Image: New York Post
Another year, another Metro Poll! We at House Enterprise and College Hoops Digest are so excited to bring you another season of coverage of the best teams in the New York Area. In this season's Metro Poll, we see the return of Columbia to the fray after the Ivy League's cancelled all sports last season, as well as a new voter! Before we get into the first poll of the season, let's do a quick recap of who will be voting on this year's Metro Poll.
Sam Basel (@samjuan2878)- Yours truly. House Enterprise's resident A-10 Hoops writer and win-deprived Fordham fan.
Jake Zimmer (@JakeZimmer12)- Co-Host of the BBB Pod, Co-Founder of House Enterprise, Sports Broadcaster Extraordinaire, Bryant Bulldogs broadcaster and superfan.
Will Tondo (@wtondo)- Co-Host of the BBB Pod, Co-Founder of House Enterprise, loyal Bryant Dawg, inferior football bettor to Basel.
The Metro Poll, 2021-22 Week 1
St. John's hits the top in our first poll of the season, which should be no surprise. With their veteran rotation, along with the arrival of Joel Soriano from Fordham, the Johnnies have their best shot in a long time at making the big dance this year. Iona, second in the poll, looks to continue their run as a MAAC powerhouse in their second year under Rick Pitino. Hofstra is no doubt the biggest surprise, opening at 3 in a season where they should make some serious noise in the Colonial.
Johnnies Open Their Season Strong
Undefeated in their first two games against Mississippi Valley and St. Peter's, the Red Storm are rolling so far due to efficient team basketball. Every guy in the Johnnies rotation has something positive to contribute, and in their first two games, they haven't kept it close. Joel Soriano, a junior transfer from Fordham, has been a major presence so far down low. His 4 blocks and 5 rebounds against St. Peter's gave the guard combo of Julian Champagnie and Posh Alexander plenty of cushion to work offensively, resulting in the pair scoring 22 and 12 points respectively. As long as the Johnnies can hold on against Indiana, they're bound for the Top 25.
Manhattan Takes This Year's Battle of the Bronx
Following Fordham's exciting home win over Columbia, they headed up a bit north for the second major Metro clash this season, this time against longtime rival Manhattan. While Coach Neptune's squad got off to a hot start, with Chuba Ohams taking control of the paint and Fordham's 4-out scheme producing solid buckets, Manhattan maintained their poise and waited for the right time to strike. After several missed opportunities to tie the game or take the lead, the Jaspers finally broke through with an Elijah Buchanan layup to tie, followed immediately by a Samir Stewart three pointer to take a lead that they would never relinquish. Despite the loss, Rams Coach Kyle Neptune felt that their was plenty of positives to develop as they move forward in the season.
Wagner Upsets VCU in Richmond
How about the boys from Staten Island? In probably the biggest statement win from a Metro Poll team so far, the Wagner Seahawks took down one of the toughest home teams in the country in the VCU Rams. When looking at how they pulled this off, you can easily point to the rebounds, a category in which Wagner outperformed the Rams 42-24, 17-4 on the offensive end. In terms of scoring, reigning NEC Player of the Year notched 20 points and 11 rebounds, bringing his average up to 17.5 points per game. After a shaky season last year, it looks like this team has matured into another team that could make a deep run in an already stacked NEC.
See you next week!