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Sean Miller says this might be worst defensive team he’s coached

Arizona head coach Sean Miller reacts to a foul call in the first half during an NCAA college basketball game against Arizona, Thursday, Jan. 11, 2018, in Tucson, Ariz. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)

College basketball fans are used to the Arizona Wildcats having a great defense. This year, though, that is not the case.

A few days after Arizona’s fifth loss of the season, a buzzer-beating upset to Washington, Sean Miller came out and said the Wildcats’ weakness is their defense.

“This is my 14th year as a head coach and this is may be the worst defensive team,” Miller said Monday at his weekly talk with the media.

According to Miller, the team’s defensive struggles are because Arizona gives up open threes, good looks and fouls a lot.

“I wish we could have fixed it and maybe have been further along, but there’s still plenty of time left,” Miller said.

Arizona is ranked 160th in points per possession allowed, a mark of defensive efficiency they’ve finished in the top-50 of the last five seasons. Despite that drastic drop, Miller is still optimistic they can change things and build around the team’s great offensive play.

He said the offense might be the best he’s coached, an offense that ranks eighth in points per possession.

“Sometimes what’s worked in the past doesn’t necessarily work with the current team,” Miller said. “It’s up to us to adjust.”

With the end of the regular season approaching, the Wildcats aren’t too worried about each individual game but more so in the end result.

“Our mantra moving forward isn’t to win the Pac-12, it’s not to beat the next team, it really has to be to look at ourselves and have a sense of improvement,” Miller said. “To know that we have to get better at certain areas of the game for us to have the most successful season that we can.”


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