friars posted a 24–12 record, led by Austin Croshere and Jamel Thomas. After defeating Duke in the 1997 NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament, the Friars reached the Elite Eight before losing to eventual champion Arizona. Following a losing season in 1997–98, Gillen departed to become the head coach at Virginia.

Welsh era: 1998–2008

Gillen was replaced by Iona head coach Tim Welsh in 1998. Led by Thomas, the Friars made an NIT bid in 1999. The team returned to the NCAA Tournament two years later, posting a 21–10 record behind John Linehan. While the Friars posted a losing record in Linehan's senior season in 2001–02, the guard broke Allen Iverson's single-season Big East steals record of 67 as well as Murdock's NCAA career steals record of 377. Led by Ryan Gomes, the Friars returned to the NIT with an 18–14 record in 2002–03 and made another NCAA appearance in 2003–04 with a 20–9 record. However, Welsh's next four teams, without Gomes after 2004–05, recorded one winning season, and Welsh was fired following the 2007–08 season.

Davis era: 2008–2011

In 2008, the Friars hired Drake head coach Keno Davis, who won the National Coach of the Year Award in his first and only season as Drake's head coach. Davis' team posted a 19–14 record, including a win at home over top-ranked Pittsburgh, in 2008–09 en route to an NIT appearance. In 2009–10, Davis' team lost their final eleven games to finish 15th in the Big East. The Friars averaged 82 points per game, the fourth highest in Division I, while also surrendering 85 points per conference game, the worst statistical performance in BIG EAST history. In Davis' third season, 2010–11, the Friars finished 14th in the conference despite having Division I's second-leading scorer in Marshon Brooks. Davis was fired after the 2010–11 season.

Cooley era: 2011–present

On March 22, 2011, the Friars hired Fairfield head coach Ed Cooley, as the 15th head coach in program history. A Providence native, Cooley brought a reinvigorated energy surrounding the program and recruited six consensus Top 100 recruits in his first three years.

2011-2012 Season

In his first season at Providence, Cooley led the Friars to a 15-17 mark overall, posting a 11-3 mark (8-0 at home) in non-conference action and going 4-14 in the Big East. That season, point guard Vincent Council was named All-BIG EAST Third Team and forward LaDontae Henton earned BIG EAST All-Rookie Team accolades.

2012-2013 Season - NIT Quarterfinals

In his second season, Cooley led the Friars to a 19-15 record overall and a 9-9 mark in league play. Included in the 9-9 BIG EAST record in 2012-13 was a 7-2 mark over the last nine games of the conference season, marking the second best turnaround over second half of the season in BIG EAST history. The Friars played the season with a short roster with transfers Carson Desrosier and Tyler Harris having to sit out the year per NCAA transfer rules, four star Freshman shooting guard and Providence native Ricky Ledo sitting our per NCAA eligibility issues, and four star Freshman point guard Kris Dunn sitting out the first semester with a shoulder injury. Friars Freshman guard Josh Fortune, was the only incoming player in 2012-2013 season eligible to compete. Cooley guided the Friars to the NIT where the squad posted a 2-1 record, beating Charlotte and Robert Morris before losing in the quarterfinals to eventual NIT Champion Baylor. That season, combo guard Bryce Cotton was named All-BIG EAST First Team and Kadeem Batts was recognized as a co-winner of the league's Most Improved Award and earned All-BIG EAST Honorable Mention accolades. After spending one year at Providence without being able to play, Ledo declared for the 2013 NBA Draft and was drafted by the Minnesota Timberwolves, eventually being traded to the Dallas Mavericks.

