Once again, the YouTube folks at Kentucky Wildcats TV are back with their pre-game videos, this time for tomorrow’s game at Auburn. Coach Payne fills in for Cal in today’s press conference, and today’s player interviews feature Willie Cauley-Stein and Jon Hood. As always, a rough transcript of the questions the media asked the coach and players can be found below each video.
QUESTIONS TO COACH PAYNE:
Kenny, some of these guys have talked about, you know, everybody not clicking on the same day–everyone not playing well in the same game. How close are you guys, do you think, to that?
What’s the closest you’ve been [to everybody playing well] in a game?
The transition defense popped up again Saturday. What have you all been working on to correct that?
Is that one of the many pitfalls [bad transition defense] of a young team? Is that not their instinct to turn around and sprint?
With a young team, what’s the risk of overlooking Auburn, especially with Florida coming up on Saturday?
Kenny, you hear some coaches this time of the year saying “Well, we are what we are the rest of the way.” Do you buy that? Is that true of a team this young?
What do you make of the ups and downs Willie has had here lately?
Are you the guy that pushes on him [Willie Cauley-Stein] the most?
Kenny, what about Dakari? Can you talk about how he’s coming along?
What’ve you seen from Julius’ development and how he’s dealing with being the focus on so much of the other team’s plans?
Does Jon Hood have a defined role on this team? Or is it just kind of a case-by-case basis?
How hard is it to be a leader when you don’t play or play very little?
Is it a little easier when you’ve played with the John Walls, Eric Bledsoes, & DeMarcus Cousins?
Cal took issue on Saturday with the way Julius responded on a couple of those plays with helping Dakari on defense. How did he take that when you all went back and looked at the film, and what has he done since then?
Kenny, with James Young, is the challenge still to get him to drive more and play through contact so he can go to the line instead of just settling for perimeter shots all the time?
QUESTIONS TO WILLIE CAULEY-STEIN:
What has Cal been like since Saturday? He seemed pretty down after the game…
Where would you say this team is right now with the Florida game looming and your two games back?
How do you feel that that stuff can be polished up?
Is there any danger in overlooking Auburn with Florida on Saturday?
Are you excited to deal with more ice headed down there?
You said that some of the things you all need to work on is your defense and energy. How much do you think you can help out with that?
QUESTIONS TO JON HOOD:
You talk about this team kind of needing to flip on that switch of effort. Why do you think that hasn’t happened just yet?
Willie said you played a lot of pros and that’s how, you know… How do you feel about that?
What did it mean to you, Jon, to go in Saturday and do what you were able to do?
Is that the way you’ve been going in practice? How has practice been?
I asked Willie where this team is right now in the second week of February. He said maybe a 6 on a scale of 1 to 10. What do you think?
How do you think it compares to the 2011 [team] when you made it to the final four?
What’s it going to take to really come on and be like that  team?