Memphis Postgame Quotes vs. Austin Peay
Nov. 14, 2013
Good win, always good to get a win. Again, we never take a win for granted. Winning is hard to do so we will take it. Dave Loos the coach at Austin Peay: if you have your name on the court, you're not a good coach; you're a great coach. So he did such a good job. Austin Peay is a very good team, and it is good for us to get the win.
There are some positives that we had in the first half. I thought we played well in the first half; the second half was a bit loosy goosy. I thought things got a big unsound and we tried to make the home run and not make things simple. We can't try to make the fancy play; we have got to make the simple one. It is about us in terms of the name on the front of our jersey. We have got to stay simple and sound. If we do that, we can be very very effective. When we try to make home runs and make the fancy play, or the 50/50 play where we might or might not get it, in a two-possession game it can cost you the game. So the win is great and the first half was good.
We have to cut down on the turnovers. When we press like we do, you are going to have some turnovers, but we cannot have as many as we had. I thought we were very good when we make the extra pass and when we make the hockey assist we are good. Overall, like I said it is a win and we will take it, and we will move on to get ready for Tuesday.
On Austin Nichols' performance:
I jumped Austin when he came out of the game, and I shouldn't have done that. I told Austin that you win every 50/50 ball. You cannot play for me if you don't win every 50/50 ball. Those things are very important to me. You have to stick your nose in there and get me rebounds. He did not win some 50/50 balls, so I jumped him hard. I probably shouldn't have jumped him that hard, but I wanted him to know that you have to win 50/50 balls if you want to play for me. I love Austin; he is going to be a great player. There is no question Austin is going to be a great player here. I am telling everybody now; Austin will be a great player. This year, he is going to have highs and lows. He will get better. He was fantastic today. The long term for Austin is that he is going to have tremendous upside. His hands are great and I loved how he finished around the hoop. He is a great player to watch and to see improvement.
On the play of the seniors and experience for the team:
That is why I took Austin out in the first half; I did the same thing to Nick King. I said you can't play for me if you do not win 50/50 balls. He went up soft the first time, so I took him out. In the 2nd half he played with a great tenacity. So it was a good lesson for the freshmen. Regarding the seniors, the four senior guards did a nice job. Geron (Johnson), Joe (Jackson) and Michael Dixon came in with a lot of energy. Chris (Crawford) came in and really opened the game by making those three's. Really those four guys played at a high level. When our team had a little slippage in the second half, I thought it was because those guys got a bit loosy goosy. They didn't keep it simple, they tried to hit the home run and that's when we started to play the way I didn't want to finish the game. Our four seniors got us where we wanted to be but at the same time they did not play for the whole 40 minutes, and that's what we need to work on.
On making his collegiate debut and his first career start:
"I think I was pretty comfortable out there. I've been playing with these guys for four or five months now so if you aren't comfortable now you aren't going to get comfortable I guess. I feel at home here and I go out there and do my best."
On the team's free throw shooting tonight:
"Overall, it was really good free throw shooting. My free throws weren't the best. I have to step up on that. We were definitely better than last game (Christian Brothers exhibition). I think we were like 50 percent that game and tonight we were around 70 percent, so we are doing much better."
On what the team can improve on:
Defense, obviously. Nobody has perfect defense. We gave up a lot of easy baskets tonight and we have to improve on that. We can't give up in our half-court defense. We played a lot of good defense when we stretched the floor. We try to get three stops in a row, seven times a game. We got six tonight, so we missed one. We are work in progress and this is just the first game."
On the athleticism of this year's team:
"We have a lot of guys who can stretch the floor and finish at the rim. We did a good job attacking the basket and stretching the floor."
On playing a ranked team like Memphis:
They're very good, no question about that. We got off to a rough start. I thought we went out there a little scared to be honest. We were fumbling the ball and we were out of sorts early. I think it was due to stage fright out there. I was disappointed in our inability to keep our poise and composure in order to play basketball.
On Memphis jumping out to an early lead:
We came unraveled pretty early and it was over, there was no question about that. There was a stretch where we missed seven consecutive layups and were 1-for-9 from the free-throw line during that stretch.
On Memphis winning the rebounding battle:
They annihilated us on the boards, almost doubling our rebounds. The margin for error is so thin when you play a team like this, but when you make as many mistakes as we did then you've got no chance.