West Virginia: 61
An Interview With:
Q. Coach, talk about the big on the two big 3‑pointers that Darius hit that changed the momentum of the game.
COACH WILLIAMS: He's a very special player but he's an even more special person. Maybe more so than any player I've coached, he senses when I'm mad at him quicker than any player I've been around.
The same exact thing happened when we played at UConn. I'm mad at him, yanking at him in and out of the game, he doesn't like that, he gives the player typical response, I can't get in the flow.
But typically when he comes back in, he's trying to prove me wrong, and typically that translates into us having a good chance to win.
That's what happened at UConn particularly in overtime and I thought that, to answer your questions, those two shots you could argue changed the game, definitely changed the momentum.
Q. Coach, after all the second half collapses it would be remiss not to mention the second half tonight. I know you're proud of the offensive output but how about the 22% that you held them in the field and the two steals at the end?
COACH WILLIAMS: You're probably the only one that is strong enough to ask that question.
Thank you. I think I haven't seen the play‑by‑play but before I subbed five guys in I think they scored three baskets, maybe four, I don't know the timing on that but I know that I subbed those four guys prior to the first media time‑out, and I know that they were ahead by more than they were at half so they had to have at least scored three so there was a long period of time that accounted for at max, three baskets but I think it was more like two, I don't know the exact numbers on it.
D.J.'s shots were big but the reason we won the game was because we guarded in the second half.
Q. I would say that most of us feel that you wrapped up an at large with this win. How do you feel about that? Did you know that and express that coming into the game with your players, we need this win?
COACH WILLIAMS: No, I went out early again tonight and I was looking for someone on the selection committee. I didn't see anybody. I thought they would be the best dressed here. I saw guys from Wall Street but I didn't see anybody from the selection committee. I didn't mention any of that to our guys, they're not quarantined from the TV. I haven't banned them from Twitter or Facebook. They know what everybody is saying, was it necessarily the truth? I don't know.
I think that's the thing. You get so caught up in the melodrama of what happens during this time of the year that you have to win this, you don't have to win that, ESPN says this, Fox Sports says that. I don't think any of 'em know. I think the best thing is to continue to win because the teams that are continuing to play this late in March are typically going to play next week. Our guys are smart enough to deduct all of that.
COACH WILLIAMS: Ask D.J. a question, he needs reps on how to respond.
Q. D.J. talk about the guard play between you and junior, especially in the second half coming up big on the free‑throw line?
COACH WILLIAMS: I think Junior did a great job tonight. He played as hard as anybody. I think he controlled the tempo of the game on both ends of the court.
When you see a kid like Junior who has been through, you know, achilles tear you just want to smile. The kid has been working his butt off and I think he controlled the game. He helped me get back into the flow, keeping me into the game. We put this game on Junior. He carried us and controlled the game and did a great job doing it.
Q. After this game look forward to this Louisville game the game at the Yum! Center, the collapse maybe ‑‑
COACH WILLIAMS: Melt down.
Q. Melt down, is there an inspiration after that performance?
COACH WILLIAMS: The thing I told them before we prayed is it tells you how big of a God we have because you could argue if you follow our team closely that the melt down shook us.
And I don't know ‑‑ I think that we responded in the three‑game winning streak prior to last week, but I'm not sure that we ever fully regained our complete composure. I don't know that we have even yet today. I thought the first 34 minutes at the Yum! Center was as good as we have played all year long and I thought the 6 minutes were as bad as we have played all year long. But I think it speaks to our guys' character. We've won 20 games, 11 in the Big East and we have an opportunity to play another game tomorrow night.
So I don't know that anything that happened at the Yum! Center. Once the ball is tipped tomorrow night really has any bearing, I think that stuff dissipates once the game starts.
Q. D.J., Buzz mentioned that the two 3‑pointers that you hit changed the momentum of the game. Talk about the state of mind that you were in given that this was an off‑night for you?
COACH WILLIAMS: He was mad at me.
Q. And talk about the confidence that it shows in your teammates to give you the ball given that you'd be struggling tonight?
COACH WILLIAMS: I think my teammates do a great job on finding me for shots and it's my job to make 'em, knock 'em down. I don't think ‑‑ if there was a momentum swing but I think Junior changed the game and I think he found me on one of those shots and that changed our momentum on the defensive end. We did a great job guard and go if we do that then it's going to be hard for teams.
THE MODERATOR: Thank you.
March 9, 2011
West Virginia: 61
An Interview With:
Q. Coach, talk about the problems in the second half especially the shooting, what was going on with the team?
COACH HUGGINS: It's been a year long problem. We just don't make open shots. I don't know what to tell you. I've said it and said it and said it we just don't make open shots. We made some shots in the first half and then the second half we didn't make shots. We don't we don't have people who can drive it to the basket, that's not the kind of guys we have, you know, so it's we have to depend on making some shots.
Q. Coach, if you could talk about how you guys were able to slow down two players on Marquette, Jimmy Butler and Darius Johnson Odom that had up until this game had been pretty proficient on offense, can you talk about what you guys were able to do to throw them off tonight?
COACH HUGGINS: I don't know that we threw 'em off. Darius made two three's and won the game. I don't consider that throwing them off.
Q. I meant up until that point, before that?
COACH HUGGINS: Tried to guard 'em. I mean, Jimmy may not have scored but he created offense. How many times does he drive it into the lane and pitch it to their bigs, that's not containing them, that's anything but.
Q. Kevin, Saturday against Louisville you personally had 11 offensive rebounds by yourself tonight as a team you had 9, what were they doing on defense or was it hard work and grit on the glass?
KEVIN JONES: I think you said it. It's hard work and grit. Rebounding comes down to basically who wants it more and they showed that they wanted it more and they didn't really do a great job of boxing us out but it all came down to who wanted the rebound more.
Q. Coach, this is the third year in a row that the defending champion has lost in their first game back in. Is there a point where a bye can work against you?
COACH HUGGINS: I don't think it worked against us. We played well the first half. If it would have worked against us, we wouldn't have played well the first half. Shoot 22% the second half you're not going to win.
You're not going to win in this league doing that.
THE MODERATOR: Thank you West Virginia.