I had my first post-season conversation with UW basketball coach Lorenzo Romar since the day his team was snubbed by the NIT.
I'll have a story in the Thursday paper, but here are a few of his interesting quotes:
IF HE'S WATCHING THE NCAA TOURNAMENT:
You can't help but watch and wonder what-if and want to be a part of it. We've been a part of it the last three years and have gone beyond the first week in the last two. It's difficult to watch, but the more I watch the more I get over it – watching it from a fan's perspective and an analytical perspective.
WHY HIS TEAM DIDN'T MAKE THE POSTSEASON:
As much as we want to avoid saying it, I think it was a necessary process with a youthful group that you go through. I won't say you underachieve, but you don't get things going as quickly as you'd like. When you look at UConn's season, I think you see something very similar. Once you say something like that, people say, 'Well, it's no excuse.' And again I'm not making excuses. But you ask what do I think: I think that was just a necessary process that you go through. But with all that being said, I still think that if Spencer Hawes is healthy the entire time, we're in the NCAA tournament.
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HIS ASSESSMENT OF THE JOB THE COACHES DID
I don't think we were perfect. When we went to the Sweet 16 a couple of years back you look back and see a couple of things you wish you could have done better. I think once you're content that's when you don't grow anymore.
HIS FEELINGS ABOUT NEXT SEASON
We feel optimistic for next year. It will be fun to get the guys who were sitting out: Joel Smith who we anticipated playing this year and Joe Wolfinger, who we anticipated playing and will now be able to play in Greece. Tim Morris, who redshirted, will be able to play. And then we have our freshmen coming in.
ADVICE FOR SPENCER HAWES
I'm just going to talk to Spencer and his family about the facts and he will make an intelligent decision. Either way, he will make the best decision. (That's what he did with Nate Robinson and Brandon Roy). I've not said 'You need to do this.'