Blogs > Delco Hoops

The Daily Times' boys basketball blog

Tuesday, December 13, 2011


On the first play of the game, D.J. Irving planted himself on Maalik Wayns' hip. On the second play of the game, Irving knocked down a 3-pointer. Not a bad start, huh? Irving's talents were on display at Wells Fargo Center, where BU lost to Villanova, 68-43, Tuesday.

A two-time All-Delco at Archbishop Carroll, Irving was in town for the second of three trips this season. (The Terriers lost at Saint Joseph's University last month and visit La Salle at the end of this month.) Still, his family and friends were in South Philly to see the Chester native play.

(Check out my column on Irving proving his critics wrong, in Wednesday's Daily Times)

Even Archbishop Carroll coach Paul Romanczuk brought eight players to the game, a ritual he has with his upperclassmen, to see Irving in action. Among the eight? Juniors Yosef Yacob and Isaiah Warren, who like Irving are Chester natives.

Irving finished with 11 points on 4-for-9 shooting, with three rebounds and three steals. He elicited some positive feedback from coaches on both sides:

Said Joe Jones, BU's coach: “D.J. has had a great year. With this team and these players, he's got to score. Got to. He's also got to defend and be our first line of defense. We need him to be an all-around player, not just a guy that sets it up. He's got to score it, he's got to defend it. He's got a lot of responsibility.”

Said Villanova's Jay Wright: “I think D.J. Irving is a great player. I think he's going to have a great career.”

Here's what Irving had to say, including who he'd pick if he was fielding a Delco all-star team:

Q: Were you surprised to see this game played at Wells Fargo Center?
A: “Pretty much, because Wells Fargo is usually for the big teams that come in and they need a lot of people to see the game. The atmosphere, I thought there would be a lot more people. But I thought it was a good game. I just wish we could have kept it a little closer, you know?”

Q: How much of a shock was it to go from a three-point halftime lead to a 25-point loss?
A: “I honestly don't even know what happened. It just went to them real fast. It's something we've got to work on.”

Q: Was it your idea to go out and cover Maalik at the start?
A: “I figured Coach Jones was going to put me on him anyway, so I was all for it. I've seen him a lot of times from summer leagues and all that.”

Q: How has your new role (from true point guard to scoring point guard) with Boston University made you a better player?
A: “It's made me more aggressive, and made me focus more on my shot.”

Q: With Juan'ya (Green, the 2011 Daily Times Player of the Year from Archbishop Carroll) playing so well at Niagara, have you reached out to him at all?
A: “When they played Missouri on ESPN3, that was the only game I got to watch. But I look at all of his box scores and I text him after most every game.”

Q: Was there an older player who taught you about that, keeping tabs on guys?
A: “Not really. I think I learned that from my mom (Jacqueline) and my dad (Desmond). Being in touch with people and staying humble was what they taught me.”

Q: You like what you see in Delco basketball this year? If you had to put together a team, who would you take?
A: Of course the Chester guys – Rondae (Jefferson) and Darius Robinson. He's up and coming. I was telling people that all summer that he's going to be great. I'd take Malcolm Richardson, from Penn Wood. I know him real well and he's great. And, of course, I'll go with my Carroll guys – Yosef (Yacob) and Isaiah (Warren). That's a pretty good team, don't you think?”

(Photos courtesy Boston University athletics)

Labels: , , , , , , ,


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home