June 10, 2013
BOSTON - After leading the Boston University men's basketball team to the postseason and developing four All-Conference honorees, head men's basketball coach Joe Jones has signed a contract extension that will keep him on Commonwealth Avenue through the 2017-18 season, Assistant Vice President and Director of Athletics Mike Lynch announced Monday afternoon.
"Coach Jones has demonstrated in numerous ways that he is the right man for Boston University as we transition into the Patriot League," Lynch said. "He is a true leader both on and off the court and has already proven to be a great teacher and recruiter of upstanding young men. In just two years, he has immersed himself in the BU culture and has made great progress in laying the foundation for future success."
In two years at BU, Jones has posted a 33-29 record, highlighted by this past season in which the Terriers went 17-13 and made an appearance in the CollegeInsider.com Postseason Tournament. Banned from the America East tournament due to the upcoming move to the Patriot League, they swept both finalists Albany and Vermont during the regular season and watched the Great Danes become the first-ever squad in conference history to win the title without claiming at least one victory over BU. Following the successful season, Jones was named a finalist for the Ben Jobe Award, which is presented annually to the top minority coach in Division I men's basketball.
"The opportunity to continue to serve Boston University is a tremendous honor," Jones said. "Our staff is very appreciative of the support that President Brown, [Senior Vice President, General Counsel, and Secretary of the Board of Trustees] Todd Klipp and our athletic administration led by Mike Lynch have provided us. Boston University is a very special place and that is no more evident than in the tremendous young men that we work with every day."
Besides the tournament ban, the 2012-13 season was presented with many other challenges, including the graduation of six players from the previous season. With a recruiting class heralded by ESPN.com as one of the best at the mid-major level, BU started two freshmen in the season opener for the first time since 2006. The Terriers would go on to lead the conference in field goal shooting percentage (.449) for the first time since 1994 and in assists (13.6 per game) for the first time since 2004. On the defensive end, they held nine straight non-conference opponents below 70 points, a feat last seen over 50 years ago.
In player development, Jones helped Darryl Partin ('12) earn America East Player of the Year honors in his first season at the helm. This past year, rising senior and three-year starter D.J. Irving claimed his first All-Conference First Team award along with Mid-Major All-America honors after averaging personal bests in scoring (14.2 ppg), rebounding (3.3 rpg) and steals (1.4 spg).
Another three-year starter, forward Dom Morris made a big leap forward to earn All-Conference Third Team accolades, nearly doubling his scoring output (11.6 ppg) while leading the team in rebounding (6.4 rpg) for the first time. His field goal shooting percentage skyrocketed from 49.4 percent to 57.4 percent, which represented the highest mark by a Terrier since 1997 and the fourth highest since 1980.
The highly-touted freshman class did not disappoint with rookie Maurice Watson Jr. averaging 11.2 ppg, a league-high 5.4 apg and 3.3 rpg. A 5-foot-10 Parade All-American from Philadelphia, he tallied the most assists by a Terrier since 1990 with 13 at Binghamton and later followed up a points-rebounds double-double with a points-assists double-double.
John Papale started the last 14 games of the season and led the league in 3-point shooting (.419) to finish the year with 65 treys. Averaging 17.1 minutes per game, Nathan Dieudonne had 14 starts under his belt as well and led the Terriers in rebounding on three occasions while scoring in double figures twice.
Rising senior Travis Robinson (6.7 ppg, 2.3 rpg, 37.9% 3FG) and junior Malik Thomas (7.3 ppg, 5.3 rpg) both had 16 starts apiece and will be returning with junior James Kennedy, junior Dylan Brossman and sophomore Justin Alston. They will be joined in the fall by two freshmen.
Both 6-foot-5 guard Cedric Hankerson and 7-foot-0 forward Dylan Haines turned down opportunities with higher profile programs and will look to be key contributors next season. Hankerson was an All-State First Team honoree at Coral Reef H.S. in Miami, while Haines helped lead St. Thomas More (Conn.) to the semifinals of the National Prep School Tournament.