Jared Homan: The games in Mexico are not necessarily our focus, it was basically the 10 days of practice when we get the new guys in here and see what practices look like. This also gives the coaches an idea of what the team is going to be like and what they have to work on.
CN: Division I programs are only allowed to take one of these trips every four seasons. Of the four teams you've been on, does it benefit this team the most?
Homan: I'd say this team definitely, because we have so many youngsters. We have five new guys. We're looking for these new guys to come in and play significant minutes, whereas with past teams we have always had a big core of guys returning. That's not the case with this group.
CN: What different things do you hope to learn about your new teammates?
Homan: We need to find out the habits of other players, their tendencies, and how they play. Basically, we just need to get to know them. These guys haven't been on campus all summer and I'm just starting to get to know them. It's good for team chemistry.
CN: Contrast this offseason from the one you endured last summer.
Homan: It was nice because if you ever had something that needed to get worked out, like gym scheduling, practice, or workouts, you could talk to the coaches and get it done. The Des Moines league was organized for us to play in. We had stuff to do all summer. The main thing that came out of the summer league was it kept us in shape a little bit. It also gave us some new competition to play against rather than just the same guys every day.
CN: Any certain message that Coach Wayne Morgan gave you or the returning players after last season's NIT run?
Homan: Coach Morgan sat (me, Curtis, Will, and Jon) down and told us to show the new guys how it's done. He told us what he expected out of us and that's been helpful.
CN: Give us some strengths and weaknesses of this team, as you see them.
Homan: I think the depth of this team will be our main strongpoint. Since I've been here it's probably going to be the most depth we've had. We're a very versatile group and will be able to run a lot.
"Defense and rebounding with the new guys is an area we need to work on at first. In high school or prep school, those two aspects aren't keyed on very much. The early start should really benefit us when the season begins, and down the road."