Tag:Ed DeChellis
Posted on: October 6, 2011 11:14 am

From Penn State to Navy, Ed DeChellis is adapting

By Jeff Borzello

Ed DeChellis raised plenty of eyebrows in May when he announced that he was leaving Penn State to become the head coach at Navy.

After all, the Nittany Lions were coming off an NCAA tournament appearance and Navy has finished above .500 in the Patriot League just twice in the last decade.

For DeChellis, it was the perfect choice.

“This is where I wanted to be,” he said Thursday by phone. “I enjoy getting back on the floor, I enjoy the stuff that basketball coaches do. Not the development things, not the going around and speaking. I can focus on my team.

“I’m looking at yachts coming into the harbor right now. It’s a beautiful place. I don’t regret the move at all.”

There’s no question DeChellis has his work cut out for him, though. The Midshipmen only won 11 games last season, but lost four seniors from that team. They return one senior – Jordan Sugars – that played more than 17 minutes last year. Navy also brings back six sophomores and welcome in a 10-man recruiting class.

With so many underclassmen, DeChellis plans on having a junior varsity team – and being serious about it. He wants at least a 14-game schedule for the JV squad, with seven or eight players on the roster. With as many as 19 players on the current varsity roster, it’s certainly a feasible option.

“Just because you play JV basketball doesn’t mean we don’t think highly of you,” DeChellis said. “You’re going to be playing 12 games, 30-40 minutes a game – maybe you don’t get 12 games for the varsity.”

As for the varsity team, don’t expect the Midshipmen to be as up-tempo as they were a year ago under Billy Lange. Last season, Navy ranked No. 27 in the country in tempo; Penn State was at the other end of the spectrum, ranking No. 341.

Sugars will lead the way, after averaging 16.0 points and 6.0 rebounds last season. He and sophomore J.J. Avila will have to carry the load offensively, although their individual offensive numbers might drop a little with the slower pace. Sophomore Isaiah Roberts is also expected to take on a bigger role.

“I’m trying to adapt to Navy, not sure about the Patriot League yet,” DeChellis said. “We have a lot of games and practices before we get to January to figure out where we are as a program. I’m getting to know the players, trying to figure out what we want to know. We’re figuring out what kind of things, offensively and defensively, give us a chance to be successful. For us, it’s uncharted waters.”

Annapolis, Md. is fewer than 200 miles from State College, Pa., but it’s a world of difference when it comes to basketball, lifestyle and off-court responsibilities. It’s certainly a distinct challenge; recently, one of DeChellis’ seniors was awarded a spot in the SEAL training program.

Obviously, that type of thing doesn’t happen at Penn State – and that’s what DeChellis likes.

“That’s what I came here for,” he said. “I want to help mold these kids, help them become leaders and fulfill their dreams in the United States Navy. It’s been different, but it’s been a good different.”

Photo: US Presswire

Category: NCAAB
Posted on: May 26, 2011 11:09 am
Edited on: May 26, 2011 11:19 am

DeChellis' move to lesser program not an outlier

Posted by Matt Norlander

When news came down Monday that Penn State's Ed DeChellis was leaving his team -- his alma mater, at that -- to coach at Navy, it raised eyebrows across the country. Even if Penn State's a horrible Big Ten hoops job, it's still much, much, much better than Navy's. DeChellis' move this late into the offseason, an offseason filled with tardy coaching changes, shocked just about everyone. After all, the man was coming off a season in which he got the Nittany Lions to the NCAA tournament.

Yes, that happened. Here's the proof. If you were a little surprised about such a transgression, well maybe that speaks to Penn State basketball in general. The 2010-11 season was a successful one, one of culmination after years of basement Big Ten dwelling. Maybe that's why he's going.

For the first time in years, Penn State was more than an also-ran. But DeChellis wanted out so badly he took a job in the Patriot League, one that will pay him considerably less money and tether many of his recruiting tentacles. Was the move unprecedented? Absolutely not. Just last year Greg McDermott left Iowa State to coach at Creighton. The difference there: Iowa State was in a much worse position than Penn State, plus, McDermott had the chance of coaching his son at Creighton. 

