Pac-10 Men's Basketball Coaches Teleconference

March 3, 2010

Arizona Head Coach Sean Miller

On how he manages a big freshmen class throughout the season
“I think you have to really balance trying to make sure they are held accountable for things that are important, obviously like every player on your team. At the same time, there is a fine line of understanding who they are. They are so young and new. In our case, a lot of those players have prominent roles on our team. You really have to have patience as well. I think you find yourself as a coaching staff juggling both patience and making sure the mistakes being made, which isn’t really a good thing regardless if you are a freshmen or not. The one characteristic of this team here at Arizona this year is we don’t have a lot of older players who can show the young guys the way.”

On FR F Derrick Williams and the expectations as they go forward
“Well, I really didn’t know what to expect from Derrick. It became apparent that he was very talented. He is a really soft-spoken kid. He’s a fantastic kid who wants to do well and do the things you ask him. His talent far super-exceed our expectations. In his third college game against Wisconsin, and I have said this a number of times, when you look at how good of a team Wisconsin is, Derrick shot 21 free throws in that game that broke the Arizona single-game record for all players for free throw attempts in a game. He has been very consistent and has certainly earned the right to be in heavy conversations as Pac-10 Freshman of the Year and probably could be an All-Conference player if he finishes up strong this weekend. He has had a great year for us.”

When did you to think about playing the younger mores
“I will tell you that we are not playing for the future now. We almost have the luxury of playing everyday for the future because we have so many young players who have contributed. You come to a point as a coach in the effort to try to win the game you play the players that are playing well, performing well and giving a great effort. In our last game against Stanford, there were a number of young players who were playing well. We went with them. If we had lost it wouldn’t have been that big of a story, but because we won. Derrick Williams and Lamont Jones were such big contributors on the last play and I think it has become a bigger story, but as you know, our younger players have played a significant role on this year’s team. With that, we have had our ups and downs.”

On if the freshmen have come further this season than he thought the would
“I think all our freshmen have improved. [Lamont] Jones is the most improved freshman of all of them. He didn’t understand shot selection and what is was to play at the highest level of college basketball. He has learned and he has really developed into a really good player maker. You look at his shooting percentage and his assist total in Pac-10 play and they both have gone up astronomically from his early days in November. Obviously Derrick Williams has been terrific for us. Arguably, our team’s best player at times. Kyryl [Natyazhko], like a lot of big guys, the best is yet to come. I hope all the experience that he has gone through helps him a year from now as he gets physically stronger, you will see he will be a very good player for us. Solomon Hill is very similar. He has gotten better defensively which is something that he has had to work on to be better at, but he has done that. I really think the experience he has gone through by guarding players like he did at Cal, teach a guy a lot of lessons. Finally for Kevin Parrom, which unfortunately missed the first 10 games of our season and he is probably going to miss the ending, as you watched will be a pivotal  part of our program. I think all of them have really grown, individually some more than others. I feel good about the freshmen class moving forward.”

Thoughts on the job Kevin O’Neill has done this year with USC
“I think a number of coaches have done a great job in our Conference. Herb Sendek has done a tremendous job at Arizona State when you consider who he lost and where his team is down the stretch. Kevin O’Neill has done an excellent job as well with their man-to-man defense. Their identity of their team is exceptional and is great at it. The nations best defensive teams and it must be hard not to go to the post season, but he has done a great job there as well.”

With the team’s struggles in February, how important was it to get that win against Stanford
“It helps. Winning breeds confidence. A lot of times you can play a really good game and lose. I look at our Arizona State home loss and on offense we played some of our best basketball of the year, but we didn’t have any answers for them defensively. Some of which was our fault. Some of which you have to give credit to your opponent. Arizona State did a great job. It’s not easy to talk about good things in a loss and there were things in the Stanford game that we didn’t do a good job with, but you leave that game feeling confident. In our case, we are 8-8. You come into the last weekend playing for a lot when you consider our overall record and where we could possibly be seeded in the Pac-10 Tournament. There’s no question, especially a road win, can give a team confidence and it will be interesting to see if we can build on that.”