2013-2014 Season - BIG EAST Tournament Champions / NCAA Tournament 2nd Round

In his third season at Providence and first season in the reconfigured BIG EAST Conference, Cooley led the Friars to a 10-8 mark in the BIG EAST Conference and finished tied for 3rd with Xavier and St. John's. Transfers, Junior forward Carson Desrosiers and Sophomore forward Tyler Harris, were eligible to play their first season in black and white, having sat out the NCAA enforced one year period. However, in addition to former Senior point guard Vincent Council's graduation and Ricky Ledo entering the draft, Sophomore point guard Kris Dunn faced another shoulder injury and had to sit out almost the entire year as a medical redshirt, Cleveland State transfer Sophomore guard Junior Lamomba had to sit out the NCAA enforced one year period, and incoming Freshmen Brandon Austin and Rodney Bullock were suspended for the entire season due to a unspecified violation of team rules. The Friars finished the season at 23-12 mark overall, the most wins in a season since 1996-1997. Two players received regular season honors, Senior point guard Bryce Cotton was named All-BIG EAST First Team and Senior forward Kadeem Batts earned All-BIG EAST Second Team accolades. Entering the BIG EAST Tournament, the Friars played as the 4th seed due to losing the tie-breaker with Xavier. They defeated St. John's in the Quarterfinals, Seton Hall in the Semifinals, and Creighton in the thrilling final at Madison Square Garden, claiming PC's second tournament title in BIG EAST history. By winning the BIG EAST Tournament the team earned an automatic bid, removing any "bubble" fears. On their way to making history as the first tournament champion of the reconfigured league, Junior forward Ladonte Henton was named to the All-Tournament Team and Senior guard Bryce Cotton was named the tournaments Most Outstanding Player. On selection Sunday, the Friars were given the 11th seed in the 2014 NCAA Tournament East Regional and faced the UNC. The Friars lost 77-79, but en route Bryce Cotton scored a career high 36 points, making him to 4th all time leading scorer in Providence College basketball history. Despite the loss, the season marked yet another major step forward by Ed Cooley& Co in rebuilding of the PC basketball program.

