Hewitt, and thoughts on “No Dome”

Paul Hewitt held a press conference with the press today ahead of full practices, which start Friday.
This is courtesy of the sports information department at Tech:
- On strengths of this year’s roster:

“Compared to last year, our back court is much stronger from a health standpoint, experience standpoint, and talent standpoint. I think a lot of people point to the addition of Derrick [Favors] and think that that will be the big difference. But last year I thought Zachery Peacock, Gani Lawal, and Alade Aminu played extremely well. I thought that frontcourt was as good as any in the league maybe with the exception of North Carolina’s. I think our back court will be the big difference this year. We have Mfon Udofia, and having D’Andre Bell back is as important as any addition we’ve had in the last year. We have more depth with Brian Oliver and Glen Rice. Lance Storrs is improved this year. So now we’ve got more options. Last year, we basically played with one ball handler in Iman Shumpert after the injury to Moe [Miller]. And Moe was unfortunately in a car accident a couple weeks ago and is suffering the effects of a third concussion within the last year. So we’re concerned about him. He has not worked out over the last two weeks. I dropped by his apartment to see how he’s feeling. He’s doing better, but I don’t think he’ll practice this week. If the doctors clear him, then fine. Again, he’s suffering the effects of a concussion.
On freshman Derrick Favors:

“He’s about where I expected. He’s a hard worker, he listens well, and he’s very coachable. He picks things up pretty well, also. I’m impressed with his ability to retain information.”

On using last season as motivation:

“Last year was last year. I thought that team performed extremely well. Under the conditions, I thought we played very hard. We were there in every game. At the end of the games, we just didn’t take care of the ball as much as we would have liked and we didn’t make free throws. When you go back and review it, I saw at least nine games we could have won if we had made free throws, and we didn’t turn the ball over in the last few minutes. But that’s a different team compared to today in terms of depth and health.

On this year’s team being wiser on the court:

“I think the big thing is that we’re healthier, deeper, and more talented.”

On the roster allowing different things this season:

“Again I thought we did pretty much everything we wanted to do except at the end of the games. We pressed effectively last year. There’s only one game that I felt like I walked right off the court and we didn’t compete. That was at North Carolina. And I’m sure I wasn’t the only coach that felt that way walking off of the court. But if you go back and look at every single game, you’ll see we had many overtime games and buzzer-beaters. That tells you that that team competed. I’m not going to poor-mouth the effort that those guys gave last year. Sometimes that’s what you are. You play as hard as you can, but you miss free throws and turn the ball over in the last few minutes. But I think they got everything that they had out of their ability.”

On getting enough minutes for the players:

“The best players are going to play.”

On having the best feeling he’s had before a season:

“Of course, because we’re healthy. We don’t have to deal with any issues. Obviously, Moe’s issue is somewhat of a concern. But I’ve liked the teams that I’ve seen in the past. This year I think we’re the healthiest that we have been in a long time.”

On Moe Miller’s recovery:

“It’s just a matter of taking time, resting, and healing. They’ve done impact testing on him and things like that. He played a little bit yesterday for the first time in a while. He got in to workouts yesterday, but he came out of it feeling a little light-headed. A `little off-balance’ is the term that he used.”

On the details of Miller’s accident:

“I don’t know the details of it. He banged his head on the side window, I think. He was driving.”

On spending time in the pre-season finding the right combinations on the court:

“Some of it will be, but like I said, the best guys are going to play. It’s going to be competitive, and guys are going to do what they have to do to get on the court.”

On Favors playing inside vs. outside:

“I would say he’s more of an inside guy right now. The thing I like about Derrick is he’s not a big guy trying the impress you with his perimeter skills. He would like to dominate the paint area before he steps out. That’s how he approached each game. John O’Connor asked him one day, `What’s the one thing you think you do well?’ Derrick thought for a minute and said, `Rebounding.’ That’s a nice answer to hear from a big guy.”

