Transcript From Jim Ferry's Introductory Press Conference

April 12, 2012

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Jim Ferry introduced as Duquesne University Head Men's Basketball Coach April 12, 2012, 2:00 p.m. (EST) • Main playing floor of the Palumbo Center

Transcript provided by ASAP Sports

Good afternoon. Welcome to Duquesne University and a new era in Duquesne basketball an era of renewal, an era of success. Success on the basketball court is important to the University for a number of reasons.

It will restore the luster of the glory days of Duquesne basketball and strengthen the loyalty of our alums to the University. It will help us recruit a new generation of students to the University to be part of the excitement of a successful basketball program.

It will be a source of revenue for the University, funding basketball itself, but also helping with the University's general budget. It will further enhance Duquesne University's growing national reputation.

I want to publicly thank AD Greg Amodio and his staff for conducting a highly professional national search. There was considerable pressure on him to conclude this search quickly, but we were resolved to conclude this search right because of his diligent efforts. We have.

Thank you, too, to our many alums and fans for their patience with this process and for rallying around our new coach, our AD, and the program. I know we can count on your continued support. It is very important to us, and it will help us take the program to the next higher level of achievement.

Our new coach, Jim Ferry, has had impressive success on the basketball court. Those details are public, and others are better able to elaborate on them. But such success on the court was only a threshold consideration for us. Equally important were the positive intangibles that we had to be sure of in the selection process, and Jim has all of them.

He is a man of character who does not take easy shortcuts in developing a team. He expects hard work from his players, and he is a role model for it himself. He is committed to the academic success of his athletes and has a record to prove it.

He is a dedicated family man, and so we know that he will become an integral part of our University family.

Most importantly in our interview, I spent time outlining the religious and ethical dimensions of Duquesne's mission, and the responsibilities of a coach to uphold that mission. We readily reached the mutual conclusion that Jim's own personal commitments are a great fit with our University's mission.

Coach Jim Ferry and his team will have the support they need from me and from Greg Amodio to take our program to the next higher level of success. I am sure that on and off the court we will always be proud of Coach Jim Ferry and the teams he will produce to represent this great University. Thank you.

I just wanted to start off by welcoming everyone and thanking everyone for coming out today and being part of a great day and the start of a new era in Duquesne basketball. This is a positive time for the University, the athletic program and the basketball program specifically, and, as always, we appreciate your continued support.

As we continue to move through this process over the course of two and a half weeks and we took a look at individuals that were out in the landscape, I had a lot of conversations with administrators and coaches all over the country. So many of the comments that I heard regarding Jim were things like: Highly organized, a man of integrity, great character, a fabulous coach, and an even better person. And I believe all of those attributes are exactly what we're looking for in the leadership of our men's basketball program.

There is no doubt that we've found the right person who can help lead us to the next level, and we are very, very pleased to have Jim and his family here with us today.

As the process concluded, I had to make one other phone call on Tuesday to an individual who, unfortunately, did not get the position, and those are always difficult conversations to have.

I had a conversation with that individual, and we went back and forth, and I talked about the process and he thanked me for being part of the process.

He said to me, "Greg, sometimes you sit back and you say to yourself, why did that individual get the job over me or, boy, I'm not sure that was the right choice." And that gentleman said to me, "I can't argue with you. You have an outstanding coach and an even better person to lead your program." I think that truly says a lot about Jim Ferry, his family, and what he'll bring to the Duquesne family.

Ladies and gentlemen, our new men's basketball coach, Jim Ferry.

Thank you. First of all, let me say my family is very excited, and I'm honored for this opportunity. I want to thank President Dougherty and Greg Amodio for believing in me. And, Phil [Racicot], I had the opportunity to meet with you as well, and it was absolutely fantastic.

I said this a while back that it would have to take something special for me to leave LIU. When I met these guys, it was automatic. It just came together.

They talked to me about what Duquesne University is, and you could just see it. You could just see how it was just a family environment, a family atmosphere and great people. The sense of community here at this University, the commitment not only to men's basketball, but the commitment to the University, that says a lot.

Whether it was a commitment to me, the program, the facilities, there is a vision, okay. Greg was very clear with his vision. I could tell this was the right time and the right place for me, and I knew that.