Season-by-season

Season Overall Record Con. Record Coach Postseason Scoring Leader (ppg) Rebounding Leader (rpg) Assists Leader (apg)
1926–27 8–8 Archie Golembeski Hector Allen (7.3)
1927–28 7–9 Al McClellan John Krieger (9.9)
1928–29 17–3 Al McClellan Eddie Wineapple (13.9)
1929–30 15–4 Al McClellan John Krieger (10.7)
1930–31 14–5 Al McClellan Allen Brachen (9.5)
1931–32 19–5 Al McClellan Allen Brachen (9.4)
1932–33 13–3 Al McClellan Allen Brachen (13.0)
1933–34 12–5 Al McClellan Allen Brachen (9.9)
1934–35 17–5 Al McClellan Bill Kutniewski (8.0)
1935–36 14–7 Al McClellan Ed Bobinski (10.1)
1936–37 12–10 Al McClellan Ed Bobinski (9.5)
1937–38 7–9 Al McClellan John Crowley (9.8)
1938–39 4–7 Ed Crotty Steve Fallon (10.1)
1939–40 5–9 Ed Crotty Joe Kwasniewski (9.7)
1940–41 11–6 Ed Crotty John Lee (10.3)
1941–42 13–7 Ed Crotty Ted McConnon (15.5)
1942–43 15–5 Ed Crotty Ted McConnon (15.0)
1943–44 World War II
1944–45 5–7 Ed Crotty John Arzoomanian (19.7)
1945–46 5–12 Ed Crotty Henri Ethier (13.9)
1946–47 8–11 Lawrence Drew John Sullivan (8.2)
1947–48 10–10 Lawrence Drew Ferdinand Sowa (10.7)
1948–49 7–9 Lawrence Drew Francis Pelligrino (8.5)
1949–50 14–9 Vin Cuddy James Schlimm (15.5)
1950–51 14–10 Vin Cuddy James Schlimm (15.7)
1951–52 14–9 Vin Cuddy Robert Moran (18.0) James Schlimm (8.3)
1952–53 11–11 Vin Cuddy Robert Moran (20.8) Robert Prendergast (7.8)
1953–54 13–13 Vin Cuddy Robert Moran (16.0)
1954–55 9–12 Vin Cuddy Mike Pascale (17.8) John Ritch (14.2)
1955–56 14–8 Joe Mullaney Mike Pascale (15.0) John Ritch (10.3)
1956–57 15–9 Joe Mullaney John Ritch (14.4)
1957–58 18–6 Joe Mullaney Lenny Wilkens (14.9) John Woods (8.4)
1958–59 20–7 Joe Mullaney NIT Semifinals Johnny Egan (20.9) John Woods (9.6)
1959–60 24–5 Joe Mullaney NIT Finals James Hadnot (14.8) James Hadnot (16.3)
1960–61 24–5 Joe Mullaney NIT Champion James Hadnot (19.3) James Hadnot (16.4)
1961–62 20–6 Joe Mullaney NIT 1st Round James Hadnot (18.3) James Hadnot (13.5) Vin Ernst (8.7)
1962–63 24–4 Joe Mullaney NIT Champion Raymond Flynn & John Thompson (18.9) John Thompson (14.0)
1963–64 20–6 Joe Mullaney NCAA 1st Round John Thompson (26.2) John Thompson (14.5)
1964–65 24–2 Joe Mullaney NCAA Elite 8 Jimmy Walker (20.5) Dexter Westbrook (12.1) Jimmy Walker (5.2)
1965–66 22–5 Joe Mullaney NCAA 1st Round Jimmy Walker (24.5) Michael Riordan (9.1) Jimmy Walker (5.5)
1966–67 21–7 Joe Mullaney NIT Quarterfinals Jimmy Walker (30.4) Anthony Koski (11.2) Jimmy Walker (5.1)
1967–68 11–14 Joe Mullaney Alphonse Hayes (15.6) Anthony Koski (11.2)
1968–69 14–10 Joe Mullaney Jim Larranaga (19.4) Raymond Johnson (10.4)
1969–70 14–11 Dave Gavitt Jim Larranaga (16.3) Raymond Johnson (10.4) Jim Larranaga (3.2)
1970–71 20–8 Dave Gavitt NIT Quarterfinals Ernie DiGregorio (18.6) Nehru King (6.1) Ernie DiGregorio (6.5)
1971–72 21–6 Dave Gavitt NCAA 1st Round Marvin Barnes (21.6) Marvin Barnes (15.7) Ernie DiGregorio (7.9)
1972–73 27–4 Dave Gavitt NCAA Final Four Ernie DiGregorio (24.6) Marvin Barnes (19.0) Ernie DiGregorio (8.6)
1973–74 28–4 Dave Gavitt NCAA Sweet 16 Marvin Barnes (22.1) Marvin Barnes (18.7) Kevin Stacom (5.3)
1974–75 20–11 Dave Gavitt NIT Finals Joe Hassett (16.5) Bill Eason (7.9) Rick Santos (4.5)
1975–76 21–11 Dave Gavitt NIT Semifinals Joe Hassett (17.0) Bruce Campbell (8.5) Bob Misevicius (4.8)
1976–77 24–5 Dave Gavitt NCAA 1st Round Joe Hassett (18.8) Bruce Campbell (8.1) Dwight Williams (5.1)
1977–78 24–8 Dave Gavitt NCAA 1st Round Bruce Campbell (17.4) Bill Eason (8.3) Bob Misevicius (5.5)
1978–79 10–16 Dave Gavitt Rudy Williams (17.8) Rudy Williams (9.0) David Frye (5.0)
1979–80 11–6 0–6 Gary Walters Jerry Scott (14.9) Rudy Williams (7.6) Ricky Tucker (5.3)
1980–81 10–18 3–11 Gary Walters Rich Hunger (12.0) Rich Hunger (6.7) Jim Panaggio (3.9)
1981–82 10–17 2–12 Joe Mullaney Ron Jackson (16.2) Otis Thorpe (8.0) Jim Panaggio (4.0)
