A new era begins on Saturday night for the Drake basketball program when the Bulldogs open the regular season at Illinois-Chicago. It will mark the debut of first year coach Ray Giacoletti. Giacoletti says there’s an urgency within the team that season is going to be starting soon.
Giacoletti. has been stressing rebounding and defense in practice and says those areas will be crucial against UIC. He says they will need to do a great job of defense again UIC’s dribble drive, and with the new rules, he says you have to do a better job of playing without fouling.
Officials will be cracking down on hand checking this season. It may lead to foul-plagued games, especially early in the season, and Giacoletti says teams may play more zone as a result. “We’ve made a huge emphasis on showing the officials your hands and keeping them above your shoulders. Zone is something we’ve worked on also,” Giacoletti says. He believes more teams may play some zone as they try to adjust to the new rules.