Losing games hasn’t helped Hobbs’ efforts to draw students to the Smith Center, but the student section was filled for Saturday’s home loss to Temple, where students offered their candid thoughts on the coach and his team.
Early success made head coach Karl Hobbs’ job more difficult. Ten wins, a couple successful comebacks and one of the nation’s top scorers (Chris Monroe) have made students forget the first-year coach is working with the most inexperienced team in the Atlantic 10 in a rebuilding season. Most students seem to be turning the page on this season, setting their eyes on next year’s recruiting class.
Players, meanwhile, remain grateful for those who support the team, saying the sixth man provides the team a needed boost.
Senior Mike Lupo: “It’s just that we’re rebuilding, but it looks like (Hobbs) has a strong recruiting class coming next season. Patience is necessary.
Junior John Silbereis: “We got spoiled. We were picked to finish last in the A-10. We have no size. Hobbs is bringing in a great recruiting class. We just have to give him time. He inherited a program that was in a mess.”
Freshman Megan Menesale: “I’m less impressed because he came from (the University of Connecticut). I was expecting more, not seven losses in a row.”
Freshman Phil Gugger: “Hobbs is a very intense person. I don’t really question his coaching style but he is too aggressive with the players.”
Junior guard Chris Monroe: “They’re a big help. It gives that extra boost. You’re basically tired and someone hits a three and they go all wild. We just want to make sure that they keep coming back, because we need their support.”
Senior forward Jaason Smith: “When you’re starting to get fatigued, you hear the crowd in the background chanting for you, wanting you to pull through. It gives you that extra momentum to go a little harder, to make that steal, grab that rebound.”
-Charles Vundla and Sean Lee