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Highlights from “Call the Coach” radio show

The “Call the Coach” radio show featuring University of Hawai’i basketball coach Eran Ganot was held on Monday night at the Ruby Tuesday restaurant in Moanalua, and broadcast on ESPN 1420 AM.

Here are some excerpts of what the Coach had to say on various topics …

On Sheriff Drammeh’s technical foul for throwing the ball at UC Davis’ Chima Moneke:

Sheriff gets under people’s skin, but he has no reputation for hurting people. When you’re in the air, people have to understand, you don’t have time to sit there and think. I looked at the video and I knew Sheriff would do this, but he went and apologized on two occasions to Moneke. All he could do was try and apologize. I don’t think he or anybody in our program have any intentions to do that (throw a ball intentionally).

On Jack Purchase’s technical foul:

At a time when he was playing some of his best basketball, and it was huge for us in that game. Moneke has a tough time guarding Jack, too. Jack’s a different kind of cover. We move him around a lot and he can shoot it so well – he shot it really well. You go from having one foul to an illegal screen and a technical, bang bang, he has three (fouls). So he doesn’t come back again until 12 minutes (in the second half) and he gives us a lift again.

On defending Chima Moneke:

We talked about point of attack … I thought our bigs did a good job keeping him off the block, and not letting him get easy catches, and then once you put it on the floor, we’re going to swarm. And I thought our guards did a great job. Eventually it got to a point where he didn’t know when or if we were coming and that’s what you want to do. You have to make him work, team cover.

On Hawai’i’s 18 turnovers:

We understand that we were very fortunate in some areas because 18 turnovers is not going to get it done as we continue to move forward. We had a lot of unforced errors, especially late in the game, we were trying to force things. … we have to take care of the ball better and that’s an emphasis this week.

On Leland Green:

He hasn’t shot it well, but I have said he’s defended better than he has before. His assist to turnover ratio is not where it was last year and he knows that. He’s a worker. There’s something about foxhole guys. You hang in with them and they’re not going to let you down and the stuff they’re struggling with is eventually going to come. … You can make the argument he made the biggest plays of the game late. He had the free throw, he had the driving layup, and then he hit the biggest shot of the game, which was that 3.

On Zigmars Raimo:

It doesn’t always show up in the boxscore. He and Mike Thomas, we’re big on blocking out, we’re big on being good on the boards. They’re the two best at blocking guys out. The difference is, he might not get the rebounds, but he makes sure we get the rebounds. His physicality is a factor for us.

On Brandon Thomas:

Guys need reps. I thought he did a good job defensively and hit some big free throws late. He needed to go through that. Now you can watch game reps film with him. He’s one of our better shooters and I think he got a little bit antsy and started forcing the issue offensively, which he hadn’t done. But we had him and Samuta (Avea) out there late and we needed it all.

On upcoming opponent, Cal State Fullerton:

This is a good team that’s been on the rise. They’re coming off a semifinal appearance last year (in the Big West Tournament), they’re coming off a 17 win season and they return a core group of guys.

When I talk about the young talent that’s in our league … you see the jumps with our team, with every team in terms of being a year older. (Khalil) Ahmad, (Kyle) Allman – Allman’s made a huge jump … Jackson Rowe is a sophomore and a potential all-conference player as well. There’s more familiarity, there’s more continuity. They defend, they play hard, and they spread you out. They’re the best in our league at getting to the free throw line. It’s going to be a heck of a challenge for sure this Saturday.

On playing zone defense against UC Davis:

We worked on zone with the bye week we worked on zone more than we did in the past and we thought it would be effective against Davis. And then that took another jump with the uncertainty in some of our players’ health. We want to continue to be balanced there. We want to mix things up. You saw us mix in some press. I think maybe our league will dictate some of that … the man has been very successful for us obviously, but zone has been good as well.

In response to a caller asking about the referees talking to the coaches during the last game:

The game was obviously intense and he didn’t want it to get out of control. There’s a lot of physicality, there’s a lot of jawing, there was a lot of that going on and he just wanted us to make sure. He told us he had respect for both our programs and he wanted us to play right.

In response to a caller asking about Samuta Avea:

I said before we have some good players playing behind good players. I think our new guys have had more stuff thrown at them than any other group of new guys we had in the past … you want to play them all, but you’re also going to play the guys who earned it. He will earn it and when he earns it, he’ll play. That’s the way he’ll get better. The best part about this whole thing is Samuta and those other guys, they have great attitudes … they want to work and get better.

In response to a caller asking about Jack Purchase’s technical foul:

During the moment, obviously when a guy gets a technical, you know they come right out of the game and they know that. Right when he sat down, we talked. It’s all about understanding and getting better. A teaching moment. He got frustrated, but the hard thing is he cares so he just has to channel that in a positive way.

In response to a caller asking about future recruits:

I’m excited about our future. I’ve made that very clear because of what we have coming back and what we have coming in. Our foundation is now rock solid. I think with the bigs coming in, we’re looking for a dynamic perimeter player. I think our shooting has made a big jump in conference, but with the size we have coming in, and with the returners in terms of the backcourt, maybe another extra shooter out there that can spread the floor.

On recruiting players from Australia:

It’s a rare geographical advantage we have. International recruits are a big part of what we do. But over the years you could see the competition for European recruits and the geographical advantage is not like it was in 2002 … that was a time when maybe Europe wasn’t being as recruited and now everyone is recruiting Europe.

Australia and New Zealand, we’re trying to make inroads there. We talked about going on a tour there this summer. We have Jack coming back, we got two guys coming in. All those guys have and will be factors and I think they have and will enjoy their experiences here.

More on Cal State Fullerton:

They turn you over and they mix up their defenses. They have a real effective man (defense), where they pressure you and get after you. Then they move into their zone, one of the better 1-3-1 zone defenses that we’ve seen. They’re balanced. Teams that do well, teams that improve are the ones that are not one dimensional. They have balance on both sides and they have dynamic playmakers.

On points of emphasis this week:

Our guys always know it’s us first. We’re coming off (18) turnovers, I think some of the lapses in terms of execution. That was a big deal, getting back to teaching. Sometimes, it’s do what we do, but do it better. It started with that.

And then you’re talking about a Fullerton team that we have to be prepared for. A three-headed monster with a lot of support around them. You’re talking about two guys who can go for 20 to 30 points on the perimeter at their 2 and 3 spot.

1 Comment

  1. Thanks for the recap. I didn’t even know the show was on. Is there a schedule listed for this?

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