The Bryant Bulldogs opened up the 2021-2022 season at home against the Fisher College Falcons in convincing fashion by a score of 122-54. Peter Kiss and Chris Childs did not play in the win due to a “violation of team policy”. Head Coach Jared Grasso wouldn’t get into it, but he did say they would be back on the court “very soon”. With games coming up against URI and Clemson for the Bulldogs over the next week, having those two back will be very important to the Bulldogs.
“I thought our guys played really well and hard in the second half. I didn’t like us in the first half” said coach Grasso after the game. Bryant outscored Fisher 68 to 23 in the second half and the Bulldogs shot 64% from the field. Charles Pride led the Bulldogs in scoring with 25 on the night along with 11 rebounds.
Leading up to Tuesday’s game, Grasso made it clear to his team that NAIA teams can knock off D1 schools and there has been several instances this year where that has already happened. That was partially the reason why Grasso was not happy with how the Bulldogs came out and started the game.
Coach Grasso said that the turnaround from first to the second half “was a product of me yelling and screaming at halftime telling them that this was unacceptable to play a certain way”. Grasso did add that in a game like Tuesday’s win over Fisher, it can be very easy to play to the scoreboard which is why Grasso was not happy with how they played in the first half.
“I found out that I can challenge them at halftime and they did come out and play the way I want them to play, which is something you don’t know sometimes with new guys” added Grasso. In the second half, the Bulldogs moved the ball a lot more and had 20 assists on 30 made shots. For a team that has such a difficult non-conference schedule, that will be very important for the Bulldogs.
As the second half moved on, it was clear that Fisher was tired and the Bulldogs size helped them out a lot. In 2021-2022, they will be able to control the area around the rim a lot better than they have in years past and not have to worry about taking 40 three-pointers in a game.
What’s next For the Bulldogs
Bryant will kick off their division 1 schedule on Friday night when the Bulldogs travel down to Kingston, Rhode Island to take on the URI Rams. The last time the Bulldogs played the Rams was Jared Grasso’s first game as head coach of the Bryant Bulldogs. The Rams won that game 97 to 63. Fans will be able to watch that game live on ESPN+ beginning at 6:00 PM.