After a successful 2015 season, the Seawolves will be undergoing a rather large change. The team’s leading scorer, rebounder, and shot-blocker is graduating. But the team is losing more than power forward Jameel Warney. As the senior moves on to a hopefully fruitful NBA career, the Seawolves head coach will also be departing. Steve Pikiell, fresh off leading Stony Brook to its first ever NCAA Tournament appearance, has been hired as the new head coach of the Rutgers Scarlet Knights.
The support for the men’s basketball team only grew as this team’s fantastic run got underway. But the real question is how the fans feel about the squad going forward.
Ashneel Raj, a sophomore biology major, had this to say on Pikiell’s decision to leave: “I believe that coach had done his duty here at Stony Brook, and really set us up for success in the future from here on out.”
Junior AMS major Andreas Lietzau offered his view on how big of a loss Warney is going to be: “I think that with Warney gone, other players are definitely going to have to step up. I’m personally looking forward to seeing what Alonzo Campbell does next year, to try and fill in for him.”
Nicholas Alberto, a freshman electrical engineering major, viewed this season as a major success but was skeptical whether the team’s success would continue without Warney and Pikiell. “Losing a player as dominant as Jameel will be tough on us, but losing the leadership they both brought could be even worse,”Alberto said. “I’ll be cheering just as loud either way, but it’ll be tough to match this season’s magic.”
In a word, this season was indeed magical. The men’s basketball team galvanized the student body, and fans can only hope that their magic carries over to a new regime.