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pakapablo

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About pakapablo

  • Birthday 03/24/1970

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    WG, MO
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    things that are blue

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  1. I hope that Yellow Jackets shirt BB-B is wearing is his youth team and not a G Tech shirt.
  2. https://www.101espn.com/episode/saint-louis-mens-basketball-hc-josh-schertz/ Coach Schertz joins Randy, Brooke & Dan to talk about the potential of an “Opening Drive Bump” with the Billikens this season, why he’s restarted his camps for this summer, why those camps are so important not only for the youth of the area but for building a connection with younger fans, the work that went into filling out their full roster, how they can build on the momentum around the SLU facilities over the last few years, making sure they weren’t settling on the players they were bringing in, his excitement for the new roster pieces to combine with the 3 current Billikens, some of the names he added to his staff and how impressed he’s been with Dennis Gates down the road.
  3. Happy to share this as it feels good to get some Billiken recognition. Sorry to see our friend Porter Moser on the list you don't want to be on. The Athletic - article link Who won, and lost, in college basketball’s transfer portal? Kansas, Indiana and more By CJ Moore, The Athletic May 23, 2024 Portal season has become the most important roster-building time on the college basketball calendar. It’s not just who you add but who you retain. The last six national title winners have all had at least one transfer in their rotation. UConn just won with two transfers in its starting lineup, both of whom were utilizing their extra COVID-19 year — which ends after this season. With so much movement happening across the sports, let’s look at the winners, five transfers who I think will perform better than consensus and the teams hardest hit by the portal. Portal winners Kansas Portal additions: Rylan Griffen (Alabama), Zeke Mayo (South Dakota State), AJ Storr (Wisconsin), Noah Shelby (Rice) Kansas needed shooting and a dynamic guard who can go get a bucket when the offense breaks down. In Mayo and Griffen, Bill Self landed two of the best shooters in the portal, who combined to make 166 3-pointers last season. Storr led Wisconsin in scoring last season and is a proven bucket-getter. And while Storr wasn’t very efficient, that’s an area where Self can probably help him based on his track record with big wings. The presence of Griffen, Mayo and Storr should help an offense that had some prolonged droughts and also make Hunter Dickinson look better. Storr and Griffen — both are 6-6 — also give Self some lineup flexibility he didn’t have last season. KU will be able to play some huge lineups and also go small, with one of those wings at the four, optimizing the floor spacing that was often lacking last year. Indiana Portal additions: Oumar Ballo (Arizona), Myles Rice (Washington State), Canaan Carlyle (Stanford), Luke Goode (Illinois), Langdon Hatton (Bellarmine) The way to boot a coach out of town these days is for donors to withhold NIL funds. The good news for Mike Woodson is the IU money folks obviously aren’t there yet, because Woodson retained four starters while landing what had to be one of the pricier portal hauls. Woodson obviously prefers a big frontline, and the Hoosiers stay huge with Ballo (7-0), Malik Reneau (6-9) and Mackenzie Mgbako (6-8). That should be one of the most talented frontcourt combos in the country. The key to it working is the added shooting and shot creation coming through. Woodson got a shooter in Goode and then shot creators in Rice and Carlyle, two young guards out of the Pac-12 with some upside. Both struggled shooting the 3, which is concerning, but there’s reason to hope that will improve with age. We’ll see how it all works, but Woodson has one of the deeper rosters in the country, and he’s at least addressed some deficiencies. Michigan Portal additions: Vladislav Goldin (Florida Atlantic), Danny Wolf (Yale), Roddy Gayle Jr. (Ohio State), Sam Walters (Alabama), Tre Donaldson (Auburn), Rubin Jones (North Texas) Dusty May is going with a twin towers approach, landing two 7-footers in Goldin and Wolf. They ranked as two of the top five centers in our portal rankings, so Michigan is stacked at that position. Wolf is at least a good enough shooter to play the four, so theoretically on paper, the pairing works. May won at FAU with smaller teams that could spread the floor and shoot a lot of 3s. He seems to be targeting positional size