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Fran Speaks: Oral Roberts

We’re on to the Golden Eagles

NCAA Basketball: DePaul at Iowa Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Well, Iowa basketball just got absolutely shitstomped by DePaul on Monday night. The team is going to try and rebound against an Oral Roberts team that I just assume is downright now very good.

But you know what happens when you assume things?

It makes an ass of u and me.

I like that one.

On to to the not-so-funnies:

Q. How much are you still trying to figure out what you have? You have a lot of new faces.

I think that’s a fair question in a lot of ways. We’ve got new faces. We’re trying to figure out, you know, getting Jordan in there. I think he’s doing pretty well. Got Cordell back in there for the first time. Probably need to get Patrick in there a little bit more. I thought Joe Toussaint was really good; I think C.J. is really coming around. I thought he was really good.

Yeah, get Jack going a little bit. He had such a great fall. He’s a better player than he played in those last two games.

A couple things here: it’s interesting Fran is chalking about a handful of really bad performances in the DePaul game to just a bad night. He says later on he may have worked the team too hard in practice Saturday, but there were a lot of causes for concern in the game of more than one player in what I saw Monday night. Fran saying Bohannon is doing “pretty well” is generous to me, so I’m chalking this up to coach speak.

Q. Talk about Ryan and Luka playing together.

Well, they’re both physical, they both can score, they both can stretch the floor. They were getting in each other’s way a little bit because they both typically play essentially the center position. So one has got to step out a little bit more maybe. One has got to be the trailer on the break. The other one has got to run to the spot.

There just has to be a better way to phrase this question.

Q. You don’t ever seem to get too high or low. Have you always been like that as a coach? Has that been kind of your way?

Yeah. I think you have to be, because I think if you overreact, then they overreact. I think it’s only human nature. You have to be honest with them and they have to be honest with themselves. I think we have a group of young guys with character and they’re willing to assess themselves honestly, as do we as coaches, all the time.

You know, we had a long day on Saturday, last Saturday. That’s my fault. That’s not their fault. We tried to get a lot in. Probably did too much. So we agree that we probably should have done it a little differently. Let’s do it differently next time and not make that an excuse for anybody.

But we, like I said, violated cardinal rules when you get behind. We tried to get it all back at once. I think we quick shot the ball, we were -- we had guys that I think were trying to make plays because they felt like we needed somebody to make a play. You give them credit for that, but then if it doesn’t work you say, Well, let’s move it, move it, move it, and then try to make a play.

So you have to learn from that.

Can we talk about how there’s a media member here who doesn’t think Fran doesn’t get too high? His multiple suspensions and ejections would like to speak otherwise. I love Fran, but this is disingenuous.

I can’t recall a time Fran ever apologizing for a practice, so that’s something but it seems reductionist to boil Iowa’s piss-poor game to being worked too hard two days prior.

Q. Joe Toussaint and Patrick stayed on the floor for 30, 40 minutes after the game shooting and getting in some extra work. Seems like those two kind of get it already?

Well, they did it both games. They did that both games. I’m proud of them for that. They’re both very close. They’re close friends, roommates. I had to turn the lights out on them on Friday night because it got really late. It was probably about 11:30 and they were still in there, so got them out of there.

But that’s what you want from your young guys. It’s what you want from everybody, quite frankly.

Q. You literally had to turn the lights off on these guys?

Well, at some point -- and it’s one of the things about having the practice facility we have. Guys will be in there all hours of the night pretty much all year long. But especially after a game where they didn’t feel like they shot it that well or we didn’t play well, they want to get in there and get a workout. Cook used to do that a lot.

So at some point I’m going to go in there and say, All right, you got to go to bed. It’s the law of diminishing returns. You got your shots up, got comfortable. You felt like you needed to do that. Now it’s time to go eat and go to sleep.

I’m only ready for a “Aaron White gets locked in Carver”-esque storyline here if these guys can put together a more-than-competent basketball team. I do like hearing about the extra work Pat and JT are putting in together, and I’m hoping that’ll pay dividends sooner than later.

Q. With Toussaint, what are your takeaways from the first two games?

I think he’s been really good. I think the real important thing -- obviously he was terrific in the second half the other night. I think that’s important because he started slow. That’s what you want to see, just him come back. I thought he really executed the game plan kind of to perfection in the second half, and played with a little bit of reckless abandon. At some point you have to do that.

I think he also showed his complete skillset.

JT needs to be inserted into the starting the lineup sooner than later, regardless of what happens with Jordan Bohannon. He can make things happen for Iowa on the offensive end, and that’s important for a team that may not be having a lot of things happening!

Q. Are you done recruiting for the fall?

Yeah. Yeah, we’re done with it. Then we’ll see how things go in the spring. Did anybody leave early, that kind of stuff, you know.

And that’s that! Recruiting szn is OVER. Now please let’s win some games.