Men's Basketball

    Previewing No. 1/1 Indiana at Minnesota

    Go Hoosiers! Will Sheehey
    Go Hoosiers!
    Will Sheehey
    Go Hoosiers!

    Feb. 25, 2013

    BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - Indiana head coach Tom Crean, along with juniors Victor Oladipo and Will Sheehey preview the Hoosiers' game at Minnesota on Tuesday, Feb. 26.

    Head Coach Tom Crean
    On the problems that Minnesota might bring:
    "They present a ton of problems because they're really, really good when they are allowed to get out and spread out and press and get up into you. They're excellent - we've got to be prepared for that, we didn't do that well here and we've spent a lot of time preparing for that. They've got some guys that are playing enormously well at home and we're getting ready for the best Minnesota team. We're getting ready for the kind of Minnesota team we saw the first time. We're getting ready for how good both (Andre and Austin) Hollins are, and how good Trevor (Mbakwe) is, and how aggressive Joe Coleman is and what Rodney Williams is capable of. They're playing different guys, they have a deep team. We think they're really good, they're really aggressive. The one thing they have that is as good as anybody's is their length. They can really create problems, that's why we have to be efficient and on the attack the whole night."

    On how well they play when they're playing well:
    "I think we saw it here, I think it was the team that was ranked in the top ten. I think that's what we're looking at; we know we're going to get their best effort. They've had time off and I'm sure they've healed up and been able to work on things. That's what we're looking at, that's what we expect to see and hopefully that's what they're going to see, they're going to see us at our best. We've had an awesome week, and you never know how you're going to play from game to game but if preparation and lead up is any indication then we'll go in and be really ready to go. Again, we haven't spent a lot of time, but we've looked at things such as why have people been good against them. This is a very aggressive, tenacious and athletic team. That's who we're focused on playing."



    On how their pressure gave them problems last game:
    "We didn't do a very good job, I didn't give us enough ways to beat it. I think it was such as high margin right until the very end, and we just didn't do a good job of getting open. We didn't do a great job of coming to the ball, we made some mistakes defensively. We kind of played to get the game over rather than play-to-play an entire 40 minutes of putting them away. We'll be better at that, but they're real good at home, there's no doubt about that."

    On being worrying about not having a game in a week:
    "Yeah it's going to be a full week, and you never know. If you spend time worrying about that then your giving yourself a lot of things that you can't do anything about. We've practiced well, and we're prepared, we have a great attitude and there's been no low, we've taken some time off we've healed up and at the same time they've come in here every day and keeping the main thing the main thing, and that's getting better."

    On if the focus is on being two games ahead in the Big Ten:
    "No, I mean if you start focusing on hypotheticals and you start focusing on where your sitting rather than focusing on where you're going then I think you're asking for trouble. They're like anyone else they know what the standings are, they know who's playing who, they know who's playing when but we know that we're playing tomorrow night against a really good team. These guys have done a phenomenal job of staying with that all year."

    On if the team has been able to grow in terms of not letting up in games:
    "Absolutely, I don't think there's any question. Every situation you go through just gives you a demonstration on how to deal with the next one. That's what experience really is. We've just got to be really good at meeting our passes, dealing with the pressure, attacking the press the way we want to attack the press, not letting it get us back on our heels. I told these guys I fully feel we're going to have to beat a zone at some point tomorrow to win the game. They can do a lot of things. Minnesota can play 3-2, 2-3, they can play 1-3-1, they can do numerous things and because they have that length and that experience that allows them to do it. We've got to focus on what we're doing, focus on our movement, focus on our technique and fundamentals and then come down and rebound and really guard them. This game is going to come down to rebounding, as much as anything else it's going to come down to the free throw line. When they win games they're phenomenal at the foul line. They're always phenomenal in the rebounding; we've got to make sure that we're really locked into those aspects."

    On focusing on rebounding as a main key to the game:
    "Yeah, they're relentless and the people that they bring off the bench are relentless. They're long and they're long and aggressive. You're going to have they're guards rebound, certainly their forwards rebound, their bench rebounds and they're excellent on the free throw line with their rebounding. They're tremendous on both ends. Trevor (Mbawke) is the leading defensive rebounder in the league. He's one of the leading guys in the country for offensive rebound percentage and certainly our league. Rodney Williams is as good an athlete as these guys will face. There might be some guys that might be as good but there's none better. That's what you're dealing with and then they go to bench and (Oto) Osenieks and (Elliott) Elliason - those guys are very aggressive but it's everybody, it's Austin Hollins, it's Joe Coleman - those guys really get after the boards it's going to be a hard fought game."

    On how important is to score off the bench:
    "It's just important that we play well for 40 minutes. Where the scoring comes from, where the statistics come from is relatively hypothetical, we can't pinpoint that. If you're playing well, if you're increasing the score while you're in, if you're impacting the game from both ends, that's most important. We're scoring a lot of points, so where they come from is not as important as how we're getting them and what flow we're getting them in and how are we getting them off of our defense and are we getting to the foul line. I don't study a lot of where the numbers are truly coming from when it comes off the bench but we do truly stay in tune to that plus-minus and who's impacting the game on both ends."

    On if you look at your bench for an injection of energy:
    "We're just looking to play better, it's everything, and you don't want to have a drop off when you go to the bench. You don't want to have it in energy, you don't want to have it in toughness, you don't want to have it in execution. We feel like we have a lot of good players, we feel like we have at least six starters and that's the bottom line. We're not over analyzing all those different things other than are you making us better while you're in. That's what we harp upon constantly."

    Victor Oladipo
    On how good the break was for the team:
    "It was nice. We got a lot of time to get better. We got a lot of time to work on things that we needed to work on and a lot of time to get better individually, so it was great."

    On the first game against Minnesota:
    "We had a great start, but we let them get back in it. Like Coach Crean was saying earlier, we're getting ready to play the top-10 Minnesota. Minnesota is going to come out and give us 100 percent. We have to be ready to play on both ends of the floor."

    On having strong play from the bench:
    "It's great for us. When they come in they have great energy. It's huge for our team. They just need to do that every game, bring it every game. We benefit from it. When everybody is ready to play, we're hard to beat."

    Will Sheehey
    On Minnesota and the difference between each meeting:
    "I don't think they are too much different. They play extremely hard. Their offensive rebounding is the best in the country. They run their stuff, they have great players and I think they are pretty much the same team we played before."

    On rebounding vs. Minnesota:
    "You go into every game the same way, taking away their strengths and then capitalize on their weaknesses. We're going to do the same thing. They are a fantastic offensive rebounding team, so we have to bring it."

    On the importance of being ahead of the Big Ten race:
    "It's very important, but we're focusing on each game because we have a tough stretch ahead of us. We are going to focus on every individual game and put the same amount of energy that we've been putting into previous games into these. The outcome should be a correlation to what we've put in."


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