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UCLA Basketball: Alford Meets the Press from the Men's Gym

In a change of direction, Alford spoke to the media from the Men's Gym this afternoon for the first time since the start of practice over a week ago.

Victor Decolongon

Steve Alford held a press conference from the Men's Gym (the Student Activities Center) this afternoon. Practice started ten days ago with no media access since, so this appears to be a strategic retreat due to fan and media blow back. Thanks to Bruins Sport Report for the video.

Here are the bullet points:

  • Alford commented on the reversal from last year when they were deep at guard and short up front. Now the depth is up front, but not as much as he would like. He's probably alluding to the loss of Jonah Bolden for this season at that point. He talks about that later. They took a chance on Bolden knowing it was 50/50 that he wouldn't get the waiver for this year.
  • Noah Allen and Wannah Bail are doing well in practice and will be in the rotation this season.
  • When asked about the point guard situation, Alford brang up Kevon Looney. I thought he was about to say Looney would play point guard, but he said Looney has the ability to rebound and go.
  • He said Bryce had an outstanding freshman year.
  • Norman Powell will play 30+ minutes per game. He is the best driving guard in college basketball. If his jump shot comes together, then he may be one of the best guards in college basketball.
  • Norman, Bryce and Isaac Hamilton played together often in practice since the beginning of the summer. They will be on the court together a lot this season.
  • This will be a scoring by committee situation.
  • Thomas Welsh asks Alford every day what he needs to do to get better.
  • Having Welsh in practice helps Tony Parker because last year he had to cover the Wears who were essentially perimeter players and runners whereas Welsh is a true center (implication in the discussion - Parker definitely starting, and not Welsh).
  • No questions about Octeus.