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Jan. 21, 2010
Penn State Coach Ed DeChellis
Q: How demoralizing were the back-to-back possessions giving up offensive rebounds?
A: We have out-rebounded every Big Ten opponent, we have played we just haven't been able to get the big rebound when we needed. Those were big possessions back-to-back were demoralizing. We had some plays where we have a guy fall down and they swing the ball and somebody bangs a three. Indiana had not been shooting the ball from three at all and they shoot almost 50 percent today.
Q: It's 40-40 and it looked like you had some early three point shots, is that what you were looking for?
A: No, I mean we just made some tough decisions, guys just get excited. We are 40-40 and launch a long three, that's just not what we are looking for. In the heat of the moment guys pull it. You can tell them in the heat of the moment you can't shoot it. You can't get to them to tell them it's not a good shot.
Q: Is that part of what happens when you get into a rut?
A: Everybody is trying to do something without letting it come to them. Sometimes it is just not a very smart decision at that time. That has been a thing of contention too. Sometimes we don't make the right decision at the right time, and we had some of those tonight. We came back and had it right where we needed it and missed a free throw to go up one and we just haven't done anything timely.
Q: How do you snap out of it with the Big Ten being so tough?
A: We got to go back to work tomorrow and try to figure that out. But, it is about a confidence thing now. We didn't play with a lot of confidence in the first-half I don't think. We played with a little more confidence in the second-half but once we got back into the game we didn't do what we needed to do to win the game. But give them credit, they made shots when they had to make them."
Q: Talk about Battle's effort with the injury?
A: He turned his ankle Tuesday and didn't practice Tuesday or Wednesday and we didn't know if he was going to play or not. He thought this morning he could play and I think [Talor Battle] did a good job of scoring the ball for us and getting us back into the game.
Q: What did you think of his injury on Tuesday?
A: I thought he would be out at least a week, and that's what the trainer told me at that point in time. They did a good job of getting him back and he was able to go tonight and play pretty well.
Q: Can you talk about the poor decision making at the crucial moment of the game?
A: I told them after the game they have to make decisions when they need to be made. You can't yell out `hey don't take that shot' or `hey you got to get that rebound' it just comes down to a play when you have to make it. We just haven't been able to make that play. It is a possession game, your tied 40-40 and you make some not great decisions and you don't make some shots.
Q: Andrew Ott played a pretty good game, can you talk about his performance?
A: I thought he did about as well as he could do. We had 13 points out of him and 7 rebounds and 5 offensive rebounds. He has given us some solid minutes and 24 minutes is about what he can play and we tried to split that between him and Andrew Jones and I thought we had decent production out of that spot tonight we just didn't get much of anything else on the perimeter. But I thought was solid, I thought Brooks came in and rebounded a little bit for us and made a couple basketball plays. I thought in the post-wise we were ok, and those guys rebound the ball a little bit.
Q: Can you talk about starting Bill Edwards?
A: Well we just tried to change some things up. I thought he had a couple good days of practice. He has been a good passer in practice it has just not carried over into the games, I think he had 4 turnovers again tonight and three early. It has just not carried over for him game-wise because he is one of the better passers on the team. He can score it just hasn't happened for him in the game.
Q: How do you make sure 0-6 does not become a burden?
A: It's hard, it's hard now. This is one we thought we could win. We think we can win every game. We thought Illinois we had a chance and were right there. Iowa we didn't finish it off and didn't play well enough in the second half. I don't have an answer for you all I know is we have another one Sunday at Wisconsin and we have to come back in here tomorrow and get ready for that one and be ready to play.
Talor Battle Q: Did you have to change anything up about the way you played tonight?
Q: Did you have to change anything up about the way you played tonight?
A: No I just try to play with no fear every game. But we lost. To be honest with you, what I did was not enough. We just have to figure out what to do as a team to win games.
Q: You tied it at 40 and then couldn't get over the hump. What is going on with the situations where you are getting there, but just can't do enough?
A: Exactly what you said. We just can't make a play offensively or defensively. It was 40-40, they got the offensive rebound and a basket. Then we gave up another offensive rebound, and they do it again. We have not made plays down the stretch this year and that goes for everyone. We just have to somehow figure it out.
Q: After last season when you had a big run, you guys said you have to play well to avoid the one-year wonder. How hard is it to lose games like this?
A: Losing is not fun for anyone. It is definitely not. But we can't quit. We have to keep pushing and continue to get better. We just keep losing close games. We've got to get over the hump one time to see what it feels like to get that one win.
Q: What happened with the slow start tonight?
A: I think we lack energy. I was telling the guys at halftime that we needed to pick up our energy. We are 0-6 now and there is no excuse for us to come out and with no energy. We brought it in spurts, but we just cant give enough to make a play obviously. So it comes down to toughness. We need to dig deep individually and as a unit to make one play to get us over the hump.
