Lickliter Addresses Tucker Situation

Iowa Coach Todd Lickliter met with the media on Monday at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. One of the main topics of conversation was the absence of leading scorer Anthony Tucker from the lineup during the weekend. Lickliter answered several questions on the subject. Read about them here in this HN.com premium update.

Do you expect Tucker to play on Wednesday?

Well, you're just working through it. You know what? I go into it expecting everybody to be ready to play.

So, why didn't he play against Western Illinois?

Just coach's decision. I go to practice. I watch. And we work through it. We pick who plays according to match-ups and the ability to be successful in different areas. There are other guys that didn't see the floor and it's happened in other games. And it will probably happen again for people.

Is he healthy?

Yeah, well, he had gone through a point where he wasn't feeling well. It wasn't, obviously, anything serious. The medical staff has released him and he's playing. But I think there is a recovery time. Obviously, he's well enough to practice. He's well enough to do everything that he needs to do. There still might need to be a recovery as far as energy and all.

Is it the flu or is it mono?

No, and I don't know what I'm privy to talk about. But I don't know the exact diagnosis. I just know when we were in Boston College, he was, I guess, under the weather. I hear from the medical team that he's not feeling well. They diagnose. The take care of him. Then they tell me he's OK to go.

Is this completely basketball related, too? It's not anything lingering from his suspension or anything else off of the court?

I'm not a lingering guy. We address things. We move on. Like I said, we've had other guys…I mean, Cyrus played the other night, but he didn't play a lot of minutes. It just depends on the situation.

Just from the outside, he's your leading scorer. He even led you in scoring at Drake when he came back. He looked, maybe at times, lost on defense.

You act like that's OK. (laughter) But let's face it, we've played well in his absence. In a team environment, it's like Ohio State. Lighty is hurt. Well, they're playing well anyway. That's what you try to do as a team. You don't know what's going to happen, and we never want guys to be out but if somebody is out we need to play well. We don't ever want to think that we couldn't continue without somebody. We want to make sure that we can replace individuals.

He's a very good shooter. That hasn't changed even when he was under the weather. He shoots it well. There's no question.

So nothing has happened since the first incident that would keep him out?

No.

OK, because there are a lot of rumors that are going around.

Is there, really?

Yeah, there was a lot of speculation going around.

Really?

Academics is one of them.

OK. I don't have time to, no offense to anybody, follow everything. Have you seen Ohio State play? (laughter) They're really good. And so what we try to address with our guys and what they need to do, and right now there's nothing going on academically, so what I want them to do right now is concentrate on basketball and take care of themselves. It should be a time if we are a little bit drained…I mean it was a drain to go through what we did for two months. You think about going to Las Vegas and playing two games and then flying back here and then flying to Boston College. It's just draining. Right now is a time to kind of rejuvenate.


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