Morris says All is Well with Beilein

Michigan sophomore PG Darius Morris et with the media yesterday to discuss his recent friction with John Beilein, his team's fight to stop the losing streak, tonight's match up with Minnesota, and more.


Question:  Everybody analyzes every interaction with your coach. Where are you guys right now since your incident and talk about that a little bit?

Darius Morris:  "I think we're fine.  Things I learned from.  I made a couple mistakes and that's what coaches are here for to correct my mistakes and to make me a better person on the court and off the court.  He is just doing his job.  It is just like being in a family. You might have a disagreement, but your parents are always right.  This is the same way."

Question:  Talk about the challenge you're going to have in trying to defend their backcourt both Al Nolan and (Blake) Hoffarber?

Darius Morris:  "It is going to be a great challenge.  They've been playing really well as of late and they have been doing this for a while in this league, veterans.  The leadership that they provide for their team is huge.  It is going to be a challenge for us to stop them and we look forward to it."

Question:  When you see players like that, do you try to impart that same leadership on your team as a point guard?

Darius Morris:  "Yeah I think I do, but I definitely look up to the older guys and see how they are doing it."

Question:  The last two games you've seemed a lot more aggressive and a lot more control in the second half of games than first half.  Obviously, fouls have played some role in that, but is there a different mentality?

Darius Morris:  "That is kind of it.  You get down and my competitive nature just wants to kind of not be down any more.  In the first half, it is more about just trying to execute our game plan and try to get the ball to our shooters and stuff like that.  I just try to do my job as a point guard and try to get everybody involved and see where it goes from there."

Question:  Have you noticed that the team maybe plays better from ahead or when you are playing well in the first half and you have a good start to it as opposed to trying to come back.  Maybe the team is not built for a second half comeback.

Darius Morris:  "Yeah, we don't have enough veterans on our teams to be able to go down and be able to play successfully.  We've done it a couple of times but that is not the norm for us. We've been a lot better when we were able to get early hot starts and see the ball go into the basket.  I think that's huge and then also getting early stops, which also boosts our confidence up as a team.  It is key for us to get off to a good start."

Question:  What is the mood around the team right now?

Darius Morris:  "It is the same way for the most part.  Everybody, you don't like to lose, but it is has not hit that point yet, where everybody is kind of just down and there is no hope.  It has not gotten there.  Everybody is still eager to play.  We know we got a lot of games left, 12 or 13 guaranteed, so we know it is still a long season."

Question:  Do you worry about that though?

Darius Morris:  "Yeah.  It is always a concern, especially when you have people that haven't been through a losing season before in college.  It is definitely a concern, but we've handled it well, this little tough stretch that we've had."

Question:  Who is that rah-rah person or if there is a rah-rah person who tries to keep things positive?

Darius Morris:  "We have a couple of those guys. Walk-ons that are huge for us like Josh Bartelstein, Corey Person.  They are great locker room guys to have and great parts of this team. Really they just boost our energy because it's hard for them as they watch us play and they know it is tough to see us struggle, but they do a great job of bringing it every day in practice for the scout team and providing us with a good look of what we're going to face.  I would say definitely them."

Question:  Among the main guys?

Darius Morris:  "We all just kind of self starters.  We all try to stay positive, Tim (Hardaway), I, Zach Novak try to encourage people, Stu (Douglass); we all got the right mindset.  I don't think that is an issue."

Question:  Do you know there are 12 or 13 games left.  How often do you look at the schedule and just say, kind of pick out, maybe we got to pick out this one or maybe we got to get this one?

Darius Morris:  "Actually, the other day, I actually for the first time really looked at the schedule and wrote it all out and I envisioned ourselves finishing like 22-8.  That's how I look at it.  I'm always thinking positively until proven otherwise.  I really did that the other day.  I really wrote down and put a win next to each of our games coming up and I know that is not going to be easy but that's just the way you got to think, especially as a leader that is the kind of thing that you want to roll off on your teammates."


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