On the veterans allowing the freshmen to get minutes:

“I don’t think anybody is going to accept anyone taking minutes from them, but you find out more about them as the season keeps going. Right now we’ve been doing individual workouts, and they’ve been playing pick-up (games) on their own. We’ve started to have some mini-practices. You’re allowed to have two hours a week. Today, for instance, we did one hour of individual instruction and tomorrow we’ll do one hour of practice. We’ll be off on Thursday in preparation for the season. You’ll learn more as time goes on and we’ve scrimmaged. We haven’t really scrimmaged in an organized setting. It’s going to be competitive, I know that much.”

On the new Zelnak Center practice facility:

“It looks great, but it hasn’t been opened yet. It looks great, though.”

On the rest of the ACC:”It’s going to be a good league. It’s going to be like it always is. I think that last year it ended up number one in the RPI. I wouldn’t be surprised if we’re up there again in the RPI. I’d be curious to see how many years the ACC finished 1 or 2 in the RPI over the last 10 years. That’s the way it is every year. I know we have the ACC-Big 10 Challenge which I think we’ve won every year. The thing that kind of puzzles me is at the end of the year they’ll sometimes get more bids than the ACC. I can’t figure that out, but I’m not that smart anyways.”

On the ACC being more open this year:

“It’s probably more open, because Carolina was such a prohibitive favorite last year. But I think that the league overall is probably better and stronger. Again, they finished first last year.”

On the media’s perception of the team:

“I think these guys know that if everything goes right, we have a chance to be as good as anyone in the ACC, and if you are as good as anyone in the ACC, then you can compete for anything that comes after that. But nobody really knows. You know health always plays into it. Mfon Udofia has impressed and Zach will tell you. I think he has impressed all these guys with how hard he plays and how hard he works. Who knows how he is going to adjust to being on the road at Maryland or Duke or whatever. I like where we are and we will see where it goes from here.”

On the ACC being tough on freshmen:

[It is], because you have the most talented players in the country, depending on how you measure it. If your measuring stick is how many McDonald’s All-Americans or highly rated players coming in. This league gets more McDonald’s All-Americans than any league in the country by far. You also have more NBA players coming out of here. For a freshman to walk into this situation that we’re walking into, whether you’re Derrick Favors or Mfon Udofia or Glen Rice, you’re probably going to play against four or five maybe 10 eventual first-round draft picks. You are also going to play against some McDonald’s All-Americans, and then you have to factor in the coaching, because the coaching is also outstanding in this league.”

On ACC teams beating each other up:

“It happens every year. We talk about it come tournament time every year. You see teams come out of their league with one or two loses, and you know if they were in our league, they would have seven losses. I tell people all the time, it is great to be in the ACC to recruit and then to talk about it after the season. But when you’re in the middle of it, you won’t like it so much. When you’re recruiting it’s great, and then after the season and you look back and see all the things, it’s great. But when you get ready to play someplace you think, `Man, I wish I was in this other league right now.’”

On D’Andre Bell’s injury:

“When the doctors went in they didn’t know what they were going to find. When they went in, they found a situation that was correctable. He had to sit out eight months. Matter of fact, I talked to him today after the individual workouts. He’s really making a lot of strides. He still doesn’t feel good in terms of his full-court defense, but in his half-court defense, he feels like he’s getting it back. He’s getting his first step back offensively, but he doesn’t feel like he has the quickness and the stamina to guard someone full-court. I tell him, `look, you were out for eight months and now you are getting back.’ That’s what the doctors have told us, they would not have released him had they not thought it was correctable. He’s had a conversation with T.J. Ford, the kid from Indiana. He had a more severe situation. I think the same doctor did the surgery. Dr. Watkins felt like he was good enough to play.”

——

Georgia’s decision to not play Georgia Tech in the Dome to open the season is what it is, to use one of Paul Johnson’s phrases.

It made so much sense for Tech, but didn’t make a lot of sense for Georgia.

So, there you go.

Based upon the comments on the blog, I don’t think y’all will be too disappointed.

