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Tim Floyd speaks for the first time since Winn’s departure

Gaby Velasquez

After the news of sophomore forward Terry Winn announcing his departure from the team, head coach Tim Floyd spoke to the media before practice on Tuesday, Nov. 30, and addressed the issue .

“Matt Willms needs to be healthy and we needed a healthy Terry Winn in all areas, but we didn’t need the distraction,” Floyd said. “Right now we have chosen to coach the guys that we’ve got.”

Floyd also expressed that it was more than simply a distraction to the team that appeared suddenly. According to Floyd, the behavior that Winn exhibited stemmed from last year.

“Terry tried to quit twice as a freshman and we probably would’ve slid him out after his freshman year, but Vince Hunter went pro and we had to have him go play,” Floyd said. “I was hoping that we could rely on him. It probably wasn’t a good fit for Terry. It probably wasn’t a good fit for us–and that happens. But we’ve got good kids in here. We’re going to go coach them hard and we’re going to try to have a great year.”

Floyd and his troop will carry on without Winn and move forward to their game against Northwestern State on Saturday, Dec. 3. The Miners (2-3) have been on a nine-game break since their devastating 72-55 loss to Southeastern Louisiana.

“We’re using (the break) to teach and coach and get a lot of repetitions and the kids have been fabulous,” Floyd said. “They’re really, really trying hard. I think we needed a break. We needed to try to get better.”

Another inactive Miner for Saturday’s game will be Omega Harris, who was suspended a game for missing class.

“I have convictions about why I’m here,” Floyd said. “These kids are here to get diplomas and they’re here to get degrees. Omega has abused the class attendance clause in his contract repeatedly. The latest one happened last week after a warning that if he did it again, he was going to miss a game. I think the easy thing to do for a coach would be to say, ‘Boy, we really need to win and I’ve really got to play this guy,’ but it’s not the right thing for this kid. And the right thing for this kid to do is to get an education, to understand you’re a student-athlete and you’re going to go to school and set an example.”

Prior to his departure, Winn averaged 9.7 points and 5.7 rebounds. The Miners will rely on their backcourt to make up for the loss of the big man. Dominic Artis and Harris lead the squad in scoring, both averaging 15.6 points per game. Floyd also has high expectations for the rest of his troop to rally through their early stump and step up their game.

“Dominic is having a hell of a year at this point,” Floyd said. “He needs some help. We’re hopeful that Matt (Willms) gets healthy and Kelvin (Jones) develops and Paul (Thomas) gets to do his job and Jake (Flaggert) flourishes and Omega comes back as a solid kid and a solid guy that we can count on. We try to go win as many games as we can. Right now we’re struggling a little bit right now. But we’re going to get better.”

On the Northwestern State side, the Demons come into the matchup with a 2-4 record and 0-4 when traveling on the road. They have one of the top guards in the nation with Zeek Woodley, who is averaging 19.2 points per game and shoots 49.4 percent from the field.

“They all look like Golden State to me. We’ve got to go fight them all,” Floyd said. “So I want our guys to understand ‘look, you’ve got to get over yourselves. We’ve got to all think about the other guy and when we do we’ll grow, we’ll get better and we’re going to win as many games as we can.”

Tip off for the game is slated at 7 p.m. at the Don Haskins Center.
Follow Adrian Broaddus on Twitter @adrian_broaddus.

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About the Contributors
Adrian Broaddus, Sports Editor
Adrian Broaddus is the sports editor for The Prospector. He is a junior multimedia journalism major with a minor in political science.   Adrian was born and raised in El Paso, TX, and is a graduate of Franklin high school. He entered college in the fall of 2015 in hopes to better his career in journalism.   Along with sports, Adrian enjoys writing music reviews, perspective columns and news stories on politics.   Although he is pursuing his degree in journalism, Adrian would like to go to law school and be an attorney while doing part-time work in journalism.  
Gaby Velasquez, Photo editor
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Tim Floyd speaks for the first time since Winn’s departure