Weekly Coach Menzies Interview

warning: Creating default object from empty value in /var/www/ on line 33. Weekly Coach Menzies Interview Weekly Coach Menzies Interview :: 03/30/10 One of the big concerns heading into the game against Michigan State was the rebounding ability of the Spartans but your team was able to tie them in rebounding.
Marvin Menzies: Yeah that was a concern. Obviously they do a phenomenal job on their rebounding, especially on the offensive side of the game, we just preached the priority of it. So we just kept talking about what they do well in that area which we thought was a key and we ran a few extra drills and made an emphasis of it in our preparation. It was a credit to the kids for maintaining the focus on boxing out and getting after the ball with a passion realizing that was a key. Jonathan Gibson had a good last senior game and when you look around at a lot of seniors who go out in the tournament they don't necessarily have the best final game in a loss, for example Sherron Collins from Kansas and Scottie Reynolds from Villanova. What was he able to do in his final game that he was able to play well?
MM: Jonathan shot the ball okay, he didn't shoot it great but he shot it well from the three. He did a phenomenal job defensively. He got a little fatigued late in the game and had a couple defensive breakdowns but when you play that hard it's hard to not have some mistakes. To his credit, his effort was there which ended up giving him the stat line that was a good stat line for a senior on the way out. I really thought his concentration and confidence were high and as a result he had a good performance for his final game as an Aggie.  Continue Reading This Post >> Weekly Coach Menzies Interview :: 03/14/10 :: Championship Thoughts

Marvin Your thoughts on the tournament as a whole. The team played phenomenal defense the whole tournament, you got the key stops when you needed them and your rebounding, particlarly limiting the opposing teams' offensive rebounds, was outstanding.
Marvin Menzies: When you're teaching lessons all year long and you're at a point in the season where they have to adhere to the lesson or else their season is over, basically the kids have to make a decision that they're going to have to commit to getting stops, commit to rebounding, commit to playing defense the way we do it in practice and when we emphasized several times that that was the only way we were going to win this championship was if we improved our defense drastically. We talked about it several times, especially after the two road losses and the kids responded. We've known for quite some time that we have the talent but we've been constantly working toward developing it and getting better and the culmination of their efforts and the coaching from the staff just all came together at the right time. Your team is 11-0 in games decided by six points or less and both the semifinal and the championship game were tight games. What has been the biggest factor in that success versus last year when you had such a young team and lost a lot of those close games?
MM: Well the experience is obviously the key factor when you're growing a program and you have a paradigm in place that you commit to and say we want to bring in young kids and develop them and have the type of program where you're just reloading rather than rebuilding and that's what we're doing. Losing Jonathan Gibson this year will be a blow but we feel comfortable that the returning players will be able to pick up the slack based on their offseason training.  Continue Reading This Post >> Weekly Coach Menzies Interview :: 03/08/10 Your thoughts on the two games last week at Nevada and at Utah State? You were close at halftime in both of those games.
Marvin Menzies: I think a combination of factors, the bottom line is both of those places are really tough to play and they wear on you in reference to all the dynamics that go into playing on the road. I think that coupled with our shooting woes at Utah State and the defensive breakdowns we started to have kind of had a snowball effect and it was difficult to climb back in. In both cases there were runs that were made, in the Utah State was a little bit more significant run, but both games our opponents had runs where things clicked for them and went the other way for us and on the road as you know it's tough to fight back on the road. Do you think there's any benefit for your team in terms of familiarity having been able to play in the tournament venue just last week?
MM: I hope so. I think that there's something to be said with familiarity with a venue and your immediate surroundings. Having played there I'm hoping that bodes well for us having just played there the week before.  Continue Reading This Post >> Weekly Coach Menzies Interview :: 02/10/10 Your thoughts on Troy Gillenwater's play so far?
Marvin Menzies: Troy obviously is a huge addition especially at this time of year and you're doing well. We've been fortunate enough to win a lot of close games in conference and to add a player of Troy's ability is obviously going to be a big plus for us as long as we keep our focus and understand that it's a team game and everybody stays on point with that. The transition right now seems to be good, right when Troy came into the San Jose State game it was evident that his presence was going to be felt. He's been practicing with the team and that's a huge piece of why I'm anticipating the chemistry is going to be good. After the Louisiana Tech game you mentioned that you weren't particularly pleased with the play of some of your guys and that you didn't want to have to continue to rely on last second shots to win games. In your mind what does your team need to do to have a little bit more cushion at the end of games?
MM: Well it's not necessarily a cushion we're looking for, it's just solid play. Whether solid play has us in the lead then you want to continue with the level of execution that got you the lead and we seem to have mental lapses down the stretch. Now we've been fortunate because we've been able to survive them but you have to give credit to the defense of La. Tech as well. They played great defense down the stretch and they had a hand in us not executing. So it's not just us, it has to do with your competition as well.  Continue Reading This Post >> Weekly Coach Menzies Interview :: 01/29/10 Your thoughts on the San Jose State game?
Marvin Menzies: That was a game that we had a chance to win. We started the game off really well and just didn't get a chance to get the 'W' after such a great, it was a little disappointing. You've got to give credit to San Jose and how they played in the second half both offensively and defensively. They really did a good job shooting the ball and finding open guys off our pressure and then they did a good job collapsing on the interior and helping on our big guys and making it difficult for Hamidu and Abdoulaye to score inside on the block. The Hawai'i was a pretty physical game, how much did that combined with the long trip to San Jose fatigue the players heading into the San Jose State game?
MM: Only the players know for sure. I think we had our chances to win regardless of the travel and you just have to give San Jose credit for playing a great game and with their starting center out too.  Continue Reading This Post >> Weekly Coach Menzies Interview :: 01/19/10 Your thoughts on the Fresno State win on Saturday night?
Marvin Menzies: We had the fortune of playing some really good defense the second half, things started to click a little bit and it made a difference for us in the turnaround in that game. We weren't very efficient with the press in the first half and then the second half we got it going. It was good to see the guys keep fighting regardless of the score. You got some good bench production in that game.
MM: Yeah, it's going to be critical that our bench produces when they come in. We can't rely on just one or two guys to get your scoring. Maybe in crunch time you have to rely on those guys but for the most part when you play the better teams you're going to have to have a real team effort. I think we got some extra special minutes from Aboulaye, his first double-digit minute game playing 12 minutes. Hernst having zero turnovers and 10 assists, it was just a lot of chemistry when those guys came in. A lot of energy. Tyrone Watson came in off the bench and gave us a nice boost and didn't fall off when he replaced Wendell. It was good to see.  Continue Reading This Post >> Weekly Coach Menzies Interview :: 01/07/10 You defeated Utah State 55-52 on Saturday night and you've got to be pleased that you were able to win a game that was really played at Utah State's pace.
Marvin Menzies: I was. It really came back to down to defensively doing what we needed to do down the stretch. They did a good job on us defensively and we did a good job on them and that's what ended up getting us over the hump in the last five minutes of the game. We couldn't score and we did a good job of putting pressure on them and not allowing them score at the same rate they were earlier. In that game Jonathan Gibson had 19 points and hit the big shot at the end of the game that broke the six and a half minute scoring drought. Talk about the play that you set up for Jonathan.
MM: Well he had obviously been pretty effective throughout the game and so we drew up a play that was designed to give him the ball and give him a read off the pick and roll situation and whether to keep it or drive and dish, it was his call based on how they defended him. Most people that know Gib know that he was going to try to get that ball up if he could and they defended him in a way where he did get an opening and an opportunity to shoot it.  Continue Reading This Post >> Weekly Coach Menzies Interview :: 12/30/09 Your thoughts on the Texas Southern and Prairie View A&M games?
Marvin Menzies: Texas Southern, we knew that we were going against a very talented and athletic team. They had been playing teams on the road close. They had been very competitive in games until late in the game where their depth ended up being a problem and teams were ending up blowing them out down the stretch. Having beat Idaho at home who is a team that we think is very talented in the WAC, we knew we were going to have our hands full. I thought my guys did a very good job of being prepared mentally for the game and being solid. We had a lot of breakdowns obviously still in our progression of trying to develop through the course of the season but at the end of the day I thought we were solid when we needed to be and pulled out the victory. I thought it was a good win at home.