——

Please join the AJC’s Georgia Tech  fans page on facebook: http://bit.ly/6ipoH

56 comments Add your comment

the real Old Gold

October 13th, 2009
10:03 pm

TechDan

October 13th, 2009
10:04 pm

I for one am glad that we won’t be messing with our traditions in what happens to be one of the oldest rivalries in college football.

the real Old Gold

October 13th, 2009
10:06 pm

I think it worked out for the best… I’d rather Tech and Georgia just headline the kickoff every so often, but college football is all about tradition. Notre Dame doesn’t play in Purple pants, Alabama doesn’t have an elephant on their helmet, and Clean Old Fashioned Hate is meant for a time when we are all full of turkey.. GO TECH!

Buzzboy

October 13th, 2009
10:33 pm

I am happy we don’t open with UGA in 2011 for one primary reason – Nesbitt will be gone and it will be the first game with an inexperienced QB. Georgia should have jumped at that opportunity.

Coloradojacket

October 13th, 2009
10:38 pm

The Georgia Georgia Tech game is such a rivalry and a climactic end in a season. To play it first would mean disaster for the team that loses. There would be no recovery. Besides, it is a Thanksgiving classic like the Iron Bowl.

gtfan

October 13th, 2009
10:51 pm

“I can’t figure that out, but I’m not that smart anyways.”

this pretty much in a nutshell describes phew to a T.

hey paul here is a clue for ya…. you are the sarah palin of basketball coaches and most of the fan base has already figured that one out.

9 years of for the most part underachievement and failure by our coach to ‘coach’ our team bears out his opinion of himself.

maybe, just maybe if this dud we have for a coach bothered to attend some coaching seminars instead of heading up the BCA we would have better results to show for it.

i for one think we should start refering to this dimwit as ‘coach duh’.

StingerSplash

October 13th, 2009
11:01 pm

“It is what it is”?
Maybe PJ spent more time with Belichick than he’s letting on.

gtg

October 13th, 2009
11:05 pm

CPH needs to learn something from Coach Paul Johnson. CPH indicated last year team played extremely well….OMG….which game did he watched? Several games the team looked like street ball, guys run around without any clue, turn the ball over, missed FT. Until CPH demand accountability, attention to detail, put it all out on the court, GT Basketball will not reach the high level (just like Chan Gailey in Football).

AlabamaRamblinwreck

October 13th, 2009
11:41 pm

No comments on basketball, because we will continue to suck with Hewitt. Painful to watch, so I don’t watch!!

I would have liked to see the home game against UGAG be in the even-numbered years, but I also did not like messing with tradition. I hope GT could still play in this spotlight game played in front of a national audience to start the season, just against another opponent.

Go Jackets!!

Midnight Rambler

October 13th, 2009
11:50 pm

I am glad the rivalry game isn’t being moved to the Dome and played first.

I saw many problems with this idea. Who would the officials have been in 2011 at the Ga. Dome? They would be SEC @ Bobby Dodd. Then who would officiate @ Bobby Dodd in 2012? SEC again? That might not be good for Tech.

I would have been concerned about giving up home field in 2011. We would certainly be badly outnumbered by Dawg fans in the huge Ga. Dome giving them home field advantage. They put too many in Bobby Dodd as it is.

If refs from a neutral conference – Big 12, Pac10, etc. – did the Ga. Dome in 2011, then back to SEC at Tech in 2012, it might have worked.

I understand the logic of improving the unbalanced home schedule. I hated it when the stupid ACC first did that to us. They made us play VT two straight years at their home. It was poetic justice that we beat them with Calvin Johnson et al.

Tech made a bad decision in 1991 to play Penn State in NJ in the Kick-Off Classic [or whatever it was called]. I attended it, and it was a home game for Penn State. Neither team was ready to play so early, and I felt the home field advantage – I’d say 90% of the roughly 80,000 there – helped Penn State to win, got Tech off to a bad start, & they never played up to their potential. They were pre-season #4 with most starters returning from the National Championship team. Tech then lost a heartbreaker to FSU after which they went up & we went down – for several years.

I thought the minuses outweighed the pluses on changing the rivalry game so I am glad it will stay as is. There is also the rich tradition of it being the last game of the regular season during Thanksgiving WE. This would have been lost.

ben

October 13th, 2009
11:55 pm

Disappointed in his comments, but by now I figure he hates the fans (especially Southern fans). I guess, like Bobby Knight, for the next few years we’ll just have to put up with an angry coach who hates the press and the fans. Would like to see some Knight-like results in the meantime.

