MU’s Chartouny experiences radical change of venues
Guard has moved on from small arena to Fiserv Forum
Joseph Chartouny’s college basketball experience has changed dramatically since transferring to Marquette for his final season of eligibility.
In his three years at Fordham, Chartouny played home games at Rose Hill Gymnasium on the school’s Bronx campus in New York.
The 3,200-seat barn was built in 1925 and is one of the oldest venues in college hoops. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, then a teenager named Lew
Alcindor, played his final high school game in 1966 at Rose Hill.
“First couple games you play (at Rose Hill), you’re like ‘Oh, this is pretty cool – this old gym,’ ” Chartouny said. “But after three years you’re just like it’s just another (gym). It’s very small.”
The historic gym has detractors who think it hinders the Rams in recruiting. Former Green Bay Packers coach Vince Lombardi, a Fordham graduate, was trying to raise money for a new building before he died in 1970. But the games have continued at Rose Hill.
“It really looks like a high school gym more than anything else,” Chartouny said.
Now the point guard is playing in the state-of-the-art, 17,500-seat Fiserv Forum. The Golden Eagles play their second game in their new home against Bethune-Cookman at 3 p.m. Saturday.
“To see what I was playing at at Fordham and now coming here, I’m not taking anything for granted,” said Chartouny, who is getting a one-year MBA at MU. “I’m just trying to enjoy as much as possible that experience, because I know every team doesn’t have the chance to play in those big arenas. So I’m just really grateful.”
The Montreal native visited Milwaukee in April before making the decision to transfer to MU. He took a tour of Fiserv Forum before it was fully completed and was suitably awed.
But basketball is really what drew him to the Golden Eagles and fitting in with his new team is a work in progress.
Chartouny came off the bench in the opener against Maryland-Baltimore County and had two points, two assists and five rebounds in just over 16 minutes.
“I’m still trying to figure out my role,” he said. “I know what I have to do to get myself going, to help the team win.
“Haven’t done as good a job as I would have liked to, but it’s a process. And really confident that I’m going to get there. I’m not really worried about that.”
Chartouny is a pass-first point guard who also racked up 2.9 steals per game at Fordham.
“He’s good defensively,” MU head coach Steve Wojciechowski said. “He’s not a great athlete. You don’t necessarily have to be a great athlete to be a really good defender.
“I think he’s got good concentration and focus. He’s got long arms. He understands how to play angles, and he’s just got a knack for defense.”
Chartouny’s Fordham teams played deliberately, running set plays on every possession. He is getting used to playing in MU’s fast-paced, flowing offense and with speedy teammates like Markus Howard, Sacar Anim and Jamal Cain.
“I wouldn’t say we have clicked yet,” Chartouny said. “But at some point they will understand that if they run, I’m going to pass it to them and we’ll score most of the time.
“We’re starting to get there. It’s only the first game. We have a lot of games coming.”
The upcoming schedule includes matchups with tradition-rich basketball schools like Indiana and Kansas.
“Just playing all those great teams, I didn’t have that chance at Fordham,” Chartouny said. “So now I’m just taking it day by day.
“But obviously I’m very happy to play those teams because in a couple years I’m going to look back and say I had a chance to play that team, that team, that team. So I’m just enjoying it. Enjoying the process. It’s been fun so far.”
Marquette graduate transfer guard Joseph Chartouny played at Fordham for three years.