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Coaches from around the conference, including Miami Head Coach Jim Larranaga, spoke to the media about the state's of their respective teams, as well as looking ahead to this week's games.
Coach Larranaga opened things up by speaking about the rivalry with FSU and mentioning that the team's focus needs to remain laser sharp.
On the team staying focused with the added media attention:
"So far so good. We are very excited to have gotten the support here in Coral Gables. They have appreciated the media attention, but they are hungry to do something they haven't down before."
On remaining personally focused:
"I wouldn't call it difficult because it means you are successful. I have told the team the media has their job to do and we have our job to do."
On Rion Brown:
"He has been playing very well in conference play. He is our leading 3 point shooter in conference play. He's an important performer because you always need a high octane scorer off the bench."
"I'm sure their crowd will be supporting them. Our team will be ready and I am sure their team will be ready."
On the two headed center monster:
"Julian is a 6th year senior, Reggie is a 5th year senior. They are experienced and have been though a lot. They prepare themselves. Against NC State I played them together when we made our run."
On winning big and putting teams away:
"Every day is different. Every opponent is different. We were 3-21 against NC State and that was a 1 point game. We were 10-16 against North Carolina in the first half. Every game is different. We are more focused on just being well prepared and making sure the kids play hard."
Notes from the rest of the ACC:
- Wake Forest skipper Jeff Bzdelik felt like they matched up well with Boston College because of Devin Thomas' ability to play down low. Bzdelik also talked about the development of Arnaud William Adala Moto and his adjustment to college athletics and life in this country. He praised Moto for "finishing better" during games and also mentioned how he often skypes his family back in Africa late at night. Bzdelik expects Moto to improve significantly as he gets used to life here.
- James Johnson of Virginia Tech felt his team was playing well but needed to finish games better. The big news was that star guard Erick Green was "good to go" and not expected to miss any time despite suffering dehydration following Saturday's loss to Georgia Tech. Do not expect Johnson to cut into Green's minutes when the Hokies take on Virginia Tuesday night.
- Virginia coach Tony Bennett expects the game with Va Tech to be emotional, and warned even though they have not been able to close out ACC opponents, the Hokies were "very close." He also felt that team defense would be just as important as Jontel Evans individual effort in slowing down Erick Green. The status of Mike Tobey had no new updates, however Darion Atkins may see more playing time as his health improves
- Mark Gottfied of NC State, said the team felt better about itself getting back on the winning track against Clemson. With the improved play of freshman Tyler Lewis, Gottfried noted he would see more minutes even with the return of star PG Lorenzo Brown. Lewis and Brown may also see some time together on the court, with Brown playing off the ball.
- North Carolina Coach Roy Williams gave Miami a lot of credit for Saturday's performance against his team, and called UM "under appreciated." Williams said the 'Canes had "no holes", and along with Duke were a top 5 team. He also said playing in Coral Gables was a like being in a "hornet's nest" much like playing in Indiana was earlier in the year. In regards to facing Duke this week, Williams theorized that the recent success of road teams in the series just boiled down to both teams being "very good" and being evenly matched. As to why Marcus Paige is typically the first substitute, he talked about Paige being too fired up and needing a rest, much like Michael Jordan when he was at UNC.
- Mark Turgeon of Maryland, talked about using the bye week to get refreshed. He called his team "tired" and felt the break was coming at a good time. He also mentioned he liked how his team pressed and that using a small line-up was effective in yesterday's loss to Virginia. But also noted the press was more of a desperation move and not a strategy they would employ regularly.
- Brian Gregory of Georgia Tech was pleased with his team's performance in Blacksburg. He felt winning on the road would help his young team going forward.
At this point, unfortunately I had to drop for a personal obligation. So I apologize for not having notes from each coach. Next week we will be sure to get everyone.
Be sure to stay tuned as we bring you updates through out the season. The ACC Coaches Teleconference takes places every Monday morning.