Returning Players Meet With The Media
Aug. 12, 2010
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - Late last week, four returning players from the men's basketball team met with members of the media to discuss how the summer session was going as well as how the newcomers are adjusting. Verdell Jones III, Bobby Capobianco, Jordan Hulls and Derek Elston answered questions from the media and the transcript and links to video can be found below:
Here's a transcript:
On what the summer has meant as a team and individually:
BOBBY: "I would say from a team perspective we have grown together as a team. We have really bonded more in workouts where there is no guy left behind or hanging their head, everyone is picked each other up and that has been a big step for us.
"Individually, it has been great. I have been here both semesters this summer and it has given me the opportunity with Cook Hall being open all day every day to come in and get a lot shots up."
JORDAN: "Like Bobby said, all of us have been here both summer sessions and it has allowed us to bond and grow as a team.
"Individually, I have been working on trying to be a better leader and working on all the things I need to do to help this team out. We are working really hard and have improved on a lot of things, and we are excited to have the facilities that we have."
DEREK: "For me individually, it has been my weight and my jump shot. I have been doing a lot of things that try to help me be lighter on my feet and make quick movements.
"As a team, we are really playing as a team and building team chemistry. It has been at an all-time high for us. As soon as the new guys got here, everybody hit home with each other. We are all about the same age and listen to the same music so we all hang out. So all of that hanging out and being around each other will help on the court as well."
On how much easier it is to incorporate the newcomers now that there are some veterans:
On the difference between this year and last year at this point:
On how much of the improvement can be attributed to Cook Hall being available 24/7:
"It has definitely helped me out, in terms of the weight room and that kind of thing. I think everyone is putting it to good use right now."
On the new strength and conditioning coach, Je'Ney Jackson and the differences between his approach and (former strength coach) Jeff Watkinson's:
On what the expectations are for the team right now looking ahead to the season:
DEREK: "You could have asked that question last year and the answer could have been the same. But Maurice (Creek) got hurt and we are still just taking it day-by-day. Whether it is getting shots up or getting in the cool tank and getting healthy, you have to get better than the day before and take it from there."
Elston on what he wants to get better at this year:
"I weigh 230 pounds right now. We have two more weeks of workouts and then we get two weeks off, so hopefully my mom has that kettle going and I would like to be 235 to 240. But if I can't, I will play smart at 230 or 235."
"The difference for me in terms of strength is not just in my body but also just being a year older. Whether I have to post-up Bobby, Tom or Guy, I am not just being passive but putting up a shot that is consistent. Part of that is due to the weight but also due to the experience of going up against some of the better post players in the Big Ten like (Purdue's JuJuan) Johnson and (Ohio State's Dallas) Lauderdale. Once you get that year under you and you come to open gym, it makes things much more smooth."
On the impression of the new guys:
On what has surprised them about the newcomers play on the court:
On Guy-Marc Michel:
"I look at myself as one of the stronger guys and I cannot move Guy for anything, he is that big. We are looking forward to have that guy that we can come down in a half-court offense and throw it into the post and let him bang and get to the rim.
"To go along with that, he has an unbelievable work ethic. Since he has been here, he will come back to the apartment just drenched in sweat and I'll ask him where he has been and he'll tell me he's been at the gym. He is always in there. He has great touch and a good jump shot and hits his free throws - all of the things well that we need him to do. Everybody has been happy with him. He is a great guy and we all love him and he mixes with us well. He is going to be a great addition to this team."
VERDELL: "He may be the funniest seven-footer you will ever meet too."
Funny in what way?
VERDELL: "Derek is always messing with him. I live right across the hallway from Derek and every time I hang out with them it's hilarious."
"He's hilarious, he's so fun to have here, and he's a great guy."
How do you guys expect this team to change stylistically? How do expect the way this team plays to change?
BOBBY: "I think there are big things with the addition of Guy, kind of moving back to our natural positions. I think especially two years ago and then definitely last year. It would come game time and coach would say `Look, this is what I need you to do.', and whether or not you've done that before, that is what you thought you could do and that is what you did. That was what was asked of you but with the additions of Will, Vick and Guy, we all can kind of know that we are going to play the position that we know best. Derek and I can go back to playing the four, Tommy and Guy can hold down the middle, we can finally push Christian out on the wing. It kind of pushes everybody into a little bit more of their own comfort zone."
"So I don't how much stylistically we will change by the way the offense runs or any of that type of stuff. The addition of those guys is going to be great for all of us."
How has Christian Watford been this summer, has he been playing more of a wing or has he been going at it assuming he is always going to be a three?
VERDELL: "Christian is Christian. He's going to do whatever he needs to do to win. It's just about who is guarding him. If he has a small on him, he knows to go right to the post. If they don't do something about it he's just going to stay there and it's going to be a mismatch all day. The days that he is feeling it, he will just get you outside, look you off and then just pull up in your face and hit it. Christian has been putting in a lot of good work this whole summer. The jump shot is looking really nice, he has gotten a lot stronger and you will be able to tell that easily. He is getting to the hole and finishing real well. He is fun to watch out there."
How much stronger is he (Watford)?
Talk about how Maurice (Creek) is doing, getting back into things?
Verdell on gaining weight?
You can eat as much as you want?
Are you a salad guy (Capobianco)?
Check back soon