PTL Transcript: Anthony Tucker Interview

Hawkeye Nation caught up with Hawkeye guard Anthony Tucker at Monday's PTL. The following is a transcript of that interview.

Q: Some fans seem to be looking ahead to the 2010-2011 season with the four recruits you guys recently received. Do you get a sense that some people might be writing off this season?

Anthony Tucker: They're fans. We're players. We control it. They don't. If that's what they think, that's fine.

Q: Do you guys hear it? What do you think of next year?

AT: We don't really focus on it. We're going to be competitive. We know we are. I guess it's for people to find out.

Q: If you hear it, does it motivate you?

AT: Nah, it doesn't really matter. We all want to win. We don't want to be 10th or 11th in the Big Ten.

Q: Do you feel like you're back in the flow now after the semester away?

AT: I'm starting to. Games are going to be a different story, Practices are going to be a different story. I'm just trying to get back in the flow for pick-up games and stuff. When the season comes, I'm going to have to step it up a little bit more.

Q: There been a concerted effort out here to work on playing point guard like you will during the season instead of the usual crazy pickup game version. How has that gone?

AT: Good. The whole point of the summer stuff that we do is to get better at the stuff you need to work at. So, I just try to do my best doing the things that I know I'm going to have to do in the games. You need to practice it and there is no better atmosphere to do it in than here. I think it's going well.

Q: What are the aspects of the PG position you feel real comfortable with and what are some you still need to polish up before the season gets started?

AT: My biggest thing is going to be guarding the other point guards in our league. A lot of times, they are just set-up guys. There are not a lot great scoring point guards in our conference except for Kalin Lucas and Talor Battle. But guarding that spot is going to be tough just because they're so quick and explosive. That's the biggest thing I'm going to need to work on. So, going against a guy like Jason Price tonight is a good measure.

Q: You guys do pretty well with help defense. Will that help?

AT: They can still get you in isolations. You still have to guard the screen and roll. They can reject screens. You still have to guard. I'm working on it.

Q: You've had some nice drives to the basket this summer. Do you think you'll be able to use your threat of the three to open up penetration lanes?

AT: I don't really look at it like that. I just try to make the best play possible, whatever that may be. I know a lot of people don't think I'm capable of going to the basket, which is fine. It doesn't really matter to me. It's something I can do. It's something I've been working on to get more efficient at it. I think it's going well.

Q: What have you seen this summer that gives you confidence that you will be able to compete at a high level this season?

AT: It's just seeing how hard everyone is working, how much work we've all put in to make sure we're the best we can be individually. Coach is going to have us playing well as a team. So, just seeing the dedication and the improvements that we've made has meant nothing but excitement from our standpoint.

Q: What's the chemistry like with this group compared to last season?

AT: I don't know. It's two completely different ends of the spectrum. I think we're more cohesive now with this group that we have than we were last year. But part of that is that people were unhappy last year. So, of course, there's going to be issues in the locker room and stuff like that. But so far, everyone is cohesive and we get along well.

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