Post-Scrimmage Comments

Head Coach Herb Sendek and guard James Harden talked to the media after the basketball team's Saturday afternoon scrimmage at Wells Fargo Arena.

Herb Sendek

Was he pleased with inside play of his starters?

"We do have an inside presence but I'm not pleased with anything yet. We have a lot of work to do and sometimes our inside presence on offense is a function of our lack of presence on defense. But that's the trouble when you're playing against yourself. If you score it's like "gosh…the defense – what happened?' and if the defense stops then ‘what's wrong with the offense?' Every play can go either way."

Is he looking forward to the team's first exhibition game?

"Yes, that will be great for us. We're gonna scrimmage again tomorrow (Sunday) with officials, we'll go three periods tomorrow. We have only 11 healthy guys right now, so no one rarely (rests) and that's good because we need to improve on conditioning."

Is Jamelle McMillan fine?

"He is. He'll do some 5 on 0 work as early as tomorrow. But he hasn't gone (full speed) since a week now."

Are you where you want to be at this point?

"It's early. But we only had two weeks of practice under our belts. But we have a lot of work to do. We need to get in as much as we can as fast as we can."

Are you pleased with the way the young players have grasped this system?

"I like our group, but I know how much we have to get better. But I like the guys and I know that we're gonna get better. Historically, we always had an open scrimmage on this Saturday. We've had some really bad October 27th scrimmages and went on to be a very good team. It's all part of the process."

How did this October 27th scrimmage compare to last year's?

"We've probably have a little more offensive fire power. That's probably the most notable thing. Our attention to detail, our ability to play together, our ability to sustain great effort…all those things have to come a long way."

What is James Harden brining to the table?

"He's a great player and those guys make all the difference in the world. We have the things we do, but you still need guys that can make plays, and even today he made some fun plays for the crowd." Can you talk about the play of Kradion Woods and his adjustment to playing a different role of an inside player?

"He has the unenviable talks of going against Eric (Boateng) and Jeff (Pendergraph) everyday in practice. Enough said. He made a couple of nice moves and did a good job."

How will the presence of Boateng down low help Pendergraph?

"It's always good for good players to play with other good players. The more balance you have the more difficult it is for defenses to key on one guy."

Is there more optimism on your part going into this year?

"Honestly I was excited about coaching last year. I didn't want to skip over any year. I really had a great experience with that group of guys. We would have liked to win more games obviously, but we learned a lot and right now we're focused on this group and very much thrilled about coaching them."

James Harden

How do you feel the team is doing right now?

"Well, we have a lot of work to do as you can see. We're just working to put everything together, just keep on working harder. In a couple of weeks when our first (regular season) game (starts) we'll be ready."

On his scrimmage performance

"My teammates did a good job looking for me and got me open shots. We're just trying to move the ball around as fast as possible."

After this team struggling last year, does he feel this group can make some noise in the Pac-10?

"Like I said, we're just trying to put all the pieces together. We'll see what happens."

Has the transition from high school ball to college ball been easy?

"I'm getting used to it now, but for the first couple of weeks I was struggling. I got adjusted to it and I'm doing a lot better."

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