Still, this kind of jump is fairly rare, when you consider the average amount of coaching flux in an offseason in the past 20 years is about 35 jobs, give or take.

The Wall Street Journal looked at recent self-initiated demotions. Darren Everson went back to 1994 and found eight cases where a coach left one school to coach at an inferior one. The only reasonable comparison to DeChellis, though, is Billy Tubbs, who was out at Oklahoma in '94, leaving for TCU.

The RPI listed below is according to CollegeRPI.com, run by CBSSports.com contributor Jerry Palm. Everson listed BCS-to-non-BCS switches; not every job is a higher-to-lower/superior-too-inferi
or move, though. New Mexico is an upgrade from Oregon State, which Ritchie McKay did nine years ago.

Ed DeChellis 2011 Penn St. (39) Navy (299)
Greg McDermott 2010 Iowa St. (123)

Creighton (115)

Steve Alford 2007 Iowa (96)

New Mexico (166)

Tubby Smith 2007 Kentucky (13)

Minnesota (190)

Ritchie McKay 2002 Oregon St. (179)

New Mexico (66)

Kevin O'Neill 1997 Tennessee (135)

N'western (203)

Billy Tubbs 1994 Oklahoma (33)

TCU (240)

Dana Altman 1994 Kansas St. (50)

Creighton (260)

Good luck to DeChellis. He'll toil in more obscurity and deal with bigger challenges, even if his league is easier to win than the Big Ten. All things considered, you can't call this the easy way out.

Photo: AP
Category: NCAAB
Tags: Ed DeChellis
Posted on: May 23, 2011 4:44 pm
Edited on: May 23, 2011 10:17 pm

Ed DeChellis leaves Penn State for Navy

Posted by Jeff Borzello

In a shocking coaching move, Penn State head coach Ed DeChellis is leaving the Nittany Lions for the vacant coaching job at Navy, sources confirmed to Gary Parrish of CBSSports.com.

The story was first reported by Dana O’Neil of ESPN.com.

DeChellis will replace Billy Lange, who left to become the associate head coach at Villanova.

"It's been a very, very dificult weekend for me and my family. If I break down, there's good reason for that," DeChellis said at a news conference Monday afternoon. "Penn State is a special place for me and my family, but I found another special place in the U.S. Naval Academy." 

By leaving Penn State, DeChellis leaves a bigger conference, a bigger school – and a bigger paycheck. David Jones of The Patriot-News reported that DeChellis was making $650,000 at Penn State, but will dip down to $450,000 at the Naval Academy.

"This is a great job ... a Big Ten job with Big Ten facilities. We've got all the bells and whistles," DeChellis said. "But to me, it's not about the bells and whistles. It's not about the large arenas anymore."

DeChellis went 222-232 in eight seasons at Penn State, reaching the NCAA tournament for the first time this past March.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

Photo: US Presswire 

Category: NCAAB
Posted on: April 24, 2011 11:46 am
Edited on: April 24, 2011 4:36 pm

Penn Staten: Dayton transfer big for PSU

Posted by Eric Angevine

Buried in Friday night's sports news was a very interesting tidbit. The Dayton Daily News reported that point guard Juwan Staten, who played his freshman season for his hometown Dayton Flyers, will transfer to Penn State next season.

I had openly wondered this week exactly how Ed DeChellis expected to hold on to his job in State College with both Talor Battle and Taran Buie on the way out, and this is at least part of the answer. Staten's light has been at least somewhat hidden under a bushel during his one season with the 2010 NIT champs. Had the Flyers delivered on their promise and made a run to the NCAA tournament this season, perhaps this move never would have occurred. Instead, Dayton went 7-9 in league play, lost to Richmond in the A-10 championship game, and failed to even win one game in the NIT. Following that dispiriting end to the season, head coach Brian Gregory was rather bafflingly given his ticket to the big time, hired to take over for fired Paul Hewitt at Georgia Tech.

