Postgame Quotes

Dec. 3, 2011

Recap | Final Stats | Notes |

December 3, 2011
Postgame Quotes

Kansas head coach Bill Self
On the team’s performance:
“The first half we actually guarded them pretty well. We just didn’t create anything. When you foul three times in a half, that means you’re not trying very hard and not being very aggressive. They didn’t make shots, and we rebounded it pretty well. When you’re up three at halftime, it’s hard to say your defense was awful, but by normal standards I don’t think it was very good. Certainly in the second half we had spurts where we played pretty good, but it was a very lackluster performance today. I thought we played bad against Florida Atlantic, but in the first half today we took it to a whole other level. We did change from Wednesday. Unfortunately, we got worse as opposed to getting better in the first half.”

On Conner Teahan’s night of 11 points, four assists and no turnover:
“I thought Conner played well. I thought he did some nice things. I thought Jeff Withey did some nice things. I thought he made a couple of key plays late. Tyshawn (Taylor) made shots, but he still didn’t play like a point guard. He made shots, but he turned it over quite a bit. I said before this season that this team was going to have to enjoy winning ugly. We’re going to have to because we don’t have as many weapons offensively, but we’re taking that ugliness to a whole different level this week. I told our guys it’s like a different galaxy where no man has ever gone before. It is a 28-point win. Who would ever argue beating a BIG EAST team by 28 points?”

On the Long Beach State game next Tuesday:
“This is a Long Beach State team that can obviously beat us because they’ve already won at Pittsburgh by double figures. I think they’re really good. They’ve won here before back when Seth (Greenberg) was coaching. That was when Roy (Williams) had a really good (Kansas) team. We know we have to play better. This is a big week for us. I really felt like coming back from Hawaii we were getting a lot better, but our energy level stinks. Thomas (Robinson) has a head cold; he doesn’t have any energy. Other than that, what’s our excuse? It looked like we tried a lot harder defensively in the second half than the first half. How could that be? You’re fresher in the first half, so there are certainly some things that we have to tighten up moving forward. Still, moving forward, it was a 28-point win, and I would have sold out for that this morning, no question.”

Senior guard Conner Teahan
On why there was a lack of energy in the first half:
“That’s hard to tell. Sometimes people just don’t come out with the energy or they think they have the right level of energy and they really don’t. It’s a good thing when you can look at how you are playing poorly in the first half and be able to change your attitude. Sometimes you are going to have a bad first half and it continues on into the second half, whereas we were able to turn it around.

On his dribble drives:
“I was definitely comfortable driving to the basket today. I wasn’t really able to knock down the three-point shot so I had to find another way to help the team out and I was able to do that. I just wanted to come out and be aggressive and at the end of the first half when we were kind of struggling I was able to get into the paint and get that and-one.”

Senior guard Tyshawn Taylor
On scoring 20 points in the second half:
“I think we just came out in the second half with a different attitude. The first half was kind of slow for us. We were a little sluggish and we didn’t have much energy as a team. In the second half Coach (Bill) Self told us about it and we wanted to come out with more energy and pressure the ball and get some fast break points; And that is what we did.”

On what was said to the team at halftime:
“Just `bring more energy and come out ready to play.’ Like I said, we just looked kind of sluggish. We just wanted to turn it around and have more energy and be the aggressor and that is what we did.”

On the importance of three-point shooting:
“I think at the beginning of the season we didn’t think it would be as big for us as it has been; with Conner (Teahan) making some shots along with me and Elijah (Johnson) we could be a pretty good shooting team. It is not one of the things that we focus on but Coach (Self) always says if you’re open, shoot it. We can get a lot of open looks in our offense. Tonight I got a lot of open looks and I just wanted to knock them down and I did.

On hitting three-pointers in the second half to extend the lead:
“Our focus was more into our defense and we hadn’t even realized how big the lead had gotten. Those three three-pointers were big for us to take the lid off the goal because early on we were one-for-eleven. Those shots in the second half were able to give us some confidence.”

On having the Kansas’ 1966 team in attendance:
“I think it was good for us. They came and talked to us at practice yesterday and they gave an inspirational speech that helped us realize that every day we come out here we are playing for something bigger than ourselves. I think for them to be at the game it was something that we were all excited and grateful for. We are lucky to be in a situation where we can play in front of amazing guys and amazing players; guys that paved the way for us, it was exciting.”

