Providence coach Kim English was hired to fill pretty sizable sneakers when he was named Ed Cooley’s successor. Early returns indicate English is up to the task.
The Friars are off to a perfect start under English and face Kansas State on Friday in the Baha Mar Hoops Bahamas Championship in Nassau, Bahamas.
English guided Providence (3-0) to a 72-59 victory over Wisconsin on Tuesday, a performance that made him feel like his team was starting to find its footing.
“We knew that they would have some extra fire and fight coming into (Tuesday’s) game,” English said of the Badgers. “Wanted our group to exceed that. … I thought this was one of our best days.”
Devin Carter had 21 points and eight rebounds against Wisconsin in the Friars’ first true challenge of the season. Although Providence’s schedule is now getting harder, Carter is heading into every game with the same mindset.
“I don’t really feel like there’s more (of) a burst of energy or something whenever I’m playing a higher team,” Carter said. “Just go into every game and try to guard their best player.”
For the Wildcats (2-1), that player is Tylor Perry. He averaged 20.7 points, 5.0 rebounds and 5.3 assists in Kansas State’s first three games.
Perry had 22 points in KSU’s 91-68 victory over South Dakota State on Monday, with Cam Carter leading the way with 25.
“They’re being real good leaders for us,” Wildcats guard R.J. Jones said of Perry and Carter. “Without them helping me out in practice, without them going hard at me, we wouldn’t be able to have dubs like this.”
In terms of having success, Perry believes Kansas State is just getting started.
“The more we play (with) each other, the more we’re gonna get a feel for each other,” Perry said. “We’re so far from where we want to be. We got so long to go.”
KSU is 1-0 against the Friars, beating them 87-80 on March 12, 1977, in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.
The winner of Friday’s game will face either Miami or Georgia in the tournament title game scheduled for Sunday.
–Field Level Media
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