at Michigan. I like the upside on the wing of this class. Gayle has the potential to be an alpha scorer and turn into May’s next Johnell Davis. Walters was one of the best shooters in the portal. As a freshman at Alabama, he shot 39.4 percent from 3 and made 3.4 3s per 40 minutes — and he’s 6-10. The question is whether there’s enough playmaking on the perimeter. Both Jones and Donaldson are solid defenders who should be able to make an open shot, but this team is probably missing a dynamic setup man. Still, this is one of the best collective portal classes of the cycle. Baylor Portal additions: Jeremy Roach (Duke), Norchad Omier (Miami), Jalen Celestine (California) We don’t know NIL numbers because we won’t live in a transparent college basketball world until the NCAA truly adopts a professional model, but it’s likely that Baylor is as heavily invested in its starting lineup as anyone. Scott Drew’s budget benefitted from Louisville and Kentucky’s pursuit of the veteran coach. After landing a high school class that included five-star wing VJ Edgecombe, Baylor needed a veteran floor general to replace RayJ Dennis and a frontcourt starter to replace Yves Missi. Drew landed two of the top talents at those positions in Roach and Omier. Baylor also needed a shooter with some size and grabbed Celestine late. Celestine, who is 6-6, shot 44 percent from 3 this past season. The Bears are usually heavy in pick-and-roll usage, so Roach and Omier will be integral to their offense. The roster was also pretty young without them, so their experience — both have played in a Final Four — is another bonus. Louisville Portal additions: Terrence Edwards Jr. (James Madison), Chucky Hepburn (Wisconsin), Noah Waterman (BYU), Aly Khalifa (BYU), Kasean Pryor (South Florida), J’Vonne Hadley (Colorado), Building an 11-man portal class seems impossible, but Pat Kelsey somehow pulled it off without the feeling that he made any big reaches. He also wisely landed one player who will sit out next year in Aly Khalifa so that not all 11 are expecting to be in the rotation. While Louisville’s top-end talent might not compare with the other blue bloods, it found some solid players who come from winning programs. Edwards, the Sun Belt Player of the Year, was the highest-ranked portal addition and could be Louisville’s star, but I’m most interested to see how Kelsey uses Pryor. He averaged only 13 points for South Florida, but he’s the type of playmaking big man who makes it possible to run five-out offense and play fast. Kelsey has a nice mix of skill and size and a roster that should be in consideration of the preseason Top 25, which is noteworthy considering how far Louisville had fallen. Alabama Portal additions: Clifford Omoruyi (Rutgers), Chris Youngblood (South Florida), Aden Holloway (Auburn), Houston Mallette (Pepperdine) Nate Oats has one of the best-returning rosters, and he made it even better through the portal. Alabama’s biggest weakness last season was defense, so Oats landed arguably the best defensive center in the portal in Omoruyi, a two-time Big Ten all-defense honoree. Then Oats added shot-making guards who fit exactly how he wants to play. Youngblood is a plug-and-play starter who will replace Aaron Estrada, and then Holloway was insurance in case Mark Sears stays in the draft. If Sears returns, Holloway could be one of the most talented guards off the bench in the country and set up to be a star in 2025-26, when it’ll be time for him and former KU commit Labaron Philon to run the show. Mallette is the one wildcard. Alabama has so much talent on the perimeter that he could be a miss and it wouldn’t matter much, but it’s not bad when that player averaged 14.7 points and shot 41.5 percent from deep in the WCC. Connecticut Portal additions: Aidan Mahaney (Saint Mary’s), Tarris Reed Jr. (Michigan) We’re basically operating under the premise that whatever Danny Hurley touches right now turns to gold. Hurley needed a scoring guard who can shoot and landed one in Mahaney who has produced in a winning program. It feels like his best ball is still in front of him. Hurley has had so much success with two centers splitting minutes that he’s running that back with Reed and Samson Johnson. The last two years, UConn’s centers have had different strengths, and the Huskies are almost like two different teams depending on which center is on the floor. That should continue with Reed, more of a back-to-the-basket scorer, playing the yang to Johnson’s rim-rolling yin. UConn also landed McDonald’s All-American Liam McNeely during the spring. Sometimes portal season turns into programs just grabbing whatever talent they can grab and hoping to figure it out later. Hurley seems to always have a