That did not, however, take anything away from the excitement of college basketball's opening day. All 16 roster players were in new their practice uniforms healthy enough and all ready to go.
Going in the expectations were this team had to be quick and play at an increased tempo. All that is true but one other thing that stood out is these players are going to play tough. Being timid in this group will not gain you any respect not will it gain you any playing time.
Here's a quick rundown of some of the best performers at the first practice.
Best Dunk: Justin Burns
Best Block: Frank Robinson
Most Vocal: Scott Cutley, Marcus Crenshaw
Most Impressive: Bobby Brown (He just looked very comfortable on the floor)
Best Rebounder: Andrew Green
Best Defense: No one really stood out today. All played okay defensively though.
Best Passer: Bobby Brown
Most Hustle: Everyone (It was the first practice)
Best Penetrator: Ray Reed
Andrew Green was much bigger and stronger than I last remember. If Burns can not match up at the five Green will have no problems with more physical players. Needs better touch inside but has a natural ability to box out.
Marcus Morgan was also better than I saw last time. Doesn't have the size of Green -- more of a four -- but he has a better outside shot. Post depth this year should be much more improved.
Without singling anyone out, all the players needs to realize sooner than later who the boss is and that he is always right. He really is. Don't take anything personally but do take it seriously because Coach Burton wants them to get better, know their limitations and play smart.
Scott Cutley is a leader and he is a perfect example of how to act when you are called out by the coach for doing something wrong. Admit it and correct it.
Bobby Brown looks even quicker than last year and looks to be in more control.
Frank Robinson missed a lot of outside shots but I'm not worried and I expect him to come out firing again at the next practice.
These guys are all very competitive.
Sloppy play on offense and defense but the talent and intensity is there. These guys will be fun to watch.