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Husky Men's Basketball

The latest news and analysis on Husky men's hoops.

January 16, 2009 at 2:10 PM

Notes from Corvallis

The Huskies have concluded their practice at Gill Coliseum.
And they did so without incident.
You may remember it was here a year ago when a few of the Beavers walked into UW’s practice as it was wrapping up, nearly setting off a little rumble (details here). But the ringleaders of that exercise are gone, and the Beavers are pretty much a new team under first-year coach Craig Robinson.
“We literally have not brought it up,” said UW coach Lorenzo Romar. “No one has brought it up. I mean, Oregon State is so different than they were then in that regard. It’s just a different team.”
“The guy with the main issue (Marcel Jones), he’s gone now,” said UW guard Venoy Overton, who was at the center of the conflict for the Huskies. “It’s in the past.”
Instead, the Huskies spent their two-plus hours at Gill working on how to attacke OSU’s 1-3-1 zone defense, and how to defend Oregon State’s Princeton-style offense.
Romar said “discipline” will be the key to handling the Beavers tomorrow. I’ll have more on some of the specifics of that later in the keys to the game entry.
For now, a few more notes:
— Romar said Darnell Gant suffered something akin to a stinger when his shoulder was pulled back with right around four minutes left in the game last night. Romar said Gant has had some shoulder injuries he has been dealing with and this just reaggravated it a bit. But he said Gant should be fine and able to start tomorrow. He took part in practice today.
Elston Turner remains questionable, but is closer to playing, having missed the last four games with a high ankle sprain. He appeared to take part in quite a bit of practice and Romar said it will be a matter of seeing where he is when gametime rolls around tomorrow night.
Isaiah Thomas has moved ahead of Jon Brockman as UW’s leading scorer for the season at 16.2 compared to Brockman’s 15.8. The difference is even more pronounced in Pac-10 play as Thomas is at 20.5 compared to 13.8 for Brockman (Justin Dentmon is second in conference gamese at 18.0). Romar said that while he wouldn’t have predicted it before the season, he isn’t surprised and thinks it’s a sign of how quickly Thomas is maturing. “What I like about it is that I thought early in the season he was forcing the issue a little too much,” Romar said. “It took him a while to adjust to college defenses and realizing that they are hanging out in there and I’ve been impressed that he is letting the game come to him a little more. He’s not playing like some gunner going out trying to get 40 a game. He’s playing within himself.”
— Brockman is shooting just 42.9 percent in four Pac-10 games and admits that his ankle is still a little of an issue, saying “I probably won’t be 100 percent until the season is over” saying he just can’t take the time off needed to get to that level. Romar said he thinks Brockman is at about 95 percent but getting better.
— UW has won two straight road games by an average of 18.5 points. Asked about it, Romar said “I think we have been pretty mentally tough on the road. I’ve been more impressed with the mental toughness and the intensity than the scores. Those upperclassmen (Brockman, Dentmon, Quincy Pondexter) have done a good job and Isaiah has been very good on the road.”
— Romar recalled hosting Robinson when the OSU coach took a recruiting visit to UW as a player in 1980 — Robinson ended up attending Princeton, instead. “I just remember he was really laid back and was not a high-maintenance guy at all,” Romar said. “Sometimes recruits got to do this and that, are sleepy or whiny. He wasn’t like that at all. He just kind of went with the flow.”
Keys and picks to tomorrow’s games later.

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