I think we have some great people here. I think we have a University that is committed. You have a conference that is one of the tops in the country, and it's my job, and I take pride in that, in building Duquesne basketball back to where it belongs. I think Duquesne University, the city of Pittsburgh deserves a great, tough, aggressive basketball program.

We will do it the right way. Everywhere I've been, it's been an emphasis to do it the right way. To act the right way. We'll be great in the community. We'll be great students, great student athletes.

Family is very important to me, as you can tell. Obviously, I want to thank my family for being here too. I'd get in trouble if I didn't do that. But it's very, very important to me.

I heard Greg use the words organization, discipline, accountability. These are things that I hold very true to me that have worked very well for me and my programs.

Like I said before, I'm extremely excited to be here. I cannot wait to get to work. We met with the players quickly today. We're going to get to work tomorrow. We'll be tireless workers on the recruiting trail to bring in the next great student athletes to Duquesne for Duquesne basketball and for the Duquesne community.

I'd like to thank my staff that's here. Associate head coach, Brian Nash who you'll all get to know Brian. Rich Glesmann has come with me from LIU, and Danny Lawson who is also coming from LIU.

I've worked throughout my career, as I said, to do things the right way, whether that's to be a father figure, a coach, a mentor, an academic advisor, and we're going to continue that work here.

Expectations are high, and they should be. I think this is a special place. And I can tell you that I will represent Duquesne University in a very organized and professional manner with unbelievable enthusiasm.

It takes a community to raise a child. They've said that over and over. We hear that. It's so true. It's really what a community of colleges and Universities are. Whether it's raising a child into a man, or raising a program from not having great success to achieving success. That is our goal and it starts today.

I want to, again, thank you guys for the opportunity. I will not let you down. We represent this program to a high level every single day. Thank you.


Q. Coach, what assurances have you gotten from the administration that they're going to be as committed to the program as say some of the top tiered Atlantic 10 programs?
Jim Ferry: We've got a ton of assurances. Look at the commitment the University has made from seven years ago till now to where they want to be within the Atlantic 10. Their commitment to the basketball program I wouldn't be here if I didn't feel I had a secure commitment from everybody. Again, that is something that's pretty special about the opportunity that's presented right now. Not for me, but for Duquesne basketball and Duquesne University.

Q. Do you look at this job as a more attractive head coaching job today than it was say five, six, seven years ago?
Jim Ferry: Yeah, I do. I do. Again, because renovations to the facility, the commitment to be a successful program, the administration and leadership in this program. I think this is a great job. Obviously, as Greg saw going through the process, there are a lot of people that wanted this job, because it's a great job. It's a great city. It's a wonderful University. It's got an outstanding academic reputation. This is something that is pretty special, and that's why I'm here today.

Q. In doing your due diligence and taking the job, did you reach out to any other Atlantic 10 coaches or people who know the program well here? I guess, what was the reaction that you got?
Jim Ferry: I'm very close with several coaches within this league. Tommy Pecora is one of my very, very good friends, and they all had great things to say about it. Again, the commitment, the facilities, the changes that have been going on, they felt it was a great opportunity. Again, that was very, very obvious for me. I did not need to hear that from anybody else.

Q. You said you met with the team earlier. When do you plan on meeting with recruits who previously committed to Duquesne, such as Donovon Jack?
Jim Ferry: I'm actually going to meet with Donovon and his family tomorrow. I've already spoken with them, and we have a meeting tomorrow night at 7:00. So we'll meet with them. But we are starting. The recruiting process has already started. Not just with Donovon, but with everybody else as well.

Q. Could you talk about your playing style? You're a high scoring team. Would you recruit for that? Can your program evolve as the players you bring in?
Jim Ferry: Well, it's always been a philosophy of mine. I always liked to play up tempo, play an exciting style of basketball. I really didn't even touch on that. We recruit to my philosophy. Then you make adjustments to the players that you do have, but it is something that we like to do. In the past two years, we were number two or number three in the country in scoring. I like to recruit versatile athletes. I like to recruit basketball players. We're basketball players instead of you're a 1, you're a 5, you're a this. No, we're basketball players. We work on development, playing unselfishly and playing fast and aggressive. That's what I want here, and that's what we're going to bring here. Thank you.
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