December 19, 2010

Zeigler: 'We're a soft team'

Following Central Michigan's tough loss to Detroit 75-49, CMU head coach Ernie Zeigler and freshman guard Trey Zeigler met with the media postgame. Also present were Detroit head coach Ray McCallum and freshman guard Ray McCallum Jr.


Opening Statement

"First I just want to congratulate Detroit and their head coach Ray McCallum. They came in here and….totally dismantled us. Totally dismantled us. It's extremely frustrating and we're embarrassed. We are back to square one and it's very, very frustrating, but we're just not tough enough. Let me rephrase that, we are extremely soft. We're an extremely soft team right now, mentally and physically. We have to acknowledge that and hopefully we will be able to start receiving treatments that help the softness that percolates through our roster right now."

On whether any positives can be taken from this game

"I will say that I thought Andre Coimbra tried to show some fight and hopefully that's something that we can build on with him, and right now he's one of those guys I would say has a fighting chance to be in the starting lineup for the next game. One of the small positives, I thought Trey (Zeigler) was really aggressive for us and we're probably going to have to look at him to play the point guard spot. Those would probably be the two most positive."

On whether the team's three assists for the game are a by-product of the offense

"No it's a by-product of guys afraid to take wide open shots. We passed up so many shots in the first half, we would get rebounds and guys would be standing 12 to 15 feet from the basket and would not shoot the ball, and they're standing there wide open. You would think that we're telling some guys not to shoot, that we're teaching guys not to take open shots, but that's not the case. We would get guys to penetrate and hit somebody, and we just pass up shots. Again, the majority of our shots end up being contested late in the shot clock, which now means someone has to try and take a shot off the dribble, which takes away opportunities for assists."

On the game Detroit freshman Ray McCallum had with 23 points, 11 rebounds and 7 assists

"McDonalds All-American, big time player, dominated his position as a freshman. That's what big time players do."

On his team's confidence level right now

"We have zero confidence right now. We're soft, you can't have confidence when you're soft. Trust me, we're going to do some things to create some toughness. We have some guys that supposedly are tough, should be tough, and are not tough. In this program the philosophy is 'Think Tough, Be Tough'. We're not that, we're not our motto right now. We have a ways to go with that, one thing I will promise you is that there will be some tougher looking guys on that floor, if that means we have to play six (players), we'll play six. We're going to get some guys who play tough."


On Detroit's defensive effort and CMU's recent struggles on offense

"We really struggled to score both halves. They switched up their defenses a couple different times, threw different things at us, and we struggled. "

On playing against Ray McCallum

"It was fun at first until he started kicking my butt. He had a great game. I wish the best for them. We've got to get better."

On getting to the free throw line 13 times

"I haven't really gotten to the line as much as I'm capable of doing. That was something I definitely tried doing today, just being"


Opening statement

"We had as good of a week of practice as we have had all year long. That was really encouraging for us to get a great effort for 40 minutes. That's what I'm proud of. We had a very solid first half, but the way we closed out the basketball game was the best we've played all year long."

On Detroit's post play

"We wanted to get post touches and start playing an inside-out game. We felt like that would open up the perimeter for drives for Ray and threes for Jason (Calliste). I think we have the potential to have a balanced attack with post-ups and with guys that can slash and drive and with three-point shooters."


On playing against CMU freshman guard Trey Zeigler

"It was a lot of fun. That was actually the first time we've actually played against each other in a real game. On the court we weren't friends. We just battled and wanted to help our teams win. I'm just glad we came out on top and got the win."

On stopping CMU's runs defensively

"Every time they scored we wanted to get the ball out of the net and push it up the court to try to get an easy transition bucket or throw it inside. I think it really worked, and we just wore them down by doing that throughout the game. Every time they missed a shot we capitalized on it by getting the rebound and taking off."

On CMU freshman guard Trey Zeigler

"I think he played a great game and he has a good team. I think he's great for Central and really helping the program. Hopefully he can get them to the NCAA Tournament. I wish the best of luck to him.aggressive, being on the attack."

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