Thoughts on SR G Nic Wise’s last game in McKale and the return of USC’s coach Kevin O’Neill
“I really don’t have any thoughts on it. Nic Wise has really been a big big part of our program. From that perspective, the thoughts I have is he deserves to have a great week. It’s his final weekend here at Arizona and I can’t say enough good things about Nic as a person and as a player. I can’t imagine where we would be as a team without him.”

On if SR G Nic Wise may have too much emotion for Saturday’s Senior Day against USC
“Not really. As a coach you always deal with seniors. The last couple of years we were playing the last game for a regular season conference championship. I think when you have quality seniors on your team, who’s minds and hearts on in the right place, many times the emotions bring out the very best in a team. Hopefully that will be our case on Saturday.”

Arizona State Head Coach Herb Sendek

On SR C Eric Boateng’s performance (11-for-11 for 24 points) against Stanford last week
“Eric has really been playing some excellent basketball for us for some time. I think he has a good measure of confidence. He is also doing a very good job of taking what is there and not forcing things that aren’t.”

If the regular season Pac-10 champion wins the Confernce tournament, how would you make a bid for a second Pac-10 team to make the NCAA Tournament
“I am not in the case-making business to be honest with you. I do believe that our league is a great deal better now than it was at the beginning of the year and probably much better than we are perceived nationally. But having said that, I think the committee is going to have a challenging job because there is so much balance and parity around the country.”

Oregon Head Coach Ernie Kent

On Sr G Tajuan Porter breaking out of his slump and thoughts on his final weekend at MacCourt
“I had the biggest smile on my face coming out of LA for him to go down and play as well as he played in those two environments. Against UCLA on senior day where they honored the 1970 championship team with John Wooden sitting in the audience and there is Tajuan Porter who was 7-for-9 from three, that was a memorable moment for him. With about a minute to go and we had no timeouts, he grabbed that team at mid court and said, ‘lets focus and close this out.’ He was exceptional in the game. It was a proud moment for me to see him come that far.”

On his team’s playing well down the stretch
“I have said it all along, you should never give up on players and you try to never give up on teams because you just don’t know when they are going to get it. They always don’t come at the paces of coaches, fans or anybody else. With this team, they have been through a lot. They have hung in there everyday at practice and come back to battle. Like I have said before, this team has a run in it. Maybe this it it, or maybe we don’t know. There character is really good and they have allowed us to coach them. It was a good moment to have that success down in LA last weekend.” 

Years from now, how are you going to remember SR G Tajuan Porter
“I think he is at 1,700 points, and if I am correct in saying this, 1,400 points in Pac-10 games alone. Nine three-pointers away from being the all-time leader in three-point field goals, but there is a stat there, he is ninth on the list in steals. And when everybody was talking about him being a liability defensively, and of all the great players who have come through Oregon, there is Tajuan Porter who does all the scoring is ninth on the career-list in steals. It really goes when you really understand the game, you understand how special that little guy is and the ability to get it done with his size.” 

Favorite moment of MacCourt
“Wow! As a player and coach there are so many of them. From the playing days when we beat UCLA my freshman year with Bill Walton and John Wooden on that bench and that ended up being the national championship team. As a coach, anytime you can you can go undefeated on your home floor and that was a team that won the championship. That was an expectational team and they won it in a year with I think two weeks left in the season there were six teams in position to win the Pac-10 Championship. They ended up going undefeated at home and that was tremendous.”

What is your favorite part of the building that maybe fans don’t get to see
“There are so many of them too. Probably being downstairs in the locker room, which is now the women’s locker room. Even in our locker room that we are in today, when the crowd is up above you and people start to stomp their feet to be downstairs and have that feeling come over you and all that energy in that building even before you leave the locker room it is a very special feeling. As of late, out Pit Crew, which are our students, we have allowed them to come into our locker room for our pre-game talk and have them in the back of the room and feel their energy as they start to cheer in that locker room. Fans don’t get to experience that type of passion in the building which has given it the reputation it has today.”


