Feb. 18, 2006

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Head Coach Bill Self Postgame Quotes
Kansas 79 , Missouri 46
Feb. 18, 2006

Head Coach Bill Self
On the game:

“Our leading scorer only had 14 points, so that is pretty good balance. Other than turnovers, it was a pretty good day for the Jayhawks.”

On Kansas’ defense:
“I think a lot of it was good defense, and I think a lot of it was just because (Missouri) was missing shots. The great thing about it is that when they missed, we cleaned up. (Jeff Hawkins) played great in the first half. I thought C.J. (Giles) was great off the bench. I thought everybody did some good things. It was a good win, and it was good to see everybody play.”

On coaching in his 400th career game:
“I don’t know if that is some unbelievable milestone. For some guys, it is their 2,000th game. I’ve had a lot of fun; had a lot of good players. This team has its fair share of those. We just need to keep playing and not be content. It is nice to beat Missouri, but the locker room wasn’t ecstatic. This team is like `Okay, that’s what we’re supposed to do. We’ll be here at practice tomorrow.’ I love their attitude.”

On the Big 12 Conference:
“Expect the unexpected, that’s the way the league is. When you think somebody is supposed to win, watch out. We know that we have Baylor coming in here, and we can’t be looking ahead. We need to focus in on the Bears.”

Sophomore Guard Russell Robinson
On the game:
“I think we did a good job of coming out and hitting them first. We got off to a good start and were able to keep it going throughout the first half. We did a good job as a team limiting their best players. We got (Jimmy) McKinney out of the game with three fouls in the first half and then we were able to take advantage of that situation. We were able to contain (Thomas) Gardner for the most part. I think everyone did a good job of team defense that led to the easy baskets. We never let them get into a rhythm. Their heads were scattered around. We were able to get lots of easy shots at our end, and before you knew it we had a 10 to 15 point lead and we never looked back. It was a lot better today.”

On the revenge factor:
“It was on our minds a lot because they beat us. We played good in that game and they beat us so they couldn’t beat us at home.”

On the pregame expectations:
“We were in the barber shop last night, and we thought we could double them. That means to win by 20. We definitely were thinking about winning big. We just came out and did the right things today.”

On the offense:
“I think that everybody gave effort. They played the 1-3-1 (defense) pretty wide so everybody got open looks, and we made the extra pass. We had some careless turnovers in the first half but we were able to make up for that on defense.”

Freshman Guard Brandon Rush
On the game:

“It wasn’t too easy today, but everything was falling our way. We were hitting shots and getting rebounds that helped us get the big win. I think we got out and ran real well today. It felt good (to win big).

Freshman Guard Mario Charmers
On the game:

“We felt like we should have won that game in Columbia. Gardner got hot and we tried to contain him in this game, and we did a really good job on that. That is what lead us to the successful victory.”

Freshman Forward Julian Wright
On the team’s defense:
“We do the shell drill everyday in practice. It’s plain to see that coach stresses so much defense and details. He wants us to be sound defensively. It starts by getting out and pressuring. Mario (Charmers) and Russell (Robinson) were picking their spots on when to gamble and get steals. It doesn’t allow the other team get into an offensive flow. It takes their confidence away. A lot has to deal with our transition defense. We have been doing a good job of helping. Once we get the basics down, we are able to turn up our defensive pressure even more.”

On the rebounding advantage:
“We just tried to hit them first and make contact. We have worked on our positioning and trying to get good rebounds. We just tried to clean up all the shots that led to easy baskets for us.”

On being a playmaker:
“We are always trying to become playmakers so we can do something special for the team. I concern myself with my mistakes more than the good things, and I think the rest of the team does that too. We try to get rid of those mistakes and not just focus on the good.”

Interim Head Coach Melvin Watkins
On the game:

“The Jayhawks were at their best today. They made shots and turned us over, particularly in the first half — we had 15 turnovers. I thought we could overcome that. We were just trying to play uphill and it was very difficult for us today.”

On the second half:
“You would have to say the pressure affected us. We had some looks and got the ball where we wanted it. The ball just didn’t go in today. We had spells like that, where we just couldn’t get the ball in the basket. When you have spells like that against a good basketball team, they will make you pay. There were times where we would get stops and we just couldn’t score ourselves. It’s not a good thing when you do that against a good basketball team.”

On Missouri’s energy:
“It is game day and I expect the guys to have energy no matter who the coach is. We just didn’t have the energy today. Kansas just took it to us and that’s the way I’m going to look at it. We had looks, plays, travels, we didn’t finish plays, or get the ball right to the basket. If you do that, you’re going to make it hard on yourself and that’s what we did.”

On Missouri’s state of mind:
“We’re fragile, but with what you saw today, there have been other teams that have come here and got spanked pretty good. I’m not going to put too much into it. We played against a very good basketball team that is playing maybe the best in the Big 12, as well as in the country. We’re a basketball team, and we know what we’re supposed to do when we go out there.”

Senior Forward Kevin Young
On the chaos surrounding the team:

“There is no excuse, we should have played better. We have four games before going to the Big 12 tournament. We just have to fight.”

On MU’s shooting woes:
“I thought the shots were good, they just didn’t go down.”

Senior Guard Jimmy McKinney
On the off-court problems:

“That’s definitely not an excuse. We are all grown men and it’s not an excuse for us to have the effort we had and not to play the basketball we have been practicing. It’s been a tough week–it’s been a tough year. You have those times in life.”