Q: Can you talk about what's going wrong on offense?
A: We need to make a play and make a play down the stretch. We need to believe that we can win. We just can't make that play and it's so stressful. We need to make a shot. We need to make a play. When the three-pointer is not falling we need to make things happen; Shot fake, dribble, and take it to the rim. We just can't continue to sit out there and not do anything offensively.
Q: Can you put your finger on what is going wrong here?
A: Well really just reiterating what Talor said. At the end of the game there are plays that we are not making. We need to execute and we are not doing it.
Indiana Coach Tom Crean Quotes
Comments about the game
Well first and foremost, we knew we were going to play an outstanding team and I know their record is what it is, but it's not indicative of the kind of players or coaching staff that they have. They're a couple buckets away from having a winning record in this league and I hope that everybody will remember that. I know what we went through a year ago in the sense of what we lost when the program fell apart and you have no experience. I think it's very important that people remember how much experience [Penn State] lost. They lost some major league players when you talk about [Jamelle] Cornley and [Stanley] Pringle and some of the other kids that came off the bench. I wouldn't want to play them in a couple weeks, I really wouldn't. We knew were going to have to play tougher, and match their toughness I should say, match their energy [and] I think we did. Very, very happy for my team- very happy how my coaches and staff found all the little tricks and nooks and crannies and all the motivational buttons to helpmake sure our team was ready to play tonight. Whether it was great walk-throughs, whether it was one-on-one meetings, whatever it was our coaching staff did an outstanding job. [I'm] proud of the way the guys came in the game, especially Devan Dumas, the way that he played tonight. Everybody that played made a great contribution and it might have been free throws, it might have been a rebound, but when your own the road in a possession-by-possession game, everything is magnified and when you make those kinds of contribution, it makes your team feel really good about themselves- our guys should feel good about themselves. They earned a victory again tonight, [I'm] proud of them.
Talk about the way you guys responded when [Penn State] tied it in the second half?
Well I think that's probably where Sunday has come back to help us even quicker than you might think. And you never know what experiences you're going to take from a game, and when they're going to come up again, but I think it did. There was no panic in our guys' voices; there was no deer-in-the-headlight look. Jeremiah Rivers fouled out and we bring the guys over for those quick seconds you get before you sub, I had him run that huddle because he needed to stay with them, they needed to know he was still in it even though he wasn't in the game. Those are the kinds of maturity things that help you withstand runs in a game and we made some really big plays. We had some big rebounds, Verdell [Jones III] made a huge play down the stretch, Danny Moore's free throws. I mean the list goes on and I'm really proud of the way that they found the way.
How much do you see in Verdell's confidence to step up in big situations?
Oh he wants the ball- absolutely. He wants the ball and the good thing about Verdell is that he's getting better every time with his decision-making. Even tonight when we broke the press once and Devan [Dumes] took it in and he had challenged shot. He knew right away that that was a challenged shot and to me that's growth. He knows I'm going right back to him in those situations and he had to play extended minutes with Jeremiah's foul situation. In answer with Verdell, I think he's among many. Their confidence is growing all the time and I think that's really important as we move forward.
Talk about the two big offensive rebounds that [Christian] Watford had.
They were big. Every once in a while when you don't think that Christian is going as hard he uncoils and there he is. We asked him to play different positions tonight, he had to come in at the three, we took him out for a few minutes so he could get some water and then make sure that we had three or four things that he could run from the small forward spot. We do that in practice, but again doing it in practice and doing it in a highly contested game on the road is a different deal. But he did and he did an excellent job with that. Again, for the second straight game he came up with big rebounds at winning time.
We didn't rebound the ball great- we're going to have to get better there, we know that. But we stayed in it; we stayed in it with the rebounding. When [Watford] plays like that, we're a much better basketball team. He can score in the mid-range, he can score at the rim, he can score from three. And when he can get offensive rebounds and he continues to develop the way he is defensively, our improvement level is going to be higher. There's no doubt about that.
Talk about team's improvement since 9-9 start, 3-3 in the conference
I think it builds confidence. It's not a part of my thinking, it really isn't and I hadn't really looked at it like that until you said it, but I think it's important for them. We try to make sure we learn some lessons from a year ago. We played [Penn State's] outstanding team last year. And don't forget, that team won a championship last year. They lost some serious pieces to their program and you look around the country at teams that are dealing with tough losses. I'm extra sympathetic to that because we lost our whole team with the exception of one guy. It takes time for guys to learn what has to be done and the expectations that this staff has for them. But we came in here a year agoand we battled hard until the end, our guys knew that, but they also knew that Penn State beat us three times last year. They really responded to the fact of "okay here are the things we think we can do in this game, here's the things we cannot do in the game," and i think for the most part they did a good job with it.