The emotion of the team after sweeping the LA schools and trying to avoid playing in the play-in game at the Pac-10 Tournament
“I think the emotions are a lot the same in regards to how good you feel about your basketball team and the growth of some of these guys individually and how they have come to practice and continued to focus in. It’s different in a sense that you are elated for their success because they have been through so much. For us coaches, we kind of push through it, but to see the players and their energy go to another level in practice and seeing their giddiness and the fact that it’s Tajuan’s [Porter] last week of practice at MacCourt for the regular season. Seeing how they are embracing Tajuan and Joevan Catron, it’s a special moment to see that at this time of the year.” 

On the coaches perspective of it being easier to win three games in a row, rather than four games in a row at the Pac-10 Tournament
“That is true. Particularly, we shorten our bench down and are not playing as many numbers. We do have the numbers to go four games if everybody is on their game. As for us, we have had a certain number of players who have been playing well. So obviously, it would be to our advantage to only have to play three games.”

Even with your fondness for MacCourt, do you think for the good of the program it’s necessary to have a new gym
“You do need a new building for where we want to go as a program. For where we want to go as an athletic department and institution, we need a new building at this point in time. There’s definitely will be some division there. Anytime you have change there is division going from the old to the new. MacCourt has served as a wonderful home with some unbelievable memories for so many people. This new building will be the building for generations to come. And it will be. It’s not just about the athletics department. Eugene as a community and Oregon as a state, with this new building will do for the economy and our representation of who we are across the country and everything else. We are very very fortunate that it is happening at this point in time and able to get on track with the economy as bad as it was. Through some wonderful wonderful people who have given donations and their time. To Penny and Phil Knight for their generous effort, we are very fortunate that this building is going up. People will look back and realize how special this building really was. It’s going to affect so many people in a positive way.”

On sweeping the Washington schools earlier in the season
“I think in both of the games it gave us a chance to really believe and really feel good about who we were and everything. We had some unfortunate things that happened the week after that knocked us all out of whack. It took awhile to regroup and then got knocked out of whack again. The trip obviously over to Washington State with the big controversial game, we were able gut through and get through the game. The bus ride because of the airport, the ride over to Seattle from Pullman to see guys sleeping on the floor of the bus and going through the path and looking at all the ice with the frozen waterfalls. Then in Seattle where we haven’t had a great deal of success, with that great crowd they have up there. To be able to win a game up there and come out of there with a win we felt pretty good about ourselves.”

On is his team is more relaxed on the road
“I think we have an ability, on the road, to quiet what I call the noise around us. And we can control our environment a little better with the noise around us. We do tend to come together a little more on the road. However, with that being said this weekend is a big weekend with Tajuan Porter and Joevan Catron and senior weekend. We could of want the noise because we want the energy in the building. I would say yes. We are one of those teams who tend to focus better when we are out by ourselves.”


Oregon State Head Coach Craig Robinson

On where Washington SR F Quincy Pondexter ranks in the best players in the Pac-10 and the problems he presents
“I think he ranks right at the top, at least from our vantage point because he has played so well against us in the short period of time I have been here. And I think the main problems he poses for us is he’s got great athleticism and great ability to beat you different ways than just scoring. He is a great rebounder. He poses some problems on defense and he plays hard all the time. You have a lot going for you and he is a senior. He has that knowledge and experience that just make him a tough guard.”

What are the differences in his team and Washington State since the last time the met (Jan. 2, 2010)
“Some much time as gone by. I just think we know a little more about who we are now then we did then. I think we are a much better defensive team than we were at the beginning of the season. I think the roles that he of our guys play is more defined than it was at the beginning of the year. The same can be said for Washington State. I think early on that game could have gone either way and I would imagine it would be the same way Thursday. The problems still remain. We have to find a way to keep Klay Thompson from going crazy and from DeAngelo Casto from killing us on the boards.”

