Friday, March 25, 2011

Coombs: From Doghouse to 'Junkyard Dog'

For the first time in his career, Jamal Coombs-McDaniel got the podium treatment today. "Coombsie", as his coach often calls him, joined Jim Calhoun, Kemba Walker, Alex Oriakhi, Roscoe Smith and Jeremy Lamb at the podium for a presser before breaking off into seperate interview sessions.

Coombs-McDaniel didn't get any questions, but hey, he made the podium.

I caught up with the UConn sophomore later to ask him about his trying season. He admitted he seriously considered a transfter back in early January, but ultimately is glad he went through what he went through. Yeah, I know, another "disgruntled kid almost transfers" story. But in this case, I think Coombs-McDaniel was pretty serious.

Anyway, here's the story.

And here's a few additional quotes from Coombs-McDaniel and Alex Oriakhi that didn't make the story:

Coombs-McDaniel on considering a tranfer: “To be honest, yeah. I was thinking of it, when I wasn’t getting the playing time I thought I deserved. The assistant coaches just kept saying, ‘Stay with it, stay with it,’ knowing there’s going to be my day."

On Jim Calhoun: “He knows he’s a touch coach to play for. But overall, it’s been fun.”

On Calhoun referring to him as a "junkyard dog": “I’ve never been called that before, that was cool. I just try to do a little bit of everything.”

Oriakhi, on Coombs-McDaniel's frustrations: “When he didn’t agree with coming out, he would argue. I would tell him, ‘You’re fighting a losing battle. Coach is always right, like it or not.' That’s something he’s finally figured out. Now, when coach takes him out, he’s clapping, being a team player, and he goes right back in.”

On Calhoun: “You don’t argue with Coach, because you’re never going to win that battle.”

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