October 20, 2009

Fox pleased with results thus far

It's safe to say that Tuesday's "Media Madness" at Georgia's basketball practice facility was nothing what head coach Mark Fox's Bulldogs were going to have to go through later that afternoon.

If so, Georgia might be in REAL trouble.

Billed as a way to give the media who cover the Bulldog basketball program an idea of what goes on inside a Georgia practice, Fox and his staff put the press on the assembled press, including many of the same pre-game warm-ups his players do before breaking into teams for a full-court practice game.

"It's just a little fun so the media can see what's required of our players, to get an idea of how hard it can be and hopefully an idea of how difficult it is to play at this level and the speed that these kids play at," Fox said. "But mostly, it's just to have some fun with the media and hopefully everybody enjoyed it. Nobody got hurt so that's a plus."

Fortunately, Fox's Bulldogs are much better shape.

Georgia kicked off its preseason drills Friday as the Bulldogs continue their push toward the season-opener Nov. 13 against New Orleans.

"I've been pleased so far. We've gotten better and that's always the goal," Fox said. "The kids have been very receptive to what we've been doing and hopefully we will continue on that path as we go along."

No, neither Fox nor his assistants attempted to instruct the media on the finer parts of the Triangle offense made famous by Phil Jackson.

Jackson has used the offense to win 10 NBA World Titles with the Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers.

So far, sophomore Trey Thompkins likes what he's seen.

"We've only gotten to two options out of it right now, but we're doing well with what we've learned," he said. "We'll put more plays in as we move along and see what happens."

Fox knows he's going to have to be patient installing the offense for players who have never played the system before.

"It was going to take our team a while no matter what we put in because all 15 players are learning so it's going to take us longer than normal," Fox said. "But that progression is on the track the way we thought it would be, but it's also tough for us to develop a defense we can trust so we've got some work to do there also."

But players like Dustin Ware say they don't mind the extra work.

Although the new system is different from what he's ever seen, the sophomore point guard said Fox has the team convinced it will work.

"That's the thing with Coach Fox. He just brought in a full-win attitude, that's the attitude he's had ever since he got here," Ware said. "As a player, that's just what you want to hear, especially after you've been through what we've been through."

Thompkins said the difference between last year and the Bulldogs' impending campaign has been an eye opener for all involved.

Sometimes he can't believe the change.

"As you can see, everything is 'Happy' right now. The mood is totally different than last year. Guys are anxious to see how we're going to do this season and so far Coach Fox has been nothing but a plus," Thompkins said. "He's a great teacher; it's fun and he's a people person. My first impression of him was that he's a winner. When I met him I didn't know what to expect but as time went on, I realized he was a no-nonsense guy so that's really impressed me about him. He's a coach that takes care of business and is going to do what needs to get done."

...More... To continue reading this article you must be a member. Sign Up Now!