SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- The Orange got back on track last night, defeating Colgate, 78-51, to earn their seventh win of the season.
Here are four interesting things that interim head coach Mike Hopkins said after the game.
1. "We have off tomorrow, and I think these guys really need it." - Coach Hopkins decided to give his players a much needed day off on Wednesday. "Obviously, after the Bahamas and then the tough game against Wisconsin and Georgetown, they've put a lot of energy out. We're fighting until the end. I'm proud of them; they had to play a lot of minutes."
The day off will help everyone, but especially guys like Tyler Lydon, DaJuan Coleman and Tyler Roberson. These three are constantly engaging in contact in the paint for the Orange. Resting up is the best way to prepare for St. John's on Sunday.
2. "You know what, I just want to get these guys better. This has never been about me." - After earning his first victory as head coach of the Orange, Hopkins deflected the question of what it meant to him, and praised his players. He's known throughout the country as a player's coach, and Tuesday's press conference reiterated that opinion. "I'm happy that I get an opportunity to represent this great university and those kids."
3. "I tried to get some of the young guys in the game, it just wasn't happening. There wasn't enough energy from them that I thought they would bring." - That answers a few of the questions regarding Frank Howard and Kaleb Joseph. Coach Hopkins said they simply weren't bringing enough energy, which forced Trevor Cooney and Michael Gbinije to play 36 and 39 minutes, respectively. If either Joseph or Howard want to step up into the third guard spot, they'll need to pick up the effort.
4. "I mean, [Gbinije] is arguably, he's gotta be a Player of the Year candidate not only in the ACC, but the country." - Gbinije is averaging 19.7 points, 4.6 assists and 2.9 steals over 37.3 minutes per game. "He passes, he makes plays, he gets the defense going, he's high character, he plays great defense and that kid does not stop. To have a kid like that, it makes you a lot more confident and more comfortable as a coach, there's no question."