Post Game Quotes

Jan. 19, 2005

Recap | Box Score | Notes | Photo Gallery

Postgame Quotes

Kansas Head Coach Bill Self
On the game:
“We certainly played poorly tonight. Give them (Nebraska) credit, they made us play poorly, but our energy level was bad. We just didn’t play well. When you have to beg guys to have energy and enthusiasm even though you are 13-0 and coming home to a full student body, I think it is pretty sad and that is what happened tonight. Our defense was pretty good to start the game, which saved us. Our shot selection wasn’t good. We have guys that are supposed to drive the basketball that were kicking it back out to shoot threes. Our point total was low because we had poor ball and body movement. We did better with it in the second half, but overall I was pretty disappointed with our performance tonight. This was a game that if we had made our free throws, we would have won easily. In all honesty, we could have lost the game by not playing smart. When things didn’t go well for us we just wanted tried to get through it. That’s not a good attitude to have. That was about as weak as we have played all season.”

On the starters’ lack of production:
“That was a sad display. When the bench has to keep us in the game, it isn’t very good. Especially when it is a home game in front of a huge crowd. In the second half we played better. We played great defense to start the second half and tried to crack the game open, but then we made some mistakes that upperclassmen aren’t supposed to make. An example is the last possession where we double-teamed the ball and gave them an uncontested three to win the game. We controlled the second half, but made some bonehead plays. We felt like we couldn’t lose the game, which is a good attitude, but also shows a lack of respect for the opponent. We dodged a big bullet tonight.”

On Villanova:
“We are excited to play at Villanova. We are going to be playing a team that is capable of beating anybody, anywhere, especially on their home court. We will have to go into that game with a better approach than what we had tonight.”

Senior Guard Michael Lee
On the game:
“I’ll take a win anytime. Our goal is to win games. Tonight we got the win, but we have to do some things better. We need to rebound better and hit our free throws. We have to put teams away once we get them on the ropes. Everytime we went on a run, they would cut it down, so we obviously need to work on putting teams away.”

On Coach Self’s mood after the game:
“He wasn’t happy. He said that we got lucky. They only shot 32 percent from the field, and we still only won by two points. He will be on us tomorrow at practice.”

On Nebraska’s Joe McCray:
“He is a tough player. I don’t think we gave him the respect that we should have. I kind of underestimated him. He played well and knocked down big shots whenever they needed them.”

Senior Guard Aaron Miles
On the game:
“Nebraska did a good job of controlling the tempo, especially in the first half. In the second half, we tried to speed up the tempo and got some good looks. It seemed like whenever we were playing well, I would look at the score and we were only up by four points. They did a good job of coming back, staying poised and making plays. I think we were lucky tonight. We need to shoot free throws a lot better, 13-for-28 is terrible. If we want to get to St. Louis and win a national championship, we need to step it up.”

On Coach Self’s mood after the game:
“He was disappointed in our effort, especially in the first half. He didn’t think we came out with any energy. He didn’t like that we let them get off to a pretty good start. He is still happy that we won.”

Senior Forward Wayne Simien
On Nebraska going for the win:
“I didn’t really know what to expect at the end. We were just focused on not letting them get off a good shot. They got a good clean look, but fortunately missed it. Hopefully in the future our games won’t come down to the other team getting the last shot for the win.”

On the team’s free throw shooting:
“As a team we have been pretty inconsistent the entire year. As for myself, they have all felt good, but have been going in and out the last few games. Free throws are definitely something we need to knock down, especially at home during conference play.”

Nebraska Quotes

Head Coach Barry Collier
On the game:
“It was a really hard fought game. Our kids defended extremely well tonight. Obviously, so did Kansas. They defended us very, very well. It was a great game because of those two factors–the defense on both ends. We were not able to finish the ballgame. We wanted to go for the win at the end. (Kansas) did a nice job denying, but we still got a decent shot. It was not perfect by any means, but I am extremely proud of our guys’ effort. You can do a lot of things in a game and switch a lot of stuff and end up with a less-open shot than that. We were all excited to be playing a top ten team. I have been talking all week about how they are number one because I have been voting them number one. Kansas had opportunities (to go on runs) numerous times and our guys responded. I think that our guys intensity was very, very good tonight. We want that regardless of who or where we play.”

On Nebraska’s performance:
“We would have liked to have made more shots along the way. We had some pretty good looks in the second half that we did not make, and our big guys really stuggled to score inside. That is a credit to (Kansas’) defense and physical play. We had a tough-minded group tonight, and we need to be able to do that game after game. This is normal life in the Big 12. I like how our guys are competing . We are playing physical and we played great defense tonight. We just need to play with more poise. The crowd was great tonight. It helped (Kansas) a bunch.”

On the game’s physical play:
“I don’t think that it got out of control so much that both teams were really going at it. I expected that. We can’t control anything but our effort and our intensity, and that was darn good. (Aaron) Miles is one of the best on-the-ball defenders in the country in my opinion. He can really put heat on the ball. (Keith) Langford does a great job in playing in the passing lanes and creating difficulty executing a simple pass or running your sets. It takes a lot of poise. I thought that we struggled with that in the first half. We did better in the second half, under more pressure because of the game closing down.”

Junior Forward Wes Wilkinson
On the game:
“It was a blast coming out here and playing against the number two team in the country in their house, and get the competition that we did. We got together in the huddle (in the second half) and said `we have seen this before.’ We expected (Kansas) to come out in the second half and make a run. We had to find a way to stop Kansas’ fast break. I thought that we all played pretty well, especially on the defensive end. Joe (McCray) played really well tonight. He did not play like a freshman tonight. He took big shots and drove to the lane when he needed to. He played like a senior tonight. He really showed some leadership.”

On Kansas:
“They are a very athletic team and they play very aggresively. They play good team defense. It is hard to gain confidence from a loss, but our guys played well for 40 minutes. We just need to play hard defense and make a couple more shots.”

Freshman Guard Joe McCray
On his performance:
“I just came in and wanted to play hard and play with intensity. I blocked the fans out. Everywhere you go fans are going to say what they want to say. I just kept playing hard. I am a freshman, but I just play hard and give everything that I have.”

On the game:
“It was a physical game. There was a lot of intensity on both sides. I just had to brush (my incident with Michael Lee) out and play basketball. (The last shot) was designed with many options, but the ball did not make it to the middle of the court. Corey (Simms) was forced to take the last shot. It was a good shot, it just didn’t go in. It was a tough shot. I was not dissapointed about not taking the last shot. We just need to go game-by-game, trying to win. We need to continue the intensity.”