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After rolling over Mount St. Mary’s on Thursday night, the Quinnipiac Bobcats Men’s Basketball faces Robert Morris at home in the NEC semifinals. You may remember that they faced Robert Morris at home in the NEC Championship game last year and lost. But much of that team moved on, as did head coach Mike Rice, who is now coaching Rutgers.

TV Coverage of Sunday’s game will be live at 2pm ET on Fox College Sports, ESPN3.com and ESPN Full Court (the Pay-Per-View service).


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(This article was originally posted on NJNR Press Box.)

The regular season games have been played and now it’s time for March Madness. The Northeast Conference tournament begins tomorrow with four quarterfinal games at 7 pm ET:

8. Saint Francis (PA) at 1. Long Island

7. Mount St. Mary’s at 2. Quinnipiac

6. Wagner at 3. Robert Morris

5. St. Francis (NY) at 4. CCSU

[Click here for the rest of the story.]

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The Quinnipiac University Men’s Basketball team has been rolling along, at 11-3 overall and 3-1 in the conference. Until Now. Probable NEC player of the year Justin Rutty is out four weeks with bone chips in his elbow. Ouch.

For anyone who wants to see the Bobcats in the NCAA tournament, the ability of the young guys to step up over the next 11 games will be key.

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(This post originally appeared on Press Box.)

Here’s a look at the NEC on this Monday:

1. Central Connecticut State (4-1)

Central continues to roll, opening up their conference schedule with a 54-50 overtime win against Monmouth on Saturday.

2. Long Island University (4-1)

Long Island suffered their first loss of the season Saturday against Saint Peters by a 65-62 score. LIU only shot 29 percent in the second half.

3. Quinnipiac University (3-1)

Quinnipiac opens up a five-game home stand against Maine on Monday night after going into Thanksgiving break with a victory over Dartmouth. Lance Brown went from his couch to the court in a matter of hours after becoming academically eligible.

4. Robert Morris (2-2)

Robert Morris lost to No. 9 Pittsburgh in the back door rivalry last week and now enters this week with a game tonight in Cleveland against another team that’s made a NCAA tournament appearance before – Cleveland State.

5. Wagner (2-2)

Wagner fell to Hofstra last weekend and enters this week at .500 on the season. This week they have two more out of conference tests before conference play begins: Bucknell and St. Johns against new coach Steve Lavin.

6. Mount St. Mary’s (2-3)

Mount St. Mary’s beat Florida A&M last weekend in the Global Sports Main Event Tournament. Next up for them is a matchup at home against Navy.

7. St. Francis (PA) (2-4)

St. Francis has lost two straight, including a close one to Hartford and in blowout fashion to Youngstown State, shooting only 15 percent from three. This week: the conference play opener against St. Francis (NY).

8. St Francis (NY) (1-3)

NY is coming off a loss to Brown and now can prepare for the aforementioned matchup against St. Francis (PA), looking to get their conference season off to a strong start.

9. Monmouth (1-2)

Monmouth fell to Central in their NEC opener over the weekend and now goes out-of-conference for a road matchup against Davidson.

10. Sacred Heart (1-4)

Sacred Heart’s next game is on Thursday as they open conference play against Mount St. Mary’s, looking to find themselves in a season that is purely about building for the future.

11. Bryant (1-5)

The Bulldogs come off losses to Harvard and Lehigh, the latter by 20 points. They open up their NEC slate this Thursday against Farleigh Dickinson.

12. Farleigh Dickinson (0-3)

They have played the least games of any team so far in the conference and come off a ten point loss to NC State over the weekend. Their final out-of-conference tune-up before conference play begins comes against Longwood.

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(This post originally appeared on Press Box.)

The Northeast Conference has some new looks heading into the 2010-2011 basketball season after a very competitive campaign last year that almost saw Robert Morris upset No. 2 seed Villanova in the first round of the NCAA tournament. But now Andrew Toole takes over at Robert Morris now that Mike Rice has moved on to Rutgers. Wagner also boasts a new head coach with a familiar last name in Jersey as Dan Hurley takes over the reins of the Seahawks. Quinnipiac will try to finish off what it couldn’t last season, that’s win the NEC tournament. The college basketball season is about to get into full swing and it’s time to give the mid-majors some love. Let’s take a look at the 2010-2011 NEC preview.

1. Quinnipiac University

Head Coach: Tom Moore, 4th season

Last Year: 23-10, won regular season title, lost in NEC Championship to Robert Morris

Key Returners: Justin Rutty, James Johnson, Deontay Twyman, Dave Johnson, Jamee Jackson, Raheem May-Thompson.

