Lowe: ‘We’re going to get there’

Sidney Lowe met with the media Friday morning to discuss Sunday’s regular season finale against Boston College and the ACC Tournament. He even chimed in on the ACC Player of the Year discussion.

By Sunday you will know what seed you are in the ACC Tournament and what you have to do. Do you care where you are or who you play in that first round next week?

Not really. No. It doesn’t matter who we play, it’s going to be a tough game and it’s going to come down to how well we play, limiting our mistakes so it really doesn’t matter. We’re going to have to play well to beat any team in this conference.

Do you feel positive about the teams you could play because those teams from 4 or 5 through 9 have all had ups and downs? Is it a little different because of the parity in the ACC?

I don’t think any of them are going to be easy. These teams in this conference have knocked each other off, in games you didn’t think they would win. We beat a very good Duke team so you feel good about that. I’d like to say we’re going to have a chance against whoever we play, that is just the way it’s been this year. It’s a matter of who is coming out to play that day and the team that is going to limit turnovers and make shots. That’s going to be key.

What will it be like for the younger guys going to the ACC Tournament for the first time?

It will be an eye opening experience. It’s a special time, it’s a special tournament. The crowd is incredible, the atmosphere is incredible and the media attention is incredible. It will be something that they haven’t seen before and I’m sure some of them will be like a deer in headlights looking at everything but it’s also great. It’s a great experience and it’s something they should embrace early in their careers and understand. We tell them all the time what NC State is all about and what this conference is all about and I think they are going to see it now in one setting from all of the schools.

Does the team understand that what they do in the next week or two could really propel them into the offseason?

They do. We’ve talked about that. We’ve talked about trying to control what we can, and that’s us. Certainly there is a lot of basketball still to be played for this team. It’s just a matter of what we do in this next few weeks. How bad do we want to continue playing? That’s the most important thing.

What can Dennis Horner show the younger guys? He’s certainly seen both sides of the spectrum with regards to the ACC Tournament.

He can certainly understand what to expect but it’s nothing like going through it. I’m hoping that he can express to them his feeling of playing in the ACC Tournament and being eliminated and the season being over and how it felt. That is something he can certainly explain to them. How it feels to have a last game. Anytime you have a last game and it’s not the National Championship winning it, it’s just not a good feeling. He can certainly talk to them about that. He’s been through it.

Dennis’ effort was noticeable Wednesday night against Virginia Tech. I know you wanted to get Richard some more minutes and do some of that but it seems like Dennis has asserted himself and made that impossible.

He has. Part of that is that he realized that this is it. At some point in the next month or so my college career is coming to an end and what am I going to do with it. He’s just been playing hard. Even if he’s not making shots he’s going to the offensive glass, defensive glass, playing defense and it’s shown a little leadership without talking. We need that.

What does it mean that both Dennis and Farnold Degand will end up with their degrees in May?

It means everything. It means everything in the world. That’s something that we really are proud of that every senior we’ve had since I’ve been here has graduated – every last one of them. That’s more important to me than anything. Not more important because it helps me, it’s more important because it helps them. That’s not talked about a lot. It would mean everything to them. I know Dennis’ grandmother and mother are proud of him along with Farnold’s mom.

We’ve talked about scoring droughts a lot this year, but a couple of recent ones have been different because you have been getting stops on the defensive end.

That ball game the drought came became of turnovers instead of missed shots. We turned it over so we never gave ourselves a chance to score. We were solid with our defense for the most part with the exception of Delaney hitting those couple of shots. I know that we’ve made progress; there is no question about it. Just watching us and seeing us be a little more patient with it and not taking as many bad shots. We’re moving the ball and moving bodies and that’s a process. We’re going to get there. I can see it coming. If we get that down to understanding good shots and taking care of the ball we’re tough.

What do you expect to see from Boston College Sunday? They’ve played well here lately.

They are very physical. When you look at their players they are all big. The wings are big, the guards are big and thick. They are going to run their offense, their going to bang you. Trapani is going to do his thing shooting the ball. I see a very confident team and a very physical team. We have to be ready to play against that type of physicality and stay within what we’re trying to do.