1982–83 12–19 4–12 Joe Mullaney Ron Jackson (18.3) Otis Thorpe (8.0) Ricky Tucker (6.1)
1983–84 15–14 5–11 Joe Mullaney Otis Thorpe (17.1) Otis Thorpe (10.3) Harold Starks (3.3)
1984–85 11–20 3–13 Joe Mullaney Donald Brown (9.5) Ray Knight (6.0) Harold Starks (3.8)
1985–86 17–14 7–9 Rick Pitino NIT Quarterfinals Billy Donovan (15.1) Steve Wright (7.3) Billy Donovan (4.7)
1986–87 25–9 10–6 Rick Pitino NCAA Final Four Billy Donovan (20.6) David Kipfer (5.3) Billy Donovan (7.2)
1987–88 11–17 5–11 Gordie Chiesa Delray Brooks (13.5) Steve Wright (6.5) Eric Murdock (3.8)
1988–89 18–11 7–9 Rick Barnes NCAA 1st Round Eric Murdock (16.2) Marty Conlon (7.0) Carlton Screen (6.8)
1989–90 17–12 8–8 Rick Barnes NCAA 1st Round Eric Murdock (15.4) Marty Conlon (7.5) Carlton Screen (7.0)
1990–91 19–13 7–9 Rick Barnes NIT Quarterfinals Eric Murdock (25.6) Marques Bragg (8.8) Eric Murdock (4.6)
1991–92 14–17 6–12 Rick Barnes Marques Bragg (11.3) Michael Smith (10.3) Trent Forbes (3.4)
1992–93 20–13 9–9 Rick Barnes NIT Semifinals Michael Smith (11.8) Michael Smith (11.4) Abdul Abdullah (5.7)
1993–94 20–10 10–8 Rick Barnes NCAA 1st Round Eric Williams (15.7) Michael Smith (11.5) Abdul Abdullah (8.0)
1994–95 17–13 7–11 Pete Gillen NIT 2nd Round Eric Williams (17.7) Troy Brown (7.9) Michael Brown (3.9)
1995–96 18–12 9–9 Pete Gillen NIT 2nd Round Austin Croshere (15.3) Rubén Garcés (7.5) God Shammgod (6.5)
1996–97 24–12 10–8 Pete Gillen NCAA Elite 8 Austin Croshere (17.9) Rubén Garcés (7.8) God Shammgod (6.6)
1997–98 13–16 7–11 Pete Gillen Jamel Thomas (18.5) Jamel Thomas (6.9) Kendrick Moore (3.2)
1998–99 16–14 9–9 Tim Welsh NIT 1st Round Jamel Thomas (22.0) Jamel Thomas (7.2) John Linehan (3.8)
1999–00 11–19 4–12 Tim Welsh Erron Maxey (14.8) Karim Shabazz (8.2) Abdul Mills (2.2)
2000–01 21–10 11–5 Tim Welsh NCAA 1st Round Erron Maxey (11.4) Karim Shabazz (7.4) John Linehan (3.9)
2001–02 15–16 6–10 Tim Welsh Abdul Mills (14.5) Ryan Gomes (7.8) John Linehan (4.4)
2002–03 18–14 8–8 Tim Welsh NIT 2nd Round Ryan Gomes (18.4) Ryan Gomes (9.7) Donnie McGrath (4.3)
2003–04 20–9 11–5 Tim Welsh NCAA 1st Round Ryan Gomes (18.9) Ryan Gomes (9.4) Donnie McGrath (3.4)
2004–05 14–17 4–12 Tim Welsh Ryan Gomes (21.6) Ryan Gomes (8.2) Donnie McGrath (3.8)
2005–06 12–15 5–11 Tim Welsh Donnie McGrath (15.1) Geoff McDermott (9.0) Sharaud Curry (3.5)
2006–07 18–13 8–8 Tim Welsh NIT 1st Round Herbert Hill (18.1) Geoff McDermott (9.1) Geoff McDermott (5.1)
2007–08 15–16 6–12 Tim Welsh Jeff Xavier (12.4) Geoff McDermott (8.1) Geoff McDermott (4.9)
2008–09 19–14 10–8 Keno Davis NIT 1st Round Weyinmi Efejuku (15.7) Geoff McDermott (8.5) Sharaud Curry (4.2)
2009–10 12–19 4–14 Keno Davis Jamine Peterson (19.6) Jamine Peterson (10.2) Vincent Council (4.5)
2010–11 15–17 4–14 Keno Davis Marshon Brooks (24.6) Marshon Brooks (7.0) Vincent Council (5.9)
2011–12 15–17 4–14 Ed Cooley Vincent Council (15.9) LaDontae Henton (8.6) Vincent Council (7.5)
2012–13 19–15 9–9 Ed Cooley NIT Quarterfinals Bryce Cotton (19.7) LaDontae Henton (8.3) Vincent Council (6.8)
2013–14 23–12 10–8 Ed Cooley NCAA 2nd Round Bryce Cotton (21.8) LaDontae Henton (7.9) Bryce Cotton (5.9)

Friars in the NBA

"Friars Legends"
Number Player Years Date

Coach Joe Mullaney 1955–69; 1981–85 January 6, 2007
Coach Dave Gavitt 1969–79 January 6, 2007
14 Lenny Wilkens 1957–60 November 27, 1996
24 Jimmy Walker 1964–67 March 8, 2008
15 Ernie DiGregorio 1970–73 March 8, 2008
24 Marvin Barnes 1971–74 March 8, 2008
34 Johnny Egan 1958–61 February 21, 2009
10 Vin Ernst 1960–63 February 19, 2011
14 Raymond Flynn 1960–63 February 19, 2011
27 Kevin Stacom 1972–74 January 25, 2014
10 Joe Hassett 1973–77 January 25, 2014

Currently in NBA

All-time NBA Draft

Former Friars

References

External links








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