Dec. 8, 2009
California (5-3) travels to Stockton this week to face Pacific (6-1). Head Coach Mike Montgomery visited with the local media on Monday to discuss this Wednesday's contest with the Tigers.
On Theo Robertson:
He practiced today and looked pretty good. I presume he will play on Wednesday. He moved around pretty well and stayed in the whole time. Theo is maybe our best shooter in many ways. He was playing very well until he got hurt. He hit a lot of open shots, and he is a smart player. We could have really used him against those zones in New York, for example, having a third shooter. I think it would be much harder to load up on Patrick and Jerome with that third person over there that can shoot. If you play him and Jorge together, that would be four guys who are capable of shooting the ball. It should change things drastically.
On the rotation for the Pacific game:
We would go back to the way we were. It would take some minutes from some guys. Jamal will probably play some 5, but he'll play 3-4. We will probably start with Markhuri or Max in the center. We'll probably do the same thing we did last year. We're probably starting two of our big guys. I might move Jorge out because he gives us such a dimension off the bench. I don't think I'll do that on Wednesday, but ultimately, I'd like to do that because you can plug him in at the 2 or the 3. You can actually play him at the 1, and then you can move Theo to the 4. It gives you more flexibility.
On Markhuri Sanders-Frison's health:
He is starting to get in shape now. He was really sick. It has taken him some time to get his stamina back, but he was good today. We need Markhuri to get his conditioning back and get back in shape because he's a good teammate. He defends well in there. He's just having a hard time stamina-wise, so we need to get him into shape, but he's making progress. He was getting himself into foul trouble before he got sick. He was just being too aggressive and he has to learn how to not do that. When he got sick, he didn't have a choice. He was way out of sorts.
On Max Zhang:
He gained some confidence, for sure. We'll be able to use all these kids before it's all said and done to get some experience for some of these guys. Omondi has come in and done a really nice job, particularly on the boards. He is very active on the glass. He doesn't always get where he is supposed to be, but he is a strong rebounder. It's always good when guys can give us something and give us energy.
They're very solid, they play really hard, they're physical and they're well-coached. They have a lot of pride in their program. They're always a contender in the Big West just because it's important to those kids. They make it important. They don't beat themselves. They don't make a lot of mistakes, and they know who they are. They don't turn the ball over. They know where they want to throw the ball, and they defend well. They're not going to back off at all. It's a big game for them to get a Pac-10 school in Stockton. We're going to have to be ready to play.