The Pac-10 Basketball teams held their annual media day on Thursday before games start on Sunday the 1st.
The event started out with a video shown of all 10 Pac-10 teams, mostly highlighting the Pac-10 Tournament. After Larry Scott and Dave Hirsch said a few opening words, it was time to hear from the coaches.
Ernie Kent opened things up with talking about how people mistake him for Craig Robinson when he says he's the head coach at the University of Oregon. When asked about who was the leader of this year's team, Ernie Kent made it very clear that this was Tajuan Porter's team.
He also had this to say about Michael Dunnigan:
"I just see his endurance being that much better, and that means better post play."
After Kent finished Stanford Head Coach Johnny Dawkins stepped to the mic and talked about senior guard Landry Fields.
"He can be one of the best players in the conference," Dawkins said. "He's practiced that way and he's led that way as a captain. "He competes every night, every play. That's something, watching him last year, I gained an appreciation for."
When Johnny Dawkins finished it was Oregon State Head Coach Craig Robinson's turn at the podium. To begin his session he began to talk about Point Center Roeland Schaftenaar. He says he has put on 25 pounds of muscle and is taking on a greater leadership role.
On the subject of Seth Tarver he had this to say:
Seth really has come on and improved his shooting," Robinson said. "We’ll be looking for a lot more scoring to go with the defense that we expect from him."
After Robinson it was new Washington State Head Coach Ken Bone's turn. He began talking about how Pullman was a little bit of a shock after living in Seattle and Portland. He said his family was adjusting fine though and that they were excited to start the season.
After Ken Bone it was Arizona coach Sean Miller's turn to take the mic. He started out saying that one reason he left Xavier was the opportunity to work in the Pac-10, particularly with all the NBA-level talent.
On point guard Nic Wise, Miller said the senior will be one of the best point guards in the country. Wise returned after considering leaving to turn pro.
"To me, he came back to college for all the right reason," Miller said. "He has a chance to graduate in May."
Rest of the story after the breakAfter Sean Miller it was fitting that former Arizona Interim Head Coach Kevin O'Neill took the mic. On the subject of Senior Dwight Lewis, O'Neill said that he will be his main man. "As he goes, basically we'll go, and I think he's up to that task," O'Neill said.
After O'Neill it was Cal coach Mike Montgomery's turn at the podium. He started out talking about the Bears' lofty expectations this year. He said he knows the expectations are there, and he's fine with it. "There's a little bit of optimism," Montgomery said.
Someone asked Montgomery if he has any sympathy for his old team. "I don't have any sympathy for the Warriors," he cracked, joking about his stint with the NBA's Golden State franchise.
At the end of Mongomery's session it was Arizona State Head Coach Herb Sendek's turn. On Senior Jerren Ship, Sendek said "He goes into his senior year in the best condition of his life." He also added that Ty Abbott will return from knee surgery some time in November.
After Sendek finished it was UCLA coach Ben Howland's turn at the podium. "The key for us again is depending on our sophomore class and some of our freshmen to be successful," coach Ben Howland said.
Ben Howland finished up with this to say about Junior Drew Gordon:
"The key for us again is depending on our sophomore class and some of our freshmen to be successful," coach Ben Howland said.
To finish up the day, Lorenzo Romar took the mic. He had this to say about highly-touted Abdul Gaddy from Tacoma:
"He's the purest point guard on our team," Romar said.
So there you have it. Obviously, this isn't even close to the amount of all the quotes so if you want to add some in the comments section that would be great.
--Special thanks to Mike Tokito and the Oregonian for most of the quotes.