Notes & Quotes: John Beilein and Zack Novak Preview Memphis

314983_259589897423454_113453778703734_731323_1457769000_n[1]John Beilein and Zack Novak met with the media this afternoon to discuss the experience thus far in Maui and Monday’s match-up with Memphis. Here are notes and quotes from both Beilein and Novak with links to published audio. (Audio links here: John Beilein | Zack Novak)

  • It’s an early measuring stick at this point in the season. “You’re going to really see where you are against these teams, teams that will be in the NCAA tournament. We’ll find out very soon where we are in regards to that and what we have to work on going forward.”
  • On what he will look for: “How can we handle the talent and schemes that we have to play against? How have our players matured and how are new players adjusting?” There are a lot of different things and we’ll just gradually understand. “It’s discovery still, how are they going to react on the national stage.”
  • On whether defense is biggest positive: “Yeah it has been although we didn’t feel like we had a great defensive game against Western Illinois” Thought Western Illinois was a very good fundamental team, “better than their record a year ago” and really worked the clock well.

  • “We tried to keep our package, both offensively and defensively, pretty small (in early games) but we still want to be able to look at things on tape. “I wouldn’t say we were hiding a lot, we were just trying to be concise with what we were doing.”
  • “Finally after all of these years I’m delegating… I’ve delegated a little bit more every year I’ve been a Division I coach but back in those years there was no delegation”
  • “I don’t think we will take the results in this tournament too much either way because it’s November.” It’s different than football, it’s good and can be positive but if we play incredibly the whole weekend it wouldn’t mean anything in February or March. I want to see where our improvement is from last year and what adjustments we have to make with a young point guard”
  • Going to have to use the bench more this week, wanted to get the bench more involved in the early season games but now we are going to have to. “I actually look forward to that”
  • On Memphis: Almost everybody back from last year. “A very long and athletic team that will try to speed us up and play at a pace where we are almost out of control. We don’t mind playing at a faster pace as long as we control the tempo and play smart basketball.”
  • “Such a great experience for Trey to continue to mature as one of the youngest starting point guards in the country.”
  • “I’ve seen really good glimpses of everyone in practice but we haven’t seen it in the games yet. Hopefully.. we have to put some full games together in this tournament in order to come out with a win.”

Zack Novak

  • On the experience thus far: “It’s been pretty good. We’ve got too practices under our belt and got the jet lag out yesterday and got some good work today preparing, mentally and physically, for Memphis. We’re excited and just ready to play games now.”
  • On controlling the excitement: “Just delegating our time and not getting too much free time laying out in the sun.”
  • On Memphis: “They like to create turnovers and run in transition. We have to take care of the ball and get back on defense and I think we can get a win”
  • “This is one of the best basketball tournaments there is anywhere at any level. You look at the programs that are here, 21 national championships between all of us and it’s special. It’s a good opportunity and I’m just looking forward to getting in and playing.”

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