Mason takes over at Saint Peter’s needing to settle roster

JERSEY CITY, N.J. (AP) — Bashir Mason is wanting ahead to the problem of taking up at Saint Peter’s after its unbelievable run to the Elite Eight.

He understands that changing Shaheen Holloway might be a tricky act to observe after the Peacocks grew to become the primary No. 15 seed to succeed in the ultimate eight within the NCAA Tournament, and fan favorites throughout faculty basketball.

Even more durable for the 38-year-old Jersey City native, who spent the previous decade at close by Wagner, might be protecting the Peacocks’ roster intact. Starting guards Daryl Banks III and Matthew Lee are within the switch portal and high reserve guard Doug Edert has determined to switch to Bryant.

“Getting the roster settled is what I’m focused on,” Mason mentioned Wednesday, shortly after being launched because the Peacocks’ new coach. Holloway left two weeks in the past for the job at Seton Hall, his alma mater.

Banks, Lee and Edert had been on the information convention within the refurbished Run Baby Run Arena together with Peacocks teammates and gamers from Wagner in Staten Island. Edert confirmed his resolution to tranfer.

Banks mentioned Mason tried to recruit him out of highschool, so he is aware of him.

“I am listening to all my options,” mentioned Banks, who led the Peacocks, averaging 11.3 factors. “I am just going to be open-minded to everything.”

Mason mentioned he spoke Tuesday with the Peacocks, telling them that he’s a employee and is aware of they’re, too. He mentioned he’s not there to shake issues up and needs to take this system to new heights.

Athletic director Rachelle Paul mentioned there was a whole lot of curiosity within the Saint Peter’s job from all walks of faculty and highschool coaches. She in the end mentioned Mason was enticing as a result of he reminded her of Holloway, who led the group to a 22-12 mark this previous season and the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Tournament title. Both males stress onerous work, toughness and household.

Paul refused to reveal particulars of Mason’s contract with the Jesuit college, which has an undergraduate enrollment of about 2,100 college students.

Mason mentioned he was in seventh grade when he first met Holloway, a fellow guard who by no means backed down. They bought to play as a result of each children knew Chris Chavannes, the present coach at The Patrick School.

Mason performed two seasons at Marist High School for Chavannes and bought to play towards older gamers throughout the summer season after his coach left for St. Patrick High School. He often went head-to-head with Holloway, who attended St. Patrick, which grew to become The Patrick School a decade in the past.

“He probably won most of them,” Mason mentioned of their matchups. “But I fouled him a lot because I refused to get blown out.”

That’s the way in which Saint Peter’s might be on the courtroom, though Holloway had them doing that in knocking off Kentucky, Murray State and Purdue within the NCAA Tournament.

“A lot of blood, sweat and tears went into Wagner and building up that program,” Mason mentioned. “But this opportunity here was really difficult to turn down, and had nothing to do with the run they made to the Elite Eight. This is more about a new challenge. The bar has been set really high, and I’m excited about pushing the program further.”

This is the second time Mason has taken over a group after a giant season. He changed Dan Hurley at Wagner after a 25-6 season. Hurley left to go to Rhode Island and ultimately to UConn.

Mason led Wagner to 3 Northeast Conference (NEC) regular-season titles, posting a 165-130 document. The Seahawks posted a 21-6 document this previous season and appeared within the NEC title sport. Wagner’s 15 convention wins matched essentially the most in program historical past.

Wagner senior guard Elijah Ford mentioned Saint Peter’s is getting a extremely good coach who will let the gamers know the place they stand.

“Come in ready to play 150% every day,” Ford suggested the Peacocks. “I know now practice is the hardest thing I have to go through, so if your best battle is not in practice, I don’t know what you are doing here.”


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