Iowa Hoops: LaVall Jordan Q&A

Iowa Assistant Basketball Coach LaVall Jordan is excited for a lot of things this year as it relates to the Hawkeyes, one of them being that he won't have to suit up for practice any longer. Iowa didn't have many bodies late last year, but the Hawks infuse several new players with some experienced veterans this year....

Q: How do you feel this year compared to last year, starting out?

LaVall Jordan: Last year was a learning experience, getting in the door and you don't know what is here or what you need. This season, it's exciting to work with these guys and we have recruited most of them. To have them here and get ready to go is exciting

Q: What is the coaching dynamic like with this group? Six guys coming back, but seven new faces. It's like the opposite ends of the spectrum.

Jordan: They are going to have to come together. The good thing is I think the guys coming back retained a lot of the information we gave them last year. It's up to them to help the new guys learn as quickly as they can so we can all be on the same page. That is the idea.

Q: Does it make your job easier having second year guys now? You and Coach Cornette have talked about training the upper classmen to be coaches on the floor. You didn't have that last year.

Jordan: When I played my freshman year, we had five seniors. I sat and watched a lot, how things were done. They taught me a lot, I asked them questions. Cyrus, Jeff, Jake and the guys returning that picked up the stuff and were able to do what we asked them to do, they will help the young guys. Cyrus and J.R. had better help these young guys so they can have the type of senior season they envision having.

Q: Jeff Peterson thinks that some of his challenges from last year will help him going forward. Do you see that?

Jordan: I think he is a little more comfortable this year. He knows, he understands his role better. He learned last year with the good and the bad. It wasn't perfect, but he was able to learn and ask questions. Coach demands certain things from him and he now has an idea what we expect out of him. He is more comfortable with us now, and knowing his teammates. He knows the guys around him. If you are going to play the point guard, you have to know your teammates strengths and weaknesses as well as your own. Its more of a comfort thing with him.

Q: Are you more comfortable with him, in turn?

Jordan: He has had a great preseason and he has done a great job of mentoring the young guys. He has done a lot of skill work and drills, defensively, within the system and he does a great job of picking that up and passing that to the young guys.

Q: Are you comfortable with Anthony Tucker playing the point at this level?

Jordan: I think he can handle it. We will have more than one or two guys that will handle the ball. That is a good thing. We are going to be tougher to guard, I believe. You have enough guys that can handle and pass, and we have a few inside threats, we just have to put it all together and compliment one another. I think Anthony is more than capable.

Q: Will you be able to get minutes for all these guys? Last year you guys were down to like seven or eight guys at times.

Jordan: The good thing in my mind is that I have to practice less. Last year I had to suit up every day. We have guys that will have to sit on the sidelines and watch this year.

Q: How is recruiting going?

Jordan: We are excited. We are focusing in our guys now. Once this time hits, the focus comes back to our team. But we have some commitments for the future and we are excited. I think people are excited about the guys that are going to be here in years to come and we want to keep adding. It's up to these guys to establish some things; they did that last year, but we were not as consistent as we would like to be. I hope we have some carry over this year and the new guys can help us and it continues to go.

Q: Do you have numbers in mind? Class of 2010? I hear that the Class of 2011 is pretty good.

Jordan: We have to know who is out there. A lot of it is up to these new guys, seeing how they play together and what you need to add to get better. I couldn't tell you now, but we know a lot of guys out there in 2011. But those guys are a ways away. It's great to have guys on board. We want guys that want to be Hawkeyes, and it's a great feeling a couple of guys that have already said they like what we are about and want to be a part of it.

Q: Do you take one more in the Class of 2009?

Jordan: If it's the right guy. You can do more damage by just thinking you have to fill a spot. If we find the right guy and we think he compliments these guys, we will take him. Other than that, we are happy with the guys we have and we are ready to go.

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