Q&A with Tubby Smith: '‘I’m sure there's something we could have done differently'

  • Article by: MYRON P. MEDCALF , Star Tribune
  • Updated: April 18, 2011 - 11:08 PM

The Gophers coach discussed the challenges he faced during the frustrating 2010-11 season.

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aceboyApr. 17, 11 8:10 PM

True, Joseph never fit in to team basketball, losing Mo Walker hurt as you need muscle in the middle, just look at the final four to see Ralph Sampson can never succeed with his slow soft play in the paint. But seems Colton Iverson and Mbakwe were big enough and tough enough to fit the current allowed style of play and I think the develop of Iverson was next to nothing, of which some blame must be attributed to the coaching. Also wasting a pure shooter and passer like we had in Hoffarber by making him bring the ball up and then having absolutely no one to pass the ball to when he was trying to set up an offense yielded terrible results. Watching Sampson and the Cooper flash shooting 3's was the end of the line for the team as they ended up losing everygame. I still support Tubby and hope he gets some point guards and muscle in the middle but think he needs to work alot harder at adjusting then he did this year. Don't waste Mbakwe's senior year, he is your go to guy, not Sampson. Williams is not a shooter, get him to the basket where he is really good. Can't wait for next year.

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dmulville72Apr. 17, 11 8:12 PM

Wow. Although I agree with much of what he said, Tubby really accepts no responsibility for anything that went wrong does he?! He really threw his team under the bus, particularly the guys who left. I was a firm supporter of the coach, but five defections in a year is a bit much to say its all on them. I'm thinking no extension without some better growth from the players that are left and the ones coming in.

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DacotaApr. 17, 11 9:17 PM

No questions or answers about the "deadline" Smith has established about a new practice facility. Another display of "playing footsie" reporting by a Strib cub reporter.

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ranger78Apr. 17, 11 9:25 PM

All I can say is Tubby needs to recruit better and he needs to coach better. Can you honestly say that the kids have improved under his coaching? Not really. Sampson's a wimp. Williams still looks like he did in high school. Iverson was just a big lug who should have been playing D2 ball. No guards. Let's go Tubby. Earn that $2 million a year you get.

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ChiefBApr. 17, 11 9:27 PM

So Smith spends one sentence with a condescending "I accept responsibility," but then spends paragraphs blaming everyone else. Time for this coach to move on. He's already battling S and N Dakota for recruits, cut the cord before we're battling SW Minnesota for recruits. Tubby retired a couple years ago, he just hasn't told the U.

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TGarApr. 17, 11 9:58 PM

Tubby's right! injuries and departures killed us.

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tafknatApr. 17, 1110:56 PM

Coach Smith seems honest, but the way he answered the questions by covering about every number on the roulette table; we were good and bad, fans should be concerned but they shouldn't be concerned, we can do better, but we did all we could, I believe he's still not sure what happened, and was shaken by it. I do think the future is brighter than the recent past, though.

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hobie2Apr. 17, 1111:13 PM

"He got 15 minutes and when I gave him 18, he didn't get better, he got worse."---- What can you say? 1) He got 15 minutes at 4 spot, and 18 minutes at 5 spot. It is different - Tubby thinks it is not? 2) Last year he defended strong side in a crowd, and this year he defended weak side all alone on a cheated-away defense from rim to 3 line while Mbwake was strong side. You see what you look for, and if you look for mistakes, you see mistakes. 3) If you play fill-the-hole basketball, and ask a 4-5 to play top of the key passer and wonder why the big isn't scoring under the basket - wow. 4) If you ask the 5 for a 4-on-5 offense and to be a 3-4 defender, and the 5 can't stop the 3 one out of 6 times a drive is tried, he is slow? wow again. 5) I watched for coach-player interaction - Tubby turning his back on Iverson when Iverson was on fire and coming in and didn't turn around until Iverson was sitting said volumes... If you get to see the 2010 Big Ten tourney on classic basketball, watch the game where Iverson carried the team to the win. Oh.. Tubby picked him, Tubby coached him, Tubby motivated him. One has 20 years coaching, the other was just out of high school. Who gets the higher bar?

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WRITRUTHApr. 17, 1111:58 PM

Coach Smith's 16-4 record to start the season is much more indicative of his coaching abilities than the collapse after losing Al Nolen and Mo Walker. What most readers don't know is that Josephs left the program because he was bitter about being benched for breaking team rules, rules which could affect the health of his lungs. I'm glad Smith did not allow him to be an exception to that rule. Paul Carter left to be closer to his home where his sister is undergoing treatment for cancer. Royce obviously could not overcome the legal problems and Cobbs was a me-first, selfish player. Bless his heart, Colt was awful and could not consistently make layups. Can't blame the coach for that. Coach did a remarkable job, beating North Carolina and West Virginia on a neutral court and winning the Puerto Rican Classic. Let's get the practice facility built and recruit the best players possible. And let's get back to the NCAA Tournament and do some damage.

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Minnepeach19Apr. 18, 11 2:47 AM

Tubby would make a great public relations guy. He comes flying into town with a cape and a big "S" on his chest and after four years we are finally realizing that he is as much of a coach as Christopher Reeves was a real life Superman. Most of the kids under Tubby did not develop from where they were coming out of high school and in some cases (Iverson, Williams in particular) they may have gotten worse. I would be really surprised if that collection of guys he has left on next year's team amounts to much more than a middle of the pack finish in the Big Ten and a possible bid to the NIT. Time to retire Tubby and let a younger, hungrier more skilled guy take the helm.

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