distinct plan. Iowa State Portal additions: Joshua Jefferson (Saint Mary’s), Dishon Jackson (Charlotte), Nate Heise (Northern Iowa), Brandton Chatfield (Seattle) T.J. Otzelberger also seems to be very intentional in the portal. The Cyclones work fast, adding guys early in the cycle before the bidding wars start. They got Jackson right away, giving them a good candidate to start at the five. Then late they grabbed a potential starting power forward in Jefferson, who gives them some low-post scoring they lacked and who is a terrific defender, which is a necessity to play for the Cyclones. More importantly than anything else, Otzelberger didn’t lose any of his rotational players to the portal and returns his four leading scorers. While Otzelberger has been active in the portal every year, his model is closer to the next group of teams than those that seem like they’re going on shopping sprees every spring. Houston/Purdue/Marquette Only Houston added a transfer out of this group of teams, with the Cougars adding Oklahoma guard Milos Uzan to replace Jamal Shead. The reason these schools are on the list is they are proving that if you either stay out of the portal or just dabble, retention is possible. They have NIL budgets, but most of the money is going toward returners rather than trying to lure the free agents in the portal. All three will be preseason top 25 teams and have won consistently by purposely focusing on high school recruiting and retention rather than turning their rosters over each season. It’s an old-school approach, and it’s working. West Virginia Portal additions: Tucker DeVries (Drake), Javon Small (Oklahoma State), Amani Hansberry (Illinois), Sincere Harris (Illinois), Joseph Yesufu (Washington State), Toby Okani (UIC), Eduardo Andre (Fresno State) New coach Darian DeVries had a major advantage in that arguably the best player in the portal was his son, Tucker, but DeVries also made some smart additions outside of just his family. I loved Hansberry on the Nike EYBL circuit, and while he struggled to crack the Illini rotation, he could turn into a really solid college big man. He’s super skilled and has great feel. He is undersized, but former Illinois assistant Chester Frazier (now at WVU) is a believer. Frazier also brought Harris from Illinois. The other big addition here was Small, one of the most athletic guards in the portal. The hope for the Mountaineers is they can replicate what Kansas State did in the first year under Jerome Tang, leaning heavily on two players (DeVries and Small) and then piecing it together with role players around them. Saint Louis Portal additions: Robbie Avila (Indiana State), Isaiah Swope (Indiana State), Kobe Johnson (West Virginia), Josiah Dotzler (Creighton), Kalu Anya (Brown), A.J. Casey (Miami) The Billikens should be a preseason top-25 team with the roster that new coach Josh Schertz has put together. Schertz got off to a great start by convincing sharpshooting Gibson Jimerson to withdraw from the portal and stay at SLU. He then got both Avila and Swope to follow him from Indiana State when both could have gone the high-major route. Dotzler was a player Schertz recruited and really liked when Dotzler was in high school; that’s the same career arc Ryan Conwell had — recruited by Schertz, went elsewhere (South Florida for a year) and then transferred to play for Schertz. Conwell was one of the best and most efficient mid-major guards in the country last year. Johnson has the potential to be SLU’s version of Julian Larry, playing stopper for the Billikens. Then both Anya and Casey are the types of athletic fours you need next to Avila. St. John’s Portal additions: Kadary Richmond (Seton Hall), Deivon Smith (Utah), Vincent Iwuchukwu (USC), Aaron Scott (North Texas) I’m not sure how the Richmond and Smith backcourt will work because both are ball-dominant guards, but usually it’s smart to bet on Rick Pitino. Floor spacing could be a concern. Richmond and Smith are elite at getting into the paint, but shooting has never been a strength for either. Smith just shot a career-best 40.8 percent from deep, but the attempts (71) were low. Pitino is going with a game plan of accumulating talent and figuring it out from there. Iwuchukwu was a top-30 recruit out of high school, but heart issues delayed the start of his career. He’s an upside flier who could really hit. Then Pitino got a solid wing in Scott who played for a winning program at North Texas. This is a team I want to get eyes on early to see how Pitino uses Smith and Richmond. McNeese State Portal additions: Sincere Parker (Saint Louis), Brandon Murray (Ole Miss), Quadir Copeland (Syracuse), Joe Charles (Louisiana), Jerome Brewer Jr. (Texas A&M-Commerce) Will