Profile: Randy Foye

Tom Birner

It is no secret that this year’s freshman class has been one of the most highly praised throughout the entire nation. This new infusion of young talent will give the nationally recognized Villanova men’s basketball team a needed boost that will hopefully drive them far beyond the expected NCAA tourney bid.

One member of the incoming freshman class who will be depended on to contribute is guard Randy Foye. Standing at 6-foot-3-inches and weighing in at 186 lbs, Foye has the ability to play both guard positions, which gives head coach Jay Wright a variety of ways to use him off the bench.

Foye proved his worth as an excellent basketball player for East Side High School in Newark N.J., where he averaged 22 points per game along with six rebounds and six assists per outing. Foye also led his high school basketball team to the New Jersey state group IV title, while excelling at baseball as well. Foye’s natural athletic ability and speed allow him to affect the game in a variety of different ways. Since signing with Villanova, Foye has been eager to contribute his multi-faceted game and get in the Wildcat mix.

“I’m so excited, but a little nervous at the same time,” Foye said. “I just have to go out there and do the things that coach asks me to do. I have to let the game come to me, but still play my own game at the same time.”

Beyond the obvious knowledge of his scoring ability, Foye can impact the game defensively and also by setting up the other players on the court. These great basketball skills are more than expected from the New Jersey player of the year and from a young man who was ranked as one of the top 50 recruits in the nation.

Showing flashes of his ability in the Blue and White game, Foye gave further proof of his skills in the exhibition game victory over the Hoop Group. Foye led all scorers with 23 points and nine assists. Both of these games provided sound proof of his playmaking ability.

Foye will have an opportunity to impress an even greater crowd when the Wildcats face off against No. 19 Marquette in the Coaches vs. Cancer Classic at Madison Square Garden, in a game which holds extra meaning for Foye.

“This game is so close to home, so I’m really excited,” he said. “All of my family and friends can come and see me play at the Garden. It’s a place that every kid dreams of playing one day and I am lucky to have that opportunity.”

Foye’s contributions at the guard spots will be appreciated by starters Derrick Snowden and Gary Buchanan. For a player with so much talent, Foye will be depended upon to make plays for the Wildcats and will push for significant minutes off the bench. Coach Wright can count on Foye to provide a spark, especially later on in the season when players tend to get tired and the postseason picture becomes clearer. Foye’s services will be depended on especially during Villanova’s late season run, which includes a tough stretch of conference games which will greatly impact their season. The mental toughness of the players will be tested during this stretch in particular, however, Foye already has the makings of a clutch player early on.

“Pressure is just another step in my career and I am willing to take that step.”

Foye’s ability to help in such a multitude of ways will only increase his opportunities on the court. Teaming up with fellow highly-touted classmates Curtis Sumpter, Allen Ray and Jason Fraser, plus those players returning to the team from last year, the Villanova Wildcats have a very special team. The bond that has developed between these freshmen and the entire team is already unbreakable.

“It feels really good playing with these guys,” Foye said. “We all knew each other in high school and we all knew how good we could be. It just shows how good basketball [in the New York area] is; it speaks for itself.”

With a strong starting five already in place, the players contributing from the bench will only make the game harder for opposing teams.

There are different levels of expectations for every member of the team and for the incoming freshman recruits. While the team expects a lot out of everyone, this incoming freshman class has a very high level of talent and thus a very high level of expectation.

Foye is only one member of an extremely talented ensemble and a group that will be depended on perhaps more frequently than most other players their age.

It is not out of the question that Villanova could have five freshmen playing at the same time; they are truly that good. Also, it is not certain that Foye will be coming off the bench the entire season. The season is long and rigorous and it is very possible Foye will need to get a breather rather than give one.

Foye is an extremely talented player from whom Coach Wright and the Villanova fans expect a lot. He has already shown he can play and will have many more opportunities to show the fans, and given the occasion, the nation, how good he is and how good he can become.