Sorry for being away from the blog for awhile. Been a busy day. Let’s get to the notes from coach Lorenzo Romar’s weekly press conference.
He fielded questions from St. Louis-area writers asking about his return to Saint Louis where he coached for three years (1999-02) and led the Billikens to a 51-44 record before joining the Huskies.
Romar remembers the SLU years fondly and said the most difficult thing about leaving was saying goodbye to players.
“I don’t want to ever have to go through that again,” he said. “The players on your team look at you like you betrayed them. We were really close to the guys.”
Romar said his fondest memory at SLU is winning the Conference USA tournament title in 2000 and advancing to the NCAA tournament.
Washington scheduled this game for senior guard Scott Suggs, who lives in nearby Washington, MO, but he’s unable to play because he had toe surgery last month. He undergoes a X-ray next week that will determine if he’s on schedule to return for the Huskies’ New York trip and games against No. 6 Duke and No. 21 Marquette. Romar said it’s unlikely Suggs will suit up and make a ceremonial appearance.
Suggs said he could play if needed, but the trainers are making him stick to the recovery schedule. He’s been doing a lot of stretches with resistance bands and individual exercises. However, he hasn’t began running full speed and has not returned to practice.
MORE NOTES AND QUOTES …
— The Huskies will work out Friday and Saturday morning to help prepare for Sunday’s 11 a.m. start, which is 9 a.m. PST. Guard C.J. Wilcox admitted he doesn’t like morning practices, but believes the workouts should players adjust to the early start.
— UW agreed to the early start to accommodate television and to ensure the team would be able to fly out Sunday.
— On UCLA Romar said: “There’s some things going on with that team to where they’re not themselves. That team can come together. They weren’t picked to win the league for nothing. So it’s hard to evaluate where UCLA is.”
— Romar said Stanford, No. 20 California and Oregon State are playing at a high level. He also included No. 15 Arizona.
— Romar talked about the moment late in Monday’s game when he called timeout to deliver a pointed message to freshman Tony Wroten Jr. Romar said Wroten wasn’t being rebellious when he appeared to wave off the coach and the freshman wasn’t the only one to make that gesture in game. Still Romar called timeout because he wanted to deliver a point.
“I thought Tony there were a few consecutive possessions where I thought he could have done a better job defensively and that’s what I mentioned to him,” Romar said. “What his response to me was a reason to why he hadn’t done as well in those possessions. So at that point I thought it was important for us to be on the same page right away. Not go another 2-3 minutes where maybe he wasn’t real clear on what I was talking about. I wanted him to know immediately, exactly how I felt about that and what needed to happen for him to do a better job.
“Two or three minutes later, he kind of patted me on the back and said ‘I got you coach.’ So we both were able to learn in that situation. There’s been other situations where others were being rebellious. Tony wasn’t being rebellious. He’s talking to me in the heat of moment and he’s saying this is what happened! Alright so. He’s not the only guy that game who did that.
“Some guys talked but it was a different situation and some other guys who are veterans and we’ve had that moment as well. Well Tony and I hadn’t had that moment. So we just talked about it. There’s been situations where those who were rebellious and I didn’t call a timeout and just substituted for them and they didn’t play again. That was not that situation.”
— Before Thursday’s practice, Wroten worked on free throw and three-point shooting with his aunt Joyce Walker, the former All-American at Louisiana State.