Cuttysark

October 14th, 2009
12:35 am

If they want Tech to play in the dome, then schedule them to play another team from the SEC and leave the Georgia game where it belongs; Thanksgiving Weekend. There is something to be said for tradition. If it ain’t broke don’t fix it.

Go to http://isportsweb.com for more articles on Georgia Tech’s upcoming game against the # 4 rated Virginia Tech Hokies. Go Jackets!

matt

October 14th, 2009
12:49 am

How did it make sense for Tech?
Nesbit will play in 2010 and then in 2011 in the first game we would have a brand new QB playing against UGA – in this offense that almost guarantees a loss.
If playing the game is about winning it made no sense for Tech which obviously is why Dan Rad was for it because all he cares about is money (i.e. playing 3 games in 12 days).
Other than Buzzboy above, no one else has mentioned this which proves how clueless the media, Tech admin, and the Tech Nation really is. The funny thing is that UGA was against it which saved us from ourselves.

GTMike

October 14th, 2009
6:36 am

Matt…DRad often has no control over the details of scheduling (3 days in 12 days)…the league often dictates things like that because of television.
As far as being against this move because we would be breaking in a new QB, I think CPJ and DRad probably both feel like we may be at the stage by then where we reload, and not rebuild….some of the guys behind Nesbitt could be special by then.

m

October 14th, 2009
7:25 am

It was time for the IDIOTIC dome idea to be canned.

Do a TECH-tennerrsee dome game.

Paul Johson is the new sheriff in town…and I promise you that ugag is going to regret the day that he came to TECH.

And most importantly….Thank God and Greyhound that chan gomer gailey is gone forever.

chris o bomb

October 14th, 2009
7:32 am

2011 qb- jaybo shaw
2011 game- uga are a bunch of turkeys. i knew this would end up that way, if anytthing uga would receive millions just by playing that one game for them.
2009- lane kiffin’s my daddy! HA

Sunshine

October 14th, 2009
8:20 am

Chris, I can almost guarnteee that Jaybo Shaw will never start in 2011. Too much talent behind him that can actually stand up to actual D-1 talent.

T.O.S.S.

October 14th, 2009
8:53 am

I am trolling your blogs because y’all hate the dawgs less than our fans do.

morgwreck243

October 14th, 2009
8:54 am

It would be nice to have the home game dates switched to balance the schedule. Maybe they can play a game at the Dome on Thanksgiving one year to accomplish the same thing.

old Tech fan in NC

October 14th, 2009
8:57 am

Not as much pro/anti PH guy as some and I’m looking forward to the Favors year.

Also looking forward to see the Jackets sting VPoly. A prelude to an ACC good year or ___________?

collegeballfan

October 14th, 2009
9:36 am

I am concerned with the Miller concussion. His third. He really played well last year after he learned to deal with the mask. If he can’t play that will hurt. Hurt a lot.

If Tech gets good guard play on offense this will be a good team.

superDawg

October 14th, 2009
10:04 am

Hey ramble no for one this is about UGA I did’nt see one thing about tek on this blog.You have more to worry about than what is said here.I bet you will go on vacation again sunday.The reason I cross over to tek blogs is because you and your other nerd herd goons like to try and aggitate us here.The real aggitating will begin nov.28.

GoalieLax

October 14th, 2009
10:06 am

matt, you’re a moron. Navy had a new starting QB nearly every year PJ was in Annapolis. a new QB in no way is a loss leader. most of the time, the new QB’s were seniors who had spent 3 or 4 years learning the system.

Chris

October 14th, 2009
10:10 am

“You play as hard as you can, but you miss free throws and turn the ball over in the last few minutes. But I think they got everything that they had out of their ability.”

Poor free throw shooting is purely a coach problem. There are very few players that can’t be coached to shoot free throws well. That fact that this is a team wide problem makes it pretty obvious that Hewitt is the cause.

