USU men's basketball head coach Tim Duryea addressed the media on Friday and answered questions about the upcoming game against Wyoming on Saturday, Jan. 20. The complete transcript of the press conference can be found below.
“I really like Wyoming’s team. They are always a very athletic group. Since Allen (Edwards) has taken over they play at a much higher pace offensively and do a really good job of scoring points and getting up and down the floor. They are a little unusual in that their two main 3-point threats are their two post players in (Hayden) Dalton and (Alan) Herndon. They’ve got a couple of guards who can shoot it as well, but those two guys are their big threats from three. That is a bit unusual for a team and makes it difficult to game plan for when their best 3-point shooters are post players.”
On Wyoming’s shooting woes during conference play:
“They are down a little bit. I don’t think that is to form and hopefully we can make those struggles last one more night. They are not where they were in the preseason, but in Dalton, (Justin) James and Herndon, you have three guys who have played a lot of minutes for Wyoming and have played at a high level. I like their team. I like their team defensively. Herndon blocks a lot of shots. Justin James can guard multiple positions being 6’6” and so athletic. Dalton is one of the premier rebounders, pound-for-pound, in the country. He does a great job chasing the ball off of the glass. He is a little deceiving, he’s not one of those big strong guys that comes down with rebounds, but chases them and has a good motor.”
On Hayden Dalton’s production:
“There is really nothing he can’t do. You can post him up on the block. You can iso him because he can drive the ball. You can set things up for him to shoot the three and he can lead the break. He guards people and defends and we’ve already talked about his rebounding. He is a really versatile kid. He has a future professionally, maybe it will take his body a few years, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see him have a chance in the NBA. When you are that long, active and athletic and you can shoot the ball, you have a chance.”
On Wyoming’s depth:
“We watch (Alexander Aka) Gorski play a lot of games against other teams and when you look at his percentages you don’t get that alarmed. But, every time we play them he seems to shoot the ball really well. He’s a guy that you have to guard because he stretches the floor and you have to be there when he catches the ball because he is a catch-and-shoot player. The other guy that is having a good year for them is Louis Adams. He is one of the more athletic kids in the league. He is a handful in transition. He gets out early on the break and they get the ball out early to him and he is in attack mode. He does a great job of catching the ball at the 28-foot mark and getting it to the front of the rim and causing problems. He is having a good year and is shooting the ball a little better than he did last year from 3-point range. He is a player that we have to be concerned with.”
On playing a Mountain West opponent with a negative rebounding margin:
“The Mountain West is a very good rebounding league. With Dalton being such a good rebounder, he and Herndon get the majority of their rebounds. Wyoming is a little bit different on the glass. Their stats are a little deceiving. They don’t send a lot of players to the offensive glass. They turn and run for defensive transition. They don’t’ get a whole lot offensive rebounds, but it isn’t because they can’t, but their philosophy is to get back and get their defense set. Their rebounding stats are always a bit misleading because those two guys are as good a rebounder in the league.”
On Utah State’s effort against Nevada and Boise State:
“Their hearts were in the right place in both games. Basketball is one of those funny sports where you have to be totally invested. Not only physically, but more importantly mentally. Basketball is a very mental game. When you are sluggish mentally and you don’t have that edge mentally then it seeps over into the physical side. That is what happened at Nevada. We came back on Wednesday at Boise and I was proud of them. We put it out there. We put ourselves in a position and really made it a three-minute basketball game. On the road in this league that is what you are trying to do every night. You are trying to be there with three, four minutes, really that last media with a chance to win. We did so many things to put ourselves in that position. When you get open looks, you have to knock a couple down and make those shots to get you over the hump on the road. They made them and we didn’t. Looking at the film, we had some tremendous opportunities, but we didn’t get them to fall. Hopefully that mindset will carry over into tomorrow. It obviously will need to.”
On Utah State’s rotation against Wyoming:
“We are looking at the same people available for play on Saturday night. I haven’t talked to (athletic trainer) Brandon (Wells) today, but I don’t expect to have Alex (Dargenton) available for tomorrow night.”
On Alex Dargenton’s health:
“It was his good ankle, his left ankle. He just came down on the floor and it buckled to the outside. He is taped and braced on both ankles. He tried to go down the floor, but it swelled up immediately and he is in a walking boot. We are not going to have him tomorrow.”
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