Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Kojo's former team earns NCAA bid

Kojo Mensah (pictured right) left the Siena program after the 2005-06 season to come to Duquesne. I remember when all this went down, Siena didn't want to let Kojo leave, they threatened not to release him from his scholarship, and it was a big mess. As a sophomore at Siena Kojo averaged 16.6 points, 6.3 rebounds and 4.1 assists in 35.1 minutes per game. Siena eventually let Kojo leave the program and he transferred to Duquesne.

Kojo came to Duquesne and sat out the 06-07 season due to NCAA transfer rules. Kojo was one of the Dukes who was injured in the on campus shooting that rocked the Duquesne program during the 2006-07 season. This year Kojo has struggled to find consistency in his role with the Dukes and honestly he has not reached his full potential while in a Duquesne uniform. Kojo is averaging 12.5 points, 3.4 rebounds, and 3.4 assists in 23.8 minutes per game this year for the Dukes. Kojo is shooting 39% from the field and only 24% from beyond the arch this year for Duquesne.

One has to wonder if Kojo's career would have been better had he stayed at Siena rather than transferring to Duquesne where he has been shot, and seen his stats and minutes decrease.

I think that Kojo's numbers have decreased because of the 10/40 two platoon system. One of the biggest drawbacks from the 10/40 is that the Dukes' star players see reduced minutes while players from the end of the bench are in the game as a part of one of the two platoons. In addition to providing less minutes to the Dukes' most talented players the two platoon system does not allow players to develop any kind of rhythm because every 3-5 minutes all 5 players on the floor are forced to sit on the bench. This begs the question, will Ron Everhart stick with the two platoon system next year, or go with the 8 man rotation he has been using the last few weeks of the season? All I know is that I want to see players like Kojo Mensah, Shawn James, and Aaron Jackson see significant playing time every game next year.


Thorton said...

I couldn't agree more with your thoughts on the two platoon system, their best players getting more minutes-especially kojo, etc. 1040 is one of the reasons the Dukes shoot so poorly at times-shooters are on the bench for 6 minutes at a time!...I love your blog, highly informative...Can I list your blog on my website/satirical dukes blog www.bluffdivers.com? Thanks

The Duke from Dukes Court said...

By all means put a link to Dukes Court on your website.

phildogg said...

The reason Mensah spent more time on the pine was because he turned the ball over and missed TONS of lay-ups. He was overmatched in the A-10, it is apparent how much difference there is from the conference he left and the one he came into. Even James, blocks aside, didn't dominate in A-10 play.
That is the reason they were overlooked in recruiting by the higher level programs.

Perhaps they will both improve in 2nd season with Dukes, kind of like JC transfers Jackson and Tucker did.

thorton mellon said...

I disagree with you about Mensah regarding being completely overmatched. Maybe a little. I do think however both he and James will improve next year.

While Kojo did commit turnovers and made many bad decisions (most NYC point guards do), he is their strongest defender and can take over the game with dribble penetration.

He is typically clutch from the line which might have helped agaisst Fordham, Temple, Etc, Etc.

The short leash early in the year (see W. Virginia) made him a head case and caused some of his poor play. Rj had turnovers on three straight possesions against Richmond and stayed in the gamne, Mensah was yanked after one (he tried to make a no look pass to Keiron...who should have been cutting to the lane from the high post)

I love tuck, rj, and keiron, but Kojo, James, Saunders, Clark, etc. need to play late in games to gain experience for next year, when i think we have a real shot at post-season.

phildogg said...

Since the three you mentioned are gone due to graduation/eligibility Kojo, James,Saunders and Clark will need to play. I don't think that recruits will be real impact and we may see 30 plus min from these 4, if they can stay out of foul trouble.
You bet this year helped in game time and maturing into this level of play.

Also, some of the A-10 teams are losing 3 and 4 year starters and won't be so deep and talented.

I like Mensah but thought he was out of control and pressing too much this year. I think this has been hard on him since he hasn't had this type of situation to deal with as a player in the past. I wish him well.

thorton mellon said...

He definitely pressed after a couple of bad games and in a situation he had never been in before (not "the man"). I think we saw at Temple and St. Louis that he has the ability to take over the game

..I think higgins and evans will contribute some, but not at the level that jackson and tucker did...still, a good nucleus does return and since everybody plays a lot, we won't miss them as much as say Dayton will miss Roberts among others...I think we should be a 20 win team next year.

Anonymous said...

Kojo is better off at Duquesne; Siena recruited a better point guard in Ronald Moore, who unlike Kojo doesn’t turn the ball over. Good luck to Kojo I hope he does well at Duquesne. As good as Kojo is, hard to have a PG that’s turns the ball over and is not that good a shooter. Siena would not have won the MAAC with Kojo as its starting PG