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Another Niagara Update


The mass exodus from the Niagara basketball program continued over the weekend as freshman forward TJ Cline tweeted that he's landed at Richmond of the Atlantic 10. That came on the heels of the anticipated news that all-MAAC guard Juan'ya Green and his lifelong friend and Niagara teammate Ameen Tanksley both are joining former Purple Eagles coach Joe Mihalich at Hofstra. They will sit out next season and be eligible in 2014-15.

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Source: Cline will transfer to Richmond

By Rodney McKissic

The mass exedous from Niagara in the wake of Joe Mihalich's departure continues with freshman T.J. Cline giving a verbal commitment to attend Richmond according to a source.

Cline, the son of Hall of Famer Nancy Lieberman, visited Charlotte last week and informed the 49ers staff on Saturday that he would attend Richmond. The 6-foot-8, 220-pound Cline was named to the MAAC All-Rookie Team after averaging 7.9 points and 4.6 rebounds in 33 games. He also led the Purple Eagles in 3-point shooting percentage with 33.6 percent.

Cline must sit out the 2013-14 season per NCAA transfer rules, but will have three seasons of eligibility remaining. The news comes just days after Juan'ya Green and Ameen Tanksley joined Mihalich at Hofstra.

Chubak signs pro deal

by Amy Moritz

Carsen Chubak decided to forgo his senior season at Niagara as the goaltender signed an American Hockey League contract with the Adirondack Phantoms, the top affiliate of the Philadelphia Flyers.

Chubak was the Atlantic Hockey Player of the Year and was a Top 10 Hobey Baker finalist. He led Niagara to the program's fourth NCAA tournament appearance and first Atlantic Hockey regular season title. This season he went 23-7-5 with a 1.91 goals against average and a .930 save percentage.

"We are happy for Carsen and wish him well with his professional endeavors," Niagara coach Dave Burkholder said in a release from the school. "The Phantoms are getting a very dedicated and focused individual."

The Phantoms went 31-38-7 in their fourth year in the AHL.


photo from

The Ins and Outs at Niagara


Niagara coach Chris Casey has landed his first recruit as he strives to stablize a Niagara basketball program that continues to be hit by defections.

Niagara has signed Karonn Davis,  6-2 combo guard from Friends Central near Philly, but sources say the Purple Eagles are losing senior-to-be Malcolm Lemmons, who has elected to transfer. Lemmons, a reserve guard, joins All-MAAC guard Juan'ya Green and rebounding leader Ameen Tanksley on the transfer wagon that's crowding since coach Joe Mihalich was announced as the new head coach at Hofstra. Sources say Green and Tanksley are preparing to visit Hofstra, which was not forbidden when they were granted their transfers by the Purple Eagles.

Could another defection be forthcoming?

Continue reading "The Ins and Outs at Niagara" »

Bona Adds Third Recruit

By Bob DiCesare

St. Bonaventure basketball picked up its third recruit in the last 10 days today when 6-4 JUCO guard Andell Cumberbatch signed a national letter of intent. Cumberbatch, a native of East Orange, N.J., averaged 14.2 points and 8.2 rebounds last season.

"We're really impressed with the progression and improvement Andell has made in just one year," Bona coach Bona Mark Schmidt said in a university release. "He's a hard worker and his dedication and commitment has clearly yielded results. He's a great shooter who also crashes the glass hard, which is a rare combination we're looking to take advantage of right away."

The Bonnies also recently landed Xavier Smith, a 6-7 forward from Plano, Texas, and Denzell Gregg, another 6-7 forward, out of Syracuse. Both are high school recruits.


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About Campus Watch

Bob Dicesare

Bob DiCesare

Western New York native Bob DiCesare covers UB football, Big 4 basketball and writes an occasional column. He still holds a grudge against Chris Ford who, he's convinced, cost St. Bonaventure the 1970 NCAA basketball championship.

@TBNDicesare |

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz, a native of Lockport, has covered colleges for The Buffalo News since 1999. She has a bachelor’s degree in journalism/mass communication from St. Bonaventure University and a master’s degree in humanities from the University at Buffalo. An endurance athlete, she has completed several triathlons, half marathons and marathons.

@amymoritz |