Thursday, September 3, 2015

Phil Nolan: 'They're gonna have to put the arc out pretty far to stop me from taking charges'

Met up with Phil Nolan today for an interview for a story that will run in a few days.

It may be easy to overlook Nolan this season, what with so many good, new players coming in (not to mention some talented returnees, as well). But he's a senior now. He's got a national championship ring. And though he's coming off a disappointing junior season, Nolan looks fit and sounds ready to make amends.

Here's a few things he had to say today:

"I gained a lot of weight last year. It wasn’t all good weight. I lost a lot of weight, but then I started gaining it back and made sure it was good weight this time.

“It makes it tougher to move around, move your feet, not as explosive. When I went back home to Milwaukee, working with my trainer, it was a lot of agility stuff on the court and working on my explosiveness.”

(what he worked on this summer and needs to do better this season)

 “I know I’m way better at finishing around the basket. I want to improve on that, just make sure I’m in the best shape possible so I’m able to run the floor and be explosive, rebound ... just all the little things that will help the team out.”

(on how he feels about newcomers like Shonn Miller and Steve Enoch, both of whom could cut into his playing time)

“Anybody that knows me -- I’m not saying that I don’t want to play -- but anybody that knows me knows that I’m all for the team. What’s best for the team. Bringing in guys like that, it’s just Coach Ollie telling us to step up our game. We’ve got to get in the gym more, work out more. At the end of the day, it’s only gonna benefit us.”

(on taking charges)

“I had no clue that I was good at it. One day, Coach Ollie was yelling at us, ‘Nobody’s taking charges!’ He was really talking to the guards, I think. I was just like, 'I’m gonna go out and try it.' I think the first game I tried it, I got, like, three. So I’m like, ‘Man, I might as well keep doing it.’ Back then, I was getting in foul trouble a lot, too. Instead of jumping and getting a foul, I might as well let someone run into me and the referee call it a charge.”

“It hurts. I wouldn’t say it’s tough, but you’ve got to be dedicated. You’ve got to be predetermined and know what you’re gonna do. As soon as you see someone coming full-speed, just stand there and let them knock you over.”

(on the NCAA's decision to extend the arc underneath the basket by a foot, from three feet to four feet, to help reduce the number of collisions)

“I don’t think that’s gonna hold me back. They’re gonna have to put the arc out pretty far to stop me from taking charges.”

Check back in a few days for a feature story, which looks at Nolan's interesting home life back in Milwaukee ... and just why he was at the NBA draft this past June.

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Blogger Neal Ward said...

Charges? You got to give us more than a charge or two. In most games you score and rebound about what a dead guy gives.

September 16, 2015 at 5:04 AM 
Blogger Neal Ward said...

You are kidding right? Charges? How about some rebounding, scoring a point or two and some real defense? You have shown nothing in all your time at UConn and now you come talking about charges for your senior year. That's weak. Can you do a bit better than what most dead guys can provide for the team? Please?

September 16, 2015 at 5:07 AM 
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