Coach's Corner: Milestones and Cal

Lute Olson has his 700th win in the books and now he's poised to pass Fred Enke on the school's career wins list. How much does Olson want that mark? So much so that he didn't know in which game he could pass the coaching legend.

Coach's Corner is sponsored by Dollar Rent A Car. If you're coming to the game this weekend, or if you're simply coming to Tucson for business or pleasure and need a rental car, please consider Dollar. For more information and a special " Discount" click on the banner below.

Can you talk about these milestones you keep reaching? How do you feel about them?

Lute Olson:
"In looking back, I didn't realize there were so many key wins on the 100s. The 100th win at Iowa was a key one (Feb. 3, 1979). The 200th win here was against Oregon State (March 25, 1984) when they were really good. It was a big upset by us. The 300th (March 27, 1988) got us to the Final Four (in 1988) with a win over North Carolina. The 400th (Feb. 13, 1992) was probably the only one that wasn't significant. Five hundred (Feb. 11, 1996) was Miles (Simon) throwing that 64-footer in. Six hundred (Jan. 8, 2000) was beating Stanford when they were undefeated and ranked No. 1 in the country, and 700 (Saturday) came in our first league game of the season.

"Those were big wins for us. Hopefully, there will be a number of wins still to come. Frankly, the time you reflect on things is when you're coaching. Then you have time to do it. I don't have time to reflect. We've got two really critical games this week."

What changes with the start of conference play?

Olson: "Hopefully, the intensity will be consistent. Like I've said, we're not an old team with three freshmen, three sophomore and two juniors. We should get better every day given the fact that we're still as young as we are. I think focus is going to be there. Focus always comes when you hit league play because you know that every game is important. If you lose one in non-conference, big deal. It's a loss. You don't want losses any more than what you should have, but now in conference, every game counts."

What did you think of Mustafa Shakur's performance in his first Pac-10 road game?

"Mustafa's not going to get bothered by anything. He works his tail off every day in practice. He knows only one way to play and that's all-out. If the pressure is on, he is going to be better than if it's a non-pressure situation. The two thing he needs to work on as he progresses is to continue to work on the leadership end of it - to become more vocal out there. The second thing is to improve on his assist-to-turnover ratio. He's turned the ball too much. Most of the time - and it's not unusual for a freshman - it's because he's trying to do too much. He doesn't have to do too much. He's got enough talent around him where he doesn't have to do everything."

You've said that you expected Andre Iguodala to get more triple-doubles, did you realize during the game that he was so close?

Olson: We didn't play Andre in the last 10 minutes and he could have had another triple-double. I had no idea he was at that position (9 points/8 rebounds/8 assists Saturday), but he's going to have some other triple-doubles based on the way he plays.

Can you comment on California's Amit Tamir and Leon Powe?

Olson: "He (Tamir) is a great shooter. You'd better not give him any space. He's a really good player, and he plays within himself. I really like the way he plays. He's a good passer as well.

"He's (Powe) really good. He's got great size (6-foot-8, 230 pounds) and he has a nice inside touch. He's similar to (Arizona State's) Ike (Diogu), but they've moved Ike outside more, where Powe has been strictly inside. But Powe is a great athlete. He can play."

Talk about this on the BASKETBALL MESSAGE BOARD

Wildcat Authority Top Stories