Feb. 20, 2011
HEAD COACH Todd Buchanan
"Words will not be able to ever describe how proud I am of these kids and my entire staff. For us to achieve the things we've achieved to this point, everybody has bought in and done there due diligence to get us to this point. A lot of times I'm the face and voice of the program, but the assistant coaches are the backbone of our program. As long as I'm the head coach here that will not change. We are a family and that's every day, not just on days we win or days we feel good. That is the consistency that we've brought to this program."
On efforts of the team to grow to this point
"Every day in practice I see growth. It doesn't matter who it is, there are so many players who expect to achieve certain goals. We've obviously set goals very high and we have not hid behind anything from day one. Watching them grow in practice has been the best thing for me. You only get better as a team if you grow individually."
On being Conference USA champs
"It feels great. I told everybody who was down on the floor that I'm happy for them. I'm so happy for these kids and our fans, and the university as a whole. But I'm no different, I'm a coach, and a human so I'm elated that we have achieved the things that we have achieved to this point, but make no mistake about it, we're not done. I told them to enjoy it but not to get satisfied with this. We have three more to finish and three more after that in El Paso, and that's our goal."
On Jasmine Johnson's game
On how UTEP's 3-point shooting affected him
"I thought Jasmine controlled the game defensively for several possessions. She was 4-of-6 from the field, she hit a big 3-pointer, then comes in and gives us the quality minutes that we need. She's playing her best basketball right now, there's no doubt about it. Hopefully that won't change."
"I said somebody please call the fire marshall. But seriously to answer your question, the main thing for me to do is keep my poise. They're going to make shots and I told them, the game plan is still our game plan and nobody can panic. The one thing we did change was becoming more aggressive defending the three point line. I feel that we're athletic and quick enough to jam people at the three point line and make them work a little bit more."
On if the team has achieved above his expectations
"Probably so to be honest. I really don't know exactly what our expectations were as far as where we are at now. Obviously from day one we wanted to win the regular season and the conference championship and go back to the NCAA tournament. I feel very good about our body of work to achieve those things at this point. These kids want a ring but it's about what they want to put on the ring. We get a ring now but what do you want it to say. I want it to say 16-0 and tournament champs."
If he believes they're an NCAA tournament team
"No doubt. You would have to be beyond crazy not to put us in the field of 64. The schedule we played and the RPI we are at, hopefully we'll get some love this week and be in the top 25. I think these kids deserve so much credit because they have not lost their way. I'm sure they get frustrated with some of it but it keeps that chip on their shoulder and keeps them a little bit hungrier."
On what it felt like to cut down the net
"Awesome. That's why I came back. I came back for a lot of reasons but that's one of the biggest reasons. Having the opportunity to do those things in front of all those people. It is an awesome feeling. And I'm happy for the people who work behind the scenes that work so hard to get all of this to come full circle. That's who it's for. Everybody."
SENIOR FORWARD Courtney Taylor
On the outright title
"I'm just happy, I'm at a loss for words."
On the mindset at halftime with UTEP making six first-half 3-pointers
"They couldn't miss anything. They were just making everything they threw up. We just tried to keep our composure and hope their luck would run out."
On expectations this season
"We just take it one day at a time, one game at a time. At the beginning of the season we set out to win the conference championship and go undefeated so we're working hard every day. We're trying to push forward to our goal, and it's looking pretty good right now."
SENIOR GUARD Brittney Scott
On how she felt today
"Well the motivation today for this game was if we win, we're the champs, so I just shot it and didn't think twice about it. Some of them fell and some of them didn't, I'm just glad we got the win."
On how the team has progressed over the season
"We've progressed together. Our chemistry is great, and everyone gets along tremendously. As the year progressed it got even better, and our performance proves it."
JUNIOR GUARD Porsche Landry
On defensive play
"It's really hard to play defense for 30 seconds, but we kept our composure and kept rebounding and it all worked out."
SENIOR FORWARD Lesslee Mason
On what it would mean to go undefeated
"It would be wonderful, but to be honest it's expected. If we don't go 16-0 we'll be disappointed. If we lose a game in the tournament, we'll be disappointed. We expect to go undefeated to the NCAA's. Those are our goals."
On first-half play
"I knew I'd have my hands full with Gloria (Brown) so I knew my role tonight was to try and shut her down as much as possible, and we knew if we could get that done then the game should be ours. I just tried to come out aggressive and to stay on the boards and we came out with a win."