Dec. 27, 2009
COACH Tom Crean
On the team coming back to practice:
"Our practices have been intense, spirited, and competitive. We have come back with the mindset that we are ready to work."
On the focus of the team this week:
"We prepare for Bryant by focusing on getting ourselves to play 40 minutes of defense with intensity and effort. We want to have better ball movement, which will include better ball reversal and playing inside-out. And we constantly are focusing on building confidence which should help lead us to more consistency."
On facing Bryant on Monday:
"I've respected Tim for a long time, as an assistant coach and as a head coach, and I know he'll get the Bryant program going."
On goals for the team:
We're in a position where we have to do everything possible to build that intensity and energy from start to finish to help our team get better."
Verdell Jones III
On how practice has been since returning from break:
"Practice has been very intense. We've been doing a lot of conditioning, a lot of running to get our wind back from the break. We've just really focused on defense and rebounding. It's been very intense every day."
On having two weeks to focus on basketball before school returns to session:
"This is a time where we can really grow as a team and individuals. We don't have to worry about school so we can come in here and get extra shots in, get our rest and really focus on basketball and only basketball."
On what he does during the break period:
"I'll come in at night after practices, bring another player, and just really focus on our weaknesses and try to get better individually."
On how important a good start is for this team at the beginning of a game:
"The starting five sets a tone, and I think if we do that it carries on from there."