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Thread: Slippery Rock

  1. #1

    Default Slippery Rock

    Gannon has a private (it's online, so not that private) message board geared directly for Gannon Basketball. Over the years I've come to check in on it. It's a well-run site (minus a few IUP bashers). I also see the Gannon/IUP rivarly as a mutually respected one. This past weekend a piece ran focused on Slippery Rock and coach Kevin Reynolds. It brings up some interesting thoughts and perspectives. It would be very interesting to hear from any Rock fans, although I don't think any come to this side of the board.



    Knights Still On Solid Footing, Rock Reputation Slipping

    This week Gannon extended its winning streak to eight games with a rugged 57-54 win Wednesday over Slippery Rock but came crashing back down to earth Saturday when they fell to #6 Indiana (Pa.), 72-62. Unless some cataclysmic event takes place, IUP will win the PSAC West going away (they're three full games ahead of our Knights).

    Gannon’s postseason hopes are strong as well; they hold a three-game lead over Pitt-Johnstown for second place and a six-game lead over Seton Hill and Cal for sixth place, the final playoff spot in the West. The scenario for Gannon to fall to seventh place isn’t worth detailing here; we’d all have jumped off the Hammermill Center roof by that point.

    With Gannon still in good shape and no overtime games to discuss, I'd like us to look beyond basketball for a bit. The late, great Dean Smith describes the purpose of an athletic program this way: "Athletics is to the university like the front porch is to a home. It is the most visible part, yet certainly not the most important."

    I've written before about how John Reilly has done a stellar job maintaining his “porch” -- no embarrassments, arrests, academic chicanery, misbehaving coaches, or preening players. I’m going to talk about another team here, and maybe I don't have the right to say what I'm about to because I only see them once or twice a year. But here’s how I see it.

    Slippery Rock's men’s basketball “porch” is a regrettable representation of their university.

    Before I share details behind that statement, let me explain why a Gannon grad like me cares about The Rock. SRU is where my parents met and both graduated with teaching degrees, and they were proud of their experiences there. I grew up before kids had phones and everyone had cable TV, so I spent many rainy days poring over the black-and-white photos in Slippery Rock yearbooks. Soccer photos from the 1960s, when the game was foreign to most Western Pennsylvanians, were particularly entertaining to me.

    My mom would laugh while telling stories about her quirky roommates, overbearing residence hall monitors, and her time in class with soon-to-be rock legend Donny Iris. I don't know much about music, but I know his real last name is Ierace and that teachers would scold him by saying "Mr. I-ROTCH-EE!" because of my mom's fond college memories. I don't want to overstate it and say the place seemed magical to me, but it certainly was admirable.

    Today, when I see how men's basketball coach Kevin Reynolds represents Slippery Rock, I have a much different opinion of the school. I sit by the opposing bench most every Gannon game in part to observe the coaches (I'm a student of leadershipand try to use every situation to learn), and here's some of what I recall from Wednesday:

    • You know how when a fan says the coach complained about every call or whined the whole game, they don't literally mean every call and the whole game. But I'm being literal here when I say Reynolds barked at the officials -- or sometimes just shouted at the wind -- for essentially all 40 minutes Wednesday.
    • He received a warning for being outside the coaching box early in the game and was unapologetic about committing the infraction. In fact, it seemed like for the rest of the game he was baiting the officials by regularly wandering to half court or stomping three steps onto the floor during a dead ball.
    • After coach Reilly vociferously (but briefly) argued a block foul call against Evan Phoenix, Reynolds made sure to harangue each referee one-by-one on the ensuing possessions. "Why didn't he get a box warning? Why didn't he get one? How come I got one and he doesn't?" he yelled at each official. Then he started shouting to nobody in particular, "Isn't it sportsmanship week? I thought this was sportsmanship week," to the bewilderment of the folks sitting around me. (P.S. Happy belated unofficial sportsmanship week, everybody!)
    • The capper for me came with 11 seconds left in regulation when -- I'll spare you all the technical details -- Reynolds was denied inserting a player back into the game because time hadn't run off the clock since the player subbed out. Gannon official scorer Rick "Stats" Klapthor caught it, and then one of the officials informed Reynolds. "The clock moved," stated Reynolds, who clearly embraces the concept of alternative facts. When informed that wasn't the case, he continued to state his false claim: "The clock moved. The clock moved." When the official walked away from him, he started shouting at him, "You're crazy! This is crazy! You're absolutely crazy!"


