Head Men's Basketball Coach – Pratt Cannoneers
I just got back into my hotel room here in San Diego a few minutes ago and realized that I had not posted on my site for a few days. No recommended readings, no thoughts on the NBA Draft (YAY for LA taking D’Angelo Russell 2nd!!) and no updates on my summer recruiting.
But I’m back and yes, as I mentioned above, in San Diego, California. Saturday was day two of my West Coast swing which is for recruiting (which is pleasurable certainly), not solely for leisure. I’m out here hunting for future Bard Raptors. Sunday is the start of the Academic Prospect Camp at UC San Diego. Coach Turner attended the camp two summers ago and realized that the start date bumped up against the end of both UCSD’s and San Diego State’s team camps. Though the only California resident on our roster was not someone he found at this camp, we were able to secure a number of visits from these prospects and went deep into the recruiting process with many.
Both team camps started Friday, so the plan was to get out here Thursday night and get to work the next morning. Things were going swimmingly on Thursday as I had an easy flight from Newark, NJ to Charlotte, NC, landing in plenty of time to catch my connecting flight right out to San Diego. Unfortunately, the plenty of time did me no good as US Airways was unable to find a crew for my flight and delayed takeoff. Soon though, the crew became the least of the problems and the plane was taken away for maintenance for something having to do with the gas or the engines or a combination of the two. About an hour after that announcement, the flight was cancelled.
As I’m sure you can imagine, the airport was going bonkers. Flying is a stressful experience for a lot of people and this sure exacerbated the issue. I couldn’t help but laugh as the mass of travelers descended on the helpless gate agents looking for answers. Soon a cue formed at the service desk, where we were instructed to go, and new flights were given. Nothing else was flying out that night and I was put on a 6 PM flight out of Charlotte that would stop over in Chicago. I would get to San Diego at around 10 PM local time. Not going to cut it. So after a bit of back and forth, I got them to switch me to a 6 AM flight that stopped over in Washington, D.C., before arriving on the West Coast around noon.
The airline gave me a hotel voucher and I’m fairly certain it was a nice hotel, but I don’t remember much of it as I was only there for around 4 hours. After our bags were released and the hotel shuttle arrived, I checked in around midnight. I essentially took a nap and was up, showered and ready to catch a cab at 4 AM to get on my way.
The airport was not a breeze in the morning either. No employees were at the United ticket counter (where my new flight was) until around 4:40 AM and the overwhelmed woman who finally showed up ignored me about four times before finally getting my bags checked. (US Airways claims there was a “gentlemen’s agreement” that if your flight is cancelled/rescheduled/rebooked to another airline, then the new airline checks your bag for free. Unfortunately the United folks didn’t want to deal with that.) Security was a breeze and I was ready to go. Time to board. Oh wait. The pilot, first officer and flight attendants are here…but there’s no gate agent. She finally showed up at 5:50 AM (boarding time was 5:35 AM) and we were on our way.
The flight to D.C. was easy and though I find planes to be terribly uncomfortable, I managed to get a few hours of sleep on the way across the country before landing in San Diego. I picked my rental car, checked into the hotel and was ready to go.
I went to San Diego State first for the camp and honestly, it was hard to focus on basketball. I loved Hofstra for my four years of college, but if I could do it all over again, well San Diego State is calling my name. Anyway, I got the job done, watched a ton of game, got the names of prospects and did it all again this morning before finishing up recruiting this evening at UCSD’s team camp. I’ll finish off watching UCSD’s camp tomorrow morning before the Academic camp begins.
I wish I had a bit more time to enjoy the weather, see the zoo (one of five in the country housing a panda bear), Sea World or even take in a Padres game, but it’s a hell of a lot better traveling site to site and walking between gyms in San Diego. I’m going to enjoy this week.