Rowan University hoops a force in the NJAC

Matt Leon
February 13, 2019 - 1:21 pm
Senior Nick DePersia leads Rowan in scoring this season, averaging 15.2 ppg

Rowan University Athletics

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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — The Division III Rowan University men's basketball team will wrap up its regular season on Wednesday night with a road game against Kean University up in Union, New Jersey.

It's been quite a season in Glassboro already, as the Profs will bring an 18-6 record into tonight. And they sit second in the New Jersey Athletic Conference with a 12-5 league mark. They have clinched a first-round bye in the conference tournament.

The Profs are coached by Pitman High School legend and former Penn State star Joe Crispin, and he says he is enjoying this season.

"Anytime you win, you should enjoy it," Crispin said. "Naturally, though, as a head coach, I probably don't enjoy it as much as I should, because I think we should be 20-4 instead, or 21-3 and I go back to those games. But I got a good group of kids. I've got five seniors that have really led the way. They've been a pleasure to coach, and they're typically on most nights a pleasure to watch."

Crispin named the members of that senior class leading the way for the Profs.

"Robbie and Nick DePersia from Haddonfield High School have been with us — this is their fourth year," he said. "DaRon Curry, who is a local kid (Deptford, New Jersey), who was a transfer from FDU — this is kind of his second-and-a-half season as a senior. Then Ramon Wright, who is also a second-year transfer (from West Chester). Really, really talented four that really dominate the ball and dominate our minutes. Then we have one more senior, Teirique Robinson, who is just a great role player, a great kid. And we have a solid bench. A lot of times I'm playing 10, 11, 12 guys."

Nick DePersia leads the Profs in scoring at 15.2 points per game. Curry is second at 13.8. Wright is the team's third leading scorer at 11.3 ppg and he is also the team's top rebounder, pulling down 6.5 a game.

Rowan averages just under 85 points a night, which is impressive. Crispin says what they do when the other team has the basketball is key to their success as well.

"We are actually at our best when we are defending as hard as we should," he said. "We score, and we're very confident we can score. We give up a lot of points (76 a game), but I like to tell folks, and I do believe it's true: Our guys defend harder than anybody out there. Because we get after people in the full court, we constantly are kind of on the move trying to be disruptive in different ways, depending on the team.

"Us creating pace is probably the most important thing to our team. Usually, it's easy to do that on offense. You can come down and take a quick shot, or you can get into things quickly. But on defense, buying into that is the hard part. Our senior group especially has been really, really good at setting that tempo. Really that is the key to our scoring 85 to 90 points a game."

Rowan's game at Kean on Wednesday night gets underway at 8 p.m.

Follow Matt on Twitter @Mattleon1060.