    The thing is, I've seen a version of this all before. The only new part was the bald-faced lying. This wasn't just a "bad day" for Reynolds or him justifiably standing up for his kids because his team was getting manhandled. I recall in 2009 at Slippery Rock when the officials stopped the game because an SRU student fan grabbed Tyler Stoczynski’s jersey during a sideline inbounds play. When the officials asked Reynolds to address the kids, he promptly walked across the court … and started slapping hands with them!


    I’ll admit I don't know Kevin Reynolds. John Reilly said in his postgame radio interview that the two of them are friends, so maybe off the court he’s the Mother Teresa of Division II basketball. And there’s no doubt Reynolds can assemble, coach, and motivate a tough, defensive-minded team every year. If you pay attention to his kids and not him, you’d think that Slippery Rock was a school for blue-collar, hard-working, nose-to-the grindstone kids. Who doesn’t love that?

    But the fans I talked with after Wednesday’s game didn’t mention anything about SRU players because Reynolds’ hysterics were so distracting. If Reynolds doesn’t change his in-game behavior and Slippery Rock officials continue to ignore how he represents their school, to me that says a lot about the university well beyond their front porch.

  2. Default Re: Slippery Rock

    He should be speaking up about the about the Gannon women's program before he hurls insults at other schools. Remember the booster calling for Brunelli to be fired. im pretty sure it was about verbal abuse of players. I'm pretty sure it's still happening. Nice record Brunelli. Take care of your own porch. Real piece of crap article. I would post it on his website but he deletes any criticism.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Slippery Rock

    I tend to disagree with the article, also. Knowing Kevin Reynolds off the court and on the court are very different things.

    Reynolds is coaching at a school that could care less about basketball. Slippery Rock is purely a football school in the eyes of its athletic department. He's playing with half the scholarship money (perhaps less than half) than the schools he's told to compete against yearly. Cut IUP or Gannon's budget in half and see what happens. Division II recruiting is for the rich schools. Top transfers basically cause bidding wars.

    Morrow Field House is a complete dump. The only gym in the West worse is Tippin Gymnasium at Clarion -- and they are pretty much equally awful.

    Reynolds gets a little wound up on the sidelines. OK ... he gets over-animated. The others in the West aren't angels, either. Joe, Manchel, Reilly ... they aren't a whole lot better. All three hammer the officials non-stop. All game. They are older and run more respected programs. That helps.

    The thing Reynolds does with the wooden stools in the center of the court for timeouts ... yeah ... that needs to stop. It's disrespectful to the home team which is I'm sure why he does it. No other team does it.

    One thing Reynolds has done, almost miraculously, is win. He brings one rag-tag group in after another and on any given night can hang with the 'rich' boys of the PSAC. He knocked Gannon out of the Regional two years ago after losing to the Knights THREE times in the regular season/PSAC Tournament. That's impressive. He's been a major thorn to IUP at times over the past 3-4 years. And, with what ... 3 to 4 scholarships to spread over a whole roster.

    Basketball COACHING ... pound for pound ... he's one of the best in the PSAC. His theatrics are a different story but he's far from the only annoying coach in the league.

    He'd be scary with a budget.

    And, keep in mind, it's Slippery Rock. Mini Me is on the front porch of the University. Reynolds is out back in Storage B.

  4. Default Re: Slippery Rock

    I think SRU proved Gannon isn't as physical as past seasons and iup showed gannon is not as talented as they are. Possibly next year depending on recruiting. Joe making Evan Phoenix play pick and roll defense and Reilly having no answer could have been mentioned. Many other topics could have been covered. Talking about another coach and school takes focus off of your own shortcomings. Sad

  5. #5

    Default Re: Slippery Rock

    Valid point. The IUP game Saturday was essentially ignored.

    I particularly liked two items:

    * The complaint of Reynolds being constantly outside the coaches' box. Reilly lives outside of said box. In Indiana this year he spent more time out of it than in it. That's classic pot calling the kettle black.

    * In reference to Reynolds ... "(his) team was getting manhandled" .... What am I missing here .... SRU lost in the final seconds of the game. An ending, by the way, that had a controversial call turned over against Slippery Rock with 12 seconds to play. Winning a game, on your home floor, against a near .500 team, by three points, whom you likely have more than double the scholarship money, is hardly 'manhandling' them.