Does he feel like his team is peeking 
“You know it’s so hard to say if we are peaking. I think we are playing well. While sometimes it doesn’t show on the scoreboard, I like our effort in every single game. I think we have very consistent defense and have been inconsistent on offense, but we are playing hard enough that we can be in every game we play. I would like to think we are peaking. When we are so inconsistent on offense I am am reluctant to sat that. I certainly think from a confidence standpoint and a defensive standpoint we have played as well as we have played.”

On SR C Roeland Schaftenaar’s recent struggles on offense
“He has sort of been off on offense all year long, but he has given us more on the defensive end and given us more rebounds. We can afford to ride with him being a little bit off on offense. I would agree and I think he would agree that it has been a tough season for him on offense and part of that is because it’s his second time around playing the way we play. People are sort of keying in on him now.”

On signing an extension with Oregon State
“I couldn’t be happier. Like I said in the press release, it’s flattering that the university has committed to me and is showing a commitment for the program and getting us back to where Oregon State has been historically. I am honored to be entrusted with that. I look forward to getting things turned around and competing at the top of the league each year.” 

Thoughts on seniors who have helped turn around the program
“I always find it funny that coaches view guys as other people’s guys and my guys. Once you take the job, the guys you have become your guys and that’s exactly what are seniors have done. They have been more than willing to be taught. I couldn’t be more pleased with that. I tell them everyday at practice that I wish I them when they were freshmen.”

Any talks abut going back to the CBI to defend your title
“Actually we have not talked about it. I will be the first to say that I am always in favor of playing more. I think I said last year at the end of the year, if there was a tournament for the last 16 teams and we were on that list, then we would play.”


USC Head Coach Kevin O’Neill

On any extra emotion of the last game of the season being at Arizona
“None whatsoever. To me it’s just another game against a quality team. I have great respect for Arizona and their tradition. I loved my time in Tucson, but it’s just another game. It’s unfortunately our last game of the year, but it’s just another outing.”

On if his team will be up for the final two games of the season
“I will interested to see ho our guys react. Until this past weekend we were playing for something of a tangible goal of some sort. I think our guys have competed hard all year. We haven’t shot the ball at all the last three games and turned it over. Basically we are a little fried as a team. I don’t know how we will react over these last two games being that we really have nothing to play for like the Pac-10 Tournament of anything like that.”

Thoughts on having a conference tournament
“I haven’t been around college of late to know if conference tournaments are good. Conference tournaments make money and people who struggled during the year, it gives them an opportunity to make the NCAA Tournament. I heard [Oregon State’s] Craig [Robinson] say that he is in favor of playing as many games as you can. I like conference tournaments with that idea in mind. And the fact that it gives everybody a chance to go to the NCAA Tournament, it has some value to it also. I really don’t have an opinion one way or another.”

On his team being swept last weekend against Oregon and Oregon State
“We just shot poorly and took care of the ball poorly. I think our team was a little bit worn down. We had a lot of guys play minutes that they have never had to do before. It’s certainly not an excuse for losing the games at home, but at the same time we have not played the same way the last couple of games. We have defended well. When you give up 50 and 49 [points] at home you should win. We just weren’t able to get it done. Our guys have played extremely hard all year and in many ways overachieved all year. Hopefully we can muster up a couple of good games this weekend.”

Does it remind you of all what you had at Arizona the last couple of years
“The difference was we had three pros. You had Jordan [Hill], Chase [Budinger] and Jerryd Bayless who were all NBA level players, obviously. We had some injuries with Nic [Wise] that season that really hurt us, but we had an abundance of talent in short numbers. We weren’t very deep and we were young, but they were talented guys.”

