Oct. 29, 2001
Mike Brey: Hello everyone. Glad to be here. I’m ready for your questions!!
Dallas: As a ’96 grad, I love the resurgence of the program that you’re heading up! How do you like the team’s chances in the Big East without Murphy’s leadership?
Mike Brey: Troy is a huge loss as is Ingelsby. But we really feel we can be as competitve as last year. We were picked third last year and won it. We are picked third again so we know how to operate from that postition.
Dave(Harrisburg): Coach, Last year you seemed to be reluctant to turn to your bench, while at Delaware you used your bench effectively. Do you feel more comfortable with your personnel now and can we expect to see more players in the rotation?
Mike Brey: There is no question we need to develop more depth with this team and we will. We have 10 scholarship players who can play and all 10 will get a chance. Last year was such a clear cut job getting a job in the middle of the summer, that the six veterans wre the only ones who could clearly handle the intensity day to day.
philadelphia: How is Matt’s foot injury? Will he play some small forward also?
Mike Brey: Matt is completely healthy. He is basically our starting second guard. But really our two wing positiosn are interchangeable. So he could be playing either wing spot. All I know is he will be on the floor a lot and will need to get his rest between games!!
Lecanto, Florida: Jere Macura showed spots of brilliance as a freshman. Will he get to see some significant time this year?
Mike Brey: Absolutely. We need him to give us quality minutes. He is our first sub for post players and he has had a great preseason. There is certainly more room for him this year after Troy’s graduation.
Ann (Denver): What kind of an impact do you expect Chris Thomas to have this year?
Mike Brey: Huge. We handed him the ball as starting point guard at freshman orientation. He has been great. What helps him is playing with vetereans like Graves, Humphrey, Carrol, and Swanagan.
Canadian: As a coach what opinion of the “walk on” player is there still room in today’s programs for them and under what conditions would you keep a walk on athlete in your program.
Mike Brey: There is definitely still room for walk ons in college basketball. With the 13 scholorship limit, you have to think about having enough people to run a quality practice. We have been famous for our walkons. The role of that player is to make every pracatice his game and to provide a competitive practive atmosphere for the guys who are playing.
I’m still looking for Rudy!!!
raliegh: Do you think you can have one of the best backcourts in the league with Chris T, Torrian J, Matt Carroll, and Chris M?
Mike Brey: I really do. Even though at this point they have not gotten much respect as a group. I feel over time they will prove to be one of the more effective backcourts in our leageue.
south bend: I see Torrian Jones has bulked up big time! I’ve been reading nothing but good things about him. Will he see more productive min this season?
Mike Brey: He has had a great offseason as far as improving physically. We need him to give us quality minutes off the bench on the perimeter. His defensive and rebounding abilities are needed the most right now coming off the bench.
David: Any specific reason why you don’t wear collared shirts?
Mike Brey: I don’t know. Maybe it’s a little superstisious but for the most part it has become more comfortable on gameday and traveling back after gamedays to go with the mock turtleneck. That’s a collar!! Just a different kind. The style has caught on in South Bend!!!!!
sean: How different will the offense be this season with Chris T runnin the point, and not Martin I?
Mike Brey: We’re a little faster than last year but that is also with Troy not being here. You become more reliant on transtition and the easy bucket. Two factors, faster, more transition and a few more sets to let Chris try and break the defense down and make decisions.
Nick (Bloomington): With such a tough non-conference schedule, is there any particular game that you look forward to? Go Irish!
Mike Brey: Well, don’t’ yell at me too much when we are in Bloomington. Certainly the Indiana is a game you look toward in the preseason. We have not had great success with them and that will be a big challenge. We also look at DePaul, Alabama, Miam of Ohio.
Terry Lally-Louisville: Here in Louisville, Coach Pitino has been conditioning his team harder this summer than he has his racehorses at Churchill Downs. I haven’t read too much about our summer program, are our guys in shape?
Mike Brey: Our guys are in great shape. One key that Troy left us with was working had in the offseason. The young guys have really picked up on that. Keep in mind our style of play is differnet than Louisville. The season is a marathon not a sprint.
Bahama Bob: Coach, are there any clear cut favorites in the Big East? It seems like the league is going to be very competitive from top to bottom. And what are your realistic expectations this year?
Mike Brey: In the West division it is absolutely wide open. GTown has been picked to win but I belive anything can happen. As far as the East, seems Boston College and UConn look pretty strong. But Miami is quitely getting better. Overall, I think our league is really wide open.
Aaron, West Lafayette: Coach, how difficult is it to be recruit in a state with 2 other major college basketball programs, how do you get an edge? We know ND will be good, what do you think of Purdue and IU this coming year?
Mike Brey: Chris Thomas has helped us get that edge. That has been an endorsement for kids to take a close look at us. I also think we have such a great package of high academics and athletics to sell, it is getting more attractive. We are getting hotter in this state.
Trent Rademacher Ortonville Minn.: How has Chris Markwood improved his game over the summer?
Mike Brey: Chris has made a remarkable comeback from a serious injury. He has been very solid as our backup point guard in the first two weeks of practice. That is how we plan to look at him. I am very happy with how he has recovered from his surgery in October of 2000.
peru indiana: i see rebounding as a potential problem for the irish. would you please share your thoughts? thanks
Mike Brey: First of all, were you sitting in our staff meeting one hour ago?? I agree 100 percent. That is my biggest concern. Our perimeter must help out big guys this season.
indianapolis: Will the irish fans see some Chris Thomas/ Torrian Jones backcourt this season? They are both great defenders, and explosive leapers!!! I’m really hyped!!
Mike Brey: There is no question they will play some together. And you are right, defensivley they give us a whole different look. It’s nice to see freshman and sophomore next to their name.
Thanks for your questions. Thanks for all your support. Make sure you follow us closely this season!! Take care.