October 30, 2009

Pac 10 media day with Howland

UCLA head basketball coach Ben Howland spoke at the Pac 10 media day held at the LAX Hilton today. Howland was clearly concerned about the injuries that have held many of his players out of practice, but was also glad that all of the injured players were due to return to practice except for Jerime Anderson, who still suffers from a pulled groin and may not be able to go. Anderson has had a chronic groin pull since high school and has not been able to practice at all this season.

Pre-season practice is always a high priority with Coach Howland and with nine underclassmen including five freshmen, it has been frustrating to him to have so many players sitting out from these initial sessions. Howland stated that UCLA will have five games that count within the coming month. He also said that the games come too quick now, and he would like to start practice October 1st.

Asked about the new players and their learning Howland's defense, he said that we have lost a lot in the players who have left recently. Reeves Nelson, for instance, needs to learn how to get through screens. All the freshmen will improve on defense over the course of the season.

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