Wednesday, 26 August 2009

UTC Prepares for Labour Day trip to Southern Ontario

A couple of articles previewing Tennessee-Chattanooga's Labour Day weekend trip to Toronto and Guelph, where they will play 3 games in 4 days including matches against the Varsity Blues, Gryphons and York Lions of CIS and Sheridan Bruins of CCAA (Monday morning). The Mocs, a member of the NCAA Division 1 Southern Conference, have made several NCAA tournament appearances over the last few years but are coming off a season in which all 5 starters graduated.

Mocs Head to Canada for pre-season tour

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn.---The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga men’s basketball team is headed north of the border to Toronto, Canada for a series of exhibition games head coach John Shulman announced on Monday. It will be after school starts in August, but during the Labor Day weekend so no class will be missed.

Since the tour starts after school has begun, 14 members of the team will be eligible to play. Considering the Mocs graduated all five starters, this should be a beneficial time for such a young team.

“This is a great opportunity on so many levels for our basketball team,” said Head Coach John Shulman. “We are very young and this gives us an opportunity to learn a lot about ourselves before practice for the season starts in October.

“Also, Toronto is one of the world’s great cities so it is a ‘once-in-a-lifetime’ chance for a lot of our players.”

The Mocs will play four games in three days beginning with the University of Toronto on Saturday, Sept. 5, at Noon. The schedule:

Sat., Sept. 5: University of Toronto, Noon

Sat., Sept. 5: York University, 8 p.m.

Sun., Sept. 6: University of Guelph, 8 p.m.

Mon., Sept. 7: Sheridan College, 11 a.m.

“We leave on Friday after classes are over for the weekend and return on Labor Day,” added Shulman. “It is important for us to avoid missing any class time.”

University of Toronto
Nickname: Varsity Blues
Enrollment: 50,159 (full-time/includes three campuses)
2008-09 Record: 16-8

York University
Nickname: Lions
Enrollment: 45,890
2008-09 Record: 8-16

University of Guelph
Nickname: Gryphons
Enrollment: 18,616
2008-09 Record: 10-12

Sheridan College Institute of Technology
Nickname: Bruins
Enrollment: 50,000 (two campuses)
2008-09 Record: 24-8

Basketball Mocs open practice: UTC is allowed an early start because of its Labor Day weekend trip to Canada By: David Uchiyama

The first drills were fundamental.

University of Tennessee at Chattanooga basketball coach John Shulman had to start somewhere. How to make an outlet pass; how to pull the ball from the net and inbound it; where to sprint on a fast break.

Shulman's 2009-10 Mocs held their first practice Monday in McKenzie Arena. The August practices are permissible because UTC will be taking a four-game exhibition trip to Canada over Labor Day weekend, and the NCAA allows one such trip every four years.

"I don't know who any of these guys are," Shulman joked during warmups.

But he also had a slightly serious and nervous tone. After all, the Mocs lost their entire starting lineup and six seniors from the 2009 Southern Conference championship team.

"I looked around for (Nicchaeus Doaks) and he's not here. Does he have class?" Shulman said. "Where is K.G. (Kevin Goffney)? What about Steph (McDowell)? Because he's always out here early shooting the ball. They're not out here.

"I don't know who we have, but I'll tell you in a couple weeks."

The full-scale practices and the trip north will help the Mocs build unity and an identity. Sitting in a airport and going through security will be a team experience. So would be catching a baseball game between the New York Yankees and Toronto Blue Jays.

"You have to start sometime, and we have a lot of new guys so we'd like to get off to a good start," said Ty Patterson, the Mocs' lone senior. "I love basketball and everybody else does, too. Pickup games are fine, but let's do this and see what we've got.

"We have to get everybody acclimated to each other."

Patterson and other role players from last year such as Jasper Williams and Dante Harvey are adapting to new roles as veterans. They were in front during warm-up laps and used by Shulman to demonstrate drills.

"We're not fat and happy," Williams said. "We want to win SoCon again."

The newcomers are adapting to UTC basketball. It's a little different than playing for a junior college, a high school or another Division I program.

"Coming from junior college, I think the only problem I'll have is getting into Coach Shulman's system," said Ridge McKeither, a chiseled forward from North Dakota State College of Science. "I need to learn how they run things here. In the next 10 days I want to get better and learn about my teammates."

Mocs open practice today for Canadian trip

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn.---The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga men's basketball team is getting an early start on coming together for the 2009-10 season. With no returning starters, it is the perfect time for a preseason trip to Canada.

"It is a great opportunity for our basketball team," said head coach John Shulman. "There are five open positions on the court and every player has the chance to make a good first impression.

"We have 10 days of practices to get ready for a four-game Canada trip," added Shulman. "This is going to be great not only for basketball, but also for life. This may be their only chance to see another country."

Practice opened today and Chattanooga will have a total of 13 practices and four games coming up. The Mocs leave for Toronto on Friday, Sept. 4 and return on Labor Day, Sept. 7. Student-athletes will keep fans informed on the trip on a daily basis on

1 comment:

Bob said...

We look forward to the trip! Stop by and talk to us at

I will be there, is there a forum where I can inquire about Toronto?