Lowe: 'I Love My School'

RALEIGH, N.C. -- NC State head coach Sidney Lowe met with the media today to discuss the upcoming season. Here is audio and quotes from Lowe's press conference.

Sidney Lowe

"We have players. We have guys that are here on scholarship and that are healthy for the most part. We're looking at every position and seeing that we have a backup."

"You want guys to dream. I think [Gavin Grant] is looking at his teammates and sees that we have enough players. If we work hard and things fall in place, maybe things will work out for us. You like to go into the season feeling that way."

"I like the fact that people feel that we should be a better ballclub. I think we should be a better ballclub. No question about it. As I told our guys earlier, we still have to go out play. A lot of people didn't think we could do too much last year and we proved some folks wrong. We probably have to do it again. I told them, we had a good year last year, but we really haven't done anything. Everyone in this business know what the big picture is, and we didn't win it last year. We've got a lot of work to do."

"[Ben McCauley] is experienced. His attitude, in terms of knowing that he is capable of being effective, being a pretty good player on this level... He showed that he's capable of being a very good player."

"It depends. Certainly you'd like to have some experience at that position, but I think if your guys understand what they are doing, more importantly what we need from them, it makes it easier."

"The key for us is to take care of the basketball."

"I'm still learning. I'm learning everyday on this job. Just like I told our players, we really haven't done anything in the big picture. Same thing for myself, I haven't done anything in the big picture. Am I pleased with what I've done so far? Sure, absolutely. That's because I hear it from other coaches, people I respect, and some of you guys. It's impressive when other people tell you that you're doing a good job. That means a lot."

"I think our staff has done a great job of staying ahead in terms of recruiting. We have guys that have already committed for next year. We've got a couple that are ready for '09... we have one already in '10. We're ahead of the game there. That's what this is all about. It's recruiting.. being able to get those student-athletes to come here to perform and represent the university."

"I think the most important thing with Brandon was he started to understand that he isn't just a three-point shooter."

"[J.J. Hickson] brings unbelievable work ethic. When we do our individual workouts at 3:30, he'll already have his 6/6:30 am workout that morning. He still came to the 3:30. He brings unbelievable work ethic, works hard, he understands the game, and he's passionate about the game. He's talented.. he's a talented young man, he really is."

"I expect Tracy to really help us. He can score the basketball. I like our bigs. I like the fact that we have some depth there. There won't be a big dropoff when we go from the starters to the guys coming off the bench."

"They have to adjust. We're fortunate that we do have some guys coming off the bench that can play and give us good minutes. The game is going to dictate that. I'm not going to promise guys.. I'm going to play the guys that are getting it done. I think we can have great balance at each position really."

"They can't rest.. Ben and Brandon at times last year would take a play off, try to rest themselves, or not get a foul because they didn't think they could come out the game. We've got a different mindset this year. They know they have to get it done every second they are out there on the floor. It was something I had to say. There was some things I did say, but I think when you're looking behind you and you see that you have a teammate capable of doing the same job or better job than you can, that makes you play a little harder."

"I had the jacket all year. I knew which game I was going to wear it. Again, it just reiterated what I was telling our players before about certain games. Duke is a big game. Carolina is a big game. While some of our young men didn't quite understand that, certainly they got it. When I came out with that jacket, I think that helped them also understand this is a big game. That was just a tribute to coach Sloan, coach V, and all our fans... to let them know that I understand. I understand what this whole thing is all about. It's not something I made up. It's something that has always been. It's a big game to Carolina. It's a big game to Duke when they play us. That's a great thing about our schools. You've got great basketball tradition, and when we match up it's a battle."

"It's reality. It's not something where you just dislike, it's a rivalry. It's basketball. You have three schools that are so close in proximity, there is so much history and tradition there. I'm certainly not going to come in here and let it change. I want our guys to embrace it. That's what it's all about. You get out there, you're playing for your school, for your fans... when you walk out of that arena, whoever wins that game, those fans have the rights to talk. It's fun... maybe I'm a little more passionate about it because I played it. I really lived it. I have great respect for both schools, the players, and I have friends today that I talk to that went to both schools. It just is what it is. I want our kids to understand the history and tradition of our schools."

"It's hard not to be [excited being NC State's head coach]. It really is. I'm just me. I love my school. I love the job. I'm blessed to have it. That's what I do every morning I wake up. I thank the Lord for my job. I just want to represent us. I want to represent us the best that I can."

"This is the best basketball... ACC basketball. I'm coaching against guys that were coaching when I played. Guys that recruited me. Hall of Fame coaches.. that's an honor. I'm out there competing against them. To have them say some of the things they said to me last year, that was remarkable... they said some words to me that I will never forget."

"We try to educate them. That's what we try to do. We try to educate them on the history of our school... the history of the ACC. You make them aware of the championships, the players that have come through here."

"With this Internet... I always tell them to go google David Thompson."

"I took our team to hear David speak. He did a testimony last night over at Providence Church on Glennwood. It was absolutely amazing. I know David, I knew of David, I watched him play, but I had no idea that he had accomplished what he had. He started reeling off stats, numbers, and awards. I had no idea. I was amazed. I've already put this guy up here anyway. Now I learn all of that last night, now I'm staring at him like I'm six years old. I'm looking at him. I just gave him a hug afterwards... and he went to NC State. He was a special player. He told his whole story right there... good and bad. It was a great event. I had our guys there and they heard him speak. That was special."

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