Wade brought in a haul that would have been solid for a high-major, and just like last season, it’s going to be very difficult for anyone in the Southland to compete with the talent he’s putting on the floor. Parker was the leading scorer at Saint Louis; Copeland just averaged 9.6 points at Syracuse; Murray struggled at Ole Miss but was a double-digit scorer at LSU (for Wade) and Georgetown, and both Charles and Brewer were double-digit scorers at their previous schools. Four transfers I’m betting on Ryan Conwell, Xavier (from Indiana State): Conwell is the Sycamore whose game best translates to the high-major level. The lefty is an elite shooter (40.7 from 3) and can create his shot off the bounce. Xavier lost what would have been its leading returning scorer in Desmond Claude, who transferred to USC, but I see Conwell as an upgrade. Deivon Smith, St. John’s (from Utah): Smith’s speed and ability to deliver pinpoint passes on the move with either hand is special. He’s a guy not a lot of people have heard of who could make St. John’s a must-watch team. R.J. Godfrey, Georgia: He’s built like a defensive end and has some game too. He was behind P.J. Hall and Ian Schiefffelin at Clemson. Given a chance to play starter minutes, Godfrey could be a breakout star. His per-40 averages — 15.7 points, 8.7 rebounds, 1.6 blocks — support this argument. Dain Dainja, Illinois: Brad Underwood decided to embrace a more modern, five-out style at Illinois, and Dainja didn’t fit. But he produced when he was on the floor. His per-40 averages for his career: 20.2 points, 11.7 rebounds and 2.3 blocks while shooting 64.8 percent from the field. Not many bigs possess his combination of touch, hands and footwork. If given touches and minutes, he could put up big numbers. The portal was unkind to … Low- and mid-majors: There were 53 players who entered the transfer portal after earning first-team all-conference honors from leagues outside the Power 6. Of those, only 35 returned to their team. Wisconsin: The Badgers would be a preseason top-25 team if they could have retained everyone with eligibility. But they lost Storr, Hepburn and key reserve Connor Essegian, who bizarrely went from averaging 11.7 points in 27.4 minutes per game as a freshman to 3.2 points in 7.3 minutes per game as a sophomore. The Essegian departure wasn’t surprising, but losing Storr and Hepburn had to be frustrating for Greg Gard. Saint Mary’s: Mahaney grew up going to Saint Mary’s games and played youth ball with Randy Bennett’s son. Jefferson was a top-150 recruit who developed into one of the best forwards in the WCC. These are the kind of guys a winning program retained pre-NIL. Now, both will play next season for high-majors. Washington State: You could take your pick of schools that lost their head coach and were depleted by the portal, but I’m going with the Cougars as the hardest hit. Wazzu, which hadn’t to the NCAA Tournament since 2008, advanced to the second round in March before Kyle Smith left for Stanford. The program is now moving to the WCC — and must replace 12 of the 13 players who saw the floor last season. Oklahoma: The Sooners climbed to No. 7 nationally in mid-December and were one of the darlings of the nonconference season behind strong guard play from Javian McCollum, Otega Oweh and Uzan. An injury-riddled Big 12 season saw them just miss the NCAA Tournament, but at least the core would be returning. Unfortunately, it didn’t. McCollum transferred to Georgia Tech, Oweh to Kentucky and Uzan to Houston. OU also lost backup big man John Hugley IV to Xavier, and freshman Kaden Cooper also hit the portal. Seton Hall: Richmond and Dre Davis started their careers in the ACC. They transferred to Seton Hall before Shaheen Holloway showed up, but he helped turn them into stars. Now he has to coach against Richmond, who transferred in league to St. John’s while Davis left for Ole Miss. The Pirates may have been a top-25 team had everyone returned to go along with their portal additions. Instead, sixth man Isaiah Coleman is the only returner from the NIT champs. Minnesota: Minnesota climbed out of the Big Ten cellar for the first time in Ben Johnson’s tenure and had a core returning that would have given the Gophers a good shot at making the NCAA Tournament. Then three of the starters —Elijah Hawkins, Pharrell Payne and Cam Christie — all hit the portal. Harvard: The Crimson have had a rough stretch post-COVID, but Tommy Amaker had one of the youngest teams in college basketball this season and there was hope with freshman star Malik Mack (the league’s rookie of the year) and sophomore forward Chisom Okpara. Turns out an Ivy League education is not enough to stiff arm the portal, as both left.
