Feb. 20, 2012
COLLEGE PARK, Md. -
Quotes from head coach Mark Turgeon in advance of Tuesday's game against Miami at Comcast Center.
On finding a balance between building guys up and being critical:
"What I told the guys when we got off the bus Saturday was we really hadn't played a bad game since Puerto Rico. Now there's some scores [losing] by 18 at Duke, and 16 at Florida State, but they didn't really indicate how well we played in some of those games. So I told them, `Okay guys, that's a really long time since we've played not very well. So we'll let it go, and come back Monday and try to be better.'
"Our bus was silent for three hours coming home, and the only one really talking was me and I was just venting to my assistants. Everybody else was pretty distraught of our performance, so that's a good sign. We were not very happy with the way we performed, so I expect us to bounce back and hopefully play better."
On managing burnout and fatigue:
"It's hard, it's really hard. That deal we had Saturday, playing Thursday and Saturday was really tough. You saw some other teams struggle, that played that late Thursday night game and played Saturday at 1:00, it was tough on both of us. I expect our guys to bounce back, we have a tremendous amount of work to do today in practice. To me it's not about Miami, it's about us getting back to the way we were playing. So we'll spend a majority of time on us. Ideally this time of year with three games in six days I'd like to go really short, I just don't know if we can afford to the way this season has gone."
On how Nick Faust is handling the point:
On how Faust is playing now compared to the beginning of the season:
"He's doing the best he can, he's a little aggressive, he's an aggressive player. He'll make a couple plays out there, three or four that I'm not really fond of, but at least he's being aggressive. He's not playing on his heels, which I like. We've all seen the struggles that he had, but I think he's doing a great job. We thought we were done with that, but I think he's put both arms around it, embraced it, likes it and I think he's doing really well. The thing I'm most disappointed with Saturday is he didn't guard anybody. Nick's been one of our best defenders, I keep telling you that, but he decided he wasn't going to guard. He let his offense affect his defense, we all did. Nick's too important to us defensively to do that."
"I think he's much better, I think he's a much better player than he was. He has a better understanding, he's matured, he's been through it, and he's watched it. I think he's doing great under the circumstances."
On walk-ons Jonathan Thomas and Arnold Richmond being ready:
"Well I keep them on their toes more, they know they're going to play. I'm going to play one of those two in the first half tomorrow night. How much? A minute, two minutes, three seconds, I don't know, but I have to make our bench deeper than it is so we have a fighting chance in the second half in a close game. I thought we got a little tired against Georgia Tech when we had a nice lead, and athletically we were as good or better than Boston College. A lot of teams we play will be more athletic so I have to keep our guys fresh. We talked about it on the bus coming home as a staff, just trying to be a deeper team."
On how it's been as a former point guard coaching a team without one:
"It's been a challenge. I wish I could help guys more. As a coach, you wish you could help players more; I wish I could help Terrell and Nick more understand the fine line between a win and a loss, making winning plays, winning decisions, and you just keep trying with them. It's just hard, you have a crowd out there and you're getting up and down. It's just hard, you can't stop it every time, kids have to grow up and learn from their mistakes.
"Pe'Shon gave us everything but he's not a true point guard, he wasn't a point guard coming out of high school so I thought when Pe'Shon was in there he was playing the most minutes for a reason for our team. Pe'Shon tried to think that way, Nick's tried he's just never had to play that way, and Terrell just needs to score so it's hard for him. Terrell has to have enough faith that he's going to give it up and get it back and still get the shot for us. It's been hard, I just want to help him more, and hopefully I can down the stretch. I think we've really made some strides in practice, with guys and maturity. We'll see, with four games left we'll see if we can do something positive down the stretch."