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February 4, 2008On Monday afternoon, Florida State's Leonard Hamilton and Miami's Frank Haith participated in their weekly ACC teleconference. During that teleconference, both coaches talked about the upcoming Florida State at Miami game, as well as team specific news, like Hamilton talking about the Seminoles needing to put together a couple of wins, needing more from Ryan Reid, and their upcoming eight day break.
Florida State Head Coach Leonard Hamilton
"We got beat by a very, we lost to a very good University of North Carolina team yesterday where (Tyler) Hansbrough probably had one of the best rebounding efforts that I have ever seen. We did a pretty good job defending him but he is such a smart-headed player that he just found a way to contribute to his team and get (22) rebounds. He just kind of really broke our back and he willed his team to I think another Hansbrough type effort and a victory for his team. I think we played at some times as well defensively as we could on him and offensively we didn't shoot the ball well from the perimeter. We lost to a very good North Carolina team that I am sure is going to finish very strong and make a run for the national title."
On what he says to the team after numerous tough losses:
LH: We have shown a resilience. We have had different circumstances we have had to overcome. We have had a confidence issue because with Ryan Reid missing seven weeks of playing and Julian (Vaughn) missing 15 days of practice with a medical condition, it has slowed their progress up and some of the things other players are doing with confidence they are just kind of getting back into the flow. It kind of impacts us.
We have had to play so many extended minutes with our players during the period where we only had six scholarship players therefore stretching us. I can just tell we need to do a better job of keeping guys fresher and we seem to be fatiguing a little more.
We need to find a way to manage our practices a little better and stay focused on the fact that we have been in positions where we have had a chance to win just about every game but now we just need to stay focused and get over the hump. We just need two or three victories in a row to rejuvenate our spirits and to take our confidence level a little higher. Right now it is a little bit of a challenge for us to maintain the focus but our players have not shown any signs of backing off. I think they gained a little confidence from the fact we have been right there and they realize the challenges we have had to overcome. Now we just need to win two or three games and hopefully that will turn into a positive.
On having an eight day break after Miami benefiting the team greatly:
LH: I think it would be tremendous for us to have a break right now. We need to get Ryan and Julian into a little bit better condition. We need to kind of now practice the way we need to play with the talent that we have now and get a little more in sync. I think we are moving a little closer to that but we are not totally there yet. The Miami game really looms big for us.
On Ryan Reid:
LH: Well Ryan has really worked on his perimeter shooting. In fact, we are always kind of teasing him about how we wish he would spend some more time working on his inside moves. He spends all of his time like so many big guys working on his jumper. He really has improved his free throw shooting and jump shooting ability. We really need him with the team that we have now to become a force inside. I thought he was doing a very good job of that before he was suspended and he has to gain confidence. He had 11 (points) in the game before the North Carolina game. He made a couple of baskets and a nice jump hook inside. We need to get him doing that more on a consistent basis. We think he is more than capable of giving us a low-post threat and without having Solomon Alabi, our 7-foot-1 center, he needs to become our go-to guys on the block along with Julian.
Miami Head Coach Frank Haith
On the importance of this weekend's game:
FH: Obviously the kids know that we are back home and that we have to protect our homecourt. We haven't had any luck on the road. We have had two ballgames, and I think they know we could very easily like a lot of ball clubs sitting here at 2-5 we could easily be 4-3 with two last second shots that beat us on the road at North Carolina State and Wake Forest. So I think that we are trying to use that as indicator that hey guys we are close, we are very close. Some of those games are going to flip our way.
The schedule is going to be in our favor here in the latter part of the year too. If we can keep them on an even keel and understand this week is a very important week but not put too much on it but we have to protect our homecourt.
On what he sees of Florida State on film from recent games:
FH: Well, you know, I think Florida State is a lot like a lot of teams in our conference. They have been on the short-end of some tight ballgames.
I love Florida State's athleticism. I love their talent. I think they have great talent on the perimeter if not the most talented perimeter group in our league. That possesses tremendous problems for opposing teams. When I had really good guards in terms of three guys that present problems, you are very difficult to guard. I think Florida State is close. If you look at the game yesterday, it just went down to the wire. I think for the most part they have had some tight ball games that just haven't gone their way.
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