How Josh Warren became a pass-first player for Cornell

first_imgIt hasn’t always been this way, but Cornell’s offense hinges on Josh Warren’s passing.As a senior forward, Warren runs the Big Red (1-3) offense. He leads Cornell in assists per game (4.75) and has a team-leading 6.8 rebounds per game. Standing at 6-foot-8, that combo is rare in college basketball.“He’s almost like a point guard in our half-court offense, which is a lot of responsibility for a bigger guy,” head coach Brian Earl said.Passing wasn’t always Warren’s strength. At Downingtown West (Pennsylvania) High School, Warren finished his career with 1,228 points, crowning him Downingtown West’s second all-time leading scorer. His high school head coach Jason Ritter said Warren would work out before school, setting an example for other players on his team.“He just outworked everyone,” Ritter said. “What made him great was his size, but he just outworked everybody in our league.”AdvertisementThis is placeholder textIn high school, Ritter needed Warren to make the important shots. His high school team needed him to finish possessions, not initiate them. At Downingtown West, Warren averaged 15.0 points per game and 1.8 assists in his senior season. This season at Cornell, Warren averages 10.5 points per game and 4.5 assists per game.When Warren chose to play at Cornell, his game had to change. Instead of being a go-to scorer, Warren had to become a facilitator as a forward. The offense had to run through him. When Earl informed Warren of his new role, Warren was ready to take on the challenge.“It was kind of smart of him to not say ‘Hey I scored in high school, so I’m going to score here,’ Earl said. “He does whatever’s needed for the team.”Photo Courtesy of Cornell AthleticsWhen he got to Cornell, Warren started focusing on ball handling, passing and shooting. It was the first time he needed to hone these aspects of his game, he said.In his past three seasons, Warren said he looked up to Matt Morgan and Steven Julian — Cornell’s leading scorer and best defender, respectively. Now, they’ve both graduated. Although Warren said that no single player is going to replace them, he’s acknowledged that everyone is going to have to step up their game. His pass-first mentality was a starting point.As one of three seniors on Cornell, coaches said lesser experienced players look up to Warren like he used to admire Morgan and Julian.Because of Warren’s high basketball IQ and leadership, he was named one of three Big Red captains. In Cornell’s only win on the season, Warren paced the Big Red with 19 points, seven assists and six rebounds.“We try to be a smart team,” Warren said, “And that kind of starts with me.” Comments Published on November 19, 2019 at 9:52 pm Contact Sophie: srlevine@syr.edu Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

Brad Fast named director of hockey operations at Michigan State

first_imgFast laced up the skates for the Spartans back in his playing days where he was an All-American, and an Academic All-American. From 1999-2003 he tallied 114 points in 164 games for the team. Fort St John alumni Brad Fast has landed one of the top hockey jobs with the Michigan State Spartans of the NCAA. The school announced last week that Fast would be joining the team as director of hockey operations.Fast applied for the job shortly after he returned from running this year’s North Peace Alumni Hockey School after a friend who previously held the position took a job with USA Hockey.While he won’t be coaching the players directly, Fast will have an active role in helping the squad get ready for their games this season- Advertisement -“I do a lot of preparation for games. It’s a non-coaching role so I’m not out on the ice because of NCAA compliance rules. They prevent me from getting out there. What I do is I watch video from our opponent’s previous games, I break down the video from our games and try and get us as best prepared as we possibly can for every weekend,” he said.Michigan State has always had a soft spot in Fast’s heart going back to when he first visited the campus when he was being recruited by the school as a player.“I really just love being a part of Michigan State. To be a part of the hockey program is an added bonus. From the time that I came here and visited the school way back when I was in high school I fell in love with this place,” he said.Advertisementlast_img read more