Chat With Duke's Coach G. and Mo Currie
Coach G. has led the Devils to five-straight ACC Championship titles and five-straight ACC regular reason titles. Coach Goestenkors has earned ACC Coach of the Year honors six times for her remarkable achievements at the helm.
Monique Currie returns for a fifth year with the Blue Devils after redshirting her soph. season due to an ACL tear. Last year, in addition to ACC Player of the Year honors, Monique was named Kodak All-America, first-team AP All-America, John R. Wooden All-America and USBWA All-America.
Send in your questions for Coach G. and Monique Currie now, then join them right here on ESPN.com for all the answers Monday starting at 2:30 ET!
The ShowGirl (5:10 PM)
Welcome to The Show! We'll kick this off on Monday when Coach G will take your questions at 2:30 ET followed by Monique checking in at 3 ET. Send in your questions now using the form below, then join us Monday for all the answers!
Coach G. (2:30 PM)
Hello everybody, I'm excited to be here. Looking forward to a great season!
Gus Viani (Durham, NC)
Despite being picked preseaon No. 1 by most of the media, the ESPN/USA Today coach's poll has you ranked as the No. 2 team in the country behind Tennessee. Do you think your team should have been ranked No. 1?
Coach G. (2:31 PM)
We don't really pay any attention to the polls. We've been ranked No. 1 before and are painfully aware of the fact that preseason polls do not mean anything. I think that Tennessee is a great choice for the No. 1 ranking because they have been to the Final Four the last several years, are returning so many key players and have so many players back from injury.
GREG (ST.LOUIS MO.)
I THINK LINDSEY HARDING OF DUKE IS THE BEST POINT GUARD IN WOMENS COLLEGE BASKETBALL. WHY IS SHE OVERLOOKED? WHY ISN'T SHE FEATURED MORE? WATCH THE EXCITEMENT SHE WILL BRING TO DUKE THIS YEAR NOW SHE IS BACK.
How excited are you to have Lindsey back on the court? Go Blue Devils!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Coach G. (2:32 PM)
We're so excited about having Lindsey back on the floor. She's improved tremendously over the last season. She's always been an exceptional defensive player and now her offensive skills will match her defensive intensity.
Coach G: How do you define success? Also, with such a defined ten-year, can we expect to see a book about your coaching style and Duke basketball gracing the stands?
Coach G. (2:34 PM)
Well, I'm not thinking about a book as of yet. There's still too much too accomplish on the court! Success, to me, would be when my players graduate and have learned and grown as both people and players on and off the court.
George, Cincinnati, Ohio
Coach G - now that you have a full roster of players, it will be hard to get everyone the minutes they'd like. How do you handle keeping players fully motivated and involved when they might play less than they did last year at Duke or in High School?
Coach G. (2:36 PM)
Well, we have 13 players on our roster and I've yet to have a practice with all 13 available because of injuries. I'm looking forward to having to make decisions about playing time. It's a very nice problemt o have. This team is very focussed on winning championships and willing to sacrifice playing time for the betterment of the team. We've talked about playing less minutes, yet being more productive within those minutes. As long as we keep the greater good and the betterment of the team in mind, we will make the appropriate sacrifices and I think we'll be just fine.
Jim. Kingstree, SC
Coach.You have some nagging injuries on your team.To what extent do you believe them to affect the team and player(s)effectiveness?
Coach G. (2:38 PM)
At least at this point, I don't think injuries will be a factor. They are all minor and players will recover quickly from them.
Austin (Durham, NC)
Coach G, what a team you've assembled this year and for the future. I'm looking forward to watching both Duke basketball teams this season. With that said, what would it mean to this wonderful university if both you and Coach K could bring home championships?
Coach G. (2:40 PM)
When I came to Duke 14 years ago, my goal was to be the first school to win both the men's and women's championship in the same year. In 1999, both of our teams went to the final game, and unfortunately, we both lost. Since then, Connecticut had the good fortune to nab dual national championships, so it can be done, and we're hoping that this might be our year, as well.
Laura College Park,Md
how tough do you thinkMd is gonna be this year
Coach G. (2:42 PM)
I think Maryland is going to be an exceptional team this season. Brenda Frese has been doing a tremendous job putting together one of the nation's elite teams. I had the distinct pleasure of coaching Crystal Langhorn this summer for USA basketball and believe that she is one of the best post player in the country. I expect to see great things from them They are very difficult to prepare for because they have weapons at every position.