Key Newcomers: Dominique Langston, Tevin Baskin (eligible Dec. 22 at Niagara), Ike Azotam, William Harrison, Mike Gabriel, Lance Brown (transfer, out for 2010-11), Garvey Young (transfer, out for 2010-11), Austin Alecxih (transfer, out for 2010-11).

Projected Lineup:

G — James Johnson (1),

G– Deontay Twyman (2)

G – TBA (Raheem May-Thompson and William Harrison are most likely to start)

F — Jamee Jackson (4)

C — Justin Rutty (5)

Quotebook: “I think it will only be a positive going forward.” – Head Coach Tom Moore on last year’s two point loss in the NEC Championship game last year.

Nugget: The team took a European trip over the summer, giving the freshman time to bond with the returners.

2. Robert Morris University

Head Coach: Andrew Toole, 1st season

Last Year: 23-12, Northeast Conference Champions

Key Returners: Karon Abraham Velton Jones, Russell Johnson

Key Newcomers: Anthony Myers, Yann Charles, Lawrence Bridges

Projected Lineup:

G – Jones

G – Abraham

G – Myers

G – Gary Wallace, lone senior on squad

F – Johnson

Quotebook: “I’d like to run a little more. I’d like to push the ball a little more. I think that’s me a little bit, but I also think it’s something we tried to do over the last couple years.” – Head Coach Andrew Toole

3. Long Island University

Head Coach: Jim Ferry, 13th season

Last Year: 14-17, 4th in NEC regular season standings

Key Returners: Julian Boyd, Kyle Johnson, Michael Culpo

Key Newcomers: CJ Garner, Jason Brickman

Projected Lineup:

G – CJ Garner

G – David Hicks

F – Kyle Johnson

F – Jamal Olasewere

F – Julian Boyd

Quotebook: “The positive of getting Julian Boyd back has been wonderful, to say the least.” – Head Coach Jim Ferry on Julian Boyd returning from heart issues.

Nugget: This team’s mantra: solid defense and rebounding.

4. Central Connecticut State University

Head Coach: Howie Dickenman

Last Year: 12-18, 6th in NEC regular season standings

Key Returners: Ken Horton, Markeys Deans, Shemik Thompson

Key Newcomers: Justin Alexander, De’Angelo Speech, Joe Efese

Projected Lineup: To be announced

Quotebook: “That’s a major plus for us – having Ken back. I think you’ll see a different style of play from us – we want to run and we’re going to run.” – Head Coach Howie Dickenman

5. Mount St. Mary’s University

Head Coach: Robert Burke, 1st Season

Last Year: 16-15, 3rd in NEC regular season standings

Key Returners: Shawn Atupem, Raven Barber, Pierre Brown,

Key Newcomers: Julian Norfleet, Josh Castellanos, Evan Cleveland

Projected lineup: To Be Determined due to new coach

Quotebook: “We have a very good group of guys that have been working extremely hard.” – Head Coach Robert Burke

Nugget: This group will emphasize defense.

6. Farleigh Dickinson University

Head Coach: Greg Vetrone, 2nd year

Last Year: 11-21, 5th in NEC regular season standings

Key Returners: Terence Grier, Mike Scott, Kamil Svardlik

Key Newcomers: Nate Gibbs, Tyler Reynolds, Mathias Seilund, Briahn Smith,, Ayotunde Oyeniyi

Projected Lineup:

G –.Terence Grier

G – Mike Scott

F – Kamil Svardlik



Quotebook: “The positive is my backcourt is back…I think that’s going to be the key to our season – how well they play.” – Head Coach Greg Vetrone

7. St Francis (PA)

Head Coach: Don Friday, 8th season

Last Year: 11-19, 6th in NEC regular season standings

Key Returners: Mislav Jukic (sat out last season with injury), Sorena Orandi, Will Felder, Umar Shannon

Key Newcomers: Kyheim Hall, Kameron Ritter, Daniel Witczak, Robert Wortman

Projected Lineup:
PG Chris Johnson

SG Anthony Ervin

SF Will Felder

PF Tony Peters

C Mislav Jukic

Quotebook: “Our expectations…are just trying to get better everyday.” – Head Coach Don Friday

7. St Francis (NY)

Head Coach: Glenn Braica, 1st season

Last Year: 11-18, 8th in NEC regular season standings

Key Returners: Ricky Cadell, Akeem Bennett, Justin Newton, Akeem Johnson, Alexander Harrington

