Jan. 7, 2006

Recap | Final Stats | Notes | Photo Gallery

Head Coach Bill Self
On the game:

“The players came out and were poised and focused but still had high intensity and they were at that magic level to start the game. Some good things happened early. We defended great. They beat us too many times on the glass, primarily in the second half, but a lot of those we had the rebounds but the ball went through our hands. I never would have dreamed we would have held Kentucky to 46 points. We got off to a big lead (in the first half). Our defense was really good in the first half. They, fortunately for us, missed some shots but we really got out and ran well. The first 25 minutes we ran great, the last 15 we were just kind of icing it. I am really proud of our players.”

On Kentucky:
“We took care of the ball. He (Rajon Rando) is very good defensively but we did a good job on him. We did a good job of keeping him out of the lane and we did a good job on (Patrick) Sparks and (Ramel) Bradley, the three key guys. We took care of the ball better. We got kind of sloppy in the second half but 12 turnovers against guys that can really eat you up is not bad.”

On Brandon Rush:
“Brandon (Rush) as everyone knows is very talented but he has yet to put a game together where he has excelled in all areas; shooting the basketball, creating off the bounce, rebounding, and being aggressive. Previously he had been great in two of the four but today he was great in all four areas. He was aggressive, got his shot off the bounce, got it off the catch and of course he was the best rebounder in the game. He was totally dominate on both ends.”

On the play of the guards:
“Since we have moved him (Russell Robinson) to point he has played better. He only had one assist today but he didn’t turn it over. Rondo was guarding him, and I thought he did a real good job. I thought Mario (Chalmers) played well. Mario got us off to a real good start. He got a couple baskets early. But you look at those guards, 5 assists and one turnover for Mario, Russell zero turnovers. (Jeff Hawkins’) back was bothering him and he had a couple turnovers but for the most part we took care of the basketball. This was a game where we spread it and drove it and when we got a lead they had to pressure. If we were behind we probably would have had to play a different mode but it worked out for us good tonight.”

On the block by Russell Robinson:
“It was a great block but then he went out and fouled. That was about as loud as our building got today because it was a fabulous hustle play.”

On Colorado:
“We will enjoy it tonight but we have to get ready to play the `Buffs. (They have) one loss in the non-conference and if I am not mistaken they are at Texas today. We always have a strong contingent our there and I hope that will be the same. We will play a lot better Colorado team than we have seen in the last couple years.”

Freshman Guard Brandon Rush
On the win:

“This is a real confidence builder. We get into conference play with Colorado on Wednesday. This win was just really big for us.”

On his performance:
“I just found a way. I found a way to score and rebound. Coach had been getting on me about rebounding.”

“I think this was my most complete game. I had a good game against Arkansas, but this was my career high in points and career high in rebounds.”

On the game:
“I thought it was going to be a down the stretch type of game. I figured it would be a one or two point game. We just came out and played harder than they did.”

On Kansas’ defense against Rajon Rondo:
“We played strong help on Rondo. We cut the head off from the start, because he is their offense.”

Freshman Guard Mario Chalmers
On Kansas’ change in mentality:

“In the locker room, everybody was talking to each other, and everybody was more relaxed. Coach really helped during the game by calming us down and getting us up throughout the game.”

On Kentucky’s attitude towards Kansas:
“I don’t think that they took us lightly. I just think that they had an off game today, and we were able to take advantage of that.”

On Kansas’ intensity:
“We have been working at bringing more intensity, focusing more and being more hard nosed on defense. Practice makes perfect, and we are trying to get perfection.”

On the win:
“I think this will help our confidence a lot, especially going into league play. Everybody is going to be more focused and ready to play.”

Sophomore Guard Russell Robinson
On his block on Patrick Sparks’ layup attempt:

“My biggest thing is trying to cover for my teammates. We had a turnover, and I had to cover for my team. I had a little momentum, and I had to get that block. Plays like that can change the game.”

On his intensity:
“I am normally a quiet guy. I usually don’t show much emotion, but today I definitely came out ready.”

On guarding Rajon Rondo:
“I knew he was a great player. He is a great rebounder. He is sneaky with the ball and things like that. I knew he was their key, so we tried to cut the head off. I think we did that today. He is not that great of a shooter, so I kind of wanted him to shoot. He still got to the free throw line, but I just tried to take away other things he is good at.”

Junior Forward Bobby Perry
On the game:

“We came out slow again. KU played a great game. We just were not ready to play. It was our first true road game, in a tough environment to play in, we did not adjust. They came out and kicked our butt. We have to have the patience and poise to work through the pressure. I tip my hat to them because it was just a tough loss for us.”

On the low number of assists:
“You can not win without sharing the ball. It is difficult to score when every shot is contested or when you are trying to score with just one man. The lack of execution is why we had the low number of assists. We also did not set very good screens. Kansas forced us out of our offense.”

On Kansas’ size:
“We knew that they were long, athletic and strong coming in, but they played very big today. Brandon Rush came out on fire and Sasha Kaun played well. They all played big. They have a great inside presence and even their guards got out and pressured and played physically.”

On the poor shooting:
“Yesterday in the shootaround we shot well but in game situations, in front of all these fans, it changes a lot. I do not know what it was but we just were not hitting the shots.”

On trying to contain Brandon Rush:
“Brandon Rush is a great player. We had scouted that he likes to penetrate and take it to the basket but we did not communicate well on him. We tried to force him to his left, but he just had a tremendous game.”

Senior Guard Ravi Moss
On the game:

“We just came out flat today and it was disappointing. We just got outworked today. We have to look at ourselves in the mirror and see if we have any heart. They beat us to loose balls. They were tougher than we were today. We got behind and dug ourselves a hole and it was just too deep for us to get out of.”

On the low number of assists:
“It is terrible. Basketball is a team sport and you are supposed to have assists. Obviously, that is why the score was the way that it was.”

On getting Randolph Morris back:
“We are excited about getting Randolph back because he will really help inside. It is going to be nice.”