Houston Postgame Quotes vs. Texas A&M-Corpus Christi

Dec. 6, 2009

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Opening Statement:

"We had a heck of a road trip. When we got back, we've been off for four days to catch up with their classes and studies. I knew it was going to be a dangerous game. Fortunately, we prepared hard for it. This team beat Oregon State by 24 points and took Texas Tech to the last couple minutes in Lubbock. I knew they were good, and I expected a very good game. With the layoff, travel and the quality of the opponent, I knew it'd be hard.

"We're playing the hardest schedule in Conference USA by far, the league office told us. These games are right around finals, anything can happen. Next game we play Troy and they beat Auburn in Auburn.

"Texas A&M-Corpus Christi has a very good basketball program. They are led by veteran coaches, great personnel and basketball is their only sport. This is a good game for us to play, particularly when we win. We've been very fortunate against teams like that, like those in the Southland Conference.

"We did a lot of things very well. We moved the ball well with 17 assists on 30 buckets. We forced 13 steals and only had 11 turnovers with five of them being a little sloppy and uncharacteristic. But then again we were only averaging eight, so that's not too bad."

On the lineup:

"They went small so we had to follow. We got rolling with our smaller lineup so we stuck with it. Guys like Kirk Van Slyke are going to be very good but tonight he didn't have a good match up, unless. He and Kendrick Washington are guys who are going to be playing a lot and fit in the regular rotation. It's hard for Washington because he's been hurt, but I was thrilled he got his 15 minutes tonight. We've been hoping to get him that many minutes before Christmas."

On the rotation:

"No rotation has been set yet. I don't want Kelvin (Lewis) to play 40 minutes but whenever I wanted to take him out, they went on a run. We only took Aubrey (Coleman) out because of foul trouble. Most teams we'll put in a legitimate four and five position. But my job is to win basketball games, and I can't worry about minutes at this point in the season. Sometimes that requires you to put your five best guys on the court without regard to position. I'm not saying I want to do that, but it is very difficult for teams to guard us."

On the guard-heavy lineup:

"When we go with four guards we're in an all-out, shut-down-the-passing-lane mode. We're not concerned with rebounding as much as disrupting their offense, and it worked for most of the game today. We had something like 47 deflections, and a lot of those lead to steals and that throws them off their rhythm. "

On the tough early season schedule:

We went to Alaska to play Oklahoma, period. Oklahoma will not play us home-and-home, and we need to play quality opponents. Sure you want to win every game but we took two out of three, and the win versus Oklahoma was a resounding win. It wasn't as close as the score. That trip educated us a lot about our ball club.


On the game:

"We knew it was a must-win situation for us, so we had to take it out and go 100 percent. We tried to jump with them in the beginning, and they taught us a quick lesson. We were more athletic, but not as big as them so we had to be smarter. Once we started doing that, I felt we started to pull away."

On building chemistry on the road:

"On the road, we found our identity more so than at home. (Aubrey Coleman) said we were the only ones on the court, and we had to communicate with each other more and boost each other up. "

On becoming a key member of the rotation:

"In the first game, I went in with the right attitude. I didn't go in expecting minutes. I just knew when I had my opportunity, I had to rise to the moment and show Coach what I can do no matter if it's three minutes, two minutes or thirty seconds. I have to come out and make a difference.

"After I showed coach I can do it in the amount of time that he gave me in the Nicholos State game, he gave a little more trust in the Nevada game. I kept coming along, and I fit well with Aubrey (Coleman) and Kelvin (Lewis). It's a three-headed monster on the floor, and we all have a bond, plus we all want to win. That is the most important thing with a team, you have to want to win. Basically, I just gave it all and showed coach what I can do."


On the game:

"They were longer than us. Coach Penders likes to run four guards, and they took advantage by posting us up and out-rebounding us. In the second half, we picked it up and put in Kendrick (Washington), who could bang with them. I told everybody that we just have to box out, hold them and then go get the ball. We couldn't jump with them because they were just too long."

On building chemistry on the road:

"When we're away, we're all we have. The fans are against us so it's only us players on the floor so we have to come together. Even though we lost to Nevada, in the second half we ran a 2-1-2 (zone), and we were scrambling everywhere, each one of us had each other's backs. On the road, that's how we have to play as a team."

On the upcoming break:

"We just have to practice and do the same thing we've been doing. Since we've been back from Alaska, we been doing two-a-days extra hard and working on defense. We just have to keep practicing. It's good to get the rest but we have to continue to stay focused and go even harder. We're never satisfied."


On the game:

"Sometime we're going to win games. We might have a good game and beat a team by 40 points, or we might have to grind it out and beat a team by one. It's more important that we win. Corpus Christi is a good team. They've been picked to win their division. They brought it today, and we were a little sluggish at the beginning but we pulled it out."

On playing fast:

"I think that we accept it. When we have the four guards, we're lean, quick and cause problems for some teams. That's where we get our lead. When we put the pressure on them full court, we have four guards so if they try to throw passes and they're sluggish, then we're going to steal them."








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