Dec. 22, 2007
Indiana Head Coach Kelvin Sampson
"I thought the second half was really good. You always worry about this, especially the game before the Christmas holidays. I walked into the locker room this morning; you know you always get a little feeling. The conversations were about what time does your flight leave, what time are you leaving, who is picking you up? And every game we played this year I heard the conversations about the game. So we have four freshmen and two first-year JUCO guys...that first half was a lesson. I am not sure that that first half in some ways won't be good for us down the road.
"I would be remiss in not congratulating Fang on having his team ready to play. I respect those kids. I coached at a small college and played games and jumped on a bus and to drive for hours and come in and play. For those kids to come in and play like that in the first half says a lot about Fang and his team.
"In the second half, I thought we were really good. Defensively, we really executed our offense well, got into gaps, moved the ball, got the ball inside to D.J. (White). Defense was good, offense was good, we got to the free throw line 35 times. There were a lot of positives in the second half. The first half - a lot of lessons learned."
On Mike White:
"Mike's greatest attribute is his maturity. He doesn't have too many highs or lows. He is just solid. That is why he fits in our lineup. You know exactly what you are going to get from him everyday at 3 p.m. He plays exactly like he practices. He's not real vocal, doesn't say a lot...fortunately for us, the idea to redshirt Mike was a good idea. I probably would have done the same thing if I had to do it over again. The idea to bring him out of the redshirt was what this team needed."
On the team's offense in the second half:
On Eric Gordon:
"Our offense was really good in the second half. I just didn't think we had a lot of energy (to start the game). The second half, we played good. We are good against the zone. We attack zones well. Once we spread them out and drove them, we got a lot of easy baskets. The first half there was a lot of standing and looking. In the second half, a lot of movement, passed the ball well, got a lot of easy baskets. We shot 67 percent in the second half."
"There will be nights where he doesn't make it. Against Western Carolina he made his first five threes. He had the same shots tonight. Tonight they didn't go in. That's going to happen. One of the things we are always on our guys about is getting to the free throw line. That is the strength of our team. I'd rather have Eric driving it than standing out there passing it and screening. That is what he is good at. He can really get to the free throw line."
Senior Forward D.J. White
On the team being ready to play:
"Like coach said, conversations have been going on. People haven't been home in awhile, but we just had to pick it up. First half we came out slow, coach got on us in the locker room and I think we just came together. I think we didn't have a good defensive possession until the second half. That is on us. We can't let that happen again. That is on me being a captain and a leader. We need to be more focused."
On missing out on his seventh-straight double-double:
"It was (disappointing). That is something that I try to do every time I go out on the court. I am disappointed in myself. I'll bounce back. Our team got the win and that is the most important thing."
On what the improvement was in the second half:
"Defense. We weren't perfect, but I think we got better. We were playing together, helping each other."
Senior Forward Mike White
On being 6 of 7 from the free throw line:
"It was something I worked on over the summer everyday. It is something we also work on everyday in practice."
Coppin State Head Coach Ron "Fang" Mitchell
On what his team was successful with in the first half:
"Well, we were getting our hands up and we were moving on the defensive end. We really controlled the tempo in the first half. I think what happened in the second half was a situation where the tempo went in Indiana's favor and they got dribble penetration, which caused some problems for us. They (Indiana) went insides a lot more in second half, which hurt us and it just became one of those things."
On the difference in the second half:
"When it is time for us to dig in, we haven't dug in, and I have had that problem all this year. But we are working on that, we are working on when teams makes runs, we have to do a better job of stopping them.
On the positive to take from a game like this:
"The fact is we recognized that our defense can be good, when we want it to be, when we move and rebound the basketball and contest the shot. We just have to be able to be more patient when times aren't going well for us. It is times like that that become difficult for young people because they want to rush things in that situation."
On what Indiana did well during the game to pull away:
"I do think they went inside-out on us in the second half. They did a pretty good job of posting our big people up. Kelvin is a great coach and he made some good adjustments. I know initially they were shooting a lot of jumpers and weren't getting the ball inside as much as he wanted to because they are strong inside. We were fortunate that Eric (Gordon) wasn't shooting it like I know he is capable of shooting it."