Jim Ferry sounded excited Friday night to have a young team this year at Duquesne, and make no mistake it is. He spoke to the media before DukeFest.
Ferry has two seniors with significant minutes – Sean Johnson and Andre Marhold – and repeatedly stressed that he would need them to be leaders.
Johnson averaged 25.9 minutes a game last year and Marhold averaged 21.5 minutes a game.
Ferry: “What I do like about (the roster) as a coach, it is young. Most of the time you want experience, which I do, believe me. But it brings you back to your roots of coaching. This is a young team, a really young team. Besides Sean Johnson and Andre Marhold there’s not a lot of game experience in this gym at all. We’re almost treating everybody like a freshman. It’s the pure stage. Starting with basic passing drills, pivoting drills, cutting drills. As a coaching staff it’s very exciting to us.We do have some athleticism, some quickness and we’re trying to play to our strengths right now."
Ferry also talked a little bit about point guards Derrick Colter and Marvin Binney - saying he'll need both of them during the year. He did not indicate who was in the lead for the starting position.
Binney, who is a sophomore junior college transfer has a bit more game experience, and Colter's got a lot of flash - but doesn't sound like there is a decision there yet.
Ferry: "Derrick Colter has been playing very well, great speed and aggressiveness but he makes some freshman mistakes. Marvin Binney as well. They’re different from each other and we’re going to need both of them as a two headed monster."
Two interesting notes, one that was included in today’s story, but thought bared repeating.
1. Mamadou Datt is officially out until December to right some academic issues. I know this is a player Duquesne fans have been following with great interest. He moved pretty well on the court during Dukefest, and his knee did not look to be an issue.
Ferry: “Mamadou Datt, for the first semester, he’s going to focus on academics right now. That’s something we need to make sure he gets supported on to take care of that. Came in struggled a little bit last year academically. He won’t play until December."2. Ferry actually recruited Robert Morris Coach Andy Toole when he was an assistant at Bentley College outside Boston, Mass.
“I recruited Andy out of high school. I don’t look that old, which I guess is pretty good. I’ve known Andy since he’s about 18 years old…I think he’s a fantastic young coach. Take young away. I’ll support him as best I can till we play the Blackbirds. “