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Paul Hewitt - ACC Teleconference Transcript

Feb. 7, 2011

Opening Statement:
Iman Shumpert continues to have an outstanding year. He’s actually six points away from 1,000. He’ll actually be the 41st player in Georgia Tech basketball history to score 1,000 points. We also expect Nate Hicks to practice this week–today, tomorrow and Wednesday–and should be available for the game against Florida State.”

On finding a third scoring option behind Shumpert and Rice:
“Glen [Rice, Jr.] is having a terrific year. He’s really matured as a player, and his consistency is much greater than it was last year. It has been somewhat of a chore to find that third guy. The obvious option is Brian Oliver. When he has shot the ball well and played well we’ve been a very good team. But he’s been up and down this year in shooting the basketball. But he continues to come in and work and continues to try to take good shots to try to score points. That’s been part of our issue this year is getting that third consistent scorer.”

On the freshman class:
“Two of them are redshirts. Obviously it helped them last year to be around the program and practice. Kammeon Holsey obviously did not practice, but got a chance to get in the weight room and get bigger and stronger. I think both he and Daniel Miller, the two redshirts, have played well for us. I’d obviously like to see those guys establish themselves a little bit more offensively down low, but overall they’ve contributed to some very good wins for us. Jason Morris is a young man who can really score. He can shoot the three, and he can go off the dribble. He certainly has to improve defensively. And Nate Hicks I think has a very bright future. He’s missed the last ten days or so with the appendectomy, but he’s made a very quick recovery from that. He’s going to practice and he should be in uniform ready to go on Thursday against Florida State. But all four of those kids are going to be very solid contributors to our program for the rest of this year and moving forward. All four of them are very good students, and they’re quality kids who I think are going to be building blocks as we move forward with the rest of the season and into next year.”

On the ACC getting only a few teams into the NCAA Tournament:
“I think we’ll get more than three, but we’ll know for sure on Selection Sunday. I think that the standard that the ACC has set over the years sometimes comes back to be a negative with people. I’ve been in the league now for eleven years, and every year I’ve always heard that the ACC is down. But you look at the last ten years, we’ve had five national champions come out of the league and we played for the title in 2004. I think it’s just become a stylish thing to say that the ACC is down. Now, are we young this year? Definitely. We’re definitely a very young league. But I do think it’s a league that’s improving, and I think that as we go into March, how our teams do in the NCAA Tournament will probably change everybody’s mind. I can’t remember a year I’ve been in this league, except maybe ’04, where I didn’t hear that the ACC is down. But again, the fact of the matter is, this year it’s a very young league that’s getting better.”

On this year’s ACC freshman class:
“I’ve gotten so used to great players coming to this league. If anything that’s hurt the league a little bit, it’s that we’ve had the very best freshmen in the country coming in year-in and year-out. Unfortunately we’ve lost quite a few players. I’d say the PAC-10 and the ACC are probably the two leagues that have lost more guys early to the NBA than all the other leagues. It’s a very strong group, but again, after ten years I’ve been here, I’m just used to seeing great players come in top-to-bottom in the league. Not just the marquee schools, but everyone has the opportunity to recruit the best high school players coast-to-coast to come to the ACC.”

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