"As well as can be expected, Dexter's in OK spirits. It was tough for him when he first heard it, because it was something he thought he had just tweaked, and he'd be back the next game. It was very difficult for him when he found out. But yesterday, we had nice little talk after practice, and he's handling it really well. He's a tough kid."
On how Stilman White ended up at North Carolina and how he's looked thus far:
"The game of college basketball has changed so much. When I was here working for Coach Smith, we recruited and we thought we'd have the guy for four years and you could make plans. You can't do that anymore. With some departures to the NBA, that always changes everything, and then for a couple of years there, we had the Wear twins and Larry Drew and they left. So that's a point guard that would still be with us this year and next year… But the bottom line is you can't prepare for those kinds of things because in the spring when you have those losses from your program, basically all of the kids sign in the fall, so there aren't many key people available.
"But we were looking for a point guard and thought we needed another point guard in our program. I've always felt like you need three. For us, we heard about Stilman and Jerod [Haase] made the contact and went to see him the first time. We watched him on tape and I went down to see him. He's a wonderful kid, so it worked out for us that he would willing to do this. He had scholarship offers from Utah, BYU, UNC-Wilmington and some other schools like that, but we laid out a plan for him that we thought would be good. He liked it and his family came up and they liked it, so that's how he got here.
"He's really been doing a nice job. To be a freshman point guard is just overwhelming sometimes and that's what it's been a little bit for him. But we're going to put his feet to fire here in the next couple of weeks and we'll see how he reacts."
Can you run your offense without a true point guard?
"We'll find out. Never had to do it… but we'll see. We're going to have some fun trying some things the next couple of days."
Can Reggie Bullock replace Strickland as that perimeter lockdown defender for you?
"They're different kinds of defensive players. Both of them together, you've got an unbelievable defender. One guy gets around screens, one guy can stay in front of the ball, one guy has more length, but they're very different kinds of defensive players. Dexter would rather just guard the guy and he didn't care about what was going on on the other side of the court, which sometimes was a big, big negative. And Reggie can get off and see what's going on a little bit but doesn't put as much pressure on the ball. But we're getting ready to play North Carolina State and Scott Wood has just been lighting it up, so there's a great chance that Reggie will be asked to find out how good he is defensively."
On the challenges of switching up the lineup:
"It's always difficult, because you do change the minutes, you do change the rotation, you do change habits. Kendall [Marshall] is a guy, as a point guard, who really studies what his teammates like -- where they like the ball. We know, for a fact, that Dexter's not just going to catch the ball and go up and shoot it, he's going to put the ball on the floor, and if he can do that, he's got a much greater chance of making it. And now, you've got somebody in the game that's doing it different than Dexter.
"So it takes a while to get smooth with the playing style … it changes. It changes how everything goes on the court out there. Sometimes those transitions are pretty easy, and sometimes they're difficult. So we're just going to have to wait and see."
On John Henson's play against Virginia Tech:
"John Henson was off the charts defensively. With the way we grade, he ended up with 44 good defensive plays. That's just off the charts. Most of the time, the guy that wins the defensive player of the game will have it in the 20s or the high-20s, but he had 44. Six blocks – he was just so active."
On the team's motivation for the Virginia Tech game:
"I was in there Friday morning with Harrison [Barnes]. He came by and I said, 'The feeling after the Virginia Tech game had to be so much better than after the Florida State game, even though I ran the crap out of you, I pushed you, I screamed at you, everything for a couple of days.' And he said, ‘Well, that was motivation, but Coach, there was another motivation we talked about in the locker room. We saw what you had been like after Florida State and there were only three or four days practicing after that. We knew after Virginia Tech, we didn't play for a week. So we didn't want to have to put up with you for a whole week, so we decided we'd better play.' Different motivations for different people."
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