Washington State Head Coach Ken Bone

On FR G Reggie Moore and SO G Klay Thompson struggling with their jump shots
“We are not blessed with a team with a lot of good shooters. When I was at Portland State I think we shot 40 percent from the three-point line the last two years and had three guys who were between 43 precent and 47 percent from the three-point line. So it was hard for teams to matchup because you always had different threats out there. We do not have that right now. We had a little bit of that going in the beginning of the year, but during the Pac-10 season we did not shoot the three-point ball well. Teams can afford to focus on Klay and Reggie because we don’t have other threats on the arc. We will continue to do the same thing we have done all season long. We are not going to change our offense. We are going to continue to try to get the ball to better shooters. We are going to try to get the ball inside to have an inside presence. We have worked on setting better screens. We have worked on coming off screens tighter, but other than that we are going to continue to do the things we have been working on all season long since October.”

Do you dismiss the theory that Reggie Moore and Klay Thompson have hit a wall
“There are a ton of theories if you listen to enough of them. Maybe they have. Maybe they have hit a wall. It’s just endless. It’s possible. I am not saying that it’s not possible. So I will go with it’s possible that they have hit the wall.”

Do you anticipate using Nikola Koprivica and Abe Lodwick more this weekend
“Yeah I do. I think we need to utilize are bigs. James Watson is another big kid who is really active the last few games and has helped us on the offensive glass.”

Overall assessment of the game last week against Washington
“I was really proud of our team effort and the fact that we played as a team. I think this time of year we have had our struggles the last month and a half. Not winning a lot of games, it becomes a concern whether your team is staying together to play hard. And yet, I thought our effort the week before the Saturday game against USC we played really hard and together. I felt like against Washington, our kids stuck with the game plan and busted their tails for 40 minutes.”

On the challenges of playing against Oregon State from the first time you played them
“The only difference is they are two months along. We played them the first weekend of Pac-10 play. So I think we played them on Jan. 2, 2010. So it was awhile ago. I am sure they are better now then they were then. They look like it on video. I think they are executing their defense better. They are running their offense better. They are playing a little quicker. So I think they can present some problems in those ways.”

On the progress of SO F DeAngelo Casto
“I don’t know about the knee situation. I think his knee has been pretty good most of the year, but he has been more efficient so we have tried to get him the ball more. I think it goes hand-in-hand. The more we try to give him the ball, the more confident he is and the more productive he has been.”

Stanford Head Coach Johnny Dawkins

On his arguments on why SR F Landry Fields should be considered Pac-10 Player of the Year
“Well, I think Landry has truly had a special season. I think he is a player that is not called upon to do anymore for his team than Landry has had to do with us. Lot of times people look at his points, but he is second leading rebounder in the Pac-10. You look at his blocks and steals and those categories he would be right up there. The kid has done pretty much everything possible for his team. Not saying that some of the other kids haven’t because they have as well. He has meant the world for us. And like I said, he has truly been one of the better players in the Pac-10 this season.”

On if being near the bottom of the standings does that hurt his chances of winning the Pac-10 Player of the Year
“I would say I understand. To the victors goes the spoil. We haven’t won enough games from the standpoint of where the Confernce is. This isn’t a typical year either. There is not that much separation between first and last place. If you look at it I don’t think there has been a year like this in our conference. It’s not that type of year where you have separation by a couple of teams. It’s been very competitive throughout.”

The importance of momentum heading into the Pac-10 Tournament
“It’s important that we play well this weekend heading into the Pac-10 Tournament. We did come off a tough loss, but my kids have been terrific all year in regards to bouncing back and that’s something that we will have to do again. We have had some tough loses. This isn’t the first loss of the season where somebody has thrown something in at the buzzer to beat us. It rarely happens and unfortunately it has happened twice this season. Our kids bounced back then and we have to regroup again.”

California Head Coach Mike Montgomery 

On if Jerome Randle should be a candidate for Pac-10 Player of the Year
“I don’t know that I’ve said anything about that. I didn’t want to battle it out in the press. Jerome is a very, very good player. there are times that he has just been spectacular. We win on Saturday against Arizona State and he has seven points but he manages and runs the show for us. Dilemma for us is that we have Patrick Christopher who is awful good and Theo Robertson who is also awful good. Jamal Boykin has also played very well. It seems to me it depends on how you want to define it. Is he the best player, is he the most valuable player? I’m just glad I have him. It seems to me a team being successful should be the bottom line.”

