Dec. 8, 2011
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December 8, 2011
Connecticut vs. Columbia
Connecticut Head Coach Jim Calhoun
"Tommy has done an incredible job in five years at Harvard....They're very good because, mentally, they're tough. They run their stuff about as well as anybody in the country. They're very disciplined."
"In the first half, I thought we played poorly until about the 12 minute mark, and they we really turned the defense up...then we went the last six minutes with one basket, no baskets, whatever, and kind of let them back into the game. Second half...I thought our defense got better and better. I thought we made a few mistakes where we could have made better choices but, otherwise, I think we're getting better."
"You can see with Tommy's team, having two seniors and three juniors start, that they're molded. We aren't molded."
"I thought we defensively dominated them. I thought there were about five or six rebounds that I would like to see us get. Otherwise, we're getting better. We're just still adjusting."
"Overall, a pretty good performance against a team that is going to win 25, 26, 27 games. They would be a tough out for almost anybody. I think our size bothered them, overall, and the penetration of our guys."
"I liked Andre's scores tonight: six dunks, 12 points. That's one of the best stats we've had all year. We don't want finesse. When you're as big and strong as him, finesse doesn't come into the picture."
"I thought Jeremy, in the second half, looked like a big-time player. The feel of a big-time player, where nothing seemed to bother him."
How does this team become a championship team?
"They have to come to practice every single day, and start overcoming the negative things that happen to them on the court. By that I mean, a team makes a run on you. Everybody has a run in them, I don't care who they are...you have to be able to handle all of those things. You have to be able to handle bad calls. And, in our system, you have to be able to handle, occasionally, being criticized for your performance. I tell the kids it's hard to play here. It's hard to play here because the expectations are very high....it is hard to play here because I expect more. And when you give more, I expect more....We haven't quite connected yet. And when we get into the meat of our schedule, we have to be connected."
UConn Men's basketball vs. Harvard
Harvard Head Coach Tommy Amaker
"They're very talented, very big. I just think when they have those perimeter players, Boatright, Napier and obviously Lamb on the perimeter, they're almost un-guardable."
"I was pleased with the effort from our team. I think we played a tremendous first half. I thought the difference, you know, was their lineup change in the beginning of the second half and how they took control of the game. We tried our best to make a run at it, but they're so crafty with the ball and certainly what they can do on the backboard."
"We didn't get much of anything easy around the basket which is probably going to happen to a lot of teams when they face this basketball team with their size and athleticism."
"I was pleased with the effort from our team. I felt we hung in there, the first 20 [minutes] for sure, and I think they took control in beginning of the second half."
"I was pleased with the way we were prepared and how we followed our game plan and tried to manage the game." December 8, 2011
Connecticut vs. Harvard
On playing Harvard
"They just got ranked and were playing real well. So we just wanted to come out focused. We didn't want to take them lightly."
"Right now, they have a lot of confidence. We had to make sure we came out with a lot of energy. At times we let up and stopped playing defense. We were able to focus in, keep playing defense and be ready to get a big win. They were a very disciplined team. They ran their plays and didn't take any bad shots."
What do you have to do to become a championship level team?
"I think we're moving in the right direction. We have to work hard. The team has to know their roles. We have to pick it up on defense. Just really start executing our plays. Sometimes we go one-on-one too much or ball screen too much."
On Andre Drummond
"Even though he might not have blocked a lot, he was there and they had to adjust."
"I think one thing that separates us from being a great team is we don't have the killer instinct. We don't have that, we're up by 15 now let's punch it in and get home without having a tough game at the end. Once we get that I think we'll be a great team."
"My main goal is to do something better each and every game until I get to the ultimate goal of playing more consistent every single day."
"I was really excited to play without the mask. I wasn't nervous at all. I just felt like I was at home again."
"I think we learned how good we can be if we play a full game of basketball. There were times we looked really good on defense and there were times when we just let up."
"This team can be very good. We have so many weapons at so many different positions. We're very tough to guard."
"We really just want to win. That's our main thing. To us, it doesn't matter who scores."
On Andre Drummond's game
"He had a great game. He played great defense on Keith Wright - I think he was 3 for 10 shooting. He shut him down and played unbelievable defense."
"We knew they were good. Coach told us they go deep into the shot clock. They don't just pass the ball 2 or 3 times. They pass it 7 or 8 and that's exactly what they did. Coach had us prepared very well."
On Jeremy Lamb
"He is a versatile player. He can do a lot. He can go to the basket. He shoots unbelievably well. With a player like that, if you get up on him, he'll go by you. If you back up, he can shoot the ball. He showed what he can do last year in the tournament and that's why he's our go to man."
With so many scorers on the team, how much of an adjustment is it to not score so much?
"It's an adjustment, but it's for the better. As long as you get the win, that's what everybody is here to do. You have to be a team player. I've always been a team player. Unfortunately, in high school I had to score a lot of points, but I don't have to do that here. I don't really care about my points as long as we get the win. I just want to contribute to the team."
On playing against a slower pace
"You just got to adapt. It's all part of being a point guard and being on this level of basketball. You just got to adapt to the speed of the game."