On passing late in the game during a fast break where he could have tied his career high in scoring:
“I wasn’t paying attention to how many points I had. I just saw him (Thomas Robinson) coming in from the right so I just gave it up.”

Junior forward Thomas Robinson
On the Jayhawks’ defensive performance:
I think it was pretty good but I think we could do a little bit better. So far I think we have been doing well on the defensive end. Like Coach says, `the only way other teams are going to score on us is off of our offense’ and we are starting to take that as our mentality. We could do a little better at that.”

On playing while under the weather:
“I’ve been under the weather the past couple of days but that shouldn’t be a distraction.”

South Florida head coach Stan Heath
Opening Statement:
“Well I don’t know which team you want to talk about: our first half team or our second half team. Our second half team lost a little focus and more than anything thing, couldn’t keep pace with Kansas. I thought they did a great job in the second half of continuing to attack and having a little bit more patience. Tyshawn Taylor, in the second half, was just the difference. I thought he just really picked things up with three-point shooting and making plays out there on the court. We had a hard time, the other part was just dealing with their inside guys because we typically can score a lot better around the basket. Both Robinson and Withey just made it hard to score around the basket for us but you know, Kansas is tough. We came here to find out a little more about ourselves and we did. We learned that we’re not a 40-minute team and we’ve got to get there.

On first and second half offense:
“It wasn’t very good, period. We need to be better offensively throughout the game but defensively, I though Kansas was better in the second half and I thought Taylor was the difference in the second half for them.”

On South Florida’s conditioning efforts:
“It’s been a strange beginning of the year for us. We have literally not been able to practice with 10 guys since October. We just haven’t had the bodies; (Augustus) Gilchrist had his first practice just yesterday, (Anthony) Collins has not practiced with contact till a week ago and this is the first game Anthony Collins and Gilchrist have played together. Jawanza Poland, our second leading scorer, has not played all year long, has not practiced. So we have been practicing a lot of times with nine guys and throwing a coach out there or a manager to throw some passes to us, or something like that. So yeah, I don’t think our conditioning is where it needs to be and a lot of that’s not the kids’ fault, it’s just the lack of having bodies out there to practice every day.

On junior guard Shaun Noriega playing off the bench:
“Noriega was terrific today. He hasn’t necessarily been `Shaun’ over the last few weeks but it was good for him to come back and give us a spark and it was good for his confidence, too. I thought he was a bright spot in today’s game for us.”

On offensive presence of Kansas’ Robinson and Withey:
“It’s the strangest thing: we came into the game and our whole thing was not to get caught on the topside so they could throw lobs. I don’t know how it happens but for some reason they just wedge you up the lane, and next thing you know, they’re catching lobs. Kansas does a nice job of passing the ball to each other. You trap their ball screens and you rotate, they find that extra pass and that extra guy. They do a good job of clogging up that paint. When Robinson gets it down low, it’s hard, he is so strong and so explosive and if you double him, he’s pretty good and finding some guys, too. It’s kind of one of those things where you pick your poison and you say, “Do you want to take away the outside or take away the inside?”

South Florida forward Toarlyn Fitzpatrick
On the role that their conditioning played against Kansas’ up-tempo offense:
“That’s something that Coach (Stan Heath) went over in the scouting report, so we were prepared for it. I don’t think our guys on offense knew that when we put a shot up, we have to get someone back on defense. We can’t have all five guys crashing the offensive glass, so that bit us early, and (Kansas) got a lot of early points off of that.”

On the mood in the locker room at halftime:
“We felt like we gave them a lot of transition baskets, but our half-court defense was doing a good job. To start the second half, they went on a run and I think we put our head down a little bit. We tried to withstand the run and go on a run ourselves, but they started knocking down more shots and their fans got into it more and we didn’t respond.”

South Florida guard Anthony Collins
On what Kansas did on defense to make it hard to score:
“We just didn’t make shots, they played good defense, but we just took too many jump shots. We can’t just be a jump shot-type team, because (against Kansas) that is a low-percentage shot.”

On if their goal on offense was to slow the pace down:
“We were just trying to be patient and get the best shot that we can. Coach wanted us to get the ball to the post anyway we could and it just didn’t work out for us.”