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John Pelphrey press conference – Campbellsville

BY ANDRES FOCIL
John Pelphrey press conference – Campbellsville

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Arkansas plays its first exhibition game on Monday when the Razorbacks face Campbellsville University in a 7:05 p.m. contest in Bud Walton Arena. Head coach John Pelphrey met with the media on Friday to preview the game. Following is a partial transcript of his press conference.

“We were off on Thursday. We’ll come back today and hopefully get five practices in before we play. There’s always the potential for more. “Monday is a unique situation. There’s very little scouting. A lot of the emphasis we place on ourselves to see how far we’ve come from Day One as a unit. We want to play well, to have respect for the basketball and for who we’re playing, to play defense and have an understanding of what it’s like to play hard. To have any success this year, we need a committed level to defense. I’m interested in seeing that.”

Courtney Fortson:“He will not play in the exhibition game. He’s done nothing wrong in terms of prior to not playing on Friday (Red-White game). He’s going to be a special player here. I’m the guy that decides how much or how little. I want to make sure he’s clear on what I expect. “When he does play, he will give us a level of toughness. He can put the ball on the floor, and he and Rotnei (Clarke) have developed a good rapport on the floor. Those two excite me for the future.”

Practices:“Wednesday was outstanding. We had 10 guys getting after it. We played well on both sides of the ball with more intensity than we had before.“We have a lot to work on in terms of being organized, screen angles and where to catch the ball on a pick and roll. Sometimes with young guys, that’s the toughest thing to understand. Every time you get a rebound, I want you to chin it and pivot, always catch the ball with two hands and on defense, stay down and stay square.”

Point guard:“Stefan (Welsh) and Marcus (Britt) will play there (on Monday). Marcus did okay on Friday (in the Red-White game). Marcus can make that penetrate and kick out three. When that happens, I feel very good about him making that shot.”

Starters for Monday:“I’m sure about two spots. The two Mikes are in (forwards Michael Washington and Michael Sanchez). Stefan will be in the mix, but the other spots are up in the air. Rotnei will probably be in the mix as well.”

Montrell McDonald:“He’s getting better at understanding and his attitude is in the right place. If he keeps progressing like this, he will be able to do the things we thought he could do. I would like to see him get active with steals and get easy baskets. I want to see him be long and athletic.”

Jason Henry:“He has a lot of ability, but there are a lot of other places slowing him up.”

Exhibition games:“The exhibition games this year are more important than last year. Every time we line up together, we’re going to learn something. I want to see guys play hard with unity, cohesiveness and understand what it takes to be on a team. I want us to play collective defense and take care of the ball.”



Sports Category : Basketball (M)