We just kept running in players, in and out. They kind of got in foul trouble. Actually, a lot of guys got in foul trouble. I'm sure they were kind of tired. We just kept running players in and out and continued to get the ball inside and get a lot of easy baskets.
Yeah, I feel great about this win. We are going to celebrate until midnight and then it's all business from there looking at Virginia Tech.
Aw, he means so much. If we were to lose him--I wouldn't say the season would be over or anything like that, but we would definitely have to do a lot to replace him. He's just a great guy on and off the court. He's so vocal. He's a guy that's always with a smile on his face. The only time I've ever seen him down was when he was sick in Arizona. He's just a great guy.
He's a big body with a lot of skills. He's almost seven feet. He's just a very talented player. He has a nice game. He's improved every year since he's been in college. He's, overall, a pretty good player.
You all were 28-34 from the free-throw line today. How important is it to get to the line?
It's very important. I know we have been shooting a lot more free throws than the other team has been shooting. It's very important. It means we are getting the ball inside, it means we are sharing the ball, it means we are attacking more than pulling up and shooting jumpers. You have to get fouls on these types of teams. Especially today, they were in foul trouble and Visser even fouled out with like 12 minutes left in the game or something like that.
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What do you think you showed the '57 and '82 teams today about what you can do?
It was definitely exciting to have those two teams here, just bringing a great atmosphere to the game. Obviously, Michael Jordan, James Worthy, [Lenny] Rosenbluth, all those great guys sitting there watching us play really humbles you. It really makes you think about the past and what this university and athletic program is really about. It was a great feeling to have them here tonight.
You guys have been around a lot of famous players, but to look up and see Jordan and Worthy watching you play basketball, does it put you in awe?
Absolutely. It was hard to keep my eyes off of Jordan. When I was sitting on the bench Mike Copeland and I were sitting down, and I see Mike look and I 'd turn and look. Coming in the locker room everybody was talking about, 'Jordan slapped me on the butt coming in the locker room.' It's definitely something that puts you in awe. It's crazy to think about it.
Coach Williams was talking about you as a player and how there are all these stars on the team and how you don't care about getting headlines--you will go for the loose ball, you will play the defense. Is that what you want to be, the 'glue guy'?
Since the summertime, having all the players here together over the summer and then early in the fall and early in the season, I really just wanted to be the guy who does whatever needs to be done. I always feel like there has to be somebody on the team who has to do whatever it takes. It just doesn't matter. Somebody has to take it into their own hands to do whatever they can to help the team. That's really just the attitude I have.
What is more fun for you, shutting down someone on defense, getting rebound, or scoring points?
I get a lot of joy out of a lot of things. I get just as much pleasure out of scoring as I do to see Bob[by Frasor] make a great pass to Brandan [Wright]. I came in the locker room and was boasting about a screen that I set for Tyler. I came in the locker room, 'That was a great screen I set for Tyler. He was wide open.' I can get excited about a lot of different things. As long as this team is playing well and we are getting better everyday, reaching out potential, I've got no problem with it.
Tell me about the block on [Kyle] Visser.
That's interesting because last game--there was a clip we watched before the game on the scouting tape. Visser got a rebound and he went back up, and I just stood under the rim just kind of looking at him like 'What am I supposed to do?' Deon [Thompson], said, 'Just look at him. Don't try to block it.' I look at the scout sheet, I said, 'He's 6-11. What do you want me to do?' It's funny, this game as soon as I get in he got the ball and went up. This time I just went for it. It turned out in my favor, I guess.
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[You and Ishua Smith] are both freshmen point guards, you are both starting. He comes in and he's playing OK, but they are really struggling around him. Can you talk about that and whether or not you can sympathize looking at it from the other direction?
Yeah, a little bit. The team, they just probably didn't have a good game today or something like that. It looked like they were kind of down at the end. He's a tough player, he's going to get through it. Ish is a great player, and he'll get through it eventually.
Does it get easier for you when you are facing a team [for the second time] now that you have guarded him before and you know his tendancies?
Yeah, it was much easier today because--I've played against him before in high school. I knew how fast he was, but it caught me off-guard the first game. This game it wasn't that hard to guard him because we had help and we had things planned for him. It was all right.
What are your thoughts about Virginia Tech? Is there a little bit of a revenge factor there?
Yeah, a little bit. They beat us at their place. They were blowing us out for most of the game, so we want to try to get revenge. We want to win that game bad. We have been looking at it, circled the game on our schedule for awhile now. We want them bad.
What was it like playing in front of the guys you see on the highlight reels all these years and now to have them in the building?
It was good. Like Coach said, that was like motivation for us because they have already accomplished what we want to accomplish. We want to get there and get a national championship. Hopefully, in like 50 or 25 years, come back and motivate somebody else. It was great playing in front of them.
You guys seemed to find another gear at the end of the first half. Tell me about that run after Wake made their run and you guys answered.
I think they got a little tired after that run because they don't play that many players. We just took advantage of that and started running more, and we just started hitting shots and getting out on breaks and scoring so that was the main factor that won the game.