Our men’s basketball team is adapting to new expectations. Last season, finishing 18-12 left a lot of unanswered questions out on the court. It seems as if Head Coach Matt Reimer has a clear plan to get his team back on track.
“Our number one goal is to be better defensively than we were last season. We were not a really great defensive team. I think we can be better but we need to do it on a consistent basis,” stated Head Coach Reimer.
Last season, the Huskies averaged 81.8 points while limiting their opponents to 75.9 points a game. This leaves room for improvement, with only a 5.9 point differential, and has to be great to create less stressful and down to the last shot games.
Yes, a win’s a win, regardless of if you win by 10 points or 1 point, but hard-fought games catch up to a team after a while.
Winning games and adapting their playing style is something that the team is very effective at.
“When it comes to the three, it isn’t something that we sit around talking about. If guys are open, we want them to take that shot. We try to recruit guys who can shoot the three. We have a couple of plays we can run when we need a three, but for the most part, we leave it to the natural flow of the game,” said Head Coach Reimer.
The Husky basketball has been labeled many things. Yet, the only thing that truly matters is what we as a University and, more importantly, the team itself thinks about themselves.
“I would like to think we are defined by tough, hard-nosed kids that play the game the right way. Playing hard and smart each night; yes, some nights you do it better than others—some years better than others. I want our guys to play hard every night so we can be defined by our fight each night,” said Head Coach Reimer.
Defining a basketball team is usually put upon the players, as they are what the fans see out on the court. But the coach contributes so much to a team that even he sets the tone before the players hit the court, which is why a head coach’s style of coaching is so important.
“I let the guys play. I would like them to have freedom and confidence,” stated Head Coach Reimer. “I am a very vocal coach in practice, but during the games I try to be calm, let the guys play, and make adjustments as needed. I want my guys to have confidence. I do not want to micromanage.”
This year’s team has a lot of expectations on their shoulders. They have to improve from last year’s standards and capture the attention of students and fans again. They need to leave fewer questions on the court this season.
With budget cuts and setbacks, it puts an added pressure on every university team to win, and win now. There’s less room for error.
“This is a team concept,” said Head Coach Reimer when asked about how they plan on winning more games. “We have players who need to get more shots, but we create a style for equal opportunity. We don’t want guys who are in it for themselves or who play hero ball. It has to be team first; we have to win as a team.”
With great expectations this season and the team already sitting at 3-5, there is a lot of room for improvement. And with a heach coach like Reimer, those improvements will come quickly and get our team back on track.