Gottfried: "They Are Very Good"

Gottfried: "They Are Very Good"

RALEIGH, N.C. -- Mark Gottfried knows that his team must play better if they are going to upset No. 3 Michigan.



"Our team has to get better. We feel that we can play a lot better. We have a great challenge Tuesday night against a good team on the road. More than anything, we've got to try to correct some of the things we didn't feel we were very good at and turn it around in a short amount of time to be able to compete with Michigan."

"They are very good, when you study them on tape. They have a talented team that can shoot the ball well. They have size, they do a lot of things well. We have to play really well, but I think we can do it, and our players are excited about the chance to go up there and play."

"I don't know if there is a great concern (over the last two games) because it's a long season. We're going to get better, we're going to become a better team as the year goes on. We feel like we can play better. I don't think it's one thing, we've mishandled the ball, we've not executed our offense, we've got young players learning how to use the offense, defensively there are a lot of things. We're not happy with how we've played, we feel like we can play a lot better and there is a great deal of improvement our team can make."

"Michigan plays four perimeter players around one post, and he's never in the low post. They've opened the floor up, they penetrate it, pitch. They do some creative things to get guys shots and all of the guys on the perimeter can me the three. They pretty much all can get to the basket as well. They are quick, Burke and Hardaway are some of the best guards we will play all year long. Those two together are two of the best combos anyone will see in college basketball."

"We'll have some challenges guarding them, but as we get better executing our offense we will be hard to guard too. I thought we were for three games and then for two games we haven't been nearly as effective."

"I'm asking TJ Warren to do a lot. Jordan Vandenberg needs to play a little bit more as an inside guy, and I think that will take a little bit of the pressure off of TJ to learn that spot. I like having TJ on the floor, but he has to have time to learn everything too. I have to do a better job making it easier on him."

"I like playing games like this. I try to put games on our schedule that are challenging, so this fits right in with our philosophy. This is a great opportunity for us. When you play good teams, it's how you learn how you have to get better."

"All three of the freshmen are walking into a situation with four established players. It doesn't mean those four guys have to score all the points, but you're trying as a young player to fit in as a piece to something that was pretty successful. The three of those guys have all done well. All three of them will get better as the year goes on and they get games under their belts."

"My take on all that is we don't have any control over where someone expects you to be pre-season. What happened to our team a year ago is simple, we earned. We have to earn it this year, and we have to earn it on the court, not what someone prints in a magazine. When you go to play, you better play, against whoever. I'm not as caught up in where we're ranked, all of that. When we get to February and March, that stuff will be so far behind us it won't matter anyway. We have to get better. It's early, it's still November."

"Scott Wood will be excited, and he will have a lot of people there. He finished the game for us the other night. Since I've taken this job I've talked to a lot of coaches in that area. Scott was one of those players that flew under the radar recruiting wise. He's got a chance to go back up there in his home area and play well, so I'm sure he's excited about it."

"We have to handle the ball better. We've turned it over too many times, and it starts with Lorenzo Brown. He has to be better, and it's something we talk about with him every day. When we become a team that is efficient offensively, our offense is going to get us in position for offensive rebounds. We gave Asheville 12 points in the first half on pick-sixes. We turn the ball over, they get a layup. You take those away from the game the other night, those 12 points, and you're probably up 7 or 9 and ready to play the second half."

"We've got two guys that can score inside and put teams in foul trouble. We've got to do a better job getting the ball around the basket a little more."

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