  4. I remember playing a few baseball games against the Paul Fultz "Pros" at The Greens in the late 80s. Probably the first time this Creve Coeur kid saw the famous River Des Peres and the pretzel guy on the corner. A not fond memory of one of the games was playing manning left field and having the ball bounce off my glove and over the fence for a home run.
  5. From twitter it looks like CJ and Avila are pretty tight.
  6. A relevant BVF update segment featuring the younger brother of Ryan Robertson on the Press Box with Frank. Segment 5 4/16/24 https://590thefan.com/radio-shows/press-box/
  7. Author of this article, CJ Moore, on live with Bernie right now talking Schertz in sites. 590am.
  8. You are welcome. I am glad you enjoyed it as much as I did. Saturday April 6, 2024, a good day to be a Billiken fan.
  9. The biggest tragedy was having to sit through the game.
  10. Nice read. Sorry Athletic but thanks for the great content. Article from a few months ago. Excited for Coach Schertz to get to work! https://theathletic.com/5238989/2024/01/31/josh-schertz-indiana-state-basketball/ How Indiana State basketball’s Josh Schertz rose from ‘anonymity’ to coaching star CJ Moore The 12-year-old boy held the ball in his left hand as he prepared to serve. It was another weekend, another national tournament, this one at Miami’s Junior Orange Bowl, one of the world’s most prestigious junior events. A rustling sound behind him caught his attention. He turned – and to his chagrin – spotted his father, struggling to hold onto a branch of the tree he had climbed to sneak a glimpse of his son on the court. Once when Josh Schertz missed an easy overhead at match point, his father banged his head against the plexiglass in front of him, cracking the glass and leaving a gash on his forehead. Tournament officials removed him. It was not the first time. Back in Miami, Schertz’s dad had broken the rule they had agreed upon; he was no longer welcome at these events. It had become too much. Nine years earlier, Paul Schertz put a sawed-off tennis racket in his toddler’s hands, and Josh was exceptional from the start. By age 10, he was ranked in the state of New York. Then came a regional ranking, then national. When Josh was 12, Paul paid to move his son to Haines City, Fla., to train with Rick Macci, who tutored Jennifer Capriati and the Williams sisters. He traveled the country every weekend playing tournaments. Josh’s success in tennis was intoxicating for his father, who played collegiately at Long Island. But it came at a price. Tennis was never fun anymore. Winning was a relief. No victory could be too lopsided. Where they had dinner, the mood in the house, everything, was dictated by how Josh played. “I remember wanting to be my brother because he was getting all of the attention,” his younger brother, Michael, says. “He would say that he would want to be me, who would just be left alone.” To Josh, his life felt scripted. He’d missed out on a childhood. “I’m Jewish,” he says. “I didn’t have a bar mitzvah.” As time went on, Josh began to realize his dream — or, really, his father’s — was probably not coming true. He was 5-foot-6 when he was 12, and he was 5-foot-6 when he was 15. He was in the top 100 in his age group, but closer to 100 than 1. By the fall of his freshman year, Josh hit his breaking point. After another uncomfortable ride home from yet another tournament, he mustered the courage to approach his dad. I’m done with tennis. His father, eating grapes and mozzarella sticks in the kitchen, was taken aback. He pushed back. This was not a good decision, he said. Josh was unrelenting. This was not a break. Not a sabbatical. This was not an impulsive decision. He wanted to do something different with his life. He exited to the garage, surrounded by all of his tennis gear, and his father followed. Josh worried it might turn violent. If he was going to quit, Paul told him, he wasn’t going to stay there. This was not a place for quitters. Josh gathered his things and went to a friend’s house. Just like that, the millionaire’s son was homeless. Today, Indiana State’s Josh Schertz is one of the most respected mid-major coaches in college basketball. After turning Lincoln Memorial, one of the worst Division II programs in the country, into one of the best over 13 seasons, he took the worst job in the Missouri Valley three years ago and already has the top team. His Sycamores are the best shooting team in college basketball. College coaches rave about his modern offense. Indiana State, 18-3, is on pace to have its best season since Larry Bird was on campus. So how did Schertz — who