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Zips men's basketball: December record leads to MAC preparation

By George Thomas Published: December 12, 2012

Zips players have adopted the right attitude when it comes to the recent loss against Creighton in Omaha.  It’s best to let it go.

Considering the Zips own a 40-18 record under Keith Dambrot in the month of December, there’s no reason to disagree.  With the MAC season coming up, it’s pivotal that the team goes into January with some semblance of momentum.

A couple of things that may have hampered them:

  • Victimized by their schedule.  Not in that the schedule is too tough (although it has been challenging) but because that schedule features a lot of down time and very few actual games.  By my count they’ve played three games in 25 days.

“You can't tip-toe into the MAC.  You'll get smacked if you're not really ready.  I can't wait to get back to playing multiple games each week.  This one game a week is no good.  I'm looking forward to rattling off some wins here,” senior guard Brian Walsh said after Wednesday’s practice.

Dambrot agrees:  “It's hard to play well...when you play a lot, you're kind of on your stuff a little bit.  Extra prep is overrated a little bit.  I think for us that our teams have always played well when we've played a lot.   Or job now is to start simulating game experiences.  Even conditioning wise.  There's nothing like the game for conditioning. “

  • Cleaning up that defense is priority No. 1 before hitting the court against the Detroit Titans Saturday afternoon.  It’s been a point of emphasis for Dambrot, especially in Wednesday’s practice.

“Guys who came before you knew that if they didn't play good defense their minutes were going to get cut and you're going to be held to the same standard as the guys who built the program,” Dambrot said.

Apparently he has the team’s attention.

“It's going to be all right; I tell you that right now.  I think what (people) saw the past few games were shadows of what's going to come,” senior center Zeke Marshall said. “We just need to emphasize playing defense a little bit harder.  We got away from what Akron has been built upon and now we're going back to it.”

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