To prepare for the tip-off of another great year of college basketball, CHD is reaching out to coaches and players around the country to get the inside scoop on what we can expect this time around. Jon Teitel continues our season preview series by chatting with Old Dominion Aaron Bacote about leading his team in scoring and passing.
You play for Coach Jeff Jones: what makes him such a good coach, and what is the most important thing you ever learned from him? He is definitely a players’ coach and someone we can relate to because he played at the D-1 level.
Last year your program switched from the CAA to the CUSA: what is the hardest part of changing conferences? We did not know what it was going to be like: we just got thrown into it. CUSA has a lot of older guys so you have to compete every night, but we handled it pretty well.
In the 2014 CBI semifinals you scored 8 points in a 7-point loss to Fresno State: what did you learn from that game that you think can help you this year? When we get to postseason play it is just do-or-die because everyone trying to win a title. A lot of us had never been in that position before, so it gave us a lot of confidence and experience going forward.
You led the team in points and assists last season: how do you balance your scoring with your passing? I just try to make the correct play on offense. This year it should be easier because we have a lot more weapons on the perimeter.
Richard Ross led your team in rebounds and blocks last season: how crucial is he to your team’s success? He is very crucial. He is one of the guys on the team I am closest to and he always has our back. He does all the dirty work on the court and is a great teammate.
Your non-conference schedule includes games against Richmond, LSU, and VCU: which of these games do you feel will present your biggest test? Those three are really good teams, but we are going to respect all our opponents and not underestimate anybody.
Your cousin Marc is an ODU assistant football coach and your cousin Damon played basketball at Alabama: who is the best athlete in the family? I have to say me, but we can all play and do our own thing.
What are your goals for the upcoming season, and what are your expectations for the upcoming season? We just want to get better each day and try to win every game. We want to come out on top whether it is practice, an exhibition, or an actual game.