never played high school basketball — end up a college basketball player and coach? “I’ve lived a majority of my life in anonymity,” he says. “My path is definitely not linear or even probably expected.” Schertz laid down a sweatshirt for some padding on the tile floor next to the duffel bag full of clothes he’d use for a pillow. It was the fall of 1991, he was 15, and he was out on his own. Most nights he’d sleep on friends’ couches, but some nights it was this tile floor. He’d sneak into one of two local schools in Boca Raton and hide out until sunrise in the boys bathroom. He was lost. His safety net was gone. The former straight-A student was skipping school regularly. He fell in with the wrong crowd. Eventually, he quit school altogether. He’d lay there and worry. He figured he was headed toward a life much like his mom’s. Kathi Cook was a nurse when she met Paul Schertz. His buddy wanted to take her out, but he didn’t have a car. Paul did. They married, and Paul bought a department store in Montauk, N.Y., a town on the East edge of the Hamptons. One of Paul’s best friends would host big parties every Saturday for their volleyball team in the Hamptons. It was at those parties, he says, that Cook’s drug use began. When Josh was 6, he went into his parents’ room midday, and Cook looked to be sleeping. He reached out and touched her. She felt balmy; she wasn’t breathing. He screamed for his dad. She was rushed to the hospital in an ambulance. She survived, but that was the end of their nuclear family. Cook got nothing in the divorce. She moved to Brick, N.J., and started waitressing and cleaning houses. She still helped take care of the boys; mostly Michael, as Schertz was usually off training. He remembers her working long days, coming home to make sure the boys had what they needed. Then she’d lock herself in her room with a bottle of Almaden wine and a pack of Marlboros. Schertz can still picture her comforter, dozens of burn holes in it from falling asleep with the TV on and a lit cigarette. Once Schertz moved to Florida, he’d go years without seeing his mom. But now, he considered the possibility that he was about to be her, working menial jobs and battling his own demons. “I just didn’t see where the hope was,” Schertz says. His grandpa saved him. When Seymour Schertz found out that Schertz was without a home, he immediately moved Josh in with him in Delray Beach. He enrolled him to get his GED; Schertz went to night school to satisfy requirements. Then he enrolled at Palm Beach Community College and worked part-time at a carwash and a drug store. He still had a competitive drive, but he wasn’t stepping foot on a tennis court. He tried basketball and loved it. He found pickup games and started playing in leagues. “Being part of a team was so cool,” he says. Opportunity arrived in a chance meeting. Jack Martin, the longtime coach at County College of Morris in New Jersey, was visiting a friend in Boca Raton in the summer of 1994 when Schertz caught his eye during a rec game at the Athletic Club. Martin knew a player when he saw one. He asked Schertz if he ever thought about playing college basketball. Schertz, then 17, had never given it a thought. He explained he hadn’t graduated and hadn’t even played high school basketball. Wouldn’t be a problem, Martin told him. Martin invited him up to New Jersey for a tryout. He proved worthy, and Martin offered him a spot — with his tuition paid for and a place to live, with the former mayor in town. His father thought he was crazy. He figured he was going to be the team manager. “What do you do with that?” Paul asked him. “Why would you want to do laundry?” He never imagined a 5-foot-8 Jewish kid could be a college basketball player, but Schertz was a backup point guard on a team that made the quarterfinals of the national tournament. He also joined the tennis team just for fun and went undefeated until the regional final. That spring Schertz started reaching out to small, four-year schools and found a taker in Webber College, an NAIA school in Babson Park, a tiny town in the middle of Florida. He was a backup guard again, and it was there where he met a girl. In November, his girlfriend, Anna, got pregnant. He was 19. And he did what sounded right; the two married in May. Most of his family objected. His mom and Michael were the only family members to attend the ceremony. Anna had one year of school left to get her psychology degree, and Schertz decided to give up basketball. The newlyweds rented a double-wide. Their son Jordan was born in August. Schertz went to school in the morning, worked at the Vanguard School in the