Who is your player of the year in the ACC?

I tell you it’s hard to go against Greivis Vasquez. Certainly Maryland has other players who have stepped up but that young man is just special. He has got a mindset of just about winning. But he does it in the right way. I would have to say Vasquez.

09-10 Basketball ACC & Other Sidney Lowe

54 Responses to Lowe: ‘We’re going to get there’

  1. choppack1 03/05/2010 at 11:24 AM #

    And maybe I’m missing the nuance – and maybe it’s not a fair criticism, but if you fall into the camp that I do – that maybe some of the reason we’ve only won 19 ACC regular season games in the last 4 years is due to our Coaching staff – then comments like these really irk you.

    You read this and our coach basically says – it doesn’t matter who we play in the tournament – if our players do their job, we’ll be fine. He says, the team that makes shots and limits turnovers will win. (Funny that he didn’t mention defense and rebounding).

    He’s definitely got a point – but coaching and preparation have a role to play too. Does he honestly believe that this group is maximizing effort each night. Are they as prepared as they could possibly be?

    When he talks about the way Horner has been playing these last few days: The light came on and he realizes he’s only got a few games left – so he’s been really hustling.

    I’d respectfully ask our Coach why hasn’t he been able to motivate Horner to maximize his potential before these last few games of his career? The potential was there right?

    I’m looking forward to seeing Harrow and Brown play. I hope they can execute Sid’s offense and defense better than we’ve seen in the first 4 years.

  2. packbackr04 03/05/2010 at 11:24 AM #

    we’re going to get where exactly? is he talking about heading to the golf course in a week and a half when our season is mercifully put to an end?

  3. rtpack24 03/05/2010 at 11:27 AM #

    Why answer the POY question if you are a head coach going into a tournament not knowing who you are going to play? He will now fire up anyone other than Vasquez that plays against us. Sid is certainly in a position to answer the question you just do not answer it at this time.

  4. newt 03/05/2010 at 11:29 AM #

    Great news that our seniors are graduating!

  5. SMD 03/05/2010 at 12:04 PM #

    I laughed at the freudian slip in the second question. This year in the ACC has indeed been a “parody”, but the author meant “parity.”

    ;)

  6. ryebread 03/05/2010 at 12:32 PM #

    Hmmm… I thought the interview was pretty solid, just like most of the ones that SL gives. I think he’s a good interview and doesn’t spin everything. I can criticize many things about our basketball program, but SL’s interviews aren’t one of them.

    He made some good points to me:
    – The importance of the players being students as well as athletes. I like that SL stresses this. Yes, he should and one could argue that this is one of the few things he’s hanging his hat on, but I think it is genuine and I like that. For all of the “HWSNBN runs a clean program,” I did not hear him publicly stress and praise players for actually doing so. Say what you want about SL, but his players have stayed out of trouble and done pretty well in the classroom (much more so than our last coach).
    – The importance of protecting the basketball. When we have lost under SL (e.g. Va. Tech on Wednesday), turnovers have typically been the reason. While we’re lacking in other well documented areas, it is typically the turnovers that absolutely kill us.
    – The importance of focusing on the items you can control. This team could be very, very down at this point in the season, but good can come for them if they continue to keep pushing as hard as they can.
    – He gave credit to Vasquez. I may not like the kid, but he’s been the best and most important player in the ACC this season. When he struggled at the beginning of the year, MD looked horrible and lost some stinkers. Ever since catching fire against us in the game in College Park, Vasquez has been on a tear and MD has been virtually unstoppable. That’s exactly what an ACC POY candidate should do. This isn’t a slight to any other player we’ll face. It’s just giving respect where it is due.

    We’ve got a lot to criticize, but I don’t think this interview is one of those things.

  7. MatSci94 03/05/2010 at 12:35 PM #

    This may be nitpicking, but we aren’t *going* to get there just because someone says so (Its like the “I guarantee a victory” garbage…you don’t have the power to do that). We have to know where ‘there’ is, and what all the little steps are along the way, and how to make those happen. We *want* to get there, but so does everyone else.

