Paul Hewitt - ACC Teleconference
March 7, 2011
"We feel good about how we have wrapped up the season. Iman Shumpert continues to play great basketball, he had a terrific week this week both against Wake Forest and against Miami yesterday. Jason Morris also probably played the best basketball of his freshmen year so far here coming down the stretch. We are looking forward to getting Brian Oliver back on Thursday. We have about as much momentum as we could possibly ask for going into this game on Thursday night."
On Brian Oliver's physical conditioning coming off of his injury
"I don't expect him to be in peak physical condition but I'm sure he can give us some minutes. Shooting has been something that has really been ailing all season and he is an outstanding shooter. I know he has been getting into the gym even though he has had the cast on the left thumb. I'd imagine his shooting stroke will be fine but I'm not sure how much wind he will have. Again, if he even gives us 10-15 minutes on Thursday night we will be pleased with that."
On how Thursday can be different than the loss at Virginia Tech
"We've got to hope they aren't as red-hot as they were the second time. Even if Brian had played it wouldn't have made much of a difference. They were sharp that game, they were fresh, they played really well. We didn't play great but they played really well. We could have played really well and lost. They were outstanding."
On going into the tournament off of wins instead of last year's tournament run after losses
"Last year we were in strong contention for a NCAA tournament berth going into last year, that would be the big difference. We always feel good come tournament time. Our guys have got some experience. Iman has got experience, Brian, Glen, Mo, they all have experience playing in the ACC tournament and having success in the ACC tournament. I would imagine that gives them a little confidence going in."
On playing and the potential of winning four days in a row
"It's possible. If you get to that last day really you have so much adrenaline, you've got so much fight going on I don't think you really realize it. I think anybody who saw the game last year recognized that the fourth day didn't make a difference, it was more a big-time shot that Jon Scheyer made down the stretch of that game. It was a one possession game and he made a very difficult shot to beat us."
On if Thursday's winners have an advantage on Friday
"That is something that I have always believed in that if you get through the Thursday night game, at least in the first half you have an advantage over the team that is just hitting the court for the first time. When those upsets do happen on the Friday night usually the pattern is that the teams that played the night before get off to a quick start and they kind of run away and hide with the lead."
On if he doesn't like sitting around all day before the Thursday night game
"No...it's a great time of the year. You get to play in the ACC tournament, I don't care what time we play, it's going to be a lot of fun. I know our guys are excited about the opportunity."
On the defensive approach to guarding Malcolm Delaney
"When you talk about a guy like Malcolm Delaney, we played him the first time and he didn't shoot the ball well. Iman is an outstanding defender, but I thought Delaney missed some shots in that game that he is more than capable of making. In the second game he was lights out in the parts of the game that I saw [before Hewitt received a second technical foul]. He was lights out. You've just got to contest shots and make it as tough as you can because he is one of the few guys in the country that can make shots when he is well contested."