COACH SPEAK – FEBRUARY 9
By Leo Haggerty
Contrary to popular belief, there are other sports going on especially in the Tampa Bay area. Although our focus has been on the Buccaneers during their successful run that culminated in taking home The Lombardi Trophy in Super Bowl LV, the University of South Florida has been trying to keep it’s basketball programs afloat.
Had a chance to catch up with the Bulls Men’s Head Coach Brian Gregory. His answers to my two questions are below and his responses to my queries may astound you. Enjoy.
LH : It’s been close to a month since you played your last game. How are you dealing with that?
BG : Well, it’s new to me but it’s new to everybody else as well. You know, probably over the last week to ten days, I’ve talked to a lot of different coaches as we were preparing to, kind of, get back. The day we were suppose to play Houston we shut down. So, it’s been 28 days in a shut down mode. Approximately three or four skill sessions with three players on the court. Today, will be our second full practice with ten guys. So, talking with other coaches on what they try to do to expedite but, also, keep your players in a safe environment coming back. It’s so different. It’s not like when you started practice in the fall, or even when you start your fall workouts. You have been working them out all summer long and you had your fall preseason. We had guys that didn’t touch a ball for twelve to fourteen days during that stretch. It’s very different but we knew it was going to be different. So, we’ve gone out and tried to get their wind back and their basketball legs back. Try to prepare as best we can and understand that this is going to be a process coming back.
LH : I’m going to ask you to take off your coaching hat and put on your father hat. How are you dealing with your daughter that’s at Notre Dame?
BG : Well, for one, it’s been hard not having her around. She just has great energy about her. It was unique there. It was all in person classes for all fall long but she was home for ten weeks over the break. They got done at Thanksgiving and then she didn’t leave until last week. So, ten weeks at home. It’s been great but she’s freezing her tail off right now though. I can tell that. It’s been 12 degrees with a wind chill below zero. It’ll toughen her up and bring out that Midwestern blood.