On the atmosphere around campus after the big win on Saturday
“The atmosphere is the arena was unbelievable. It was sold out, which was the first time this year. We have had good crowds, but this one was different. You sensed the bigness of the game. It was a very well-played game in the first half. Both teams were really playing hard and it was a one-point game and then in the second half we got away from them. I just think there were a lot of people holding their breath because many of them have come to a lot of our games and then in their minds they have been let down in may years. There was a great deal of pent-up emotions. This is not a place where that is going to consume a campus. There are just many things going on here. In that facility, at that time, it was as good as it gets.”

On making a run through the last couple of weeks
“I thought we had to play very well. After getting beat by Oregon State we were down. We just really didn’t play well. And then we got Oregon on the road and then faced two great Arizona teams. We played well. We played good basketball. It wasn’t just putting the ball in the hoop. There was more from the standpoint of defending and sharing the ball and managing all the little things in the game that we haven’t always done.”

On if they will rest players during the Pac-10 Tournament
'We don’t have the luxury of resting anybody. They have scheduled the tournament and we are going to play it and try to win it. I have four senior starters and it wouldn’t make much sense to do that and I don’t think thats the way to go about it. We don’t have great depth either, we don’t have 10 or 11 players that play, so we are going to go in and try to win the first game, see what that brings and then go from there.” 

On his move back into the coaching ranks 
“I think from the stand point of what was available, I thought I had a very good situation before, so the circumstances needed to be great for me to move. It was not like I wanted to get out of that situation specifically. You have to be careful with that. Of course you don’t know everything about a place until you get there.  The seniors we have now were all sophomores when I made the move and you also had Ryan Anderson who was a sophomore and they looked like they might be pretty good if you got in there and changed somethings. Of course Ryan Anderson left, but if you look at all the guys now who are on track to graduate and for the people here, so 50 years in any sport of not winning a conference championship, it feels pretty good.”

On if the team will get extra rest this week
“We will take a day off. We are not going to practice every day. We have been lucky I guess. We have had quite a few guys who have been banged up, but we have been able to patch them together and they have managed to play games. We have guys who have been getting out of shape because they can’t practice. So we will take a day off, but we have some stuff that we want to try to practice and work on. We have a history of playing better when our backs are to the wall but when things are going well we have a tendency to not play as well. Hopefully we have grown out of that, we would like to go in there and clinch this thing outright. We know we are going to have the number one seed. In my perspective we know we have one the Conference, but we would like to win the tournament. At the same time you want to try to get people healthy.” 

On the possibility of having a 96 team NCAA Tournament 
“I have no problem with it at all. The reality of it is that with the automatic bids, you are not getting the top 64 teams. So there are some true championship contenders who are getting left off. It would be different if you were getting the top 64 teams, but you are not,    so there are legitimate potential national championship contenders who are being left off. It would be different if you were getting the top 64 teams, but you’re not, its a little bit of a misnomer. Now what number would satisfy that you are getting all those teams I’m not sure, but it wouldn’t take that much more to expand the Tournament. The conventional thinking it would upset, the purists it would upset, but you are just adding an extra day, you are still getting to the 64 and the teams that got automatic bids, you are still talking about 1/3 less than a third of the teams in the Tournament.” 

Washington Head Coach Lorenzo Romar

On jocking for position to get a better seed in the Pac-10 Tournament
“Really in our case its not where you are seeded, its who you are going to be playing. I think that opposed to picking your seed, its more important to pick a team that is a good matchup for you. It seemed like on the road everyone was a bad match up for us this year. USC gave us a lot of problems this year. So that is more important than the seed. You would rather play a higher seeded team who you matchup better with than a team with a worse record who gives you matchup problems.” 

On the possible expansion to a 96 team NCAA Tournament
“I have been asked this before. I didn’t like when MLB’s National League and American League changed to divisions. So I am a a traditionalist. I didn’t like when the tournament expanded to 64 and now 65, so I think 96 is too great a number. This year it would be great if it was 96, for us.” 

