Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Shane Gibson Finally Getting National Recognition

It's been another quiet offseason for the Sacred Heart men's basketball program in the mainstream media.  Other than the occasional piece on Dave Bike's lengthy coaching career and this Shane Gibson post by Angela Lento of Collegeinsider.com, I can't recall any media outlets outside of Connecticut running a profile piece on a SHU player.

Today, however, Jeff Eisenberg of the Yahoo Sports college basketball blog The Dagger wrote a fantastic article about Shane Gibson.  It's the first time someone from a major media outlet is profiling one of the most overlooked, yet immensely talented guards in the country.  Jeff's piece is an absolute must read for any SHU fan.

Frankly, it was refreshing to read about Gibson's competitive drive and how the lack of national attention he receives has continued to motivate him on a daily basis.  It's no wonder the SHU coaches have marveled to me about how hard Gibson works on his game and how much time he spends in the weight room pushing to get better.  During my end-of-the-season interview with Coach Bike last March, Bike clearly implied that he wished other SHU players would work as hard as Gibson did on and off the court.

Even with Gibson blossoming into a NEC Player of the Year candidate early last season, I would have considered it a wild long-shot if Gibson found his way into the NBA. Now, nothing would surprise me.  Gibson's NBA jersey could become the first piece of NBA merchandise I purchase in many years, since I forked over $40 for a green Dominique Wilkins Boston Celtics jersey!

Before Gibson begins his endeavor into profession basketball though, it's my hope that his hard work will be rewarded with SHU making a run at the NEC title.  Yes, it's a minute possibility at this point, especially with LIU, Robert Morris, and Wagner returning most of their starters, but this is why they play the games.

And I can't think of a better way for Gibson to end his collegiate career, by cutting down the nets after leading the Pioneers to their first ever NCAA tournament.  It would be a storybook ending for the greatest basketball player ever to put on the red and white of Sacred Heart University.

Ryan Peters covers Northeast Conference and Sacred Heart men's college basketball on Pioneer Pride and Big Apple Buckets.  You can follow Ryan on Twitter @pioneer_pride

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