Nov. 25, 2013
Eaves News Conference
MADISON, Wis. -- Head men's hockey coach Mike Eaves addressed the media at Wisconsin's weekly Monday news conference at Camp Randall Stadium. A full transcript follows.
Q. If you guys beat Minnesota, are you going to keep that mustache?
COACH EAVES: No, sir. It's funny. The whole mustache thing is, once again, our captains came to us and asked about if they can do it, and we said absolutely, then we jumped on board as a staff.
It's been a good topic of conversation because I actually learned I thought it was for prostate cancer. It's for all cancers for men. It's funny, you talk to people, `My dad had this problem or my...' so it really has done its job of making people talk about it and becoming more aware of it.
But it's coming off.
Q. When you go into a game against the No. 1 team in the country on the road, what's the message to the team?
COACH EAVES: First of all, we're excited to get back playing. The fact that we're going into Minnesota and they're ranked where they are, our kids will be excited. It's an opportunity to bang the drum a little bit and make some noise by going in there and playing well, see what we can do.
So the boys had a tremendous week last week. We kind of threw the carrot out there, if they had a good week of practice and did the things we needed to do, that they would get the weekend off, and they did that in spades.
They had Saturday, Sunday off, come back to work today and have three good days of practice and go in there, and like I said, hopefully bang the drum a little bit and make some noise.
Q. Mike, how much of a challenge is it for you to keep these bye weeks fresh and productive for your team?
COACH EAVES: It is a challenge. It's been kind of a fun one. I think, what it does, it gets us outside of our normal box. We've been creative. We've done some things, tried some things that we haven't done recently with Coach Snider in terms of training effects on the ice, in terms of off the ice with some things that we've done.
It's been fun. It's been a fun process. And I think the guys, when they come in and look at practice, what the heck is this? What's this? You can do that when you have these bye weeks.
I think we've learned some new techniques and training things and drills that have kept our guys' interest piqued, but at the same time, trying to keep them as close to game ready as we can.
Q. Having so many byes, especially this early, one would think that with a veteran team that could be a recipe for staleness, for getting sick of it
COACH EAVES: I would agree with you. I wouldn't argue that point at all. That's why I think some of the goofy things we've done, they've raised some eyebrows: Really? You want to try this?
We had a drill on Friday called a Russian transitional short term training games, and they'd never done that before. And they're looking at this, What the heck is this? But it was something new, and it was done. We had the heart rate monitors on. Jim said we got the training effect that we were looking for, and they kind of enjoyed it.