Don't misunderstand the impact of that last sentence, either. Staten didn't leave because his coach left. There were rumblings all season long that the star guard and his father were unhappy with the way Gregory was handling the team. This was a fait accompli, likely long before the season ended.

So who is this Staten kid? A former top-50 recruit who grew up in Dayton, Staten was hotly recruited, but gave his allegiance to his hometown program. He averaged 29.1 minutes, 8.5 points and 5.4 assists per game last season. The huge, glaring weakness in his game was shooting. His .15 three-point percentage contributed to a miserable 38 percent from the floor overall.

So, Dayton was no picnic, and Staten wasn't quite as good as he should have been. Let's call this a no-fault divorce and move on. Why Penn State? The answer to that question is still a mystery. Staten's comments to the Harrisburg Patriot-News seem to be a little out of synch with reality.

“Me and my AAU coach and father and mother all got together to try to find a school with a style that played like I play," Staten said. "A school that would be a good fit for me. ... They play fast and play loose, and the coach allows them to play their game.”

The Daily News refutes that assertion fairly well.

If Staten is looking for a fast pace from the Nittany Lions, he’ll likely have to speed them up himself. Coach Ed DeChellis’ team averaged just 63.1 points last season, the lowest output in the Big Ten.

Staten had interest from Louisville and also looked into transferring to Cleveland State. The former top-50 national recruit might have some competition at point guard for Penn State, though. Tim Frazier, who finished fourth in the league in assists at 5.1 per game, will be a senior when Staten becomes eligible.

Clearly, question marks abound here. If DeChellis makes it to his tenth season at PSU, he could have his hands full trying to incorporate Staten into his program, and dealing with the Staten family dynamic sounds challenging as well.

Nonetheless, Staten is a quality player who will be able to energize the fan base when he steps on the floor. He clearly has chops as a scorer and distributor, and a year off to learn under the new regime could cure his shooting form and selectivity. His choice of Penn State as a new home is a tad baffling (OK, a lot baffling), but it's a shot of positive news at a time when Ed DeChellis and Nittany Lions fans can really use some.

Photo: US Presswire
Posted on: April 19, 2011 7:06 pm

Troubled Buie leaves Penn State

Posted by Eric Angevine

Taran Buie has left the Penn State program and will transfer to another university, according to the PSU student newspaper the Daily Collegian.

If you're sitting there, thinking back to Penn State's second round loss to Temple, trying to remember when Buie was on the floor, don't bother. In reality, Buie checked out on the Nittany Lions almost as soon as he set foot on campus. The younger half-brother of PSU star Talor Battle was the highest-rated recruit of Ed DeChellis' career, but his head never got on the same page with his body during a tumultuous and curtailed freshman season.

Buie was cited by local law enforcement twice over the summer, once for underage drinking and once for fighting. Not really uncommon behavior for a college kid, really. Then came a violation of team rules that resulted in his suspension from the team on December 27. Buie never came back from that forced time off, and tacked on a disorderly conduct citation on February 28.

Apparently, not even Buie's talent, which had him rated as one of the top 100 players in his class by some scouts, could save him from his poor off-court behavior.

“I met with Taran following the conclusion of the season and we agreed it was in his best interest and in the interest of our program for him to pursue the remainder of his career at another school,” DeChellis said in a statement released by the PSU athletic department.

Buie, like Battle, is from upstate New York, but there has been little indication whether he'll look to transfer closer to home, or simply look for a program with the right fit and - shall we say - a somewhat less vigilant reputation?

Buie left himself very little opportunity to prove his gifts to any future suitors. In 11 games, he averaged 15 minutes and 5.8 points per game. His best performance was a 14-point effort against Central Connecticut on November 22.

This leaves DeChellis in dire straits again, even though Buie was not producing on the court. Losing Battle and Buie in the same season makes him, once again, a coach without a clear direction for his program. The recent NCAA appearance was the first in DeChellis' eight-year tenure in State College, but that one loss - to an in-state rival, no less - likely won't be enough to grant DeChellis a tenth season should his team fall apart in 2011-12.
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