Trojans to take advantage of exhibitions

first_imgWith games in Las Vegas, Minnesota and Washington, the USC men’s basketball team has the opportunity to travel the country this season. The sightseeing highlight of the year, however, will take place in South America.Experience · Senior guard Jio Fontan, one of two returning starters, averaged 10.5 points per game in 2011, his first season with the Trojans. – Robin Laird | Daily TrojanEvery four years, the NCAA allows basketball teams to travel to a foreign country to compete against local teams, in addition to 10 extra days of practice.This year USC coach Kevin O’Neill and his squad will travel to Brazil for a series of preseason exhibition games over 10 days in Rio de Janeiro, as well as Sao Paolo.“I am really excited to get out there and see another part of the world,” USC senior guard Jio Fontan said.The Trojans return just two starters, Fontan and sophomore guard Maurice Jones, from last year’s team, which fell to Virginia Commonwealth in the First Four round of the NCAA tournament in March.As a result, for such an inexperienced group of players, it is advantageous to have 10 extra days of practice in August as opposed to waiting for the traditional opening of practice in mid-October.“We are getting to know each other, and the younger guys are getting the jitters out of the way,” Fontan said. “They are getting their first practices a little earlier in the year so they know what to expect when the season starts.”To best prepare his team for the regular season, O’Neill wanted to schedule games against the top teams available in Brazil.“We hope that the competition is pro-level teams,” O’Neill said. “That is what we asked for. We had the choice of playing first or second level teams, and we wanted to play the highest level teams.”With 10 days together in an unfamiliar environment, Fontan also looks forward to bonding with his teammates and developing some cohesiveness.“There are going to be a lot more face-to-face conversations, being social with each other,” Fontan said. “It is a great way to start the season, and to build team chemistry.”Some coaches initiate special rules on foreign trips — such as forbidding text messaging — to encourage players to interact with each other, but O’Neill allows his team greater freedom off the court.“I don’t have any rules like that,” O’Neill said. “They can talk to whoever they want as long as they play hard.”USC will count heavily on an influx of transfers — junior guard Greg Allen (Navarro College), junior center James Blasczyk (Texas A&M), sophomore forward Dewayne Dedmon (Antelope Valley College) and junior forward Aaron Fuller (Iowa).The Trojans also add freshman guards Alexis Moore and Byron Wesley, in addition to sophomore forward Evan Smith, who returns after redshirting last season because of a shoulder injury.“We are all [O’Neill] recruits,” Fontan said. “It is a new era, and we are having a great time.”The last time the Trojans traveled abroad was to Mexico in 2007 with a squad led by guards Dwight Lewis and O.J. Mayo, as well as center Taj Gibson.The Trojans open the 2011-2012 season at home against Cal State Northridge on Nov. 11.“We are a hard playing group,” O’Neill said. “We are deeper and more athletic. We have a lot of guys with a lot to prove. I like our attitude, our team play, how we share the ball and that we play together on both ends.”last_img read more

Syracuse-Colgate canceled after Patriot League fall sports decision

first_img Published on July 13, 2020 at 11:37 am Contact Adam: adhillma@syr.edu | @_adamhillman The Daily Orange is a nonprofit newsroom that receives no funding from Syracuse University. Consider donating today to support our mission.The Patriot League canceled fall sports Monday due to the coronavirus pandemic, eliminating Syracuse’s scheduled home-opener against Colgate. The Sept. 19 game was supposed to be the first held in the Carrier Dome following renovations.Colgate is SU’s second opponent to have its game with the Orange canceled. Rutgers — slated to face Syracuse on Sept. 12 — and the Big Ten announced Thursday that it’ll follow conference-only schedules this fall. The Pac-12 made a similar announcement on Friday. The Atlantic Coast Conference has already delayed the start of Olympic sports until Sept. 1, and commissioner John Swofford said in a statement that the conference anticipates it will make a decision in late July regarding fall sports. The ACC also canceled its virtual media day for football, an event scheduled to begin July 21, until further notice.“Over the last few months, our conference has prepared numerous scenarios related to the fall athletics season,” Swofford said.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textCOVID-19 has continued to ravage the United States throughout June and July, and infections in Florida, Texas, Arizona and California have spiked recently. Still, college football programs have continued their voluntary offseason workouts with extra precautions. Syracuse progressed into phase two of its summer plan in early July and is on track with its initial schedule that began June 8. Training camp starts Aug. 5 for the Orange, about a month before their season-opener against Boston College on Sept. 4. Facebook Twitter Google+center_img Commentslast_img read more

Dominica Independence – celebrating 39 years

first_imgDominica Independence – celebrating 39 yearsOn Friday, November 3, for it’s 39th year even as the country recovers from the devastation caused by Hurricane Maria, the celebration continues for Dominica independence.Addressing the nation, Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit urged citizens not to be daunted by the task of rebuilding the nation.Hurricane Maria hit Dominica on September 18 as a Category 5 storm, killing at least 28 people and leaving billions of dollars in damage.Unlike previous years when nationals were honored for their contribution to the socio-economic development of the island, this year’s national awards ceremony was postponed to next year.Still standingIn his address marking the Dominica independence anniversary,  Skerrit said Dominica ‘is still standing” despite facing the “fiercest floods, the most ferocious winds. “We are sorrow-stricken; we swallow hard, but it still catches in our throat; but we are still standing! Difficulties envelope every aspect of life, uncertainties swirl; and we are still standing! The outside world wondered aloud whether this is the kind of devastation from which you don’t recover. We are still standing.Hope is infinite“We, the children of Dominica, have shown the world that disaster is finite; but, hope is infinite! Maria stole everything money can buy, everything you can put a price on; but left you with that which is priceless! We will determine the value of those things through our actions in coming days and weeks. A moment comes, but rarely in history, when a nation’s soul is revealed.”He told the Dominica Independence Day rally at the Windsor Park Stadium attended by thousands of people that how the island responds to the storm “will define us, will make us; will become us.”Skerrit said he’s confident that people who fled the island after the storm as they did in 1979 when Dominica was hit by Hurricane David, would soon return.“Sometimes it takes a crisis to remind everyone of the importance of our journey. Remember, you only see the stars clearly at the darkest hour. Ladies and Gentlemen, on this our Independence Day, Dominica stands forth on the edge of a great triumph to come, on the edge of a triumph not just for Dominica but for the world.”Outlines re-development plans The prime minister also outlined new plans for the re-development of the island saying there are moves to establish the Climate Resilient Economic Agency of Dominica, (CREAD) to support the rapid implementation of the plans once they are funded.He said following his visit to the United States, London and Brussels over the last few weeks over 50 per cent of the funding needed to rebuild the island had been forthcoming. “We will be presenting our plans to a partners conference in New York later in the month to help raise part of the balance needed. We will support the private sector as it rebuilds and restores.”For recent article on Dominica, click the link: FAO calls for immediate food production in Dominicalast_img read more