For the second year in a row, Big East Media Day was filled with questions surrounding a structural change.
Last year, the fuss was over a slight altering of the schedule from 16 to 18 conference games. Today, the spotlight was on the movement of the 3-point line back one foot to 20-feet, 9-inches, over 21 years after the advent of the trey in the college game.
Cincinnati head coach Mick Cronin, whose team shot a lowly 32.8 percent from behind the arc last season, believes his initial fears about the change were a slight overreaction.
“Originally, I thought it would be a big difference,” Cronin told The Big Beast’s Mike Vorkunov at Madison Square Garden on Wednesday. “After the fall, preseason workouts and practice for about a week, I don't see any difference. I'm optimistic it will have the effect the committee wanted it to have, which is open up the interior.”
Georgetown senior guard Jessie Sapp, who shot 41.1 percent from deep last season, doesn’t think the new line will have much of an effect.
“Guys have been shooting from that, what is it like, a foot? I think guys have been shooting from that far since the four years that I've been here,” Sapp said. “I’ve always practiced shooting from behind this line.”
Surprisingly, one of the few pessimistic comments regarding the move came from nationally-respected Notre Dame senior shooter, Kyle McAlarney, who nailed 108 threes last year.
“For average shooting teams its going to play a huge part because it’s a foot back and guys will be more reluctant,” McAlarney said.
More to come on the day’s festivities…