Ballin' and bloggin' on the national and local college hardwood.
LIU first NY school to make NCAA Tourney
And the first NY school to go dancing is... The LIU Blackbirds.
LIU made it look easy as it knocked off Robert Morris, 90-73, in the NEC championship game on Wednesday night. What's most impressive about the Blackbirds is that they did this with just two seniors on the roster. And only one of those seniors is actually a major player.
All of this means LIU will be force next season, too. With junior forwards Julian Boyd and Jamal Olasewere back, as well as sophomore point guard Jason Brickman and junior guard CJ Garner, the Blackbirds could really make waves with a third straight NCAA Tournament appearance.
LIU made it look easy as it shot 52 percent from the field and had all five starters in double figures. Garner had 18 to lead the way. Boyd and Brickman had 18 points each.
It's anyone's guess where LIU will be seeded. Last season the Blackbirds were seeded 15th and faced North Carolina in the first round. No one in Downtown Brooklyn was pleased about that seed.
Will the selection committee consider last season's run and reward LIU with a 14 seed?
As uplifting as this story is, there is a downside. The downside is what this means for LIU coach Jim Ferry. The Elmont native as turned the Blackbirds into a conference power. With two straight NCAA appearances under his belt and a chance for a third next year, will he be the next mid-major coach to move on to a job in a bigger conference?
We posted a blog a couple of days ago about the firing of Rhode Island coach Jim Baron. It would be nieve to think that Ferry wouldn't be on the short list for a bigger job.
But that's a story to get into for another day. Let's allow LIU to enjoy the accolades.