Pac-12 Basketball Media Day: What to expect from Utah? Intensity
As a former men's basketball coach at Portland State, Ken Bone has experience dealing with Larry Krystkowiak. The two coached against each other when Krystkowiak ran the show at Montana.
The two went their separate ways, eventually.
Bone went to Washington State, and Krystkowiak landed in the NBA.
But now, with Krystkowiak taking over for the fired Jim Boylen at Utah, which joined the Pacific 12 Conference this year, they're back coaching in the same league, again.
At Pac-12 media day Friday, Bone was asked what the conference should expect of Krystkowiak's Utes, since he's one of few Pac-12 coaches with experience against Krystkowiak's coaching style.
In a word, intensity.
"Larry is intense," Bone said. "He gets his kids to be extremely intense, and they play relentless basketball. I mean, they bring it."
Still, there's a learning curve for Utah, which was picked to finish last in the Pac-12 by a preseason media poll.
"The players don't know a lot of my terminology," said Krystkowiak, who coached Montana to the NCAA tournament five seasons ago. "We don't know a lot of the players' strengths and weaknesses from having limited time with them.
"I do believe we'd be -- of the 12 teams in the Pac-12, I'd be really surprised if a team made more progress than we have in the last 10 days."
Utah finished 13-18 overall last season and 6-10 in conference play.
There should be some optimism in Salt Lake City -- down the line, at least, when transfers Aaron Dotson (LSU) and Glen Dean (Eastern Washington) are eligible in 2012-13.
-- Baxter Holmes
Photo: Larry Krystkowiak addressing the media last spring upon his hiring as coach at Utah. Credit: Scott Sommerdorf / Associated Press