Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
It looks like the hiring of Freddie Hill has paid immediate dividends on the recruiting front for Seton Hall.
On the same day that the school named Hill an assistant, Gill St. Bernard’s point guard Jaren Sina pledged to the Hall over Northwestern and Indiana. Hill had previously served as an assistant at Northwestern under Bill Carmody when Sina committed to the Big Ten school.
“I’m a Pirate!!!!!! Ready to play for my state!!!!! #SetonHallPirates,” he Tweeted.
“For me, an opportunity to play right away and play for my home state did it,” he added to SNY.tv. “Coach Hill was huge but the entire staff including [assistant Dan] McHale was huge.”
The 6-foot-1 Sina gives the Pirates another quality ball-handler in the backcourt along with Texas transfer Sterling Gibbs, which is important considering that Aaron Cosbyleft the program and transferred to Illinois. The two Jersey guards know one another and can complement each in the backcourt.
Gibbs Tweeted: “Got my backcourt mate for the next couple years… Lets go hall”
Said Sina: “We can alternate it [playing the point]. He’s a great player and a good friend of mine and I believe we are going to do great things.”
“Coach [Kevin] Willard was talking about he’s very favorable of having two point guards on the court that can handle the ball and play off the ball as well,” Mergin Sina, Jaren’s father and coach, previously told SNY.tv.
“Jaren’s done that at the high school level with me and feels comfortable playing on or off the ball.”
Sina averaged 21.3 points and 9.1 assists last season at Gill St. Bernard’s, while making 117 3-pointers en route to first-team All-State honors.
Sina’s decision comes two days after he met with new Northwestern coach Chris Collins and one day after he had announced plans to visit Indiana next week. He also recently trimmed Alabama — the first school to which he committed in 2011 — from his list.
Instead, he will stay home and play in the new Big East in front of his local fans.
Sina’s decision makes the Hill addition look good right away.
The former Rutgers coach spent three years at Seton Hall under then-coach Tommy Amaker, when the Pirates reached the Sweet 16 in 2000.
“We are excited to welcome Fred back to the Seton Hall family,” said Willard. “Fred has a great basketball mind and brings over 30 years of experience to our coaching staff. He is a proven recruiter who has a track record of attracting elite talent in each of his coaching stops. Fred enjoyed tremendous success on the recruiting trail in his first term at Seton Hall, and we look forward to this next chapter of his coaching career.”
Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.