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UConn Player Quotes

Nov. 14, 2011

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November 14, 2011

Connecticut Men’s Basketball vs. Wagner Player Quotes

Alex Oriakhi
On better team rebounding after Columbia game

That’s something we stressed in practice. Coach said we have to rebound better. The frontcourt did a pretty good job of doing that. We limited their second shots. It definitely helped our fast-break. It helped our offense.

On play of freshmen Drummond and Daniels

I think they played with more confidence. Like myself, they both came off a pretty bad game. I think they just wanted to make a statement.

Andre Drummond
Rebounding is the main focal point of our team right now. We’ve got to get that together.

On being more confident since the first game

I kind of slowed myself down a little since the first game. In the first game I was thinking too much about what I was going to do.

I think I’m getting more rhythm now. I think we’re coming together as a team.

DeAndre Daniels

I think we should play hard for 40 minutes. I think when we get a comfortable lead we relax.

I felt a lot more comfortable after the first game. I’m just not rushing it.

Jeremy Lamb

Obviously, I didn’t have a good shooting game but I think my teammates played well. I think we let up during the game.

They were a tough team. They were real scrappy. We got up, and they never gave up.

We’ve got to learn to play the whole game.

Shabazz Napier
On Jeremy Lamb

Jeremy’s a scorer. He’s going to find a way to score.

On playing with a fever

They told me to keep pushing and pushing. There was a couple times I got winded. One time when I stole the ball and laid it up I thought I was going to faint.

November 14, 2011
Connecticut vs. Wagner

Connecticut Head Coach Jim Calhoun

Danny Hurley has only been at Wagner two years…he’s done a sensational job of getting good players. They’re young, they play exceptionally hard, they ran their offense wonderfully.

We won it. We didn’t play bad. We rebounded better. We’re just not invested into the whole process of 40 minutes of basketball…I didn’t think that everyone on our team invested fully into playing defense.

On Drummond, Oriakhi and Olander
I thought our big guys were better. Andre really responded exceptionally well….I thought Alex was somewhat back, and I tried to share the two of them. Tyler had a good first half and his worst half in the second half. He just looked exhausted to me.

On way Oriakhi responded
Early in the game he tried to do everything all at once, but I would much rather have that than the other.

Bottom line it was a win for us. We can’t have these kinds of endings.

We just need to have a total effort for 40 minutes and we really haven’t done that.

On Daniels

I’m really happy with his play.

November 14, 2011
Connecticut vs. Wagner

Wagner Head Coach Dan Hurley

They’re a great team, a great program. As a high school coach at St. Benedict’s, as a player at Seton Hall, assistant at Rutgers, Coach Calhoun is one the people I admired, always admired his program. It was always a program that my dad talked about. He respected him as a coach. My dad doesn’t respect everyone as a coach, trust me. It was a great experience for our guys…to get to play in an environment like this, against a team and program of this caliber.

On rebounding disadvantage
We’re used to getting crushed on the boards. It’s an acquired taste. Their guys are really big. We’re young and physically immature. I thought there were some loose balls that we could have gotten to. I thought we could have done a better job finishing some block outs, but their frontline size – you don’t realize how big…seeing our guys every day, when you see guys the size of Drummond and Alex and Olander…and their wings…you just can’t simulate that, against Princeton or every day at practice.

I thought we did a good job of just picking them up. We didn’t want to come in here and sit in the zone and pack in our man to man defense and send the wrong message to our guys. We have a way that we believe in and we practice to that every day. Whether we’re playing UConn or Duke, we’re going to play the game the way we work at it daily, and I thought we did a good job.

I thought we were able to pressure the ball fairly effectively. They just made some really tough shots, especially when we cut it to eight.