2008 Seton Hall Pirates Basketball Preview
Bobby Gonzalez starts his third season at the helm of the Seton Hall Pirates (17-15 overall, 7-11 Big East). Since he’s been the coach, the Pirates have not made a tournament appearance. Gonzalez was out of control last season on the sidelines and in the locker room. This year, he’s vowed to be calmer and more focused.
Freshman center Melvyn Oliver has talent and skill. He’s also got a six-foot-eleven, 340-pound frame. The height is fine but the weight could hamstring him. He needs to slim down a bit in order to effectively utilize his talents and maintain his stamina. Junior forward/center John Garcia (21.8 MPG, 7.6 PPG, 3.2 RPG, 2.4 APG, 35.0 FG%, 72.2 FT%) played a tough inside game despite suffering numerous knee injuries. Small forward Robert Mitchell, a Duquesne transfer, was the Atlantic-10 Rookie of the Year in 2006-2007, averaging 16.4 PPG. He could be a big help upfront this season.
Point guard Eugene Harvey (36.8 MPG, 13.3 PPG, 3.3 RPG, 4.9 APG, 41.4-FG%, 72.9 FT%) did not play as well as expected on the perimeter last season. Look for more consistency from him. Freshman guard Jordan Theodore, who’s considered to be a big talent, will spell Harvey at the point. That should cut down on the fatigue factor that seemed to weigh Harvey down last year. The shooting spot will be shared by JUCO transfer Jamel Jackson, who brings experience and a fine 3-point shot, and sophomore Jeremy Hazell (27.3 MPG, 12.8 PPG, 2.3 RPG, 0.9 APG, 39.3 FG%, 76.3 FT%), Defensive specialist Paul Gause, who was second nationally in steals last season, is back for his senior year.
The Pirates looked to be in good shape last season as, with 11
games left to go, they’d posted a 15-6 mark. But then they
lost 9 of 11, Gonzalez lost his temper and control and the team
lost its energy and drive. This season, if the coach and his players
can play in a more disciplined fashion, DePaul could finally be
bound for the NIT. The NCAA Tournament will have to wait.