Friday, November 29, 2013

Dave Wiegmann's hard work helping UAlbany

ALBANY - Dave Wiegmann was all over the floor on Tuesday evening -- playing so well that coach Will Brown couldn't take him out of the game.

That wasn't the case last season, when Wiegmann (right, playing defense against Ohio State last year) had trouble getting out onto the court.

Continued hard work and determination have Wiegmann playing more than half the game (21.2 min/gm), on average. Currently, the 6-foot-8 forward is even in the starting lineup, as Gary Johnson deals with an ankle issue.

“He just refused to give up," said Brown, following Friday's practice.

Wiegmann is averaging 5.0 points and 4.7 rebounds per game. In the two starts, he's increased his production to 8.0 points and 10.0 rebounds per contest.

“I’m just trying to take advantage of the opportunities I’ve been given," he said. "Hopefully, I can continue to keep producing.” 

In the 70-59 victory over Rider, Wiegmann grabbed a career-high 14 rebounds, in 37 minutes of action.

“I couldn’t take him off the floor the other day," Brown said. "He got every rebound.”

Wiegmann played just 49 TOTAL minutes last year, after transferring in from Southwestern Illinois Junior College. This year, he's already played 127 minutes, in just six games.

“I still think his best basketball is ahead of him," said Brown.

Wiegmann isn't concerned about maintaining a starting role, once Johnson returns. He just wants to keep helping this team keep pile up victories.

“In the end, it’s what’s most beneficial for the team," Wiegmann said. "Whatever the coaches ask, I’ll do to the best of my ability.”

Last season, Wiegmann just wasn't strong enough to battle inside with the post players, but it wasn't for a lack of effort. He would lift in the hotel room during road trips and put in as much extra work as he could.

“He always fought, worked and competed," said Brown.

Wiegmann would come to Brown routinely last season and ask what he needed to do better or what he should work on, so that he would see more playing time. 

"The one thing that he wants to be able to say is that 'I was a good, solid player and contributed to a team at the Division I level,'" said Brown.

Wiegmann is a great student and is currently looking at what medical school, he would like to attend next year. He could have just continued to work hard in practice and finished up his studies, but he wanted to work even harder to earn minutes and contribute during games this season.

“He should be an example for all kids of all ages," said Brown.

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