March 23rd, 2017
Now that our season is wrapped up, it's a good time to reflect on the season that passed and give everybody a summary of our year. This year we were tested with a lot of adversity and ups & downs, and I am extremely proud of the resiliency our team showed throughout the course of the season. During the season, we lost 3 of our top 4 players, and dealt with a number of injuries to key guys. Despite that, our team never felt sorry for themselves, and we fought our way to a 21-15 overall record and a 3rd place finish in the RSEQ.
We started very early this year with a matchup on Aug. 6th vs Wichita State, who won the MVC Championship and just got knocked out of the NCAA Tourney in the Round of 32 in a close game vs Kentucky. We also played another NCAA Tournament team in Vermont, and definitely measured ourselves against the best. Along the way we came up with big wins vs #2 Ranked Ottawa U and #6 Ranked McGill, along with UQAM's 1st ever victory vs an NCAA D1 (Arkansas-Pine Bluff), and a Top 5 NCAA D2 (St. Thomas Aquinas - Elite 8 of NCAA D2 Tournament)!
Probably our most complete game of the year though came at the right time. On March 3rd in the RSEQ Final 4, every guy on our roster stepped up and we Won 81-71 vs Concordia to punch our ticket to our 2nd consecutive RSEQ Championship Game!
With Back-to-Back appearances in the RSEQ Championship, and a 2yr record of 40-30 overall, the 2015 FISU 3x3 World University Championship in China, and many other milestone achievements for our program, I couldn't be prouded of the development of every one of our players and coaches. We also had 10 new players playing key roles this season, so the future of UQAM Basketball is very bright!
Ultimately, our goal is to Win the RSEQ Championship and compete for the National Championship in the Final 8. However, as I tell our players, it's also about the process of developing as a team, individual players, students, and people, and along the way we need to recognize the milestones we achieve in that process.
Looking towards next season, the preparation starts now, and we are excited about our team's potential in 2017-18. We have announced 2 recruits so far that we feel are great fits for our program, and had guys Red-Shirting with us this year that will also provide major impacts on our success next season.
On a personal note, my baby girl Eva just celebrated her 3rd Birthday in March...crazy how fast time flies! She is such a blessing, and I am incredibly lucky to be her father. The family and I also had a great time in Halifax for the Final 8 and visiting with our friends and family there. Halifax is a special place for us as it's my wife's hometown, and where I spent 3 great years at St. Mary's University.
Next up, I'll be heading to Phoenix, AZ for the NCAA Final 4 and NABC Coaches Convention, finish up with our 2017 recruiting class, and prepare for the 2017-18 season. I included some pictures that captured our journey in 2016-17 (below). Have a great Spring season everybody and GO UQAM!!