afternoons, supervising children with emotional disabilities, and then worked a night job as a security guard until 4 a.m. He missed basketball, and that spring he started reaching out to schools to see if he could continue his playing career. Piedmont Bible College in Winston Salem, N.C., offered him a spot. Schertz was a starter for the first time in his college career, and the free-wheeling system fit him perfectly. That year he read John Feinstein’s “A Season Inside,” which chronicled the 1987-88 college basketball season, cover-to-cover twice. Schertz realized that coaching could be a real profession. His dad was skeptical. “I told him it was the dumbest idea I’d ever heard,” Paul says. But Paul knew some people in leadership at Florida Atlantic and reached out to see if there were any opportunities for Schertz. The Owls, coming off a 5-22 season, had a graduate assistant spot. His coaching career had begun. He was a student assistant on the 1998-99 FAU basketball team. “He was very confident,” then-assistant coach Brian Lane says. “He had the gift of gab. He could talk to the players and talk to the coaches. Sometimes when you’re young, you open your mouth and stupid falls out. I never got a sense that he didn’t know a really high level of basketball.” Soon after that season, FAU fired coach Kevin Billerman, and Billlerman helped Schertz land a spot as a volunteer assistant at Division II Lynn University. He thrived in that role, so much so that his second season they made him recruiting coordinator and paid for his graduate school. “My grandpa changed my trajectory by believing in me,” Schertz says. “It changed the way I saw myself. I went from a guy that was a high school dropout to a guy that has a master’s degree.” In the spring of 2004, Schertz felt like he’d arrived. Three years earlier, Queens coach Bart Lundy hired Schertz as a full-time assistant. In his second season there, Queens made the Division II Final Four. Then Lundy got hired at High Point and made Schertz his associate head coach. They went 19-11 in their first season, the first time since joining Division I the program had a winning record. They made the Big South Conference tournament championship game, with a chance to reach the NCAA Tournament. Paul drove to Lynchburg, Va., for the final. The Panthers lost by 45, but Paul called his son afterward and left a voicemail: “I always thought this was one of the dumber ideas you’ve ever had, but I’ve got to tell you, I’ve never been more proud of you. And I’m happy to tell you that I’m glad you never listened to me.” He’d earned his father’s respect, but another pitfall was around the corner. In August, Schertz and Anna got divorced. “It was hard,” Schertz says. “In this business, you always feel like you’re sacrificing something and it was hard going from one day a house filled with people to the next day everything was gone. Furniture was gone. Kids are gone. It was just me and a cat, a couch and a bed. It was pretty empty. Pretty lonely.” Three months later, he met Natalia, his wife of 16 years. Schertz spent five seasons at High Point. He was desperate to become a head coach, and in 2008, he got an offer from Lincoln Memorial in Harrogate, Tenn. Since joining Division II in 1999, the Railsplitters had just one winning season. Small town. Small student population. No diversity. No good restaurants. “Middle-of-nowhere, Tennessee,” Schertz says. “We were flat, dead on our butts,” says Pete DeBusk, chairman of LMU’s board of trustees. Schertz saw the potential in the place. The arena was nice. Cincinnati and Louisville were both three hours away; Atlanta was four. He knew he could recruit and evaluate. Previous coaches had tried to win with transfers. He planned to recruit high schoolers and redshirt every recruit, so he’d have them five years. “We did the opposite of what they had always done,” Schertz says. His first year, LMU went from winning one conference game to eight. The next season his boys decided they wanted to live with him, and his ex-wife signed over custody. The program won 20 games for the first time in 21 years. The third year, LMU made its first NCAA Tournament and won its first South Atlantic Conference title, starting a run of eight straight tournament appearances and seven conference titles. He was the star of the town. Everyone knew him and he got to know everyone. And he found a second father in DeBusk, who made sure he had everything he needed, whether it was a practice facility, or in 2013, borrowing DeBusk’s private plane to go get his mom. Cook had been living in skilled nursing facilities since suffering a brain aneurysm