World-Herald staff writer Steven Pivovar shares his observations from Tuesday’s Creighton men’s basketball practice at the Vinardi Center.
SEEN: The Bluejays back on the practice floor working on cleaning up some of the shortcomings that have popped up in the first three wins. That was the same focus in Monday’s practice. Center Will Artino made it through the entire practice after having to sit out the second half of Monday’s workout when he took a knee to the thigh.
SEEN: Forward Doug McDermott running sprints with the guards, and beating all of them — most by several yards — on two trips up and down the court.
HEARD: “Is Doug that much faster than all you guards or is he just working harder?” — Creighton coach Greg McDermott, in a slightly peeved voice, after the above-mentioned sprint
SEEN: Most of the guards keeping up with Doug McDermott on a second sprint. Austin Chatman finished slightly ahead of McDermott, and several other guards were within a few feet of the 6-foot-8 forward at the finish.
SEEN: Former UNO coach Tim Carter observing practice. Carter coached the Mavericks during the 1994-95 season before leaving for Texas-San Antonio. He coached UTSA for 11 seasons, making two appearances in the NCAA tournament, and then was South Carolina State’s head coach from 2007 through last season. He was in town to watch UNO play South Carolina State on Tuesday night.
SEEN: Chatman leaving a scout-team defender flat-footed with a nifty fake that set up a drive to the rim for a basket.
HEARD: “Today was a good practice. It gave us a chance to work on ourselves.” — McDermott
SEEN: Spend enough time at practice, and it’s likely you’ll see something special from sophomore walk-on Mo Oginni. He usually turns in one dunk a day — like the one he had after grabbing a rebound — that produces plenty of oohs and aahs from his teammates.
SEEN: A pump fake from 7-0 center Geoffrey Groselle that set up a short shot to complete a give-and-go play from guard Grant Gibbs.
ON TAP: The Bluejays won’t practice Wednesday. After lifting weights, the starters and forward Ethan Wragge basically will take the day off while their teammates go through individual workouts. “We need to get those guys off their feet,” Greg McDermott said. “It’s not like they need the rest now, but looking ahead to those four games we’ll play in six days in California, it’s going to be important that we back off a little.”