Men's Basketball

    Indiana vs. Indianapolis: Postgame Quotes

    Go Hoosiers! Head Coach Kelvin Sampson feels he had a good chance to evaluate the team during both exhibtion games.
    Go Hoosiers!
    Head Coach Kelvin Sampson feels he had a good chance to evaluate the team during both exhibtion games.
    Go Hoosiers!

    Nov. 10, 2006

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    Indiana Head Coach Kelvin Sampson
    Opening statement:
    "I think you saw tonight how important the point of attack is. Earl has been battling a 102 degree temperature all week, he just didn't have a lot of energy tonight, and you could tell that. Look at the difference in our team with Earl at the point of attack defensively on Sunday versus tonight. I just thought we started off the game flat, and that was disappointing. In between, there were a lot of good things I saw. When you have a group like this and we're still trying to figure things out, you are going to have some head scratching possessions occasionally. I thought once we started running and pushing the pace, and just getting the ball out and going, that is when Armon (Bassett) is at his best. Armon is a playmaker, he can pass, he didn't shoot the ball well tonight, but he had 10 assists and two turnovers. That's kind of what he does best. D.J. (White) has just got to get comfortable. You can tell he is not comfortable. That is why I played him extended minutes tonight. He just has to get back in the groove and get his timing back, and get his rhythm and get his confidence going."

    On what to take from the exhibitions games:
    "One of the things you noticed tonight is that Lance probably fits into the starting line up a little better. When Ben (Allen) and D.J. (White) are on the floor at the same time, they guard the same position. One of them was guarding a 6'4" guy and those are hard match ups. I remember playing these exhibition games at Oklahoma, and we would go out there against some 6'5" guys that play on the perimeter, and those are tough match ups. Ben and D.J. defend better when they are guarding 6'9" guys instead of 6'4" three point shooters. That team came in here ready to play. Coach Sturgeon had their team ready to play tonight. I thought we played in spurts tonight. There was a spurt in the second half defensively that I thought we were outstanding. But it's about getting your best defensive team on the floor. When you are rotating guys, and you are playing a lot of different lineups, you are just trying to figure things out. I'm not going to be experimenting Monday. I'm going to play guys that are going to help us win. Lance (Stemler) has a high basketball IQ. He really understands. When Lance is in the game our stuff really flows. But Ben (Allen) is not a 4 man, he's a five. He's 6'11" 260 pounds. D.J. defensively is a five. Neither one of those guys guard out on the floor very well, but they both guard the post pretty good. That is what we are learning. It would be nice if I could bring Lance off the bench. When he's in the game, we have a guy who can make a shot or make a pass, just like Armon (Bassett). Armon may not be as good defensively as Rod (Wilmont) or A.J. (Ratliff). Armon has more things he can do to help us on offense. He can pass, he can push it up the court, and he's a good shooter. Somewhere between the other night and tonight, he's capable of being a 40 percent point shooter. You try to figure out who can play well together. That is what you get out of exhibition games. I thought I got a lot out of the exhibition games, and I think our team did too. You are not looking at exhibition games as a big picture, because if you do, what are you looking for? You are looking for little scenerios within the big picture. Like look at Lance playing with D.J. Lance is probably better playing with D.J. then Ben is because of the way they play defensively. That team had five guards out there. Who were Ben and D.J. going to guard. Then if you put Lance in there, it looks kind of normal. He can defend a perimeter or post guys. I saw enough good things that I hope we have two really good days of preparation and get ready to play Lafayette on Monday."

    On being unhappy with the defensive performance:
    "I probably am never happy with it. You know the toughest thing for freshman to do is defend the screen. We worked really hard this week, and we looked good tonight against out of bounds plays. The best screener that I have ever seen is John Stockton. On our team it's Errek Suhr, he is a great screener. So we worked with Eric screening D.J. (White) a lot this week on out of bounds plays, and he got better. We actually got a five count and almost had two more. We had another chance at another five count, and Armon (Bassett) runs right into the middle of the screen. That's a freshman, he will get better at that as he goes."

    On playing in the preseason NIT:
    "We are excited about going to play in Indianapolis. When the NCAA bought the NIT, they went to this regional system, like they do in the tournament. Instead of having the game at certain campuses, everything is regional this year. I think that is good. One year when we played in the Preseason NIT, we hosted the first game, then had to turn around and go on the road for the second game. You'd like to host them, but you have to be fair. It's good when you can have this tournament at a regional site. It's good for the fans too."

    Indiana Player Quotes

    Junior forward D.J. White
    On how he feels after two exhibition games:
    "I feel good just like coach said, there are areas I need to work on. I'm just going to continue to come to practice every day and try and get my confidence level back. On the offensive end, it's about realizing when to shoot the ball and when the double team is coming."

    Senior guard Errek Suhr
    On the start of the season in the Dick's Sporting Goods Season Tip-off NIT:
    "I think that its been a long summer, and a lot different with getting used to a new program and a new coach. We are really excited about getting better, and this team has a lot of work to do because you can still tell we are learning how to play hard. That's something that Coach Sampson has done a great job with, getting us to be a team that's ready to go out there. That's what we are excited about. We are excited to win games and get going, do what we have been working on and show what I think will be a tough team."

    Senior guard Rod Wilmont
    On the teams play:
    "Just as Coach said, we have to get better in every game. We cannot take any steps back and we have to play better, play through things. We need to continue to work hard in practice."

    On what the team can achieve with more practice: "We have to get better with loose balls because if we don't we are going run the shuttle. We don't want to have to do that. If you see the ball on the floor, everybody has to go after it. We call it a 50-50 ball, and we have to get everyone of them."




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