"We'll know a heck of a lot more after both games, but we'll know a lot more after tomorrow night. Studied some tape on Illinois. Dee Brown is a first-team All-American, player of the year in the Big Ten, led the Big Ten in three-point percentage. Is just a marvelous player. McBride is a guard we tried to recruit when I was at Kansas. Augustine is having a great year and in Dee Brown and Augustine they have two starters back from the national championship game. Brian Randle, who we also tried to recruit really hard at Kansas, was redshirted last year and he's having a great year for them. They sneaked by Wichita State and then beat Rutgers pretty handily. They've played five games and doing just what they did last year - they're guarding the heck out of you and sharing the basketball and passing it around.
"I don't think we'll see as many [three-pointers] as we did last year. I think they realize the threat they have in Augustine and Pruitt inside. When they played Wichita State on Friday night, they only shot four free throws in a 56-55 game. On Saturday when they played Rutgers they got the ball inside, got fouled a lot more and I think that's what they'll be doing [against us]. ...
"It will be a load for our freshmen because we're playing a team that's faster, stronger and more experienced than what we've played so far. Our freshmen have to be able to step up and grow up quite a bit. I think we'll play extremely hard and hopefully effectively."
On his recruiting approach -
"You have to look for ability first ... but then as soon as that happens, we look at the character and then academics. ... I'll take someone who's a little short on the academic side as long as they'll work really hard. I'll take someone who is a little short on the ability side as long as they'll work really hard. But I don't like to take anybody who's short on the character side. And today you have to look at how long, if they're really a top player, someone will be in school and if they'll be serious about school while they are here. Marvin Williams, I knew there was a great chance he'd leave after only one year. ... The boy went through his entire freshman year and never missed a single class. ... You have to go with what's comfortable for you and I just want great kids to work with. ...
"What I want to do is have a mix of recruiting the best players that fit in with what we want and at the same time have some guys who might stay around for 3-4 years. You need to have some kind of balance. I hope I never go through a year like we have now where I lose the top seven guys. But if tell me we'll win a national championship right before we do it, I'll take that deal. I want to have more stability with it and you can do that when you recruit a good mix. We do have a great group of freshman this year and we have on paper what looks like a great group of high school seniors that have signed with us for next year. But the one thing that's for sure is that David Noel doesn't have next year so we need to get our tails in gear for just this year right now."
On the five freshmen -
"They are such good kids. They're fun to be around. Tyler doesn't say nearly as much as the rest of them. Marcus talks more than all of them put together ... Today we were running a scrimmage situation and Tyler just ran flat over Wes. Someone asked Tyler, 'Did you not see him?' And he said, 'I overlooked him.'
"Tyler is going to be one of those kids where now we can't get him to say much, but I'm afraid that the longer he stays it'll get to the point where we can't get him to shut up. He's a joy to be around as they all are."
On the team's holiday schedule-
"We play Southern Cal on the 21st, and have flights out that night for everybody to get a chance to get home. I don't think we practice again until the night of the 26th. I fly from LA to Florida to see a tournament there the next day. I think everyone will get about four days at home."
On playing in future early season tournaments -
"I think next year we won't have a Christmas tournament, but we will have the Preseason NIT. So we'll hopefully have a couple of home games and if we win we'd go to Madison Square Garden. And then the following year there's a tournament that has the lawsuit we're involved with whether or not we'd go anywhere at that point."
On the low post game -
"I've always coaches teams that can score inside and outside and that'll be our challenge. Tyler's gotten off to a good start, though it's not the quality of competition he'll face later on.
On Hansbrough only committing five fouls thus far in the three games -
"He never fouled out of a high school game, but his nature is an aggressive nature and we've still got to be concerned with that all the time. We've got to do a better job of getting him the basketball in the low post and giving him room to work - and the best way to give him room to work is have some other guys make some shots."
On UNC football coach John Bunting -
"It was a great, great year for them. If not for one or two plays in the Maryland game, everybody would be so excited right now for football. I'm excited for John and his staff and what they're doing. ... John's going to be fine and is going to do a great job for us. His staff works extremely hard."
On the play of the returning players thus far -
"David has been just sensational and there's not one area of the game that stands out. He's done so many little things - in the locker room, at practice, during the game. Just to give an example, in the Gardner-Webb game, we were so scared and tight starting that game and our first two field goals David made both of those and sort of gave a little calmness to the team.
"Reyshawn hasn't been as consistent as we've wanted him to be. Byron needs to understand that rebounding and defense is more important than anything else. Wes has done a nice job giving us a lift coming off the bench and Quentin has done some nice things. We're not displeased with anyone, but David has been superior."
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