On his holiday travels -
"When we left Los Angeles, we rode the red eye to Fort Myers, Fla. and Wanda got to see 3-4 basketball games with me on Thursday and the next day we went to Charlotte. But I saw some good players in Fort Myers, Wayne Ellington and Brandan Wright, [whom] we've already signed. Got to see both of them and some other guys I liked as well. It didn't erase Southern Cal but at least gave me some work to do instead of just sitting around because I was feeling like Scrooge about that time."
Looking back on the USC loss –
"I made the statement that we're not going to let the players say it's ok, but it was the first time this year that they've played like freshman. I don't know – the focus wasn't there. We just met together as a staff to grade some tape and it was a breakdown in about every single play someone did what they weren't supposed to do. They played like freshmen. And the other thing is [USC] made some tough shots. They made some shots. I know Tim Floyd very well and I saw him jump up one time and say ‘No!' and it was a three-pointer that went right in. They made a bunch of shots and we were 8-for-32 and that usually means you got your tail beat.
"At the end of the first half we've got an eight-point lead and we let them lay it up, then turn it over … Now it's a four-point lead and they're fired up. … missed a dunk, missed a layup … It wasn't a good feeling going into the half. It was a breakdown in every area of the game. It was the worst defensive grades by far, the worst execution on the offense end by far. We missed shots, they made shots. It was about as bad a night as we could have. …
"I was really upset at halftime were we had a loose ball and we had two guys bent over at the waist to pick up and a USC player dove between them and got the ball and called a timeout. It bothered me a great deal, but for the most part they've bought into it the entire season. And I believe it was just an aberration, I'm hoping that's what it was, but I agree they outhustled us in that game and it's something that's hard to understand why."
On a tough practice Monday night after the show -
"They're lifting at 8:00, I get them at 8:30 to watch tape for an hour and a half – that'll get us to 10:00 and we'll practice from then until midnight. … I've got kicking somebody's rear end on my mind so don't get in my way."
The status of Quentin Thomas –
"His foot is better, played 12-13 minutes against Southern Cal. Had a tough stretch right before the half. … But we do need him out there and to play a bit better. Hopefully we'll get more out of practice today and tomorrow and he'll play better on Wednesday night."
Looking ahead –
"There are a lot of [Top 25 teams] we've got to play, so we've got to get a heck of a lot better. The only way I know how do it is to try and get better every day. … And we need that practice time [one game over nine days] and when we start back up it's with Davison, who is having a great, great year as well and is almost like playing an ACC team."