Friday, November 19, 2010

Iati hustling into rotation for Danes

ALBANY - Sophomore Jacob Iati wasn't in the University at Albany's nine-man rotation at the start of the season.

Just eight days later, the 5-foot-10 Iati is expected to be starting his second straight game for the Great Danes, when they travel to take on Fairleigh Dickinson tonight at 7 p.m.

Iati (seen left) has stepped into the role vacated by fellow sophomore Mike Black, after Black sprained his ankle in the season-opener against Cornell.

Iati has been high on coach Will Brown's list so far this season because of his effort and hustle.

“The way I’ve been brought up is I can’t step out on the court and not play as hard as I can play,” said Iati, who scored seven points and dished out five assists Wednesday against Georgia Tech. “I can never step out on the court and be lackadaisical. It’s not who I am. It’s not my personality.”

Brown likes what he's seen from Iati in terms of hustle and he hopes it will continues.

Iati's brother, Jon, played for UAlbany and ranks in the Top 20 on the all-time scoring list, while also being one of the top 3-point threats to ever wear a uniform.

Jon (seen right) is the Director of Basketball Operations at Quinnipiac, but made the two-hour drive to see Jacob and the Danes play against American last Monday.

“He helps me out a lot,” Jacob Iati said.

The brothers are similar in size (Jon was listed at 5-9) and they both play like they have something extra to prove.

“He was more of a true scorer and I’m more of a true point guard,” Jacob Iati said. “We play very similar games, both shooter and we can attack the rim with a shot fake.”

While UAlbany is off to an 0-3 start and the team is young, that's something Jacob certainly doesn't want to make an excuse out of.

We’re ready to play and win games," Jacob Iati said. "We don’t want to ride that out all year. We want to win. Everybody in there and the whole coaching staff want to win. We are young, but we don’t care that we’re young. We feel we’re good enough to win now.”

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