On his impressions of Nebraska:
"Well, they play a lot different ways. They defend you different ways with man and zone. (Nebraska Head Coach Tim Miles) is an excellent coach and we coached against him when we were at Marquette and he was at North Dakota State and we didn't win and it was at home. Our guys didn't, at that time, really grasp how tough that team was at North Dakota State. They had beaten Wisconsin the year before.
"I've always been an admirer of how he coaches and how good and tough his teams our. I don't think this one is any different. We probably should show our team clips from "The Journey" when they traveled to Michigan to see all of those loose ball drills at Michigan and they'll probably be doing the same thing tonight. It's one of those things where you've got to come out and establish how you're going to play. We've got to come out and establish the pace and tempo, no matter what they determine they want to do with it. We've got to make sure that we're doing everything possible to push the pace without rushing and turning the ball over. They're versatile. They can do a lot of things on the perimeter.
"(Ray) Gallegos can shoot the ball extremely well. They've got a lot of multi-positional players, which I think is dangerous, because it's not this is a standard four, this is a standard three. We're a lot like that. We've recruited to not have a team that is just standardized, positioning wise as well, and I think that's what they look like in that sense. They are good on the glass. They are getting to the foul line. They move the ball well. They run a lot of different sets. They come out and attack you out of the timeouts with whatever matchup they feel is the best one for them. They play extremely hard."
On if can use last year's loss as motivation or if it's different since they are a different team:
"No, the result is still that we didn't take care of business there and we didn't finish it off. We allowed them to get momentum back. We allowed them to get their crowd in it. That's definitely a part of it. Most of their players are different with the exception of two I think. But the bottom line is we've got to continue to show growth in everything we do. And we did from Thursday night to Sunday and we've got to do it from Sunday to Wednesday. You're never guaranteed how you're going to play but you can certainly guarantee your mindset on how you're going to play and the edge that you're going to bring. I think that's very important. I think somewhere along the line, that loss was very disappointing to them. That was a very tough locker room, a very tough trip home, and next day. I think you remember those things. I don't think it has a lot to do with tomorrow night, obviously, but I think you do remember those things."
On what he learned from his team with the win on Sunday:
"They moved forward, which was the only way to do it. I guess I've learned that there is a huge difference between bouncing back and moving forward. It's one thing to talk about it, but it's a whole other thing to have it live out. We went through the film, but we also went through what we did so well. We probably had 35 clips where we were really good in that game and it was important to see that as well. Again I think that they moved forward. They knew that they needed to. They did. They corrected the things that we needed to correct from that game in practice along the same lines of getting ready for Ohio State. Then with that situation, we were faced with again, they handled it. They handled it very well. The one thing that they took ownership of in that game was doing a better job of taking care of the ball and certainly making sure that we got the ball inside to get our offense started when we had an option to do it. Sometimes you're going to come down and you're going to have an option to get to the rim, sometimes it's going to be a wide-open three, but when there is a chance to get it inside to start our offense that's a great way to do it and at the end of the day, we got 81 points out of it."
On if retaining the No. 1 position in the AP Poll even after a loss shows a level of respect for this team:
"We haven't talked about that. You'd have to ask (the players). We haven't really talked about the respect aspect. I'm usually showing them the lack of respect aspect. I haven't really thought about that. I think it says more about the fact that you go in and you beat a really good Ohio State team at Ohio State. That says something. I think people do understand too that Illinois is capable and they've certainly been doing a lot of good things in the year and that certainly doesn't excuse the way we lost the game. It wasn't like we came back from down 10 and just lost it at the end. We had a lead. I think it says probably a lot, just thinking about it now since you asked, how respected the league is. I think it's just another example of that."
On using last year's loss to Nebraska as motivation this year:
"The guys that were there last year and experienced that loss, it definitely left a bad taste in our mouth. But it is a new year and new team. We definitely don't want to repeat that but we have things that we are focused on this year. Getting into the game plan and looking at what they like to do and what they are good at, we just have to do a good job of executing."
On what has helped Christian become more assertive:
"I think it started in the summer. Everybody put their time in in the gym and got bigger and stronger. That has allowed him to get down in the post more and since he is a good foul shooter, we like to get him the ball down there to see if he can draw some fouls and get to the foul line. It's always good for shooters to see the ball go in the bucket early, so if you can get him to the free throw line that's good. He has done a really good job of being focused, whether he is inside or outside, he creates a lot of mismatch problems."
On what is different about this Nebraska team as opposed to last year since they have a new coach:
"They like to get out in transition - they shoot pretty well from the 3-point line. They like to move the ball around and get it inside to create havoc in there. They are going to play hard and tough, so we have to make sure we get the 50-50 balls, box out and get out and run."
On what makes them so good at dictating the pace of the game:
"They are going to play really tough. There are some games where they will pack it in on the defensive end and try to slow you down a little bit. And then they will try to get out in transition and shoot the 3's. I just think we are going to have to do a good job of playing at our own pace."
On what has been the key to his strong play since Big Ten play started:
"It has been big for me to get started early and be aggressive. My teammates have been doing a great job of finding me and have kind of been getting lost in the game, getting fouled and getting some easy buckets."
On whether it's hard for a guy of his size to get lost in the game:
"Not really with us. We do a great job of spreading the floor and we have multiple guys that can score the basketball, so that makes it easier."
On what has helped him become more assertive in games:
"I don't really know how, but I'm just trying to be more aggressive going to the basket and offensive rebounding. All of that comes with being aggressive."
On what has allowed him to get to the point where he leads the Big Ten in 3-point Field Goal Percentage:
"A lot of work in the gym along with a lot of confidence obviously. Having the ability to go out there and shoot, with the coaching staff that allows me to just go out there and shoot. All of that helps, but it is definitely hours and hours in the gym."