Team prepares for Arkansas
The entire practice was a preparation for the Arkansas game on Monday. The team needs to focus on playing smarter and getting more stops defensively. SMU also has to prepare for the press with the style Arkansas plays. Nic Moore said they are prepared for ‘40 minutes of running,' but he thinks they can handle the challenge because of their depth and versatility. Keith Frazier added, "We got to execute and be patient. They want to play fast and we want to play our game. It's going to be tough in their house but if we're patient, we can kick their ass."
Coaches see chemistry starting to build
The players and coaches seem much more laid back and comfortable with one another now. The team joked around a lot, and there was much more communication between the players. Coach Tim Jankovich said the players have stopped blaming one another for mistakes, and they are starting to learn how to play off one another. "I think everybody was nervous about playing time and making a good first impression," Jankovich said. "Now, everybody seems much more relaxed, and we look like much more of a team." Coach Ulric Maligi said the players are starting to trust one another much more and it shows on and off the court.
Frazier reflects on first week
Keith Frazier had an eventful first week of the season. He said he felt pretty good about how he played in the first two games, but he is working on being more patient and getting better defensively. Frazier said he thinks the Mustangs are ‘one of the deepest teams in college' and ‘they are starting to come together as a team now.' Frazier also said he is trusting Coach Brown with his minutes and will keep being patient because he has to earn everything. Frazier told me he wishes the best for Jalen Jones wherever he ends up. As for Mudiay, Frazier said he couldn't wait to play with him next year. "That's a good friend of mine," Frazier said. "I'm excited he is coming here. He is a great player and he is coming to a great school."
• Crandall Head had a very good practice today. He thrives in an up and down system, and he is a really good athlete.
• Jean-Michael Mudiay had a nasty alley-oop from Ryan Manuel. Manuel also finished a couple nice dunks.
• Johnathan Wilfong struggled a little bit in practice, but he threw down a dunk in practice that caused all the players and coaches to erupt.
• Markus Kennedy missed a big dunk in practice and struggled a little bit, but he is becoming a much more vocal player and leader.
• Coach Brown was joking around a lot in practice today. He had Eric Snow and Ulric Maligi almost in tears a couple times. The players were also joking around with one another a lot more.
• Snow worked with Nic Moore on finishing his floater in the paint.
• Ben Moore is working tirelessly to improve his mid-range jumper, and it is coming along nicely.
• The Austin High School Maroons basketball team and coaching staff stopped by to watch the first half of practice. They were guests of Jay Duncan and have a game in Dallas tonight.
Hoops Practice Notebook
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