In 2010, Buzz Williams, then Head Coach at Marquette University fucked over one of my favorite Philly ballers of all-time. DJ Newbill was in the midst of a fabulous senior season at Strawberry Mansion High School. Like so many others over the years, DJ was my lil’ Bro… The late, great John Hardnett brought DJ to my office in Camden after they decided to transfer him from Imhotep to Mansion following his sophomore season. John was emphatic… “DJ… when it comes to this school shit, listen to Del… Fuck everybody else… run all that shit by Del.”
From that day forward, DJ and I formed a close working relationship. DJ would easily meet NCAA freshman eligibility requirements and he ended up graduating with a Bachelor’s Degree from Penn State University. Mission accomplished… The road was never smooth… It was littered with potholes and speed bumps, but we got there… God Bless John Hardnett.
I asked my good friend and then Georgetown Assistant Coach, Mike Brennan to come evaluate DJ. I was convinced DJ would be an outstanding Big East player. Mike came to town on a Tuesday and, of course, DJ showed out. I forget the particulars, but he bussed dey ass. After the game, I asked Mike what he thought. “I gotta get (Georgeown Head Coach) JT up here next week to see him… He’s definitely good enough.”
“Good shit Mike… I appreciate you Bro.”
I immediately reported back to Hardnett… “Georgetown is gonna offer DJ.”
He replied, “I got (West Virginia Head Coach) Huggins coming in later this week.”
At the time, West Virginia and Georgetown were members of the Big East Conference. John and I were excited, DJ’s recruitment was finally reaching what we felt was a level commensurate with his ability… Da King of Norf was a high major player fo sho!
Saturday morning, my phone was blowing up… I’m getting messages one after another…
“DJ committed to Marquette…”
“Newbill is going with Buzz…”
Huh? Where did that shit come from?
Buzz had gotten hold of DJ on the phone on Friday night and he convinced DJ to commit to Marquette.
Hardnett was livid… “He’ll NEVER play at Marquette!”
A the time, I didn’t understand Hardnett’s vehement objection to the commitment. “Why you say that?”
“Buzz did that to block DJ from playing in the Big East… You had Georgetown come in and I had Huggins fly in, Buzz is being a dick. He doesn’t really want him, but he doesn’t want him in the Big East.”
I actually thought Hardnett was a conspiracy theorist… It all a bit seemed far-fetched to me…
Then, in early May, Hardnett died.
Eventually, DJ Newbill signed a Letter of Intent to play at Marquette for Buzz Williams. In doing so, Newbill forfeited ALL OPPORTUNITIES to play for other teams in the Big East. Hardnett understood this… Buzz understood this… I did not know this rule existed, neither did Newbill.
Then, during the summer, Buzz called Newbill one day and told him he rescinding his scholarship offer. Just like Hardnett had predicted, DJ Newbill would NEVER play at Marquette.
FUCK BUZZ WILLIAMS
I decided then and there I would never root for, help, assist, cooperate with or even be neutral towards any Buzz Williams coached team. In the clip below, I spell out my feelings and attitude toward Buzz.
FUCK BUZZ WILLIAMS
After a year at Southern Mississippi, DJ Newbill went on to have a magnificent career at Penn State. Since then, he’s become one of the finest professional players in Asia.
Well last night… Newbill’s alma mater, the Penn State Nittany Lions faced Texas A&M coached by non other than Buzz Williams. In what can only be described as poetic justice they beat the shit out of ’em!
Penn State beat da shit down Buzz’s legs!
It felt like Hardnett was perched atop the backboard, gently guiding Andrew Funk’s (Archbishop Wood) 30 ft 3-point attempts through the basket. One after another Funk splashed the nets… He made 8 out of 10 3fg attempts and went 3 for 3 from the free throw line. His teammate, All-American guard Jalen Pickett put forth yet another virtuoso performance… 19 pts, 8 ast, 7 reb and 0 turnovers in 40 minutes.
Truth be told, I was giddy with glee watching the broadcast… on at least 17 occasions, I shouted FUCK BUZZ WILLIAMS!
Micah Shrewsberry, Adam Fisher, Mike Farrelly, Mike Green, Josh Townsend, Seth Lundy, Pickett and Funk got DJ’s revenge and it was a beautiful thing.
On behalf of John Hardnett, I want to thank the Penn State basketball program from the bottom of my heart.
Good Guys 76
Texas A&M 59