    Gannon is much better this year. No doubt about it. That said, they couldn't have gotten much worse than last year. But, when you break down the 13-6 record, there are some things that jump out:

    Their best win is arguably against UPJ. The vast majority of the other 12 wins came against teams at or below the .500 mark.

    The losses have all come against teams with winning records: IUP (twice), an average at best West Chester, Ohio Dominican, East Stroudsburg and Wheeling Jesuit. WCU is actually under .500 currently.

    It's their site ... write whatever they want to write about ... the timing just seemed weird. Four days after the Rock game but right after the IUP loss.

    I like Kevin Reynolds and know him personally. I would have ZERO problem -- none at all -- with him being the eventual replacement for Joe (when he retires). In fact, I hope he is the heir apparent.

    Maybe there's still a grudge over that Regional upset. I just think it's hard to write a degrading sermon about the man whom, as admitted, you don't know. If whiny coaches define people then the NCAA is doomed.

  6. Default Re: Slippery Rock

    Chris Fite would be a great heir apparent for Bravado Joe as well. But I hope that Joe will be staying on for a long time here.

  7. Default Re: Slippery Rock

    Gannon shot 59 free throws to 29 in the SRU and IUP games. i find that stat hard to believe. Another topic that could have been discussed. Sad

  8. Default Re: Slippery Rock

    Quote Originally Posted by IUPbigINDIANS View Post
    Valid point. The IUP game Saturday was essentially ignored.

    I particularly liked two items:

    * The complaint of Reynolds being constantly outside the coaches' box. Reilly lives outside of said box. In Indiana this year he spent more time out of it than in it. That's classic pot calling the kettle black.

    * In reference to Reynolds ... "(his) team was getting manhandled" .... What am I missing here .... SRU lost in the final seconds of the game. An ending, by the way, that had a controversial call turned over against Slippery Rock with 12 seconds to play. Winning a game, on your home floor, against a near .500 team, by three points, whom you likely have more than double the scholarship money, is hardly 'manhandling' them.


    Gannon is much better this year. No doubt about it. That said, they couldn't have gotten much worse than last year. But, when you break down the 13-6 record, there are some things that jump out:

    Their best win is arguably against UPJ. The vast majority of the other 12 wins came against teams at or below the .500 mark.

    The losses have all come against teams with winning records: IUP (twice), an average at best West Chester, Ohio Dominican, East Stroudsburg and Wheeling Jesuit. WCU is actually under .500 currently.

    It's their site ... write whatever they want to write about ... the timing just seemed weird. Four days after the Rock game but right after the IUP loss.

    I like Kevin Reynolds and know him personally. I would have ZERO problem -- none at all -- with him being the eventual replacement for Joe (when he retires). In fact, I hope he is the heir apparent.

    Maybe there's still a grudge over that Regional upset. I just think it's hard to write a degrading sermon about the man whom, as admitted, you don't know. If whiny coaches define people then the NCAA is doomed.
    A few years ago there was pretty much a full on revolt on this board against IUP men's hoops when the team morphed into a slow, plodding PSAC West style team that played the ugly West style games nearly every night. Today we pull our hair out when IUP is lured into that type of game. I can't imagine bringing in a guy who has made his name playing that way, even without all the sideline histrionics.

    Some guys are better suited for the role of the spunky underdog. Put them in the big dog seat and it just doesn't work. That's Kevin Reynolds to me. He'd wear out his welcome pretty fast at a place like IUP in my opinion.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Slippery Rock

    Valid point.

    I am looking forward to his visit Saturday. You know he's good at being annoying when he can even get the KCAC crowd fired up. That takes a magician of sorts.

    They are playing well lately. It will be a grinder.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Slippery Rock

    I think that the Gannon web site person was unable to make the IUP game (I didn't see him there) and may have prepared his piece ahead of time knowing that fact. Unfortunate scheduling.

    The site is a Gannon men's basketball site, so I don't know why it should broach the Brunelli issue.

  11. #11

    Default Re: Slippery Rock

    Quote Originally Posted by IUPbigINDIANS View Post


    Gannon is much better this year. No doubt about it. That said, they couldn't have gotten much worse than last year. But, when you break down the 13-6 record, there are some things that jump out:

    Their best win is arguably against UPJ. The vast majority of the other 12 wins came against teams at or below the .500 mark.

