Here’s video (above) of coach Lorenzo Romar talking about Thursday’s Pac-12 opener at Arizona State.
And here’s a few selected quotes.
(On challenges Arizona State presents) “Kind of the big and the small of it (and) everything else in between. Obviously, Jahii Carson is a dynamite point guard. He scored 34 in this building last year so we know what he’s capable of doing. The thing that impressed me last year about Jahii is he came in last year with a reputation as a scoring point guard and he’s certainly capable of it, but he does a good job of distributing the ball as well. He’s averaging close to six assists a game and he’s just not coming down and shooting the ball every time it touches his hands – and it’s in his hands the whole game. So he’s really impressive. When you have someone who can score the ball and distribute like he does and is so quick to get in the lane and create havoc, he’s a tough cover.
“And then (Jordan) Bachynski down low, there’s a reason they are doing a good job defensively. He really protects the rim. He really protects it. This year and you could see it coming the last couple of years, but I think this year he’s gotten to a point where they throw him the ball and he’s going to get something positive out of it. He’s averaging close to 13 points a game and with those guys they have other players that are really good at shooting and scoring. (Jermaine) Marshall is a good scorer. (Jonathan) Gilling has torched us from three. And Shaq (McKissic), who is from here, is playing a lot better right now.”
(On scouting ASU) “You can see how teams go out and play. The way Arizona State is playing right now, you look at their games, you look at their schedule, you look at their scores, the way they’re going about their business, they’re a good basketball team. It’s plain and simple. There’s just no way around it. I don’t think their preseason schedule was fool’s good. I think it was legit. The games they won, 10-2 or something like that, it’s legit. They’re good.”
(On advantages and disadvantages of four-guard lineup) “The disadvantages are two – one is protecting the rim (when) people are driving. And when someone has size sometimes you can do all you want, they throw over the top, you can’t reach up there. But offensively, either totally that fourth guard in there that has to play the big spot, either totally him getting it, him playing one spot, because it’s hard to master both. Or we change how we play offensively when we go in a four-guard lineup. Just we do something entirely different when we spread the floor. That’s probably the disadvantage to it.
“The advantage is your quickness. We remember playing against UCLA last year when Kyle Anderson was playing the four spot and we had to go over and over again in practice, how are we going to defend when he’s bringing the ball in transition because that doesn’t happen a lot where a big guy brings the ball in transition. And Mike Anderson gives us that luxury when he’s in and we have four guards because he’s bringing it in transition a lot of times where it’s just a lot of space and room for him to operate.”
(On starting Desmond Simmons in place of Mike Anderson to add size to the lineup) “That could be a possibility as we move on, as we progress. That could be a possibility.”
(On possibility of Nigel Williams-Goss defending Carson) “I think it’s quite a bit for anybody. Twenty-five, 30-year-old man, whoever. I think it’s a little bit on anyone. We usually change throughout the game, have multiple guys on different players.”
(On how far has the conference come since last year) “Wow. Murderer’s row this year. We’ve got a lot of, you start talking earlier about those road trips, those are some killers out there. Just not a whole lot of weak links in the conference. Much improved, I think. Our league is much improved.”