Men's Basketball

    Indiana vs. Southern Illinois Postgame Quotes

    Go Hoosiers! Senior Earl Calloway played strong defense for the Hoosiers.
    Go Hoosiers!
    Senior Earl Calloway played strong defense for the Hoosiers.
    Go Hoosiers!

    Dec. 17, 2006

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    Indiana Head Coach Kelvin Sampson
    Opening statement:
    "I think we had a stretch there were we missed six out of eight free throws and had a chance to be ahead. People will look back and say you had a stretch where you didn't score, well if you make free throws you score, if you miss them, you don't score. Where we have got better since the season has gone on is defending through some adversity. We had a lot of shots that can probably go in for us, hopefully they can and we missed some free throws, but we never stopped defending, we competed and played hard. I have great respect for Chris (Lowery's) team. They are a tough hard-nosed team. When you watch Southern Illinois play, you can see why Wichita State wins at Syracuse, or why Wichita State wins at LSU. Those teams are good. I coached at Washington State, and some people predict who is going to win by the name that is on their jersey. Those Southern Illinois kids are tough. I mean they are tough, tough kids, and they compete. That is why they came and looked like they did for a while tonight. Both teams were competing. It wasn't bad offense as much as it was good defense. Sometimes your offense doesn't look good against a great defense. We had guys come in off the bench and play well. But that isn't surprising because we don't have any starters in the back court. We tell every guard that you are a starter. We are just going to go with who is on. I thought Earl (Calloway) had his best back-to-back games. I thought he was good against Kentucky, and I thought he was really good tonight. That is what I have been looking for, some consistency. I don't judge how a kid plays by his statistics. I judge how a kid plays by how hard, I think he is playing and how hard he is competing. That was the hardest A.J. (Ratliff) has played. When we go to practice tomorrow and Tuesday, his challenge will be putting together back to back good performances in terms of effort. Earl did it, but now the key is can he do it a third time? Can A.J. do it twice? From what I have seen from A.J. he is pretty good one night and then he's in the witness protection program the next night. We'll see if he shows up Wednesday or if we need to get hounds out after him."

    On rebounding the ball in the second half:
    "At halftime they out rebounded us. I wrote it down at halftime. That is just something that we take pride in. The two areas we really wanted to win tonight. We wanted to get to the free throw line more than them. One of the things that we were much better at tonight than we were against Duke or Kentucky was driving the ball. It's hard to run an offense against a good defensive team, because they will take you out of your offense just like we do, we take teams out of their offense occasionally. You have got to put the ball on the floor and get to the foul line. Our free throw attempts against Kentucky and Duke, that is just unacceptable. Tonight, I thought we were a lot more aggressive driving the ball."

    On switching defenses in the second half:
    "That is what we worked on this week. The emphasis this week was finals. But when we did practice, we really worked hard on that 1-3-1 zone. And it helped find a way to get Xavier Keeling in the game too. We have these freshmen. That's the thing that concerned me about SIU more than anything, they won 22 games last year, and they have their top eight scorers returning. We are running out there a lot of new guys in a new system, and I didn't think we would look quite as good as they would early in the game. I thought if we could just get settled down. They are experienced and they know how to win on the road."

    On containing Randal Falkner:
    "If you watch tape on Southern Illinois, you will see they are good at high low play. Of course we had a week to prepare. They would flash (Matt) Shaw somewhere as hard as they can, and they would go high low. So we really tried to take that away. Every time he came to the ball, we tried to deny it. Another thing we teach our kids is post defense starts with ball pressure. Not with the guy guarding the post, it starts with ball pressure. If you have no ball pressure then your post defense is obsolete."

    Senior Guard Earl Calloway
    On guarding Jamaal Tatum:
    "Mainly, you just have to try and stay in front of him and deny him the ball. Coach emphasized that if you deny, he can't catch it. He just made some tough shots, he is a good player, probably by far the best that I have guarded. He just made good shots and hit the ones he was open on."

    On putting the game out of reach at the end:
    "We buckled down on a defense and converted on offense. We knew that they were trapping the ball screens, and we went over in practice to attack the ball screens instead of pulling it back out because that fits into their defense and their recovery which takes more time off the clock. We attacked and didn't go away from their traps, and just played ball."

    Southern Illinois Head Coach Chris Lowery Quotes
    On the game:
    "Indiana was ready to play, they had a week to get ready and to Coach Sampson's credit, he gets his guys ready. We didn't expect to just come in here and win this game. We had to earn it and they definitely made us play extremely hard. We got them to go away from their primary scorers and that's what we tried to do. With Keeling getting six and A.J. with 14 off the bench, those 20 points are 20 points that they probably weren't expecting. We did a great job on D.J. White and we really frustrated him. We need [Randal] Falker to get more touches, but he really wore himself out defending D.J. in the first half."

    On the second half of the game:
    "As you can see, we got guarded. They took some guys out, put some guys in and applied some pressure. We turned the heat up figuring we would be able to sustain the effort against that pressure, but we didn't. We had some really bad turnovers and that was not good for the situation."

    On being from Indiana and coaching at Assembly Hall:
    "I wouldn't make too much out of it. It was just like walking into another building. Being an Indiana guy, I love this place. It's a dream school for a kid. But when it comes time to compete, that's all it is, a competition. There were no misty eyes, but I wanted to win the game. That's what it became and they did a good job, made adjustments at half and made it tough for us to make a catch."

    On the upcoming schedule:
    "It helps us get ready. This is our fifth road game so we have played a lot of games away from home already in the hope to get us ready and get our confidence up. Games like this get you going, being in a hostile situation. You learn from the mistakes."

    Sophomore guard Bryan Mullins
    On the game:
    "They definitely pressured us hard today, but we go against that everyday in practice. I think they just wore us out. I give them credit, we made some bad turnovers and forced a couple of turnovers that really changed the game with about five or six minutes left. The fatigue probably got to us both physically and mentally."

     

     

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