    The losses have all come against teams with winning records: IUP (twice), an average at best West Chester, Ohio Dominican, East Stroudsburg and Wheeling Jesuit. WCU is actually under .500 currently.
    I agree that Gannon's schedule has been quite weak this year, compared to what the other posters on the Gannon site say. Look at the Key Performance Indicators. GU's strength of schedule is something like 33rd out of 43. The cancellation of the PSAC / CIAA games in early November didn't help matters. And the UPJ win in Johnstown was a small miracle. Once could make the case that Gannon could have lost three of those five OT games in regulation. (Cal missed FT with 11 seconds to go, UPJ 9-3 run in final 8 seconds, Clarion -- had to make 3 FTs in closing seconds).

  12. Default Re: Slippery Rock

    Quote Originally Posted by Golden89 View Post
    I think that the Gannon web site person was unable to make the IUP game (I didn't see him there) and may have prepared his piece ahead of time knowing that fact. Unfortunate scheduling.

    The site is a Gannon men's basketball site, so I don't know why it should broach the Brunelli issue.
    stick to Gannon men's basketball then. dont point fingers unless both your houses are in order. Extremely hypocritical. hard to believe he is not aware of the issues surrounding Brunelli.

  13. Default Re: Slippery Rock

    Quote Originally Posted by Mjtheman View Post
    stick to Gannon men's basketball then. dont point fingers unless both your houses are in order. Extremely hypocritical. hard to believe he is not aware of the issues surrounding Brunelli.
    Such anger. False equivalency here. Writer of GU blog is a hypocrite? It's men's basketball site. And I sat behind the Rock bench during the game, as I have for years and Reynolds was more boorish and than usual. And I'm glad it was written about. Sad.

    I can seperate his behavior from his ability to coach and compete with less resources.
    Last edited by thefauves1; 02-02-2017 at 11:23 PM. Reason: Errors

  14. Default Re: Slippery Rock

    Quote Originally Posted by thefauves1 View Post
    Such anger. False equivalency here. Writer of GU blog is a hypocrite? It's men's basketball site. And I sat behind the Rock bench during the game, as I have for years and Reynolds was more boorish and than usual. And I'm glad it was written about. Sad.

    I can seperate his behavior from his ability to coach and compete with less resources.
    the only difference is one coaches men and one coaches women. The behavior and the way it represents a school is equivalent. Having that behavior continue is equivalent. I agree with the last paragraph of the article. Practice what you preach.

  15. Default Re: Slippery Rock

    Quote Originally Posted by Mjtheman View Post
    the only difference is one coaches men and one coaches women. The behavior and the way it represents a school is equivalent. Having that behavior continue is equivalent. I agree with the last paragraph of the article. Practice what you preach.

    Agree, but somehow you think it is the responsibility of the GU Men's B-Basketball blog to report on this. I don't care about women's basketball. If you are so concerned, start a women's basketball blog. Sad.

  16. Default Re: Slippery Rock

    Quote Originally Posted by thefauves1 View Post
    Agree, but somehow you think it is the responsibility of the GU Men's B-Basketball blog to report on this. I don't care about women's basketball. If you are so concerned, start a women's basketball blog. Sad.
    He had no problem whining about trump on his blog. Stick to basketball. Even the low IQ hammermill fan can see the hypocrisy. Saddest

  17. #17

    Default Re: Slippery Rock

    I love the Internet! We're arguing over the moral obligation of an individual who decided o his own to write a blog about Gannon men's basketball. This individual is not getting paid, nor is affiliated with the university or a media outlet. Who has the final say on the subject matter?

    If you feel that a moral obligation exists to write about the Gannon women's basketball coaching staff or any other topic, then start your own blog. I've included a link www.theblogstarter.com/

  18. Default Re: Slippery Rock

    [QUOTE=Golden89;2018575]I love the Internet! We're arguing over the moral obligation of an individual who decided o his own to write a blog about Gannon men's basketball. This individual is not getting paid, nor is affiliated with the university or a media outlet. Who has the final say on the subject matter?

    If you feel that a moral obligation exists to write about the Gannon women's basketball coaching staff or any other topic, then start your own blog. I've included a link www.theblogstarter.com/[/QUOTE

    im pointing out a hypocrite. I know Gannon fans can dish it out but they just can't take it. He should've stayed with the keys to the game but that would've lost most of his readers.

