Friday, January 20, 2012

Duke assistant James peps up Austin Rivers

Duke assistant coach Nate James did a nice job of motivating freshman guard Austin Rivers before Thursday's victory over Wake Forest.

After Wake Forest’s starting lineup was announced Thursday, Duke’s reserves lined up on the Cameron Indoor Stadium court and waited for the starters to be introduced.

For the first time in his Duke career, Rivers wasn’t one of the five on the bench. Rivers said afterward it was the first time he hadn’t started since third grade.

Duke assistant coach Nate James walked up behind Rivers as the starters were being announced and starting talking to the Blue Devils’ freshman. What did he say?

“I was trying to get him to understand that it’s kind of different coming off the bench,” James said. “If you don’t have the right mindset and you just sit on the bench thinking about, ‘Why am I not starting?’ then that’s going to mess you up for the entire game.

“I was telling him to observe the game and not get caught up in you. He was ready – obviously he did a great job. He showed a lot of maturity to not let not starting knock him back. He did a terrific job.”

Rivers finished with 20 points and played a team-high 32 minutes.

-- Jack Daly


Anonymous said...

FSU will hammer the dookies at home by 10....Lol...