On if coaches would like the expansion so their teams have a greater chance of getting in the Tournament 
“I think that would be true. But then again, I don’t know how that would work out. By adding a couple of games, would it be watered down, if making the tournament isn’t so important, but advancing and getting to a certain round is what you are judged upon, for job security and so on.So possibly. Not me, but possibly others would like it.” 

On coaching his last game at Oregon’s Mac Court this weekend 
“That is a special place. Goodness gracious, on the NBA level, the Boston Garden never has Celtic games in it anymore. But places like that with so much history its sad to see them go. MacArthur Court as we know it has had some exciting games that have been played in it. You hate to see it go. If I’m at the Oregon side and playing there and working there I probably want to get to a new arena because its going to be such as beautiful place. But for others of us its sad to see it go.” 

On his best memory at Mac Court
“I don’t know if there were best memories. I remember when I played at Washington came back and won the game there that we didn’t have a chance to do before to get our one and only win at MacArthur Court. I think there have been more sour memories if anything. I remember at UCLA we won a national championship and they were the one team that beat us in the opening game and they rushed the floor. I still see a guy named Daryl Parker making a dunk to seal the game so I remember things like that happening there.” 

UCLA Head Coach Ben Howland 

On coaching at Oregon’s Mac Court
“They have always had a great crowd there. They are very loud just because of the way the building is built with the low ceiling. Its a great floor, I think the players enjoyed playing there. On the sidelines there wasn’t enough room for the coaches. The seats are right on top of the floor. There is no room and it really makes for a good home court advantage. It is a building that I’m sure will be missed by the fans and the people of the University of Oregon. It was a great venue to play college basketball in.” 

On the treatment former player Kevin Love received at Mac Court
“There were a lot of things that were inappropriate being yelled at him and his family that the university later apologized publicly for. That was an unfortunate situation there. Specifically I don’t remember a lot.” 

On if he believes Cal head coach Mike Montgomery should make the Naismith Hall of Fame
“I do. I think deservedly so. What he did at Stanford all those years under such tough circumstances academically to get kids in and he built one of the best programs in the country there. At Montana he was always very consistent in his nine years there, even though they didn’t win the league. His first year in coaching was my senior year in college when I played at Weber so he has done a great job these last two years at California so I do think he will be put in the Naismith eventually.” 

On if UCLA would play in the NIT or CBI 
“Who knows. We are 13-15 overall right now. My whole focus is seeing if we can have a good game and give us a chance to get a win here on the road next game in Tucson which will be no easy task. They are coming off a great win in Palo Alto after an exciting shot their player banked in at the buzzer, so they have some momentum.” 

On the health status of Reeves Nelson
“Reeves is going to be re-evaluated tomorrow by doctor Steve Schwartz over at the Jules Stein Eye Institute here on out campus that preformed the laser surgery on his retina and his left eye. His eyes have to be dilated to do that. So he hasn’t practiced and hasn’t been able to do anything since a week ago Saturday. He has some goggles that when he eventually comes back we will have him wear. But whether he is available for Thursday’s game is anybody’s guess.” 

On if Reeves will make the weekend road trip
“He will be on the trip, sure, but whether he is able to play is anyone’s guess.” 

On the importance of a team’s seeding in the Pac-10 Tournament
It definitely impacts the two teams that will be in the play-in game on Wednesday and that is what everyone wants to avoid, including ourselves. If you are in that game it takes four games to win the tournament which limits the mathematical possibilities for that to happen. It took 25 years before it happened in the Big East, when Syracuse won four games to win the tournament a couple years ago. It has happened twice in the SEC  and one or twice in the Big Ten. Its very unlikely to happen. Its in the eye of the beholder. I know that we will have a problem with anybody we play. It wont be an easy matchup for us. So we are going to have a hard time with whoever we play, everybody will be a very difficult game for us, speaking from a personal standpoint.”

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