Aug. 12, 2012
Over the last two seasons, the Wolverines have suited up for 69 total games, and Jordan Morgan has played in every single one. More impressively, he has started each of those games except one after injuries caused him to redshirt his freshman season.
Morgan led the team in field goal percentage each of the last two seasons and even finished with the second highest field goal percentage in the Big Ten last winter. He received U-M's Loy Vaught Rebounding Award in his junior/sophomore campaign after earning U-M's Rudy Tomjanovich Most Improved Player Award as a redshirt freshman.
Averaging 7.3 points per game and making nearly 62 percent of his field goal attempts, Morgan has been a dominant figure in the frontcourt for the Maize and Blue these past two seasons.
Sitting down for an exclusive interview with MGoBlue.com, Morgan talked about his expectations for the upcoming season, how he has prepared in this offseason, and how the team is meshing and preparing for the season ahead.
On what he has done in the offseason to prepare for the upcoming season ... "I've spent a lot of time in the gym. I have stayed in Ann Arbor every year over the summer, but this year I really wanted to focus on getting stronger and more athletic, and really just taking advantage of the facility we have here."
On if he notices improvements from all of his offseason work ... "Yeah, we talk about something in our program called 'sweat equity.' It's the time you put in. Right now, I'm focused on being a good teammate, being a good leader and helping our freshmen fit in."
On all of the talk surrounding the upcoming season and how the team is dealing with all of the expectations ... "We talk about it. That is something that we don't ignore. We talk about how it is not guaranteed that we'll have a good year. We are staying on everyone to be tough, and our veteran players have been there, especially the older guys. The younger guys know it isn't given, either. We just try to stay on the young guys that don't necessarily know and keep them working hard. They are here and they are excited to get going."
On welcoming the new freshmen and how the team is meshing well together ... "There is a lot of talk about the freshmen, but honestly they are all really good guys. They are all humble, and they just want to contribute to the team as much as they can. It's not a problem of them trying to do too much. They are playing a lot amongst themselves, and that's what we're going to need from them. They are all good players, but we have a lot of good players here, too. If we can all play well together, we should have a pretty good year."
On how the team responds to all of the expectations ... "We know what people say. Everyone knows about the rankings. Whether you want to know or not, someone is going to tell you. We just try to block that out. Whether we're in the weight room or are in the gym for workouts, we're focusing on getting better. We older guys know that is how you win games, by trying to get better every day. Like I said, it's about building that mindset amongst the younger guys. We're here to get better. Ignore what everyone else says and be the best team that we can be."
On his personal goals for the upcoming season ... "I really just want to have a good, productive year for the team. After sharing the Big Ten title last year, we want to use that as a stepping stone and keep pushing Michigan Basketball forward. A lot of personal goals come with team achievement, so if we can put that aside, we won't have much to worry about."
On if any of his teammates have stood out to him with offseason improvements ... "Trey (Burke) has been playing really well, but he already was a really good player. Obviously Tim (Hardaway Jr.) has stepped up in his leadership role. In terms of players getting better, Blake (McLimans) has spent a lot of time in the gym and he has really gotten better and become more solid of a player."
The Inside the Huddle Series
8/6/12 - Josh Bartelstein