Washington Huskies Men’s Basketball head coach Mike Hopkins held his weekly press conference today on Montlake, to talk about their recent win over Nevada, team rebounding and how the new players are coming along.
Here are things of note that he said…..
– Coach Hopkins said that it was very positive going into Nevada without Noah Dickerson and winning, but there are a lot of areas for them to work on.
– Coach Hopkins said it was next man up philosophy without Dickerson, and that the defense is ahead of schedule this time of year compared to last year, so overall the Nevada game was a positive experience.
– Coach Hopkins said it was great for the new guys to see what it was like to play against a top-level team, so they know the level of play that is required of them this season.
– Coach Hopkins said in the second half of the game the team showed a lot of poise and made the plays down the stretch which was enlightening.
– Coach Hopkins said the whole point of playing a tough team early is to gauge where you are at as a team, which is very important experience for the team.
– Coach Hopkins said you have to respect every team because on any given night you can beat anyone, or you can be beaten by anyone as well.
– Coach Hopkins said his message to the team is if we execute the game plan then we can beat anybody.
– Coach Hopkins said he likes where the team is at right now.
– Coach Hopkins said the team has focused on improving their rebounding and against Nevada it wasn’t great, but he was happy that they battled with a smaller lineup.
– Coach Hopkins said he was happy with the 19 assists his team totaled against Nevada.
– Coach Hopkins said the difference this year with the players being in year two is their communication on the court. He doesn’t have to call as many timeouts to make adjustments because the team understands things more.
– Coach Hopkins said the “Coach Hopkins Experience” for the players is about teaching them to be professional in life, and he likes to mess with players and throw curveballs at them from time to time.
– Coach Hopkins said the team is generally healthy and Noah Dickerson was left out of the Nevada game to be safe, but he expects him to be ready on Thursday night against Seattle Pacific.
– Coach Hopkins said he doest pay much attention to what players post on social media because you can hear just about anything.
– Coach Hopkins said he wants the players to have fun while playing and to enjoy the process along the way.
– Coach Hopkins said he tells the players that they have a chance to be a part of something special, and create a legacy of getting Washington back to the top again.
– Coach Hopkins said that Dickerson did “Heart Attack Hill” in 18 minutes compared to 55 minutes last year, and that Noah is extremely motivated for his senior season.
– Coach Hopkins said he himself did not run “Heart Attack Hill” but he walked it (as he laughs). He said walking is good because you feel ok afterwards! (as he laughs again).
– Coach Hopkins said rebounding in the zone defense that they play is more positional and he teaches triangle philosophy, with everyone getting into the paint to rebound.
– Coach Hopkins said last year the team was ranked #12 in the league in defensive rebounding and hopes they get somewhere between #6-8.
– Coach Hopkins said they focus on getting out in transition so other teams think twice about hitting the offensive glass on them.
– Coach Hopkins said “where focus goes..energy grows” and they are really mindful of team rebounding as a team. Long rebounds for guards in the zone defense has to do with playing specific areas and not going all the way back.
– Coach Hopkins said rebounding has been a major focus of the team and he doesn’t know if they will be great at it, but they will be better.
– Coach Hopkins said as far as the new guys go “we are not in Kansas anymore”. He said they have had great attitudes and come January is where they can really help the team and make an impact.
– Coach Hopkins said making the extra pass as a team is about trust! He said once guys trust each other more without trying to make plays by themselves is when creating separation during games will happen more.
– Coach Hopkins said with being ranked that he is happy for the guys but it means nothing! You have to go out and prove it because they have done nothing yet.
– Coach Hopkins said playing an exhibition game is about winning the game and also getting a chance to tinker with certain lineups.
– Coach Hopkins said that Noah Dickerson will be playing in Thursday’s game against Seattle Pacific for sure! He said everybody else is good health wise.
– Coach Hopkins said he is excited that the season is finally here!
Below is the actual video of Mike Hopkin’s press conference today…..