VIDEO: Howland & Players

Head Coach Ben Howland and various players answer questions from the media after the Delaware State game. Howland analyzes how his team did against the slowdown Hornets, and provides updates on the injuries to Farmar and Fey...

Head Coach Ben Howland, Arron Afflalo, Cedric Bozeman, Darren Collison and Mike Roll addressed the media after the Delaware State game Saturday night.

Ben Howland, Part 1 --

Ben Howland, Part 2 --

The Players --

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(Howland has a can of Diet Coke and a bottle of water on his table. He never does drink.)


"Well that was the kind f game we expected watching the film on them last year this team we played was in the NCAA tournament last year. They had some gutty kids. We came out I thought we really had the right idea. We watched them play against Duke on the first round on film last year because they hadn't played a game this year. Duke really tried to com out and pressure them and it was 28 – 26 with three minutes to go in the first half of that game. We came out I the mindset that we were gonna guard them 23, 24 feet and in. We were up 13 to nothing. I was feeling good. Then all of a sudden they started switching the defenses and we started turning the ball over. We had numerous turnovers. Twelve turnovers in the fist half was the key stat of the half. They scored 12 of 17 points at halftime…..12 of 17 came of our turnovers; led directly to a basket.


"That's just experience. It's our guys getting used to playing a trapping team: a team that's just swarming the ball. I thought Darren struggled with that early in the first half and did a much better job half in the second half handling the pressure. I told him, "Hey don't feel bad, Jordan had nine turnovers in a game last year." It's a lesson learned for a freshman point guard. It's tough. He'll get more confident as he gets more time. You talk about presses. The team we have coming up is the King of the Press so it comes back right away: another opportunity.


(Looks at sheet of paper)


"I was excited about our team defense. I was really excited about Luc at the halftime with six boards, but he didn't score or get a rebound in the second half. We probably played him too many minutes. This was a long week; six days straight of hard, competitive games. We practiced hard Monday, played a good team on Tuesday and won, practiced really hard two and half hours before that Temple game which I would never normally do, but we had to get a feel for that zone. And then we won on Thursday. We walked through (we spent an hour and a half yesterday waking through shooting foul shots. It was a long week. I'm glad we finished the way we hoped to which was three and zero. Questions? "


Does 200 wins mean a lot to you?


"It's nice. There's so many players that I've been involved with not only as a head coach but as an assistant coach. I feel everybody that I've ever been involved with ahs contributed to any kind of success as a head coach. I've been able to stay in this business because of a lot of good player and a lot of good cohorts that I've been involved with."


Who was the first win against?


"It was at Northern Arizona. I don't even remember who it was. Until you said that I didn't really think about it. My focus now is that we have tomorrow off. We really need that rest. I reminded Arron…. Arron likes to shoot every day. He needs to take a little time off for those legs. He's probably averaging 35 to 36 minutes a game.


"I thought Ced did a good job tonight. Ced's playing well. This Is the same kind of tempo we'll see in our league twice against Washington State that we've seen in the last two games. We're gonna see something vastly opposite against Memphis where it's gonna be them wanting to go up and down, up and down, press, run, trap, get it off the glass, get second and third shots….. we'll be tested.


"I'm very confident Jordan will be able to play on Wednesday. We're hoping he'll be able to shoot some Monday. He won't do any contact in any practice till Monday or Tuesday. I expect him to play and start on Wednesday. "


What about Fey?


"Fey I'm less sure about. We'll just see how it feels. He can raise both arms above his head like this (raises his arms above his head). he's taking anti-inflammatory now. It's been 48 hours. Obviously we'd like to have him, and we need him. Hopefully he'll be ready to go as well, but I'm not as sure about that."


So this is a little like the Washington State, Washington trip?


"Yeah, you're right it is. You go from one extreme to the other."


"Well this is a great trip for our kids. We're gonna be in Times Square; the Marriott Marquis. You're right in the middle of it….. Thanksgiving and New York we'll be sitting there Thursday having brunch watching the Macy's parade. It's gonna be a lot of fun for our fans who get to travel with us and our players.


"Our mindset is to go out there and try to beat the 12th ranked team in the country who had a great win at Alabama.  That is hard to do to go into Alabama and win by 17. They have very good guards in Carney and Washington. They've got a very special freshmen; a six foot seven kid whose name escapes me right now. They're good."


Could you talk a little bit about the versatility that Ced has shown early in the season?


"Ced's really doing a good job. He played backup point tonight. So far, in three games this season, he's played one, two, three, and four, and he's defended all four positions. His ability to pass… oh and by the way, he had an assist in the last game that didn't show up, Mark and Bill, that we forgot to tell you about watching the game. It was an assist out to Afflalo on the right wing against Temple that wasn't recorded properly on the stat sheet. Let's make sure we get that added to his career list. But he's doing a great job of passing the ball, defending…. I'm excited about the way Ced is playing, especially rebounding.  He didn't rebound as much tonight as he had in the first two games, but he's doing an outstanding job.


Ben, have you coached a kid like that who can play 1 through 4?


"You know, we had Jaron Brown, the kid at Pitt that I had, is a kid we had play backup at the point during his fist year I the program. He had some similarities to Ced in that respect in that he could guard four different positions if he had to. Ideally you don't want Ced having to guard a four, but he's able to do. I think he's playing with some toughness. That's what I like about him. He's playing real tough."


How did you feel about Darren playing 35 minutes today?


"I think it's a great experience for him. I'm excited about Darren. I thought the jump stops he made…… I called a timeout. I think it was my last timeout or one of the last ones, because he made a great pass to someone in the corner for a wide open three, but he's jumping the air on the pass instead of being on the ground. He should be able to penetrate whenever he wants. His biggest thing to learn is to penetrate and then stop, and not pass on the run. Mike Roll's turnover the second half; he made a nice back cut. He's trying to pass while he's moving, and he threw it right out of bounds.


"Again, you have to credit their time, and also the fact I thought the game, the way then wanted to come and play offensively was gonna work to our benefit. Us being shorthanded with Jordan being out, and Janou getting his first Minutes of the year. I thought with them wanting to hold the ball for 20 seconds….. Great go ahead. We'll stand there and watch you do it. It was really working well up to 13-0, and then they played us even for about 28 minutes until we came on at the end."


Is it hard for a young team after their up 13-0 to keep their focus and energy?


"I don't know. We had some mismatches. It was a hard game for out 5 men tonight, because there was no one for them to really match up with and guard. You saw out there get beat a couple times on the dribble. I thought Lorenzo did the best job of doing what he's supposed to do defensively tonight. It's a tough team when you're basically playing five little guys out there."


Were you happy with the energy level of your team out there tonight?


"Yeah, I think it was tough for us today, Brian, to have three games in five days. To be short-handed. And again, the practice on Wednesday was like a game. Trust me. We had two and a half hours. Normally between games we don't practice nearly as long, but we had to get ready for that zone. I think that contributed…. You know….. I think we got fatigued tonight; there's no question. I think Luc's first half was very good, but the second half he wasn't very good. I think it had to do with fatigue. That's why that style of ball where you're…..  We probably played defense for 25 - 26 minutes tonight."

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