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The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

St. Joe’s men’s basketball needs to trust the process

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The Philadelphia 76ers officially began “The Process” on June 27, 2013 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. The Process was a long-term strategy to attain young talent in order to propel the team back to the top of the NBA.

Former Philadelphia 76ers Assistant Coach Billy Lange began a new era in St. Joe’s men’s basketball when he replaced Phil Martelli as head coach on March 28.

This change signaled the start of what looks to be a long-term strategy to attain consistent success in the basketball program.

Both of the decisions behind these situations seem to stem from the same problems. The Sixers floated in NBA purgatory, either good enough to sneak into the playoffs and get bounced early or barely missing the playoffs all together. They hadn’t finished higher than sixth in the Eastern Conference since 2002.

Similarly, St. Joe’s has had a couple tough years in the Atlantic 10 Conference. They have battled through injuries, but over the past three seasons, they haven’t been able to finish above .500.

In 2011, prior to the beginning of The Process, the Sixers were bought by Joshua Harris, who remains their owner today. He brought in Sam Hinkie to take over as his general manager. The two knew that they wanted to take the team in a new direction.

Hawk Hill has mirrored this scenario with the arrival of Jill Bodensteiner, J.D., director of athletics. She evaluated Martelli and the basketball program over the course of last season and decided she wanted to change things up.

What is the point of all of this? The NBA and the A-10 are very different. There are no Jimmy Butler-esque players waiting in the wing to save the Hawks.

With situations like these, the key, at least for fans, is patience. Whether you agree with Martelli’s firing or not, Lange is the head basketball coach next season. He is going to need to be given a fair shake.

A fair shake isn’t a snap judgement after one season either. When the Sixers began The Process, there was an exodus of talent from the roster. There is a difference between players being traded for picks and players transferring schools, but at their basis, they represent the same thing. The right players need to be on the roster.

Lange has lost a lot of talent since he took over as head coach, through no fault of his own. Redshirt sophomore forward Charlie Brown declared for the 2019 NBA Draft; Redshirt junior guard Lamarr Kimble, who was a three-year captain under Martelli, transferred to the University of Louisville; and freshman guard Jared Bynum transferred to Providence College.

These were all Martelli’s guys. Fans need to give Lange a chance to bring in his own guys. He has already brought in a pair of qualified assistant coaches. He has begun to recruit, bringing in Myles Douglas, a 6-foot-8 wing from University of Central Florida. Lange has to rebuild a foundation for this program from the ground up.

Just as there was during The Process, there will be some pain. As of right now, the St. Joe’s roster is severely undermanned. The A-10 is a tough conference and isn’t going to slow down just because St. Joe’s is in a transition year.

The Sixers faced five years of misery, wallowing away in the NBA cellar. Is anyone complaining now? Anyone who thinks that Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons weren’t worth it?

Bodensteiner and Lange both seemingly have a clear idea of where they want this program to be. Fans just need to sit back and trust the process.

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