"One thing we are trying make sure that our team continually understands is that to win big, to win really big, you've got to be able play a lot of different ways and as much as we want to set the pace and tempo sometimes you don't have to have patience but you have got to wait for your opportunity and as long as you're playing solid and as long as you're sticking with what you know works sometimes those opportunities come when you least expect it or they come when you force the tempo just a little bit more defensively because you can.
"I think tonight it was a little bit like that. We kept waiting for the game to go our way in the first half and nobody got discouraged or got sped up to the point where we started forcing the action. We probably didn't get it inside as much as we needed to in the first half, especially with where we were in the bonus at the 10:53 mark. I thought we were playing really hard, really solid and just waiting for it to break and in the second half they did something about it even that much more. I think that's the sign of a team that's maturing and getting better. Like I said to them at halftime, when the score is low because a couple of the guys mentioned we only had X amount of points, we're not trying to set records. We're trying to win a National Championship.
"There are certain things that we'd really like to do defensively and offensively. I don't know if they'll be records but they'll be things that could really make us better. At the end of the day if you want to win big you've got to play a lot of different ways and our guys did that and they stayed true to the game plan. The game plan was no matter how we had to do it, whether it was post-ups, drives, cuts, whatever it was but we needed to get the foul line and (Nebraska) did a good job of taking away some of the penetration angles that we usually use and our guys did a great job of finding a different one. That's a tribute to the coaches, like Kenny Johnson who did a phenomenal job in the preparation, Steve McClain, Tim (Buckley) and Calbert (Cheaney) who are always over there talking and coming up with things and our guys reading the game at a really high level.
"We knew we'd play against a team that would play extremely hard. We spent time preparing for this game looking at how they played against the best teams in our league especially when they were at Michigan, and when they were at Michigan State and playing Ohio State the two times that they did, especially at Nebraska. They've got a tough, hard-nosed group. We knew they would. I thought our guys did a really good job of knowing, locking in and respecting what they do. To hold (Ray) Gallegos to no points in the first half that was a big, big deal because he takes 17 shots a game on the road and 10 threes a game on the road and to hold him down the way that we did I thought was really important and the same thing with (Brandon) Ubel because he can do so many different things. I like their team. They are going to get better and hopefully people look at us and think the same thing."
On the team's maturity to wait for the game to come to them:
"I think that's just the growth of older guys having a better understanding. You go through enough games, you are going to get experience from that but you are going to get an understanding of how to play. Again, this is a great thing. We had 27 points at half but yet we end with 76 and win the game by 29. That's really good. I don't want to call it a workman-like effort because they are playing so hard every possession and really took it up a notch to start the half. When the game right there momentum is up for grabs at halftime, no matter what the score is momentum is up for grabs and they grabbed it and didn't let it go. It was a lot like that when we played at Ohio State on Sunday. We had momentum until the last five minutes in the Illinois game and we didn't get it back. Momentum is always up for grabs and you never know who is going to grab it but when you have all five guys on the court trying to grab it at the same time it's usually pretty good."
Talk about the way Christian has been playing the last couple of games:
"He has been playing with a lot of confidence. I think it comes off of his defensive rebounding. You get a couple of boards, a couple of assists, you get a good feel for the game from the start, and that's when I think shots are going in for him. Even though he is shooting it really well coming off from the start."
Talk about your first points in the first half that sparked a 10-0 run:
"I just try to come in and bring that energy. We started off a little slow, but I think that the guys coming off the bench bring a little bit of energy, that kind of changed the game at that point. I don't think that play wasn't exactly what changed it, but it was kind of a group of things."
How important is it to be able to lean on the defense when the offense isn't going from the start?
"That's what you should lean on to start with, regardless of if your offense is going or not. It's funny because there is a direct correlation between when we're playing well on defense and how well we're playing on offense. If teams are getting easy baskets, you can't get the ball out and you can't run as well. If we get stops, we're going to score on the other end."
"I try to get some easy buckets early. Usually it comes from offensive rebounding. It gets me going a little bit if I get an offensive rebound and get a bucket or get to the foul line."
How important was it to get out and establish some momentum in the second half?
"We definitely wanted to start the second half off fast. We wanted to play our style of basketball. We felt like we were kind of letting them lure us in a little bit in the first half. We definitely wanted to get out in the second half and share the basketball."
Do you feel that you are able to play a grind-it-out game?
"To get where we want to get, we know that we have to be able to play multiple styles of basketball. We have to be able to win a slow game, and definitely win a game at our pace."
Talk about being able to break out of the slow pace of the game and playing more at your pace:
"We just wanted to play defense. When we started playing defense and locking them down in the second half, everything got accomplished for us. I think that was the difference."
How important was it to hit jump shots against Nebraska when they were packing the lane?
"I think it changed a lot. They did pack the lane, when everybody started to knock down open shots that started to open up the floor for everybody. I think that is what we have to do. When the lane is packed, people got to knock down 3's, mid-range pulls ups, to open up for the post players. When it's clogged on our sides, the post players have to do their work, and they did tonight. They did a good job."
What's the secret to shoot a high percentage from the 3-point line?
"It's just practice. We work on that every day. When we work on that in practice, we get better and better every day. That's what our guys do. We shoot the ball, that's what we do."
Nebraska Head Coach Tim Miles
On keeping it close in the first half:
"I think it was their 3-point shooting and their ability to score in transition in the second half. They went 6-for-9 from the three. Indiana will hurt you if you let them shoot the ball like that. I thought that we were playing at our pace for a long time. We ended up playing close to 70 possessions. The trouble in the second half came with their 3 point shooting and their ability to get to the foul line. They are always on the attack. That's just how they are."
On Nebraska's foul trouble:
"We were in foul trouble most of the night. You get to a certain point and it feels like you're on the Titanic- it's just one guy after another after another. When Brandon Ubel was in the game I thought we were at our best, we just couldn't get him on the floor enough. We really couldn't take advantage of Cody Zeller being in foul trouble for Indiana and that was too bad because there were some opportunities with him out of the game. Unfortunately, it was an opportunity lost."
"I thought we did alright on him, but then I look up and he still had a pretty nice stat line. He's just such a prolific player. He has such great athleticism and his motor is always running. He plays at a really high level in terms of energy and effort and he's always going to make plays that other guys aren't able to. He's a special talent."
On Indiana's full-court press:
"They weren't the first team to press us, and they won't be the last team to press us either."
On Nebraska's lack of ball movement:
"It was the way we were playing. We tried to play off the screen and roll so it was more of one guy with the ball in his hand trying to make a play. I thought we actually did okay that way. We were getting the ball where we wanted to and were getting two feet in the paint. We were getting fouled and got some turnovers. It didn't stun me that we didn't have more turnovers in the second half considering what we were trying to do, but you still have to share the ball better than that."
On Dylan Talley:
"Talley was really good until early in the second half when some defensive errors started to bother him, but at the same time he was a real "go-to guy" for us. Brandon Ubel is coming off strep-throat and you could tell that bothered him. Ubel wasn't himself tonight and that's a hard came for Almeida to keep up with. There are too many mobile guys out there."
On his first time in Assembly Hall:
"It's great. It's not my first time here, I came as a college student too. It's a very cool environment. I brought my son and he had a lot of fun. We filmed practice last night and watched it today and it brought back memories of being a kid and watching IU games with Bobby Knight out there on CBS. There's no camera angle like the one in Assembly Hall. It's such a unique view. It brought back a lot of childhood memories."