Heading into her second year at the helm of the North Carolina women’s basketball team, head coach Courtney Banghart is optimistic about the team's combination of new and old talent, even with the uncertainties of the months ahead.
“We’ve just tried to stay in the moment and be prepared for whatever might come our way,” Banghart said in a Zoom press conference Friday.
Because of the constant threat of a season disruption due to COVID-19, Banghart has had to adjust her coaching style and the path of the team’s progression.
“We’re not gonna take shortcuts, but we’re gonna have to introduce things maybe at a little bit different ebb and flow than we would in a regular year,” Banghart said.
So much is unknown about the upcoming season, but Banghart has focused her energy on teaching her team. The team includes lots of new faces, but the Tar Heels' head coach is confident in all of their abilities.
In terms of strategy, Banghart said the team is working on improving its defense.
“We’re just going to defend with a little more toughness which will allow us to score against non-set defenses more often,” she said. “We have a lot more versatility offensively, but we’ve got a whole lot more depth and speed on the defensive end.”
The team has faced scheduling difficulties due to the pandemic, and only just recently finalized its schedule. Banghart did not say when it will be officially released to the public.
“Scheduling was really difficult. We just completed it, and it is not what it would have looked like had we scheduled the way we wanted to and could,” Banghart said. “It’s different, it’s regional, it’s — I hope — safe, and I hope it lets us get five non-conference games in before we dive into ACC.”