Partial List of
Colleges and Universities actively recruiting our Sports U/Team IZOD
UVA, Richmond, U
of Mami, Providence, Seton Hall, Fordham, Hofstra, Penn State, St.
Bonaventure, Siena, Robert Morris, Colgate, Notre Dame, Rutgers, Boston
University, Oregon State University, Marist, St. Joe's, Princeton,
American University, Catholic University, NJIT, Alabama A & M, Norfolk
State, UNC-Central, Bloomfield, Dillard University, Oklahoma City
University, Gannon, Savannah State, Morgan State, St. Francis, Florida
Atlantic, Tampa, CW Post, Georgetown College, Stony Brook, Kennesaw State,
Maryland Baltimore-County, Wagner, Delaware, Fordham, Marist, George
Mason, Quinnipiac, UNC Wilmington, George Mason, Colgate & Lafayette
Sports U 2009 15 and
Sports U 2009 16 and
EKB Scouting Lecture Part 1
EKB Scouting Lecture 2
Team Izod/Sports U AAU Team - Dedicated On & Off The
University's 15-Under AAU basketball team enjoyed a splendid summer. Team
members included, from left, kneeling in front: Jordan Forehand, rising
freshman at St. Anthony; Isiah Calderon, rising sophomore starting point
guard at Neptune; Matt Williams, soph at St. Anthony; Tyquan Burno, soph
at St. A's; Dilepso Blanco, soph at St. A's and Marvin Williams, Ferris.
Standing: President/GM Ed Bright, Josh Brown, frosh at Morristown-Beard;
Jimmy Hall, soph at St. A's; A.J. Cooper, East Orange Campus; Jerome Frink,
soph at St. A's; Matthew Rennie, soph at Rutgers Prep; Rashard Andrews,
soph at St. A's, Frank Burno, head coach and Brian Coleman, executive
director, Team Izod/SUbasketball operations.
Speech Communications specialist Patty
Popadics (left) and President/GM Ed Bright address the players and parents
of Team Izod/Sports University during a springtime educational session at
the SU facility in Fairfield.
Team Izod/SU players and parents are an
attentive audience as communications specialist Patty Popadics discusses
techniques involved in effective non-verbal communications at Sports
FAIRFIELD- It was not your typical evening at
an Essex County training facility where athletes are busy either pumping
iron or working on speed and fitness, but that’s where this summer’s
successful Team Izod/Sports University AAU basketball program tipped-off
with one of the most important facets of its 2009 season.
The subject for players and parents to listen in on and participate in on
an early spring evening was “Non-Verbal Communication.” Speech and
communications specialist Patty Popadics went through a series of
activities that were both fun and educational.
While the subsequent on-court success for Team Izod/Sports U has been
exemplary as the summer season has seen big performances from the
Fairfield-based team across America, the dual goal of also achieving
educational goals off the court remains paramount for the folks behind the
goal-oriented AAU program.
“Our commitment is for our players to be very well-rounded,” said Team
Izod/Sports U General Manager and President Ed Bright. “We not only want
to develop great basketball players we want to help young men become great
citizens and a big part of that is how you present yourself.
“The ability to focus and communicate, whether it’s interviewing for a
job, speaking with a college administrator or simply carrying on a
meaningful conversation, is vital as these players move throughout their
The 15-and-under Team Izod/Sports U squad certainly racked up the
noteworthy achievements this summer:
Main Event Las Vegas gold champions
8th place in USA AAU D1 National championships
Finalist at the 2009 NJ AAU D1 championships
Final Four at Rumble In the Bronx
2-time Garden State Sharpshooters 15U champion
Final Four in Playaz Tune-Up
Final Four in Philly Invitational
The 15-U and 16-U squads both excelled at the
Main Event, sponsored by Vision Sports in Las Vegas, NV, July 21-26. The
Main Event draws more than 600 teams from all over the world and is one of
the featured tournaments during the July “live” period for college
While Team Izod/Sports U’s 15-U captured its title, the 16-U squad also
did well, winning its bracket while going 3-0 with a margin of victory of
30-plus points. Team Izod/SU defeated last year’s winner, the Oklahoma
Thoroughbreds, and advanced to the Final Four while going 6-1, losing a
very close 1-point game to the Drew Gooden Soldiers of Oakland, Calif.
Back in mid-July, at the 15-U AAU Nationals in Tennessee, finishing eighth
out of 82 teams in a very competitive field.
When the 15-U AAU Nationals kicked off its event with academic seminars,
Team Izod/SU from Essex County, N.J. fit right in.
“In my opinion, there’s nothing average about Team Izod/Sports
University,” said Bright after his team survived two overtimes to beat the
New York Gauchos in the championship bracket of the tourney. “We stress
things that go beyond what’s expected of a lot of inner-city basketball
Frank Burno, the fine coach of Team Izod/SU’s 15-U squad and the brother
of former St. Anthony star guard Rashon Burno, knows what the mission is
for his young basketball team based out of the Sports University
state-of-the-art facility in Fairfield.
“It’s about character building,” said Burno. “We’vehad actual therapists
come in and show our players how to interview and how to present oneself
The players also appreciate what they experience with Team Izod/SU.
“I love it,” said guard Matthew Johnson, a freshman at St. Anthony. “Not
only are we getting a chance to learn how to become men, but we get to see
things that we never would have the opportunity to do.”
During 2008, the team traveled to Iceland. Next spring, trips to China and
Germany are planned. This past spring Team Izod/SU hosted a team from
Israel’s Gaza border area, under the tutelage of former Israeli star Tal
Brody, for a special cultural exchange week and a basketball contest in
On hand that early spring Sunday afternoon at the Charter School in Jersey
City was St. Anthony legendary coach Bob Hurley. Several of the Team Izod/SU
players are in the Friars’ strong hoops program.
Always working both behind the scenes and out in front with Team Izod/SU
is its coach Darryl Dawkins, the former NBA star. “Chocolate Thunder”
spends time with both the 16-U and 15-U squads always acting as a valuable
motivator and teacher.
“I just love working with the kids and it’s all about developing
well-rounded young men,” Dawkins said during an early-season event. “The
entire season is centered around education and basketball.”
For now, there are still games to be played before calling it a season
leading up to the Sept. 24 team get-together to have food and share
camaraderie and memories of a 2009 AAU hoops campaign.
You can rest assured that in addition to trips abroad and tournaments near
and far in 2010, there will be more visits from distinguished people in
education and in the world of government, including the fine
communications specialist Patty Popadics and others such as Peter Harvey,
New Jersey’s first African-American attorney general, who also spoke with
Team Izod/SU in 2009.
“We want to help our young men get college scholarships, but we-most of
all-want to prepare them for life as productive and well-rounded young
citizens in the world,” said Bright. “It’s an on-going process and these
kids and their parents believe in what we’re trying to accomplish.”