    This is the part I’d like to see from Sid. What are the steps to get there, how are we going to make those happen, and how long do you see it taking. The only thing I’ve heard (and maybe I’m wrong) is “the steps are we need to make shots” and “we’ll get there when better players show up”.

  8. StateFans 03/05/2010 at 12:37 PM #

    Great comments here from everyone, particularly choppack & ryebread.

    My primary observation to offer is related to the seniors — we have one senior that wasn’t even a Top 100 player.

    This is the class that was destroyed by Lee Fowler’s trampling of the transition process after Herb left. Not that Dan Werner &/or Larry Davis would have been life savers…but, they would have been senior talent for this team at key positions.

  9. frankiepack 03/05/2010 at 1:14 PM #

    Good observation but other teams do win as well without any seniors! Time to file this excuse away as well.

  10. StateFans 03/05/2010 at 1:25 PM #

    I’m not using it as an excuse. I am using it as driving factor of why we are particularly bad right now.

    Who are the seniors and how many do Duke and Maryland have right now?

    You know…like John Scheyer and Vaszquez?

    Again…it is not an excuse. It is just an observation and explanation. I don’t LIKE it. I don’t LIKE the fact our AD screwed up the transition. I don’t LIKE the fact that hiring a coach outside of college basketball effectively set our recruiting back an additional year because of the nature of relationship building.

    But, that doesn’t mean it isn’t a factor that shouldn’t be recognized.

  11. Classof89 03/05/2010 at 1:26 PM #

    Can someone give me the “where are they now” summary for Werner and Davis? Have either been impact players wherever they are playing?

  12. D_Medlin 03/05/2010 at 1:33 PM #

    Werner is Florida’s sixth man I believe.

    He’s averaging 27 minutes a night. 5 point, 4 rebounds 2 assists.

    Nothing special…

  13. choppack1 03/05/2010 at 1:35 PM #

    “I thought the interview was pretty solid, just like most of the ones that SL gives.”

    Rye – He’s a good interview. You don’t land 3 HC gigs if you’re not an engaging and charismatic individual – and he is.

    This is why I haven’t totally given up on this regime yet. Success doesn’t appear likely – but when we were down 9 vs. Miami, it didn’t either.

    I always try to keep that classic Yogi Berraism in my head – it’s really not over until it’s over. And the results thus far have stunk – but we’re only a few conference game wins from having tolerable results.

    And there is definitely potential for significant improvement next year if Harrow and Brown arrive and can live up to the billing. (And by billing, I mean the recruiting analysts, not just us State fans who naturally think each player w/ some potential is the next Del Negro, Gugliotta, Irving, Rivers, Grundy or whomever)

  14. blackdom 03/05/2010 at 1:40 PM #

    Not an excuse? It is always ann excuse,now you say no seniors. Next year it will be they are too young.

  15. burnbarn 03/05/2010 at 1:41 PM #

    On the focusing on what we are doing, this is the same thing that Dook says when they lose..we didn’t play dook bball. And really this is the truth. I have coached volleyball for many years and the younger the players, the more I coach based only on what we do. If they don’t know what we are doing well, then they don’t have the experience to be able to also be focusing on the other team. You have to be able to make in game adjustments to the team, but if you have inexperienced players they are going to mess up on the adjustments too.

    The players we lost b/c of the transition were Werner who had a solid Horneresque career at UF. We could have used his experience this season. Davis probably was not an ACC level player but any senior is always welcome on a team.

    To Chop’s point about Horner really playing hard now that the end is nearing, this is valid. However, could it also be he is finally coming around after the knee injury that he continued to play through when he obviously couldn’t move well? We all wanted Howell in the game back then, but Horner has earned his starting spot back. Maybe when Dennis finally started feeling better the team was then mired in a bad losing streak and it took him a couple of games to get his mojo back.
    I don’t know. I am disappointed as we all are, but for the first time in a long time I think things will be better next season. If ONLY Harrow comes in next year it will be a huge issue, but we will be much better in just that scenario.

  16. Ed89 03/05/2010 at 1:43 PM #

    Davis went to Seton Hall, then transferred to Loyola Marymount. He’s now a Junior, and he’s not doing much.