It’s not secret why we lost so many close ones. At the end of the game, it’s not Hack-a-Shaq, Lawal, or anybody else on the team, because you don’t have to pick any person. Foul anyone and they will miss. Only two, TWO, players shot over 70% FT’s. You’re telling me that this is “getting everything out of their ability?”

Rt

October 14th, 2009
10:58 am

Maybe some of our non-conference games should be scheduled against teams that we’ve heard of. GT has scheduled a bunch of non-conference patsies. That is why the home schedule will be occasionally bad. Clemson, VT and FSU are not going to play us at the flats every year. Better start lobbying for some big draws now who still think we are no good. Once the “big boys” think we can beat them, they won’t want to schedule us any more.
DRad, please at least schedule a school that most people at least know the state the school is in and mascot the school has.

blazer

October 14th, 2009
11:02 am

maybe darrel labarrie can teach ft shooting/?

show up defense saturday!!!!!!!!!

Sorry Schedule

October 14th, 2009
11:06 am

Tech’s Best Opponents:

1. V-Tech (No doubt you will lose Saturday)
2. Miami (You looked pathetic on national TV)
3. UGA (A bad team this year but it is in the top 3 on your schedule)
4. Mississippi St. (One of the worst in SEC)

Most high school teams would go 9-3 with this schedule.

Tech82

October 14th, 2009
11:16 am

matt @ 12:49am writes: “Other than Buzzboy above, no one else has mentioned this which proves how clueless the media, Tech admin, and the Tech Nation really is.”

Wow, it’s a good thing we have a rocket scientist like you to set us straight.

RAMBLE ON!!!

October 14th, 2009
11:28 am

whatever superDawg, whatever.

neil marlowe

October 14th, 2009
12:07 pm

“it is what it is” – what a totally meaningless and stupid phrase. people who use it don/t have the intelligence to say something meaningful. oh, and how about those poeple who use “as well” to end a sentence?

Sea Island

October 14th, 2009
12:22 pm

Glorified high school stadium not sold out for game vs #4. Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha …………………………

UGAIsSoLastYear

October 14th, 2009
12:27 pm

It makes sense for the kick-off game in the Dome to feature GT and UGA – just not in the same year. They should each host a kick-off game there one year. I’d like to see GT vs Michigan or Ohio State. We never play Big 10 teams and I think that would be great fun.

dmortone

October 14th, 2009
12:36 pm

I’m more excited about Udofia and what he could bring more so than Favors. I know we’ll probably lead the ACC in rebounding again, because like CPH said, the frontcourt wasn’t the problem. Yeah, Favors will do amazing things, but if our guards have less than a 1 A/TO ratio that was so common last year it probably won’t matter. If Udofia can play big minutes without turning the ball over like Shumpert and Miller did last year, that’s all we have to add to this team to make the tourney.

Blue Pants

October 14th, 2009
1:02 pm

dmortone, you are correct about Udofia. His play this season could be the key element. Plus, he will be the cornerstone after the NBA draft dismantles this team. As far as the Dome is concerned, Tech & UGA should rotate years hosting other BCS opponents. As far as their other games, stop playing the Tennessee Techs & Jacksonville States of the world. The both would be served playing against Conference USA foes as their non-conference slate. Memphis, So Miss, UCF, E.Carolina, & UAB are beatable & relatively close for their fanbases.

coachsaywhat?

October 14th, 2009
1:09 pm

I think Paul Hewitt covered all his bases/excuses with this blog. Oh, except for the fact that he TOOK ZERO RESPONSIBLITIY for his poor coaching. Remember it’s “free throws & turnovers” that cost Tech 9 games last year…UNFREAKINBELIEVABLE!!!!!!!

basketball nut

October 14th, 2009
2:13 pm

Tech Hoops carried the athletic program through the 80’s and into the 90’s. It’s time it came back. Obviously good recruits this year. Only problem I see happening is that they play with only one ball. KLids need to learn their role. Basketball Paul needs to give kids longer minutes, let them get into the flow. In and out just doesn’t get it.. All those guys over there with ties on and holding clipboards need to get involved. Everyone needs to kick butt. It ain’t gonna be Favors…it’s going to be those other Freshmen that will be with us. Basketball Paul has got some great Recruits, now put some coaching with that recruited abijlity. Basketball tickets used to be scarce, let’s start making them scarce again.

