GVX Audio: Dean Lockwood explains Lady Vols' lineup changes and looks ahead to Troy
KNOXVILLE — In post-game comments following the win over Texas, head coach Holly Warlick explained the lineup changes - namely that Ciera Burdick and Bashaara Graves didn't start. Warlick explained that Graves hadn't had a good week in practice.
On Tuesday's Sports Page, Vince Ferrara asked assistant head coach Dean Lockwood what constitutes a good or bad week of practice for the coaching staff.
"It's like the phrase 'To whom much is given, much will be required,' said Lockwood.
"There is an expectation that you come in the same way, the same energy level, the same effort level. You don't allow distractions to get in your way. It is difficult. When you're in the teens, twenty, twenty-one it's very hard sometimes when you're feeling the pressures of academics or you've got some other things that have arisen in your life that are maybe pressuring you or maybe just bothering you or whatever. It's hard to leave them at the doorstep as you walk through that tunnel, but you must. You must do that and it's very, very important.
"You're going to make mistakes, you're not going to be perfect. That's not what we're looking for. We're looking for the same approach, the same attitude, the same effort level all the way through. A lot of times, too, we define mental toughness and competitive maturity as 'What does it take to distract you? How little or how much?' And I think in those instances we have a very high expectation of all our players. Certainly at the foremost of that list would be players who are starting or getting starting-type minutes.
"I think [Coach Warlick] looked at Bashaara — and we all did as a coaching staff — and said the effort level wasn't the same, the overall approach wasn't the same. Again, we're getting close to exams and a number of our players are feeling squeezed right now. So it wasn't any one thing that happened or a negative, it was a culmination of three days worth of work and effort and that's where the other players went to the head of the pack.
"We all made a decision — ultimately Holly did — we're going to reward that. We're not going to not reward somebody who's clearly at the front of the pack during this time and leading with effort and energy."
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