in her mid-40s. Doctors didn’t think she’d survive the aneurysm; she surpassed all expectations. Then on Sept. 13, 2013, she was diagnosed with liver cancer. Soon after, her femur broke because the cancer had reached her leg. That’s when Schertz got on DeBusk’s plane and brought his mom home with him. Doctors gave her months to live. She lived another two years. Twice a week Schertz would take his mom to her favorite spot, Applebee’s. She introduced him to everyone as the boss of LMU. “All that time I missed as a kid, I wasn’t able to get it back,” Schertz says. “It was a different lens and time in my life. That’s where I learned that two things can be true, right? I think people tend to paint somebody with a brush. ‘She’s an addict, so she’s a terrible mother or terrible person.’ It wasn’t like that at all. … She was a great person.” On Sept. 13, 2015 — exactly two years after her cancer diagnosis and on Paul’s birthday — Schertz slept that night on a mattress next to his mom’s bed because they knew the end was near. In the middle of the night, he woke up and went to her bedside. He told her how much he appreciated her and enjoyed the previous two years. It was the most time they’d ever spent together. He told her he loved her. And then he watched her take her last breath. “The deeper you love somebody and more you care, the more painful the grief is when they’re gone. That is the price we pay,” he says. “The alternative is to not care about anyone or love anybody deeply and you don’t experience any pain, but you also don’t get the incredible moments and memories that you experience when you love people.” Last summer Schertz visited Florida Atlantic coach Dusty May, his friend of five years, in Boca Raton. The plan was to talk some ball in the morning, grab some food and meet a friend for pickleball. Ten hours in, both realized they were starving and hadn’t left the office. May says his friend is “as good as there is” as a coach, noting his “obsession with learning and growing.” After his first season at LMU in 2009, Schertz spent a week with Bill Self’s Kansas program. When it was time to meet with Self, the Jayhawks coach got pulled into a meeting and handed Schertz his playbook. “You couldn’t have given me the Torah and it’d have been any better,” Schertz says. He frantically took notes the next two hours. Running Self’s high-low offense, he made five straight Division II NCAA Tournaments at Lincoln Memorial. In 2014-15, his team went 30-3. The next September, he visited Brad Stevens and the Boston Celtics. He believed the five-out systems in the NBA were where the game was going. He scrapped his entire offense in October. “My staff thought I was crazy,” he says. LMU won 34 games and made the national championship. Now in his third year at Indiana State, the Sycamores are likely headed for their first NCAA Tournament bid since 2011, and Schertz’s five-out attack is the most efficient half-court offense in college hoops. Though Schertz and his father had a complicated past, he inherited his dad’s willingness for reinvention. Paul was a millionaire twice — first running a drug store in the Hamptons, then later in commercial real estate in Florida — and lost it all twice. “It’s my special gift,” says Paul, who texts with Josh every morning. Much of how Schertz leads, he says, he learned what not to do from his father. He never wants his players to feel the pressure he once felt. “I want our guys to have an enjoyable experience and not carry the weight of the world on their shoulders every single time they take the floor,” he says. “It’s important to never lose the joy of competing and playing.” Schertz sees it as his job to instill confidence — much in the way his grandfather did for him — and then put his players in position to succeed. He did not keep any mementos from his childhood. No pictures. No trophies. No newspaper clippings. But he holds onto the lessons. “Sometimes you get wounds and you just move past them,” he says. “Sometimes you get wounds that never heal, and those are scars. And the scars just remind you how strong you are.”
  11. The men’s loss to siue was at the Fetz.
  12. Highlight of the game for me was the national anthem performance by the Impact Church singers. That was AMAZING. I am usually super patriotic but I was proud to be an American after listening to that rendition.
  13. Post game radio show eventually Rammer and Earl brought up these two in game accomplishments before Ford mentioned them during the interview.
  14. Appreciate the research time and opinions. See you Wednesday night!
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