  17. Derek Medlin 03/05/2010 at 1:44 PM #

    Like him or not, Horner has played well lately.

    In the last six games he’s had three double double’s and against Va Tech the other night he was two rebounds shy of making it four.

    I’m not excusing anything regarding the season as a whole, but Horner has played well.

  18. GAWolf 03/05/2010 at 1:45 PM #

    Can Davis dribble the ball from one end of the court to the other without throwing it in the stands, dribbling it off his foot, or palming it?

    If you answer yes to this question then he would have been an appreciated addition to this year’s squad.

  19. choppack1 03/05/2010 at 1:45 PM #

    http://espndb.go.com/ncb/player/profile?playerId=31832

    Werner got to be a part of Florida’s national championship his freshman year…and he had a very solid second year.

    However, he’s having a pretty bad senior year and Florida missed the NCAAs the last 2 years and is on the bubble this year.

    Neither him nor Davis have had the kind of careers that would have led one to conclude that we really missed out when these guys decided to back out of their LOIs.

    We really could have used both though for our depth – especially in year 1. They have both shown themselves at one time or another to be legimate D1 players.

  20. GAWolf 03/05/2010 at 1:46 PM #

    Horner has had flashes of good play, yes. He’s also, like almost all of our players, had moments where you can stare at the ceiling, hold out your hands, and say “What?”

  21. GAWolf 03/05/2010 at 1:47 PM #

    As far as Werner, it’s hard to play over a guy who regular bangs home game winners with time running off the clock from 40 feet out or more.

  22. packfan03 03/05/2010 at 2:19 PM #

    As far as Werner, it’s hard to play over a guy who regular bangs home game winners with time running off the clock from 40 feet out or more.

    You are clearly a sadist ;-). Now I feel obliged to search for this shot on YouTube and relive the horror that was, “The Gator Bomb”.

    That is the ONE home game I did not attend this year. I’ve felt terribly guilty since then, assuming some variation of the butterfly effect would have occurred had I been there and the shot wouldn’t have fallen.

  23. choppack1 03/05/2010 at 2:40 PM #

    burnbarn – I see what you’re saying – but it’s not like the results of this team have been that different from the other 3 before them – as a matter of fact – they are almost the exact same as 2007’s team. 2009 actually looked like they had a clue – and to your point, we had 3 seniors on that team…but they won a whopping 6 ACC games…this one can win 5 at the most.

    So, when Duke says, “We just didn’t play Duke ball.” Sometimes they are right. There are other times when they lose when Coach K will say, “They did every thing I asked them to do out there today.” But let’s face it – our team doesn’t play nearly as hard as Duke’s…and those are 4 and 5 star guys playing hard.

    Coach K is a supreme motivator. I think he’s a good teacher, a good recruiter, he’s average X and O’s – but his teams do so well because they are going to play like 5 Tyler Hansboro’s for 40 minutes.

  24. Wolfy__79 03/05/2010 at 3:28 PM #

    over dennis horner’s career i’ve held a grudge against the mentatility of someone his size playing so much perimeter bball. he has never been good in the post and that absolutely kills everything but a princeton offense. i would prefer a horner, costner to approach the game like tracy does, hickson too. i’m glad he woke up before his senior year was over all together and its been nice to see his effort in the paint. i thought that realization would have come about 3 years ago. i cannot really credit his play to any injury b/c there is no results before it that prove otherwise. but more importantly than that, he has yet to be a senior leader on the floor and ya don’t have to be a pg to do so.

    i think it is a high point for sid regime concerning acedemic and character standards (exception, costner).

    gawolf.. lmao, yes dribbling off the foot would have been more appropriate on the soccer team.. we rival a soccer team for # of times we turn the ball over or change possessions w/out scoring.

  25. MA Wolfpack 03/05/2010 at 3:36 PM #

    I think Coach K is excellent with X’s and O’s, but it does not matter when Duke’s talent is down. Duke is not going far in the tournament this season because they do not have a PG. They have 3 studs, but they are two 2Gs and a SF.

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