Blogs > The Full-Court Press

Welcome back to the Trentonian's Full-Court Press blog. Yes, we're still alive, and with the 2015-16 season rapidly approaching, it's time to fire up the old blog for another season. Check back here throughout the year for updates on all things Rider and Princeton, including coverage of both the MAAC and Ivy League. Feel free to drop me a line on twitter @kj_franko ( or email

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Baggett, Broncs hard at work

While Rider released the non-conference portion of its schedule on Tuesday, coach Kevin Baggett and his staff were hard at work.

Baggett, entering his second season in charge of the Broncs, has had an opportunity to work with most of the squad over the past couple weeks.

More importantly, he's got a good look at his newcomers and the way they blend with the veterans. The coach again has several new faces with five freshmen (Brandon Channer, Xavier Lundy, Jimmie Taylor, Khalil Thomas and the recently added Davis Graham) and a pair of transfers (Teddy Okereafor, Skylar Scrivano — both have to sit out this season).

"They're a talented group," Baggett said Wednesday. "Need some work, but that's what you expect with freshmen. What I like about this group is they're all business. There aren't a lot of questions. They're being sponges and soaking up everything I feed them and they're working hard."

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Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Rider to face Purdue, Villanova in non-league action

Kevin Baggett will lead Rider into non-league match-ups against Purdue and Villanova.

To get through the non-conference portion of the schedule, Rider will have to be road warriors.

The team released its non-league slate Tuesday with six of the nine contests away from Alumni Gymnasium.

The schedule is highlighted by trips to the Big Ten’s Purdue and the Big East’s Villanova. The Broncs will also play in the Cable Car Classic hosted by Santa Clara.
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Monday, July 29, 2013

Princeton's Brase represent's Germany in FIBA U20 tournament

Trentonian Photo/GREGG SLABODA

While most college basketball players work on their games over the summer in hot, empty gyms or in local summer leagues, Princeton forward Hans Brase found a bigger stage to keep his skills sharp.

The rising sophomore traveled to Tallinn, Estonia, to represent Germany in FIBA’s U20 European Championship. With Brase averaging 5.3 points and 4.2 rebounds per contest, the German squad eventually placed 11th out of 20 teams, ahead of some traditional European basketball powers like Croatia and Serbia.

“Individually I feel good about my experience,” Brase said Sunday. “I definitely learned a lot and saw a whole different lifestyle and basketball game. Like every new experience, it had its ups and downs, but overall I think that every day I was abroad helped me in some way.”

Having advanced past the first group stage of the tournament with wins over Serbia and Georgia, the Germans looked like a serious threat to advance into the quarterfinals after beating Turkey in the second group stage. Three consecutive losses to Croatia, Montenegro and France ended that hope, but they were able to rebound and beat Croatia in the 11th-place game.

“Any time you can beat very respected teams like Turkey, Croatia, Serbia all in one tournament you are doing pretty well,” Brase said. “Of course we felt that if a few plays would have changed here and there we could have made it in the quarterfinals as well as make a run at the championship. Sadly, it didn’t happen but still 11th place is nothing to be upset about. It just shows how strong the competition is in Europe because every team that was there was top notch.”

For American basketball fans, the most high-profile name in the tournament was perhaps Greece’s Giannis Antetokounmpo, who was drafted 15th overall in this year’s NBA draft by the Milwaukee Bucks. Brase got to see more of Antetokounmpo than he probably would have liked, as the 6-foot-10 scored 20 points against Germany in the opening round.

“I remember him very well as we also played against Greece in an earlier tournament in France,” Brase said of Antetokounmpo. “He is a great player and has freaky potential. I actually got to know him pretty well as we stayed in the same hotel and we spoke a lot about the NBA and America. He is a really down to earth kid and will be very good in a few years.”

Brase holds dual-citizenship, having been born in Charlottesville, Va., to German parents before moving back to Germany until he was about 3 years old. Growing up in Clover, S.C., his parents spoke both German and English around the house, so after a brief readjustment period he didn’t have too much trouble communicating with his German teammates.

Though Brase was the only American-born player on the German team, he also wasn’t the only one to have played American college basketball. The squad also featured UConn’s Leon Tolksdorf, as well as Alexander Blessig, who was a member of the Florida Gulf Coast team that made a surprise run to the Sweet 16 last season.

“Leon and Alex were great to have because we could talk a lot about college and March Madness and everything,” Brase said. “Alex was my roommate for a lot of the trip and we spoke at length about their run to the Sweet 16 and at length about the differences with European basketball and American.”

As a freshman last season, Brase was a pleasant surprise for Princeton, averaging 5.4 points and 4.2 rebounds while starting 18 games for the Tigers. With the departure of Ivy League Player of the Year Ian Hummer, it stands to reason that he’ll need to play an even bigger role this year for Princeton. Playing against top competition in Europe has given him a more solid idea of where he stands in comparison, and what he needs to continue to work on.

“Simply playing against the high-level competition has allowed me to get more comfortable with the game and playing at such a high level,” he said. “Like always I will need to work on everything as I still have much to learn. I still need to get bigger and stronger in the weight room so I can handle the physicality and get quicker so I can guard smaller quicker players. Also, I need to continue to shoot a lot, work on my post moves, as well as work on my dribbling and passing. Essentially I need to keep working on everything.”

Looking down the line, Brase’s dual-citizenship could lead to opportunities to play professionally in Germany once he graduates. Though he has plenty of basketball to play left to play for the Tigers, the thought has definitely crossed his mind.

“Playing in Germany would also be a huge plus simply because I have a lot of family there that could watch me play for the first time,” he said. “I believe I have made a great first impression with the Germans and if I have the opportunity to play professionally be it in Germany or anywhere that would be a dream come true.”

Rider women announce non-league schedule

The Rider women's basketball team released its 2013-14 non-conference schedule Monday.

The Broncs, under seventh-year coach Lynn Milligan, are looking to build off a 15-15 season which was their best since a 16-12 campaign in 1994-95.

The season opens on Nov. 8 at Lafayette and is highlighted by home games against Mercer County rival Princeton (Nov. 19) and Sweet 16 participant Delaware (Nov. 24).
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Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Rider giving Alumni Gym an upgrade

Rider University is giving Alumni Gym a second makeover.

A year after putting in a new floor and lighting, the school is adding a 9x16 video board. The screen will be capable of showing highlights and live action.

The display is designed by Darktronics.

Here is the link to