Carol - Raleigh,NC
For Coach G: What - if anything - about your summer as USA coach can you use to push DU to an NC?
Coach G. (2:43 PM)
Well, we had 12 outstanding players on that team that are all stars in college or in high school. I learned how to play 12 players quality minutes and make sure everyone was willing to sacrifice for the Gold Medal. I think that with our team and the goals we have here at Duke are very similar. I will have to play 13 players and will have to keep them feeling needed and important and happy for our championship run.
Joey Nations (College Park, Md)
Who is the toughest person in the ACC to guard?
Coach G. (2:45 PM)
I'd have to say our Monique Currie because she is so strong and powerful. She can get to the basket on just about anyone and she can also post up smaller guards. All this and she has a very good outside shot. She is physical, she is explosive and she's got a nice shot. She can just beat you in so many ways.
John Greensboro, NC
Coach G, how do you keep your players motivated and loose during the course of the season with all the media, exams, expectations, etc...?
Coach G. (2:47 PM)
Well, the players really keep themselves motivated, they understand that at this elite level, you need to come foccussed every day -- whether you are in the classroom or on the court, you are competing at the highest level. This requires great focus and attention to detail. We understand that we have a target on our back's and every game, every night, we are going to get our opponent's best shot. We need to give our opponents the ultimate respect each game and fight to get better each day.
Joey Nations (CP, MD)
Follow up. Who is the toughest opposing player to guard?
Coach G. (2:51 PM)
There are so many great players in the ACC, it's hard to pick just one. I think at Carolina Ivory Latta and Erlana Larkins are very difficult to defend. At Maryland, Shay Doron and Crystal Langhorne were very difficult to defend. At NCState Tiff Sandsbury and Billie McDowell were extremely difficult to defend. That's just off the top of my head. Every team has at least one player -- usually two players -- that really make their team special.
Atlas Drogne (Durham, NC)
How do you feel about your team's point guard situation this year with both Harding and Waner? How will you plan to utilize their talents.
Coach G. (2:53 PM)
I'm really excited about the point guard situation this year, considering last seaon, Smith was our only point guard and she is a natural 2 guard. Lindsey looks fabulous, Emily will give us some quality minutes and Wanisha Smith can slide to the 2. This is a very exciting thought to me, to have all of these talents on the floor working together at the same time. This makes my job a lot easier as a coach.
Where is Iciss Tillis? How is she handling not playing in the WNBA? Has she reached her full potiential? Do you talk to her, still?
Coach G. (2:54 PM)
Iciss is playing overseas right now. She has been in Korea and Russia and hopes to return to the WNBA in the future.
Talk about the development of the post players (Alison Bales, Mistie Williams, Chante Black, and Carrem Gay). What type of offense will you run with those four talented players up front?
Coach G. (2:57 PM)
We're very excited about our post game. Last year, we made a concerted effort to become more post oriented. All of our posts really responded. This year, we feel that we have so many differnent looks that we can give -- Alison has size and shotblocking ability, Chante runs the floor well and has moves inside. I don't think anybody works harder than Mistie and Carrem Gay added to the mix who is a post player will guard like skills. We will run a good deal of 3-out, 2-in motion to utilize our high-low game.
Where is Monique right now?
Coach G. (2:58 PM)
Monique is on the way. Thanks so much for chatting, I wish you all well. Go Devils!
Monique Currie (3:01 PM)
Hey everyone, I'm excited to be here, so let's get started!
Sherl (Freeport, Bahamas)
Hi Mo, I met you and some of your teammates when Duke played in the Bahamas last year. Mistie (in her blog) talks about team chemistry often. How special is this team's chemistry, aside from Jess having players on her left and right in the locker room :).
Monique Currie (3:03 PM)
This team is especially close this year. Chemistry is really important on and especially off the court, we spend a lot of time together getting to know each other so that we can be a lot more comfortbale with each other on the court.
Mo - How many pairs of shoes do you go through in a season? It seems that you have a pair to match all of the uniforms!
Monique Currie (3:04 PM)
(laughs) Let's see ... I love shoes! I love to switch them all the time, I wear a lot, just for comfort reasons and what not. I go through quite a few pair, I don't even know exactly how many.
First of all, Hello Monique, How is the foot? What can we expect to see different from this team.
