Sam Webb: Coach you’re up to #7 and people are going to www.votecoachbeilein.com Coach I know it is a cause near and dear to your heart.
Coach Beilein: “Two great things are happening. Number one, we have a chance there for the St. Louis Center to earn significant revenue for things that they need badly out there in Chelsea, Michigan and the second thing is that people that have never heard of the St. Louis Center probably thinks it is in Missouri. They don’t know that it is right here in Chelsea. St. Louis was a famous saint in Italy way back in the day and this is sort of named after him and so it is a great way for people to share all the great things that they have or share their time by voting.”
Sam Webb: Obviously last week got some really tough news on Caris and had to have surgery. Can you give us an update on how things went?
Coach Beilein: “Yeah he had successful surgery yesterday. I talked to him last night and really good spirits. The doctors were all very pleased with how it all turned out and they have high expectations for 100% recovery. He’s been through it before and he knows the rehab process for it. If this happens at the end of the year, might be very good for us, but as far as his overall development, this summer when he was not able to work out, I thought got in a little bit of the way of his development because how he approaches his own development. By the time our seasons over, maybe a little bit after, he’ll be able to dive right back into getting his body bigger and stronger and his game as well, improving his game.”
Sam Webb: It’s great to hear, especially about his spirits. I’m no expert on these coach, can you take me through how it happened. I read an opinion this week that said is due to overuse and that sort of thing. I’m curious if you’ve been able to get to the bottom of what actually took place here.
Coach Beilein: “When you break any bones in your feet, I think it is called the Marching Bones or things like that. Back in the day was when the soldiers had poor shoes that’s what they would break, they would march so much that they would end up breaking bones in their feet. It can be from overuse or it could just be a fluke. I broke the exact same bone when I was a teacher and I guarantee that I wasn’t overusing it. I just came down on somebody’s foot at the time, so there were a lot of different ways that you can do that. I think I was trying to play basketball in four weeks ago. Right now, they have it down much better. They put a pin in it, a very long screw in it and they have other ways to enhance the process of recovery. This should not affect him at all going forward.”
Sam Webb: Caris is there as a leadership voice and support for the team, but you’ve got to go with the guys that you have coach. You aren’t making any excuses and neither are the players and that’s kind of was the attitude that they took into the game the other day.
Coach Beilein: “Yeah we have to have that. We don’t have any choice. When you get into these situations where the unexpected happens, you have no other choice than to be optimistic and to give people an opportunities. It’s the only way we can think as coaches and we have that attitude that has to go to the team. This is not a victim thinking, feel sorry for yourself type of time. This is opportunity and it is growth mindset and let’s go forward with this. We were preaching it going into the Rutgers game. I don’t know if there is a whole lot of belief in it yet. Now as we go into the Wisconsin game, we’ll have to reinforce and we’ll have up downs for the remainder of the year, but we can’t worry about that. We’ve got to worry about developing this team so that by the end of the year we’re much better and by next year we’re much better. Just look at the whole idea of where we’re going instead of where we’ve been.”
Sam Webb: Belief and confidence because you go into that contest without Caris and then in the first few minutes you’re without Zak and you’ve got so many other sick players. Two guys in particular that I wonder about is with Muhammad and with Aubrey, with the load that’s being put on their shoulders right now I imagine after a game like that and after the types of games that they’ve had here of late that maybe the belief and confidence level has risen a bit with them.
Coach Beilein: “Every opportunity that they get to go out there is good for them and so it is good for us. So they’re getting more and more minutes out there where earlier in the year…in hindsight maybe we should have done more with them earlier in the year, but they didn’t show it in practice. They’ve got to show it in practice. They weren’t showing it in practice, so they don’t get that opportunity. Now they’ve grown in practice and they’re getting opportunities in games and for the most part they’ve made the most of it. So as they get better, their mistakes become fewer and the success they have will continue to grow and we as a coaching staff and their teammates will get more comfortable with what they can do and where their strengths are and where we have to work at their weaknesses.”
Sam Webb: I saw Zak try to attack the rim a couple of times. Didn’t see as much as him in the first half, what happened on that second foul call.
Coach Beilein: “If you swipe at the ball, whether you get it or not you are putting yourself in a 50/50 situation. They may give you the steal or deflection or they may call a foul. It’s so fast, it’s faster than the human eye can see, but you can’t put the ref in that situation when you have one foul. You just have to put your hands up, body up, they won’t call a foul if it goes against your chest, but if you let your hands leave your body, I could never see whether it was a foul or not. All I know is that you can’t put yourself in that situation. He’s got to learn from that because obviously he’s an important player going forward. As he sat there those last 18 minutes, I think he learned a very valuable lesson about. I was comfortable with it because of the fact that we were right there and ahead by two or something at the half and we were playing good basketball without him. That gave him a lot of rest so that he could play a lot of minutes in the second half as well.”
Sam Webb: You got some big minutes from Max and what about Derrick going from two points in the first half to ten big points in the second half for you guys.
Coach Beilein: “Yeah and each timeout, I watch how they run out on the court on timeouts and he could barely run at timeouts. So he’s has really been gutting things through here. A couple of things that happen when you have a nagging injury like that. The coaches can't push you in practice, so you might not get that cardio that you really need for games. Of course, when your in games and you’re playing a lot, the injury may come back towards the end of the game. We’re trying the best we can to manage it. We’ve got to continue to work on his cardio in other ways so that he is not banging on that foot. He’ll do that today. We won’t let that foot too much today, but we’ll get some higher heart rate out of him. That’s why we’re using Andrew Dakich now. We need somebody to come off the bench, much like Spike did for Trey Burke and give us another body out there so we can get more rest and manage this roster as we go through the season.”
Sam Webb: I know Ricky was dealing with the URI, how’s he doing and how is Spike.
Coach Beilein: “After the game, we’re not at 100%. Yesterday everybody saw the doctors and got their therapies and got a whole lot done. Hopefully, we’ll feel a lot better. Some of that medications takes two to three days to really get you right and we were in the middle of taking it. We’ll see what happens and Ricky was just having trouble getting up on the court and catching his breath. That’s symptomatic of what he had, so we just said okay, I love what Mark and Max did. They weren’t looking over their shoulder. They knew they were sharing their time. They were key in that game, they had 15 rebounds between the two of them.”
Sam Webb: I feel like Frank Kaminsky turned the corner against Michigan last year. He has been a different guy since he played you guys.
Coach Beilein: “I just watched a game this morning and it is something where I have it cut and I can do our whole offensive set, so between 6:45 and this phone call I watched the entire game. I went over and made notes and he was so good in that game. We weren’t so good and credit Wisconsin. I like to think the game at Wisconsin was a better indication of who we are, but it is going to be great game. Hopefully, it’s going to be a great game! We’re going to have a packed house. We have gameday here, but they’re a load because they post everybody. All five guys can shoot. Nigel Hayes is hitting threes now. So they got five guys that can shoot, five guys that can post, five guys that can defend, it is difficult. They won’t have a freshman walk on that floor I don’t believe. It’s going to be a match of a good experienced team with a young growing team and who knows. You never know what could happen and we’re going to fight like crazy in practice the next couple of days and on Saturday and try and get a W.”