Slide Rule

October 14th, 2009
3:16 pm

It’s hard for me to be a college basketball fan these days. The problem is the college “meat market” or “rent-a-rookie” aspect. Somehow, some way th NCAA and NBA had better come up with something like the rules for baseball and football as to the draft. At least we got 2 years out of Kenny Anderson, as opposed to the one and dones after that. I was impressed when UF returned its top two stars for another national championship, though a couple of years ago.

Gordon

October 14th, 2009
3:35 pm

The reason Tech wanted the Dome game with UGA in 2011 is that it would have moved UGA to the opposite year. Tech’s top 3 opponents (UGA, VaTech, Clemson) all play at Bobby Dodd in odd numbered years. Radakovich wanted one of them moved to even numbered years to balance it out. That is why these SEC schools we’ve scheduled so far (Vanderbilt, Miss. State) play here in even numbered years.

I will give Hewitt the benefit of the doubt and be positive for now, but if he doesn’t get this group into the NCAA’s he has got to go. He has depth and experience. Unless there are a lot of injuries, he has no excuses. I do find it disturbing that a team that went 2-14 in conference “performed extremely well” in his eyes.

GPB

October 14th, 2009
4:05 pm

Oct. 11, 2009
PACIFIC PALISADES, Calif. – Sophomore Irina Falconi of the Georgia Tech Women’s Tennis Team defeated Georgia’s Chelsey Gullickson in straight sets Sunday to capture the 2009 Riviera/ITA Women’s All-American Championships singles title at the Riviera Tennis Club.

crackbaby

October 14th, 2009
4:06 pm

Tech needs point guard play! I cannot believe CPH said “we were there in every game” last year. What is he smokin’?

Kurdt Kobain

October 14th, 2009
4:34 pm

Good to hear Favors talk about rebounding well. Poor guard play killed this team last year, should be much improved this season. I’m excited.

4 jacks

October 14th, 2009
5:30 pm

Hewitt will have a decent year this year, just on talent alone. After this year there will be no more Favors or Lawal. Then we will go back to wining 2,3 or 4 conference games and sub 500 overall record again, and his Braineless contract just keeps on rolling over…how depressing. I didn’t win the lottery last night, but will keep trying so I can give Drad the money to pay this coach’s (and I use the term loosly) buyout, so Drad can hire us a real basketball coach and get some excitment back in Alexander.

RAMBLE ON!!!

October 14th, 2009
6:27 pm

coachsaywhat?, preach it brother!!!

Here to F with Yech

October 14th, 2009
6:30 pm

Guys, I’m bored on my site. Ya’ll have lost your edge over there Who wants to go? Who wants to tell me how great ya’ll are? Please!! Need some material. Last night some yahoo said Yech had lots of “superior teams” that lost to UGA!! Man thats gonna be hard to beat!!! HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!

Here to F with Yech

October 14th, 2009
6:31 pm

All my yechie engineers went home early to save me some $$$ on the hourly employees. Thanks guys!!!!!

Here to F with Yech

October 14th, 2009
6:39 pm

Lost, yet superior 7-1 over 8. Thats so freakin funny. Hey guess what we had several teams that were superior to UF, we just lost. Whatever guy!!!

Stumpknocker

October 14th, 2009
6:58 pm

“Here to F with Yech” You don’t know much about engineers do you? I know quite a few and one of them is my son. They are all saleried and I can assure you make more $$$ than you ….USOB

Here to F with Yech

October 14th, 2009
7:25 pm

Whatever guy!! Your son drives a train!!! HAHAHAHAHA!!! I have several on staff, and they make much less than me. And several are not salaried. Blow the horn mr. engineer!!! I know all about engineers, god bless em’ we need em!!! But they ain’t all that.

Here to F with Yech

October 14th, 2009
7:26 pm

Here to F with Yech

October 14th, 2009
7:27 pm

More Coal!! More Coal!! Son, We need more coal!!!