Monday, November 15, 2010

No panic yet for UAlbany

ALBANY - UAlbany didn't play well Monday night.

They were still in the game and they had a chance to win (albeit, not really in the last few minutes), but coach Will Brown said they're not close to pushing the panic button.

I'm not sure if they should be pressing the panic button, but what I saw was a team that didn't look like it was trying to win in the final couple minutes.

Granted they were down big, but it just seemed like the last minute or two just ran off and the Great Danes didn't even attempt and three's or things you'd normally see a team do when they're trying to catch up.

On the injury front, sophomore Mike Black won't travel to Atlanta for Wednesday's game.

Redshirt freshman John Puk, who was severely limited and fouled out in 13 minutes, also may not travel (I tweeted he probably wouldn't. On second thought, I think he will).

When Brown was asked, this was his response.

"I hope so," Brown said. "If I have to carry the bucket of ice and hold his foot in it, I'll do that. I have to talk to our training staff. He was not comfortable out there."

Puk is dealing with Achilles tendonitis and hasn't fully practiced in six or seven days. Brown was told Monday that Puk's injury won't get better unless he rests, which is a luxury the team doesn't have right now.

"He's a guy that really helps us defensively," Brown said of Puk. "He did a good job against Cornell. He takes up space. He can really move. He gets off the ground. He didn't have any quickness and explosiveness today at all."

If Puk can't travel or can't play, that means UAlbany is down two of what Brown called "his best five players."
Jeff Couch - The Record

UAlbany has lost their first two games of this season and now the program has lost 14 of their last 15 contests, so confidence is something that probably isn't strong, if there at all.

"They're young, they're fragile," Brown said. "I have to be careful too, how I relay my message as well. I'm pretty intense and inpatient and I got a short fuse."

One postitive note for UAlbany came from American coach Jeff Jones.

"When you consider that a vast majority of those guys are freshmen and sophomores, they have a chance to really get better," Jones said. "If you looked at us a year ago, we were kind of in the same boat."

Now, the Eagles finished 11-20 last season, but they are the Patriot League favorites this year (and they went to the NCAA Tournament in 2008 & 2009).

One thing different though. Leading scorer Vlad Moldoveanu was sitting out, after transferring from George Mason.

Here is Brown talking about the loss.

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