Monique Currie (3:06 PM)
My foot is great, I was definitely happy to get out of that special shoe. This team will be able to pressure the ball a lot more, we don't have to worry about tiring as we have so much depth and numbers. I think what will be different is the number of fastbreak points we'll be able to pick up this year.
This is 2 Mo, out of all the girls on the team who would u say is the most all around goof ball?
Monique Currie (3:07 PM)
Who is a goofball? I don't know, no one really sticks out to me as being extra goofy. I can't pick one. We have a bunch of players always playing jokes, but not one particular teammate who really sticks out.
Do you miss Takoma School Days and mentors like Mrs. Hester Jackson? Great luck this year we will be in attendace at several games.
Monique Currie (3:09 PM)
Oh, finally you want to make a game! Those were glory days at Takoma elementary! (laughs) Those were fun times! I can hardly remember!
Who was the best player to ever guard you?
Monique Currie (3:11 PM)
Who gives me the most trouble? If that's what you want to call it? I've faced a lot of great defenders, Nikia Bell from UNC and Scholanda Hoston from LSU.
John Greensboro, NC
Mo, if you had to say one thing that kept you in Durham for another year other than a National Championship, what would that be?
Monique Currie (3:12 PM)
To pursue a graduate degree. That was always something I wanted to do eventually. I was able to start it this year in graduate school.
Kathryn, L.A., CA
Mo, how do you feel now playing with Lindsey Harding being back on the floor? What does her aggressive defensive play allow you to do now that you weren't able to do last year?
Monique Currie (3:14 PM)
Well, I'm so excited to be playing with Lindsey again. She is a huge addition to our team. We missed her so much last year. Her aggressive intensity will rub off on all of us and we can put more pressure on and create more turnovers this year.
Monique why do you get so many foul calls in the last few minutes? Are you the MJ of the ACC?
Monique Currie (3:15 PM)
Fouls on me or fouls called Joey??
Why didn't you come to Maryland? You could have led your hometown team to the promise land.
Monique Currie (3:15 PM)
Ahh. Well, for college I wanted to get away. I grew up in the area, and I just wanted to experience something different.
Jon, Dayton, OH
What is yours and Coach G's relationship like and how does the Duke cameron enviroment effect games home and away?
Monique Currie (3:17 PM)
Coach G and I have definitely become closer and closer every year that I've been here. She is a great coach and I love playing for her and leaving it all on the floor. As for Cameron, it is definitely a great environemnt, it has filled up each year, since I was a freshman. It prepares us so well for going on the road. Nothing fazes us or distracts us since we come from such an intense home environment and such a great fan base.
Did you pick up any new moves this summer in international ball? How was that different?
Monique Currie (3:19 PM)
Well, I worked on my game all summer so that includes new moves, I guess. As for international play, they run a lot more screens and give a different look so I think that really helped me and helped me develop into a better player.
Anne W (Washington DC)
Any chance DC will be able to get you back home to play again with Alana on the Mystics next year?
Monique Currie (3:20 PM)
That's pretty much out of my hands, but that would definitely be awesome. I love DC, the fans are great, and I've been a fan of the Mystics since they began, but I'll be happy to be drafted anywhere!
MO: Are you ready to show the world everything you can do on the court? What are your goals for yourself and the team this season? MOFERNO - It's gettin HOT in here!
Monique Currie (3:22 PM)
I think personal goal is definitely winning the national championship. Finally overcoming that obstacle we just haven't been able to overcome yet. I want to work hard and become one of the best player in the country. I know that that takes a lot of hard work and I'm willing to put that in and develop into a fine young basketball player.
Last year, there were few expectations...and Duke over-achieved reaching the Elite Eight. Is your preparation any different this year, when you are ranked among the top few teams in most polls?
Monique Currie (3:24 PM)
Definitely not. We prepare the same every year that I've been here. We work hard in practice and we always have high expectations for ourselves. We don't let what outsiders think and say affect us. We know that we can be successful if we work hard and do what our coaches instruct us to do and that's the attitude that we come out with every year.
Jane, Atlanta, GA
Mo, I'm glad to see that you and Lindsey are back playing again. It is great to have 2 guards who can rebound along withe post players. We are big Duke fans and with yhou and Lindsey in the front court, Duke can't help but take it all this year.
Monique Currie (3:26 PM)
Thanks Jane! We're really looking forward to this season. Thanks for all the fan support. Go Duke!
Monique Currie (3:26 PM)
Thanks so much, everybody. We're looking forward to a lot of success this season.
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