Bill Self Press Conference Quotes, 12-20

Dec. 20, 2004


On Wayne Simien’s thumb:
“He has a severely sprained thumb that we are still seeking medical advice on. His status is still unknown. I think we will know more tomorrow on his availability. He would be questionable at best for the game Wednesday. We did the MRI after the game and it is not broken. We are just trying to get some advice on treatment. We are just trying to get the best advice we can on what the best approach will be over time. He has had swelling and they can not really tell what is going on until the swelling goes down. He is still really sore right now. He checked himself back into the game Saturday and ran on the court. He said he was ready. We will prepare as if he won’t play. The blessing is that it is his left hand.”

On the possibility of having Simien out of the lineup:
“I don’t know who would start yet. In my mind Darnell (Jackson) probably played the next best. I don’t want to say yet. I want to wait and see how practice goes. If there is such a thing as a good time for this to happen, it is probably a good time. We can go a different mode if we have to and play small. It is amazing to me when opportunity knocks, somebody will make the most of the opportunity and step up. Collectively we can do some good things. We have plenty of good players that can excel and play well in his absence. Our guys were recruited here because they are good players. Somehow or another this is going to help us in the end.”

On playing South Carolina during finals:
“I think finals week is a bear. It is always tough coming out of finals week. I think that South Carolina’s speed had a lot more to do with how we played than finals. I think that some individuals were drained. We only had two guys that had a test on Friday. So for the most part the guys were somewhat fresh.”

On Wisconsin-Milwaukee:
“The great thing for us is that they press. We have worked against the press quite a bit. They play primarily man-to-man out of the press. They are a little undersized. But they also have some big guys that they can put in there as well. Bruce (Pearl) has done a nice job. They have been knocking on the door or participating in the NCAA tournament every year. Last year they lost on their home floor to Illinois-Chicago who we played in the first round. They are an NCAA caliber team that has a good chance to win their league.”

On playing against various styles of basketball this season:
“We have gone against trapping. We haven’t played against as much zone as I would have thought. We have gone against teams that have played fast, teams that control the ball, perimeter dominated teams and teams with great post players. I would say it has been a pretty good schedule from that regard. Most of the teams we have played play man-to-man.”

On grading his team after seven games:
“I am a very tough teacher, but I would say we are a B. There have been times we play an like an A and times that we have played at the B level.”

On playing in Kansas City:
“We will go over on Tuesday. We will treat it just like we do a road game on Wednesday. We will get up and do our shoot around and scouting report. When the game is over we will let them leave from Kansas City if they can go home for Christmas. It is not really a road game. It will not be like going to Rupp Arena. There will be nicer people in Kansas City. It will be good for our young guys, because they will be doing it in a different element. I think it will be a good crowd because it is part of our season ticket package. I would anticipate it to be a great crowd. I like Kemper. The biggest reason I like it is because it is in Kansas City. I’m not in love with the arena, but I like the locale. We have always had fun when we go to Kemper.”

On the South Carolina game:
“There are some things that we did well. Our block outs were not aggressive. I feel like we did everything at about 70 percent. Rebounding has been a struggle. I felt like they killed us on the offensive glass. We are plus eight in rebounding, but I feel we should be plus 12. I think we have been an average rebounding team when we should be a good rebounding team. I said before the season we could be a great spurt team. We didn’t have any runs against South Carolina. When we had momentum we didn’t get stops on the other end.”

On Alex Galindo:
“I think Alex has been pretty good. He has kind of been the odd man out as far as whether he is a big or a small. But if we play small, he can be both. I think there will be some opportunities that he can be more of a factor. For the most part, he knows what is going on. He is a bright kid. He is getting more and more confident all the time.”