  19. #19

    Default Re: Slippery Rock

    The sites are very different. This site tends to get animated and rough at times. Fan bases argue, debate, etc. This site will get more in to team analysis - positive and negative.

    The Gannon site is more a 'team' site. It has more of a cheerleader vibe to it. Which is fine. It's their site. It's run by kind of a homer but again it's his site. It isn't meant to be a news site but a GU spin site. Now had IUP lost up there something tells me Reynolds wouldn't have been the lead story. Personally, I'd have like to read Gannon's view of the game rather than about Reynolds. The Erie Times hardly covers the team anymore so it's hard to get opposing views. I thought Reilly was dramatically outcoached in that game. Badly. For a big game, GU wasn't ready to play and really looked lost. IUP could have -- should have -- hung a big number on them. Evan Phoenix has been a non-factor in both games with 13 combined points.

    You could certainly call some of the GU fans hypocrites over the treatment Reilly got on that board last year compared to the praise this year. They were ready to take him for a one-way boat ride in Lake Erie last year at this time. I mean the fans vanished from the Hammermill in droves and abandoned the team. In a cold-weather town they have a lot of fair-weather fans.

    I see the argument of calling out Reynolds while at the same time the GU women's program is far worse off than SRU's mens team. I don't buy the argument that the GU site is solely for mens basketball. If it is ... that didn't start until the women up there began to stink.

    Maybe I shouldn't have brought the article up. I found it interesting. You can't tell me that wasn't meant to be a shot at Reynolds. I like the guy. He's a good coach. But he's a major jazzhole on the court.

    Beleive me, every fan base thinks the same way about the guy. I find his antics entertaining. Obviously not everybody does. That said, Reilly is probably seen as the more annoying of the two by the IUP fan base. You GU fans will find that hard to fathom but it's true. I know Joe is viewed as arrogant and whiney by other schools. I actually find the West coaches to bring entertainment value. Joe, Reilly, Manchal, Reynolds .... all a bit theatrical.

    I think Golden89 is a good poster to this board. We used to have more GU posters but they seemed to vanish last season and haven't come back.

    Gannon at SRU should be interesting if nothing else. I think Gannon vs. IUP is done for this year. I don't think GU could get past Ship, ESU or Kutztown in the Final Four of the PSAC. But, let's not forget about Reynolds. He has a way of making noise in March -- in more ways than one.
    Last edited by IUPbigINDIANS; 02-03-2017 at 07:05 PM.

  20. #20

    Default Re: Slippery Rock

    IUP -- Thank you. I enjoy this board and won't stop posting. Everyone is entitled to his or her opinion here, including that of Reilly, Reynolds, and Brunelli.

    I only got ticked when the Gannon site person was called a hypocrite. The blog started on January 1, 2009. http://gannonhoops.blogspot.com/2009...non-hoops.html. Since then there have been 424 posts. By my count, only 11 posts had anything to do with the women's team. There were six during the 2010 NCAA tournament (he was basically asked to provide an area to comment and added that he doesn't go to the women's games (http://gannonhoops.blogspot.com/2010...ont-st-at.html). The other five were in 2013 -- four were again comment areas for the NCAA tournament, where he again readily admitted he doesn't follow the Lady Knights (http://gannonhoops.blogspot.com/2013...-fairmont.html) The final post was when the news broke that Cleve Wright left.

    I've known him for a while and I don't think that I've seen him at a women's game (and I go to most of them) -- he has a job and a family and prefers to focus on one team and know them well. I'm not exaggerating. He would provide no extra insight on Brunelli, Cleve, or anyone else, so why write about a topic you don't know? It's his choice whether or not to attend the women's games, and it's his choice about topics the blog he started. BTW ... He was out of the country for work for the IUP game for which I agree with you, Gannon was outcoached and not ready to play. The final score was not indicative of the lack of closeness of the game; it was essentially over after 15 minutes. And I hope that I'm wrong, but I don't realistically see GU getting to the PSAC Final.

    All 424 posts are available to view. Feel free to look at all of them them if you don't believe me about the lack of Lady Knight topics. If you do, make sure that you look at the comments section, particularly the insightful and witty comments of Golden89.

    I'm done with this topic. No worries about posting the Reynolds comments. It's certainly interesting and fun to hear others' opinions about coach's sideline demeanors. We all certainly look at the games through different lenses. That's why I like coming to this board.

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