Louisville-Hofstra Postgame Quotes

 



Nov. 12, 2013

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Louisville Head Coach Rick Pitino

(Opening statement)
“I thought Chris Jones in a tight game - where they’re a really good shooting team, and they made some tough shots. I thought Chris Jones, for a four or five minute period, just broke the game open with terrific play. Another night where he doesn’t have a turnover in the game - kind of unbelievable to play at this pace, to press, and to not have a turnover. Really remarkable performance; great performance by him.”

(On what he was trying to accomplish in the game)
“I wanted to work a lot on our zone and our 2-2 press for the first time, and our communication is so bad. It’s surprising because Luke (Hancock), on two occasions, was bad. It was just really good for us to work on that, and to get exposed a little bit by not talking enough. It’s all verbal communication - whether we are in a trap, whether we’re in a down, whether we’re in a go through, to a man, it was good tonight to get a chance to work on that finally.”

(On Russ Smith’s fast start and performance)
“I just think he shot the ball well. I think he is a remarkable basketball player. I always laugh because a lot of pro scouts come in and say to me they like him because they have a really big two-guard and they can play Russ at the two. What baffles me with the scouts is that, in the NBA, you basically have a 16-second shot clock. So what can’t Russ Smith do in 16 seconds? I mean it’s not like they’re running a lot of motion, back screens, he runs a pick and roll great, he shoots it terrific, he passes the ball terrific; that’s why I don’t understand.

“In college, you sometimes need a point guard. In the pros it’s a 16-second shot clock. He’s not guardable. And I don’t get that whole thing, because he’s a scorer because Louisville needs a scorer. So I think he’s a treasure and I’m really happy he stayed. It’s great to have him. They tried like crazy to get him in foul trouble to get him out of the game. They couldn’t do it, because he basically didn’t guard anybody.”

(On how Luke Hancock was during and after the game)
“I thought Luke’s fine. I think we’re just going to milk him a little bit. Obviously, we gave up - and we usually don’t give up - 14 3-point shots, but they were deep. They’re a great shooting team. I think the area we really need to get better at is rebounding. It has to come from everybody. We just have this quality, we all call ‘boom’, and we’ve seen it now for 18 games. We see this quality that these guys have. It is an amazing quality. And sometimes it’s different players, it’s multiple players, and tonight it was Chris Jones. All the sudden, it’s a five point game and you look up and it’s 30. It’s an amazing quality. I’ve been coaching a long time haven’t seen too many teams like these guys. But we’ve got to get better, our communication skills have to get better, we have to rebound the ball better, but once again five turnovers in a game.”

(On Wayne Blackshear’s play)
“I think Wayne is playing good defense and good basketball. He is playing really solid basketball and doing his job. I thought from an offensive standpoint tonight, the guys did a great job. They just have to get better at communicating. They have a strong desire to play defense but they just don’t communicate with each other well because they are all new to each other.”

(On Chris Jones’ performance)
“I think he is just so physically strong that you can’t poke the ball away from him because he is a really strong kid. He is smart and he knows when to take over. He knew we were in trouble. I have seen him do it before when he was in junior college. They were down 19 and during one timeout I remember him yelling, “We are Louisville and we are coming back!” He was yelling obviously to impress me, and they came back and took over the game and won it. Prior to that, he was just getting movement. He has some unique abilities. ”

(Hofstra’s ability to spread the floor and hit the three)
“We just have some communication lapses. I think we are going to be a good defensive team; we just have to play with each other more. The more we play together, the more we do things together and change things up. Tonight we changed it up and used a lot of players and it was good to see.”

(Chane Behanan’s performance)
“I think he will be ok. We are running him and working him out every morning but that is not really basketball related activity. He will be fine. Chane (Behanan) will be fine. I knew I wasn’t going to play him a whole lot tonight, but I wanted to play him to get some basketball conditioning. I think the 14 minutes was great for him. Next game he will get a little bit more. I really am proud of him because what we had him do, very few of you could have done what he has done. Please don’t ask what it was. It took a lot of discipline from an extremely undisciplined young man. For 30 straight days he had to do this and it’s not easy. To get yourself up at 5:45 or 6:00 in the morning and he still has a long way to go with this stuff, but he has done a remarkable job for 30 straight days of never going out; not one day. For 30 days, Chane (Behanan), that is an impossibility. No visitations, nothing, pretty good performance by him.”

(On rebounding and whether it was a lack of effort)
“I don’t think so, I think they were trying hard I think when you play against long jump shooting teams, it is five guys coming in like an accordion to rebound the ball. I have a lot of problems with this team on how they are communicating but not perspiration or lack of effort. That is the one thing I really like.”


Hofstra Head Coach Joe Mihalich

(Opening Statement)
“We are going to take some stuff away from this game. Our goal coming here was to become a better team and take something out of this. We are going to take some good things out of this. We are going to take some bad things away from this too. We had a good stretch here in the beginning of the second half. We cut it to five. I just reminded the guys of that. We cut it to five and then we just shot ourselves in the foot too many times. We had 22 turnovers. When you turn the ball over 22 times, you are giving the No. 3 team in the nation 22 more opportunities to score and giving yourselves 22 less chances to score. It is early in the season. It is a marathon not a sprint. I keep saying that because it is the truth. I can’t wait to get back. We take a day off and I can’t wait to get back on the practice floor. It is a great bunch of guys.”

(What do the two graduate transfers bring to the team?)
“Without them, I just can’t imagine what it would be like. Those guys have played in some games like this. Zeke (Upshaw) played here last year with Illinois State. Those guys have a good influence. They have been through the big games. Our guys look up to them.”

(What was your message at halftime?)
“We just told it like it was. We talked about turnovers. I think it was 46-31 because 20 of their points came off of turnovers. We just said if it was just half of that, it would be 36-31 and who knows, maybe we score a couple.”

(On how much his team can take from guarding a backcourt like Louisville’s)
“Let’s talk real quick about scheduling. What do you get out of your non-conference schedule? So many different things, but really what you want to do is sharpen your teeth for league play. We have some teams in our league with good guards - like Delaware’s got good guards and a couple of others. So now we’re ready for Delaware and those are the games you have got to win because we want to win our league and get to the NCAA tournament. So you play against a good backcourt like that and it makes you better for the other teams you play.”

(What did you learn about your team?)
“We learned that if we can take care of the basketball we could compete with a pretty darn good team. Our battle cry coming in was to take care of the ball which we didn’t do - but when we did it we were able to score. So maybe we learned when you take care of the basketball ball you can score against the one of the best teams in the country. We out-rebounded them... we’re going to look for some positive sides here and I think I learned our guys are hungry and they want to do well.”

(Why do you think you had so much success from the 3-point line today?)
“I wish I can tell you, I don’t know. Might have to check the breakfast menu to see what they ate for breakfast I’m not sure, but I’m glad they did. Shooting is an attitude and it’s a mentality, you guys know Chris Jenkins - he just has that. And it was great to see the other guys get that too. You’ve got to want to make a shot and you got to want to take a shot and you’ve got to be a little upset if it doesn’t go in. Chris Jenkins has that mentality and I thought the other guys are starting to get it too.”


 

 

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