Sept. 27, 2013
By Matt Winkeljohn
– Basketball practice begins today at Georgia Tech a good bit earlier than in years past, and already fifth-year seniors Daniel Miller and Kammeon Holsey are looking forward to the school’s fall break – their first.
This will be the first time in their college careers where they’ll actually get to enjoy the autumn respite Oct. 12-15 like other students rather than spending it working on a campus that is otherwise nearly empty.
The NCAA has amended its start date for men’s basketball, and where previously teams would begin practicing somewhere around Oct. 15 or 30 days before the first game.
Now, the men can practice 30 times in six weeks prior to tipping off for real, which in the Jackets’ case will be a Nov. 8 home game with Presbyterian. Head coach Brian Gregory is opting to allow players several days off in the middle of preseason preparations.
“I was surprised when we got that,” Holsey said. “The guys should go home and relax. It’s going to be something different. I think it’s a good idea to go home and see your family, get some home cooking. We usually start practice then, and nobody’s on campus. It was like a ghost town.”
Gregory said the change in schedule has come about because men’s coaches like the way the women’s programs having been starting their seasons the past few years.
“The biggest concern among coaches is you were going from two hours of basketball [practice] a week to 20 hours a week,” he said. “The coaches felt that giving us more time without [adding] any extra practice hours would give guys more time to rest in between practices to get their bodies acclimated.
“It’s going to be interesting. The women have done that for the last few years with a lot of positive responses.”
Gregory did point out that this will make the season longer, but he thinks the tradeoff will be easier on players.
Miller seems most excited just to be starting earlier.
“I’m glad. I like getting into it early instead of waiting,” he said. “We’ll have plenty of time to look at film, and we’re still getting the same amount of practices in and we’ll have time to lift weights or just have a stretching day.”
The fall break will fall in the middle of the preseason. Good timing.
“We’ll have three weeks and then the fall break, and then another three weeks and we’ll open up. It comes at a good time,” Gregory said. “I think the body recovery time for the guys will be good. I just like the fact that I think it’s better for the guys.
“Being able to go two days on and one day off as opposed to taking Sunday off and going six straight days or taking the middle of the week off and practicing on Sunday … I think it could be really good.”
About Georgia Tech Men’s Basketball
Georgia Tech’s men’s basketball team is in its third year under head coach Brian Gregory. The Yellow Jackets have been a member of the Atlantic Coast Conference since 1979, won three ACC Championships, played in the NCAA Tournament 16 times and played in two Final Fours (1990, 2004).
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