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"He has done very, very well," he said. "I'm more than pleased with his offense. He'll hit 12 of 16 shots in close in a tough scrimmage and is learning to pivot off the screen. He must learn to be more aggressive on rebounds, and he has to get back faster on defense. Moving back seems hard on his toes and soles.
"Right now, I'm concerned about his feet. He has size 17 shoes with the toes cut out. We need a size 19 and they don't have them. A Spokane shoe man has promised to provide at least an oxford-type shoe with a sponge sole. A sporting goods dealer said he'd get me something, although it may be a Primo Carnera-type boxing shoe that will need building up."
Lefebvre's feet slow him down after 30 or 40 minutes of scrimmage but not until he has whipped in a dozen hook shots or dunks on rebounds.
"His hook shot is real good for a big man," Anderson says, "but he needs experience. He really needs experience on rebounds. He can't understand yet how friendly teammates can rough him up on a scrap for the ball during scrimmage. He thinks they should be his friends. He'll learn."
Coach Anderson intends to use Lefebvre in a 1-3-1 offense. "It's something I picked up from Hank Iba of Oklahoma A&M at a coaching clinic," he said. "You'd call it a high and low post, with big Jean and low man near the basket and the others out front. They'll weave and try to hit Jean, then screen for him for a hook or expect a pass back out for a routine close shot. Lefebvre has become a team man, he's passing out real well when he doesn't have a shot. He passes back even when he does and he peaks over the defense real well, too."
Lefebvre seems better than average with his favorite shot en suspension, a one-handed jump shot from 25 feet away. His hook shots come equally well off either hand, but he is terrible on free throws.
Lefebvre shoots so well from outside that one day he told Anderson he wanted to play back as a guard. The coach hustled him into a dark room and brought out old movies of Oklahoma A&M's Bob Kurland, another 7-footer.
"That's where I want you to play, and that's the way I want you to play it," he argued, with hands going and pigeon French strained to the limit.
A major impasse might have developed had not Anderson called in some of his French professorial help. After a full hour's session they divined what was wrong. Lefebvre had decided that in playing center he was taking advantage of his height. He wanted to make the team on his ability alone.
Richie Williams, a 5-foot-8, 135-pound junior college transfer from Vallejo, Calif., has become Lefebvre's closest campus friend. Williams speaks no French, but both boys get along well together in the languages they both understand—basketball and the ballroom.