Somebody needs to splice together a Best of Eldgridge Recasner mix tape. The former Washington guard, who will be inducted in the Pac-10 Hall of Honor this year, appears weekly on a radio show with KJR’s Dave Mahler and former Husky Mike Hayward.
Recasner, a passionate Husky supporter, touched on a variety of topics.
He said Venoy Overton should start in place of Abdul Gaddy. He said Quincy Pondexter needs to adopt Isaiah Thomas’ mentality and UW’s big men should focus on doing the dirty work.
Here’s a sampling of Recasner:
(On Gaddy) “I think Abdul Gaddy is going to be fine offensively. I have 100 percent confidence in that. But when you have a guy like Quincy Pondexter and a guy like Venoy Overton and a guy like Isaiah Thomas, Abdul is just not going to get the shots. I started at the UW as a freshman. We had Chris Welp and Phil Zevenbergen. I knew I wasn’t going to get shots unless those guys got double teamed and were nice enough to throw it back out to me. So in order for me to play, I had to guard their running team and play great defense.
“And I think that’s the role that we need somebody, but I don’t think that’s Abdul Gaddy’s role. Abdul Gaddy is not a defensive player. I’ve always say and I’ve been saying this every year that we do this show, you can’t make somebody what you want them to be. Guys are what they are.
“Ryan Appleby was a shooter. We wanted him to be a point guard. He’s not. Justin Dentmon was a 2-guard. We wanted him to be a point guard. Isaiah Thomas is a 2-guard. Abdul Gaddy is a point guard and I think Abdul Gaddy is going to be a phenomenal player at the University of Washington. I think once he leaves, he’ll probably be one of the best players in the history of the school.
“But right now, we need somebody out there that can defend because Isaiah Thomas is not a defender.
(On Overton) “I hate to open up this bag of worms, but it happened on a team that me and Mike played on together. When a guy earns a starting spot and you don’t start him, bad things happen. I think Venoy came out and I think he had a right to be a starter. We got a kid who was a McDonald’s All-American. He was a Jordan All-American and up until this point, he hasn’t played to that level. And I don’t know how much longer you can keep a kid out there that’s not performing the way everybody thought that he should because one you killed a guy that in his mind, thought he earned a spot.
“I really and truly believe, Venoy thought he earned a starting role because now you’re starting to see his play taper off. You never in the three years that he’s been at the University of Washington seen him not get after somebody defensively. The last 2-3 games, he’s not the defensive player that he’s been the two previous seasons. That’s a big problem.”
(On Arizona State) “We start the game against Arizona State and (Rihards) Kuksiks is killing us. And the reason he is killing is, we have a power forward guarding him and he’s not used to defending somebody out there way out at the three-point line. … If it’s Justin Holiday, I don’t think Kuksiks gets off like he does.”
(On Matthew Bryan-Amaning)
“This kid has to focus on hitting the glass. We don’t need to be calling plays for him on the block because Quincy and Isaiah are our big offensive threats. He needs to focus on when those guys shoot, I’m going to go and get it. That’s how I’m going to get my points. Start off that way. Then maybe if he can get some confidence – because that’s what he’s lacking – if he can get some confidence with some putbacks, then maybe we can give him the ball and make a couple of moves. He needs to focus on hitting the glass and being a garbage man out there. Whoever can do that is going to be the guy that’s going to be playing.”
(On the bigs) “Unless we get somebody to step up on the interior, we’re going to struggle. That’s what I see. I don’t see it being a chemistry problem. Maybe some guys don’t know their role.”
(On the rotation) “If we keep playing 10-11 people, we’re not even going to be in the CBI. We’re going to be in the IMA.’
(On Darnell Gant) “If Darnell Gant can’t get 6-7 rebounds a game, we need to take his darn scholarship.”
(More on the bigs) “That’s where the problem begins, in the interior. We got great guards. We got one of the best on-ball defenders in the country in Venoy Overton. We got one of the best passers in the Pac-10 in Abdul Gaddy. And Isaiah Thomas … yeah he’s looking like he’s going to shoot first, second and third. But you know what I love about him, he’s aggressive. He doesn’t give a (darn) what anyone thinks. He believes he can score and he’s going to do it. Quincy Pondexter needs to get that attitude. Quit letting the game come to you and go take the (darn) game. That’s what he needs to do.”
(On Pondexter) “I had Quincy on my (summer) team and I told him two years ago. I ain’t going to tell you what I told him on the air. Look, this is his last hurrah. This is it. He can sit back and be sitting on the couch at home when the draft comes and don’t get drafted and say: ‘Man, I wish I had been more aggressive.’
“Get more aggressive. There’s 14 games left in the Pac-10 season. Get aggressive. I’m willing to die with Quincy. If we fail and Quincy Pondexter is leading us, I can accept that. I’m not going to accept the fact that he’s walking away with 5-6 shots a game, 7-9 points. I’m not saying he’s going to score 20 every night out. But at least give yourself a chance. I guarantee you one thing about Isaiah Thomas, come hell or high water, he’s putting it up. When he goes home at night, he can lay down to sleep and say you know what, I just missed some shots.”
(Last point on Bryan-Amaning) “I think the kid has a lot of talent, but the one word is confidence. … He’s lost his confidence and when you lose your confidence, you can’t do anything.”
(On C.J. Wilcox) “I saw Lorenzo (Romar) in Utah in September and he told me he was redshirting him. So this isn’t something he just thought of right before the season started. I don’t know what his plan is. I don’t know who he has coming in next year, but I wouldn’t mess with (Wilcox’s redshirt). I think if Elston Turner keeps playing the way he played over the weekend, I wouldn’t waste it.”