Key Newcomers: Two newcomers, Adam Chmielewski and Dre Calloway, Travis Nichols

Projected Lineup:

G – Ricky Cadell

G – Akeem Bennett

G – Travis Nichols

F – Akeem Johnson

C – Alexander Harrington

Quotebook: “The guys came back to school in great shape and are working hard to prove that they are a good team. I think our students and alumni are going to enjoy watching us play.” – Head Coach Glenn Braica

9. Sacred Heart University

Head Coach: Dave Bike, 33rd season

Last Year: 14-15, 10th in Northeast Conference

Key Returners: Jerrell Thompson, Mehmet Sahan, Nick Greenbacker, Shane Gibson, Stan Dulaire

Key Newcomers: Toso Adebamowo, Evan Kelley, Femi Akinpetide

Projected Lineup: Still to be determined by Coach Bike.

Projected Lineup: TBA

Quotebook: “We’re a work in progress.” – Head Coach Dave Bike

10. Monmouth University

Head Coach: Dave Calloway, 14th season

Last Year: 12-19, 8th in NEC regular season standings

Key Returners: Will Campbell, Mike Myers Keitt, James Hett, Ed Waite, Marcus Ware

Key Newcomers: Phil Wait, Jordan Davis, Dion Nesmith, Jesse Steele – eligible after first semester), Daniel James, Matt Pritchett, Gary Cox

Projected Lineup:

G – Campbell

G — Hett

F — Myers Keitt

F — Waite

C – Wait

Quotebook: “The new guys are blending in well – practice has been very good.” – Head Coach Dave Calloway

Nugget: The Hawks schedule features six out of conference home games including Rutgers and Villanova.

11. Wagner College

Head Coach: Dan Hurley, 1st Year

Last Year: 5-26, 11th in NEC regular season standings

Key Returners: Chris Martin, Tyler Murray, Josh Thompson, T.J. Czeski

Key Newcomers: Naofall Folahan, Latif Rivers, Orlando Parker

Projected Lineup:
G — Martin
G — Murray
G — Rivers
F — Parker
C – Folahan

Quotable: “Guys have given us great effort from our summer program to our preseason.” – Head Coach Dan Hurley

Nugget: Danny Mumwieler is the team’s three point specialist.

12. Bryant University

Head Coach: Tim O’Shea, 3rd season

Last Year: 1-29, 12th in NEC regular season standings

Key Returners: Papa Lo, Michael Chroney, Vlad Kondratyev, Cecil Gresham

Key Newcomers: Troy Robinson, Frankie Dobbs, Matt Lee, Corey Maynard

Projected Lineup:

G – Frankie Dobbs

G — Raphael Jordan

F/C — Vlad Kondratyev

F — Barry Latham

F — Cecil Gresham

Quotebook: “Now our roster [is] all legitimately D-I players and talent.” – Head Coach Tim O’Shea on Bryant’s continued move from D-II to D-I.

Nugget: Bryant cannot qualify for posteason play this year. They will be eligible for the 2011-2012 school year.

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(This article originally appeared on Press Box.)

The Quinnipiac Bobcats, who are the unanimous choice for preseason No. 1 in the Northeast Conference, will have their head coach, Tom Moore, on WFAN (660AM New York) and the YES Network tomorrow. He will appear on Mike’d Up: Francesa on the Fan with Mike Francesa tomorrow (Wednesday) at 3:05pm ET in a show that will be done live from Mohegan Sun.

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(This article originally appeared on Press Box.)

The Quinnipiac Bobcats were announced as the unanimous number one in the preseason Northeast Conference coaches poll. The poll was announced Wednesday on the NEC conference call. The rest of the poll is as follows, with first place votes in parenthesis:

1. Quinnipiac (11)
2. Robert Morris
3. Long Island (1)
5. Mount St. Mary’s
6. Fairleigh Dickinson
7. St. Francis (NY)
Saint Francis (PA)
9. Sacred Heart
10. Monmouth
11. Wagner
12. Bryant

(Note: Coaches cannot vote for themselves.)

The All-NEC preseason team was also announced. They are as follows:

G — Karon Abraham, Sophmore, Robert Morris

G — Akeem Bennett, Senior, St. Francis (NY),

G – Mike Scott, Senior, FDU

F — Ken Horton, Junior, Central Connecitcut State

F – Justin Rutty, Senior, Quinnipiac (reigning NEC Player of the Year)

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