Seattle U. players and coach Cameron Dollar met with the media today in advance of their 7 p.m. Tuesday meeting with Washington at KeyArena.
A bit of what they had to say:
CARTER STERLING on the Redhawks' 123-76 loss to UW last season) "We’re not losing by 47 this game. I know that for a fact. I’m not going to say we’re going to win the game, but I’m not going to say we’re going to lose by 47 either. ... We’ve just got to come out hard and compete just like we did last game against Northern Illinois – not wait to the second half to turn it on."
On playing against his former Franklin High teammate Venoy teammate) "I’ve played against him a couple of times in the off-season. Mainly just do against him what I’ve been doing all season: playing my game and doing what coach asks me to do. Not really focusing on who we’re playing but giving my all to the team."
AARON BROUSSARDOn the crowd expected at Key Arena) "We’ve been trying to get a lot of fans at our home games, and this is definitely a way that we’ll be able to do so. That will definitely bring a lot of fans and a lot of excitement."
CAMERON DOLALROn what needs to change from last season) "Score. … In their arena, every team will tell you defensively they really get after you and turn you up. We had some opportunities to put the ball in the basket, and we didn't. If you don't, eventually that score is going to get out further and further and further. It would be good for us to come out, have a good start, score some buckets early and kind of get in the flow. But I didn't think last year, we gave up some transition buckets that we shouldn't have, but other than that we just didn't make some shots. If you don't make shots it's going to be hard to obviously stay with them.''
On the difference in his team since last season) "We are a little younger than we were last year because we lost three good seniors and then obviously a really good player in (Charles) Garcia. So we are developing, we’re building. I like my young guys, they are working hard. The upperclassmen are doing a good job continuing to grow and develop and push each other. Probably where we are at since last year is that we are on pace to continue to build and develop in the right direction.''
On the Huskies) "They are doing good. They had a couple of tough losses early in the year and they are probably not where they would like to be conference wise. But they just lost to the first-place team on the road by one on a questionable call. The last two weeks, I think they have played probably some of the best basketball they have played all year. And they are veterans. So even if they dip a little bit, when post-season time comes around they are going to be good.''On this growing into a serious rivalry) "Our hope is not necessarily built around a rivalry. We want to build a legit program, so our eyes are probably a little bit more that there is a broader vision of what we are trying to do here. Part of being good is definitely being competitive with your cross-town team. But that is not something that is necessarily bantered about every day. We want to be a legit national program at the end of this, so that is probably more important than having one game against one team. … Every time you get a chance to be on a stage like this you want to make sure you leave people with a positive perception of your program, very similar to when we play at Virginia or play at Maryland or we played just the last game in Chicago, played Northern Illinois. So I always tell my guys you want to make sure when eyes are watching you that you are competing and playing and showing yourself in the light that you should be. So that's a big part of why we have done this at Seattle U. because it gives us an opportunity to show not only our basketball team but to show our university as a whole. We've got a lot of special things going on here, so it's good to be able to show that.''On if UW too tough for SU now) "I've always subscribed to if you have goals and visions and you want to be good and have substance then you need to play teams that are already there. As much as it may hurt some good butt-whippings early, it sets you up to have great success later. So I've got no problem competing not only against Washington, but any team in the country. Our motto always is and always will be anytime, anyplace, anywhere we will be ready to go.''On building SU program without conference affiliation) "Extremely comfortable going as an independent. So I like what we’re doing, I like the direction we are going. But even with that being said, what we are going to do – as always -- is we’re going to make ourselves as attractive as possible and then we are interested in listening to all suitors. If there is a conference situation that is the best for us as a university and an athletic department, then that is something we’ll definitely look at. Right now, though, being independent has not been bad for us, so we will continue to work at it and do a good job with it.''On if UW can serve as role model for what SU can be) "No question. Obviously I was a part of it and one of my mentors is still at the helm and a lot of guys over there are the type of young men that I want to recruit for our program here: how they play and go about their business. So it definitely is a great role model for us as we are building our program.”
On both programs in town be successful) "I think so. I think there is definitely enough talent to go around. But as of right now, Washington doesn't have a whole lot of Washington kids. They may be a little more national in some ways. But us and Washington State have Washington kids. The Northwest is just full of talent, so it's picking the right type of kids for your style and your system. We definitely can have more than one program be successful in that area.”