David Padgett continued his media blitz on Tuesday with an appearance on the College Hoops Today podcast with Jon Rothstein. You can listen to the full interview below:
I have heard David say “I hate to use the term ‘wake-up call’” like four times in the last 48 hours, which is awesome because it means he’s making the media rounds.
Other highlights from the interview:
—The team wasn’t playing poorly before the Kentucky game, we just played a terrible game against our biggest rival and they played very well. The team has obviously responded very well to that adversity.
—Anas was originally taken out of the starting lineup because he’d been sick and missed practice. We need either Ray or Anas on the court at all times and so not starting them together means they can’t both immediately get in foul trouble. Malik has also been playing really well. He’s done nothing to “give up” that starting spot if you want to put it like that.
—The traditional, back to the basket big man is going away in basketball. Everybody wants to play like the Warriors and Malik is a product of that. He’s gotten much better at taking good shots and taking in rhythm shots. He’s seeing that the hard work he’s been putting in during practice is paying off.
—Bench production has been big for us. It’s the reason we’ve won our last two games. It’s good to be able to look down the bench and see that you have options.
—(On the biggest thing he’s learned in 20 games as a head coach) To be honest, there hasn’t been a whole lot of time to reflect because there’s always another game right around the corner. Our focus is always on the next game up.
—This isn’t an ideal path to getting to be a head coach, but I’m very fortunate and appreciative of the fact that I’ve gotten the chance to coach these 14 players. They have made this the best possible experience it could be, given the circumstances. It’s not a situation where you’re not looking forward to practice because you’re worried about guys giving maximum effort. They’ve made the best out of the a tough situation for a lot of people.
—I’ve texted back and forth with coach Pitino a few times. He’s rooting hard for me and rooting hard for this team. He’s letting me coach this team my own way, though. He’s not trying to coach from afar.
—The biggest way Rick Pitino prepares you to be a head coach is just the daily preparation. The scouting, the practices; he always wanted his assistants to coach as if they were preparing to be head coaches. Day in, day out, nothing less than your maximum effort is expected, and that allows you to be successful moving forward.
—I’m sure there’s a lot of talk about who the coach next year is going to be, but I don’t hear any of that because I’ve basically become a ghost with that kind of stuff. I don’t read the paper or watch sports on the news or anything like that. My only concern is making this 2017-18 season as special as it can be for these players. They’re not going to get a chance to redo this year, and you only get so many chances in college.
—When we rebound and take care of the ball, we’re a pretty good team. Those are the biggest areas where we have to improve.