The Prairie View game was a little bit different in the sense that that team we played was a little deeper and a little more athletic and obviously a team that had a better record and played Cincinnati to seven at Cincinnati. Their record is a little deceptive, they were 5-5 but they had three major pieces to their puzzle out in their point guard, a wing and one of their big kids. When they had everybody together they were very very good and they are leading their conference right now. We knew that they were going to be a good test for us. We really pumped the guys up on that. I thought they came out and played very well against them. I think that playing them close in the first was something that we needed and also in the second half and got rolling and stayed within the system and played within ourselves, we also needed that because we wanted that to build on going into this weekend's games.  Continue Reading This Post >> Weekly Coach Menzies Interview :: 12/22/09 Your thoughts on the split you got on the road in California. Kind of lost was the fact that you did get a split on the road, most of the talk was about the final score of the UCLA game.
Marvin Menzies: I think anytime you can win on the road that's a good thing. For our guys to bounce back after such a bad performance against UCLA, the score in the UCLA game was kind of skewed. I played a lot of young guys in that game, a lot of freshmen when the game was pretty much already decided and the score got a little worse. But I've got to think about the big picture in terms of minutes and going forward and getting ready for conference. All my decisions are based on getting us ready for conference. We had a chance to get to get some guys on the floor at Pauley (Pavilion) for experience. You lose by one or you lose by 30 it's still a loss. That game was something that we were able to take and test our fortitude and bounce back by getting a win on the road, our second win out of three games. It was good for us to be able to rebound that way. The homestand here, hopefully we can put together a string of games and continue to grow the confidence of these young guys and get them ready for conference.  Continue Reading This Post >> Weekly Coach Menzies Interview :: 12/14/09 Your thoughts on the win last night?
Marvin Menzies: I was obviously very happy that the team went out and performed with some passion and chemistry. I was going to be very happy with them regardless of the result but to come home with a 'W' on the road is a positive thing. The offense looked the best that it's looked all season.
MM: They were more patient and they did a lot of the things we've been trying to do in terms of driving and creating opportunities for your teammates. They finally starting to get that and guys did a good job of spotting up and being ready on the weak side. It turned out to start to click. I wasn't too concerned with it not clicking eventually, it was just a matter of time. Now we've just got to sustain it and learn why it was successful. We knew we could score the ball, we've been scoring it consistently in practice and shooting it well in practice, it was just a matter of putting it together in a game.  Continue Reading This Post >>