Brown Opens Up Practice
For the first time this season, members of "the Mob" were allowed to attend the SMU practice in Moody. About twenty students attended, received shirts and toured the full facilities. "Everywhere I've been, UCLA, North Carolina and Kansas, the fans were a big part of our team and a big reason we were successful. We used to always open up practices," Brown said. "I love situations like that where they can be more involved and be around our players more. Every time I come in here and see the fans it makes me feel great, considering where we were last year. And now, I want us to figure out if the season ticket holders don't come, open up those tickets for students because we need more than 800 students at every game." Even if there only 800 students, they have been making quite the ruckus. During practice, assistant coach Tim Jankovich said that the guards were complaining that their teammates could not hear play calls over the roar of the crowd.
Keith Feeling the Love
SMU students are still developing their own fan culture at the new Moody. One cheer that has quickly become popular is a long, drawn out yell of "Keith" every time Keith Frazier makes a bucket. It has not gone unnoticed by Brown. "Him coming here, the expectations and anticipation was so great. Everybody realizes he could have gone just about anywhere and he chose SMU. I think all the students and fans appreciate that and they want him to do well," Brown said. "And it hasn't been easy for him because of, one, the expectations were so great and, two, he missed all of summer while the other players were in summer school, working out. But (the crowd) helps him tremendously." Brown did not stop there in stressing the importance of the fans. "The more students we have here, the better it is for all our kids because they're part of the student body. I was a little nervous at the last game early on. I didn't see a lot of students and I saw a lot of empty seats. I was kind of bothered by it, but then all of sudden all of the student seats got taken. What I figured is they're probably like my son, they're probably studying," Brown said with a knowing smile.
Markus Feeling Woozy
When he was on the court today, Markus Kennedy played very well. His midrange shot was falling and his defense was stellar. However, Kennedy seemed to be battling a stomach bug and had to stop occasionally to catch his breath before he finally called it quits with an hour left in practice.
Sterling Doesn't Stop
Sterling Brown had a good practice today. He played tough defense throughout, even when he had to guard the much larger Cannen Cunningham after Kennedy left practice. He made a great play by driving to the basket and dishing to an open Nick Russell for the three pointer. Brown also shot the midrange shot well and stayed afterwards to work on his free throws. This was also the most talkative Brown has been at practice all season. He was digging into his teammates and challenging them. He seems to be gaining a lot of confidence in his starting role.
• Coach Brown mentioned that before he and Coach K.T. Turner went to Los Angeles yesterday they had planned on flying to Milwaukee instead. But things didn't work out. We can infer that it was likely to watch five-star 2015 recruit Diamond Stone.
• Ryan Manuel was extremely aggressive on the offensive glass today, often flying over the bigs to get the board. But he really struggled with his midrange jumper.
• Shawn Williams was hitting a lot of three-point attempts and long twos. He also made a great move along the baseline past Kennedy to make a reverse layup.
• Ben Moore had a massive block of Russell on a layup attempt.
• Nic Moore left practice after about an hour and did not return.
• Frazier stayed after practice to work on the offense with Coach Brown and Coach Jankovich.
VIDEO: Eric Snow on player development
Hoops Practice Notebook
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