Steve Masiello's 'Coach's Corner'
Manhattan head men's basketball coach Steve Masiello brings fans the 'Coach's Corner' during the 2011-2012 academic year, an interactive blog at GoJaspers.com. The Jaspers' first year head coach, will provide first-hand insight to fans on a variety of topics surrounding the program throughout the season, including academics, recruiting, scouting, player and team development. The 'Coach's Corner' will serve as an extension of Masiello's popular 'On the Road' recruiting blog, which highlighted the men's basketball staff's efforts evaluating some of the top scholastic players across the country in July.
August 31, 2011
As we have finished Day 2 of workouts, I am already very excited and optimistic about this upcoming season. All of our players with the exception of one are here and have reported. The guys seem to have improved from the spring.
Here is a breakdown of the roster, individually touching on our players' strengths and weaknesses:
Decarlos is a terrific athletic talent with loads of potential. He needs to improve on the mental aspects of the game and his maturity.
Physically, Emmy is very gifted as a freshman. He has a great skill set and natural feel for the game. Emmy is a typical New York City player who you can tell has played in thousands of games. Conditioning and urgency will be his biggest challenges this year.
Donovan is a terrific young man who can really shoot the basketball. He needs to improve his conditioning, as do all freshmen, as well as his ability to fight through fatigue.
Biggest surprise by far! Ryan is a gifted 6'8" skilled forward who has a high basketball IQ. It is only a matter of time before this young man experiences success. Strength and mental toughness will be the biggest hurdles for Ryan.
Rashawn is a tremendous walk-on who will sit out this year. Without a doubt, he will push everyone to get better everyday and he will have a tremendous impact on our program.
Mike is a new person who is priding himself on hard work, passion and making people the people around him better. His conditioning is not where it needs to be, but his attitude is.
Rhamel came into camp in great shape, He is down to 220-pounds and he is competing at a very high level. The key for Rhamel will be his ability to concentrate and mentally lock in. His body is way ahead of his mind. When they get on the same page he is going to be a terrific player.
Torgrim is still rehabbing, but we expect him back in late September. His shooting and IQ will be a tremendous asset to this team. Torgrim gives us much needed depth up front and he is another natural leader for our program.
George is in the best shape of anyone on the team and he brings it 110% everyday. The key for George is to get his teammates to go as hard as he does and to care more about a team ego. When George gets to that point, he will truly be one of the best players in the MAAC and metropolitan area. His shooting has vastly improved, as well as his left hand. We need him to take the next step now and be a leader.
Due to Hurricane Irene, Mohamed is having issues returning to campus from France, but we are awaiting his arrival soon.
Kevin is working on getting in great shape and finding his role on how he can be a contributor to this team. Kevin's key will be his ability to play fast. He is a player who can help us with his size and length. Strength and conditioning will be major areas for him.
Kidani is our captain, our leader, our heart. He has done everything we asked and gotten himself into the best shape of his career. His ability to play multiple positions in the backcourt and lead young guys will be crucial to our success.
Roberto is still on the injured reserve. He needs to find a niche where he can be a contributor on this team and represent the program in the best way possible. Maturity and rust will be his biggest obstacles this year. Roberto has not participated in a basketball related activity in nearly 10 months.
Right now, Djibril has the best attitude of anyone on the team. All he is concerned about is improving the program and making everyone around him better. He plays with great passion and extremely hard. Djibril is a fierce competitor. We will rely on him heavily in situations to energize our team. Djibril needs to improve his skill set and durability.
Liam brings a much needed threat of perimeter shooting and scoring. He has great range and good size, and in our up-tempo style of play he will get a lot of open looks. His biggest obstacle is going to be getting in great shape and icing his elbow from the amount of shots he is going to get up.
In only 48 hours, the sweat, vomit, blood and tears have already filled the gym. And these young men are pushing themselves everyday; academically, socially and athletically to achieve greatness. We ask ourselves on a daily basis, at the conclusion of the day, were we good enough to win a road game today. So far the Jaspers are 2-0!
The Jasper family sends out our very best wishes to those affected by Hurricane Irene. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all.
Stay tuned for the next blog entry that will recap the first three weeks of workouts and update fans on recruiting.