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Floyd wants more time

November 28, 2008|Gary Klein | Klein is a Times staff writer.

USC had five days to regroup and get better.

Trojans Coach Tim Floyd would have liked more.

"Two weeks," Floyd said after the team returned from last weekend's Puerto Rico Tip-Off, where second-half turnovers and poor free-throw shooting led to losses against Seton Hall and Missouri.

The Trojans (3-2) resume their schedule tonight when they play host to Tennessee Martin (2-2) at the Galen Center.

Floyd is hoping for improved consistency from veteran point guard Daniel Hackett and new point guard Donte Smith.

USC also must improve its free-throw shooting after making only 56% against Seton Hall and 54% against Missouri.

The Trojans play a Tennessee Martin team coming off a 76-67 loss to Arkansas State. USC plays host to San Francisco on Monday before traveling to Oklahoma for a Thursday game against the No. 11 Sooners.

USC forward DeMar DeRozan, regarded as one of the top freshmen in college basketball, has had his early ups and downs. The former Compton High star is averaging nine points and 4.8 rebounds.

"He's going through a learning curve," Floyd said. "He's bright, but everything is new to him.

"He's having to give of himself on the defensive end more than he ever has in his life. . . . He's had flashes where he goes and plays with his great instinct and other times he has to think and process.

"It takes every player a different amount of time to figure it out. The best way for him to do that is to be on the floor."


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