Hoop Notes

Lute Olson held his end of season press conference on Monday. Here are some of the many things he talked about.

*Olson said that he would be meeting with all of the players on a one-on-one basis but also scheduled a team meeting for Monday afternoon. He had met with a few players before his press conference and would meet with the rest before he left town on Wednesday.

*Olson plans on attending the Final Four. He will have a dinner with former coaches and players that Thursday night. He is on a committee about the APR and seemed anxious to have his views heard.

*Ivan Radenovic was invited to play in the East/West All-Star game at the Final Four. The game returns to its old East vs. West format after pitting college all-stars against the Harlem Globetrotters the past few seasons.

*Chase Budinger was invited to try out for the US 19 and Under team. The tryouts are scheduled for first part of July. If he makes the team he would play in the Global Games in Dallas and then onto an international event in Serbia.

Before accepting the invitation Budinger wanted to make sure that he'd have the opportunity to work on his strength while competing for the USA.

*Mohamed Tangara was invited to play on the Mali national team over the summer.

*While most of the team will remain in Tucson for part of the summer Kirk Walters and Jordan Hill should be in town for the entire summer in an effort to get stronger. Olson said he hopes to get Kirk cleared by mid-April.

*The team is in the process of submitting Walters' medical redshirt paperwork now, but probably won't know until June. Olson and the staff are very confident that Walters will bet the redshirt. He is still struggling with what Olson calls a "severe case of mono". He almost blacked out while participating in some light workouts a few weeks back.

* The coach has not heard what Marcus Williams is planning on doing in regards to the draft. The two had not met yet. He confirmed that Williams will meet with his family and said that there is a good chance Williams will travel to Seattle this weekend to talk with his family. He said a decision could come as early as next week.

*Olson continued to stress that the team has to be stronger and more aggressive. He went so far as to say that this year's NCAA Tournament was the most physical he had seen in his 34 years of coaching.

*He was pleased with Jawann McClellan's comments after the Purdue loss. McClellan promised that he would not only be the leader of the team but that he would make sure the Wildcats were a tougher team in 2008. Olson called him "a tough minded kid" and "tough physically". He did note that McClellan needs to keep weight down and keep rehabbing the knee. Olson wants the wing to weigh in around 205, and stressed that he has to be good about rehab when he is away from school.

*Two other players that Olson met with were Nic Wise and Fendi Onobun. Olson told Wise that he has gone through some of the exact same struggles that Jason Terry did his first year. He also noted that Nic made "great progress" and is a "totally different player" now than when he first arrived on campus.

Olson said that he told Onobun that he has to be more physical and more intense on every possession. He noted that he told Onobun that he believed that he had the physical tools to succeed at this level but that he still has a lot to learn. He did mention that he feels that Onobun can be a mismatch at either forward spot and said that he has as "quick a set of feet as Richard (Jefferson) has.

*Budinger is another player who has to get stronger. Olson also feels that the Pac-10's Freshman of the Year has made a lot of progress and that he has the opportunity to be as good as any player in the nation next year.

*Olson stressed that he feels next year's team should be very good. He likes the players that are returning and feels that the incoming recruiting class not only brings talent, but toughness and fiery attitudes.

He was quick to point out that Jerryd Bayless will not only play point guard at Arizona but will play point guard in the NBA someday. He said that not only is Bayless a tough competitor, but that he may actually have to tone it down.

He stressed that Jamelle Horne is a pure wing player and was one of the final 30 players considered for the McDonald's All-American game, joining Bayless who made the final cut and will play in the game.

He admitted that Alex Jacobson had an up and down year but that he still likes the potential of the seven footer.

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