For Monmouth junior Justin Robinson this season might seem like it is going much faster than his previous two.
“We’ve been winning, a feeling we hadn’t had a long time here,” Robinson said. “It felt like last season we won games, but we did lose for every one too and the year before that, it seemed like the conference part of the season took forever because we lost so many games towards the end of the season. This group is a lot of fun to be around, I wouldn’t trade them for anything.”
So far that fun has been apparent on the court as the Hawks hold first place in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference by a half game over Siena and Iona. Yet even with their power conference busting wins, there has been no time for the Hawks to look back on their accomplishments.
“I know until we win a championship, we haven’t done anything yet,” Robinson said.
Their accomplishments to this date have been infectious, placing in third at the Advocate Invitational with the junior earning tournament MVP honors. Robinson broke the scoring record set by Kansas State’s Michael Beasley back in 2007, but said he didn’t realize he owned the record until after the USC win.
“I’m focused on winning games, if I had scored six points and won that game against Dayton, I would have been far more happier than setting the scoring record, but it was cool,” Robinson said. “I broke Michael Beasley’s record. He had a great college-pro career and he’s still over playing basketball in China. It definitely gave me a little bit of a confidence boost, just a reminder that I can still play basketball.”
Monmouth has started to find their groove in league play. Since their loss at Army they have won eight of their last nine games, but Robinson said they are still searching for a complete game out of their team.
“We keep making strides, but we haven’t played our best basketball yet,” Robinson said. “There’s always nights when there’s one or two guys that are clicking offensively and we lock up on defense, then there’s nights where our defense isn’t so compacted and then we have five or six guys in double figures. We’ve yet to put it all together and when we put it all together, that’s when this team will be very good.”
Ryan Restivo wrote the America East conference preview for the 2015-16 Blue Ribbon College Basketball Yearbook. He covers the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference, the America East conference among others for Big Apple Buckets. You can follow Ryan on Twitter @ryanarestivo or contact Ryan at rrestivo[at]nycbuckets.com.