Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Kevin Ollie on Dean Smith, Jerry Tarkanian; Ollie, Ryan Boatright, Rodney Purvis on Tulsa

Some video and quotes after UConn's practice today, in advance of Thursday night's key clash with Tulsa at the XL Center:


“You don’t get a better chance than this. To have Tulsa, then come and play SMU -- great teams on the plate, No. 1, No. 2 in our league, and especially in the RPI. To get a good win like this would be great. Both teams are in the Top 50 RPI ... It’s a great opportunity for us. Hopefully, we take advantage of it.”

(on Rodney Purvis vs. Tulane)

“He missed a couple of layups in transition, but I love how he responded and came back and made some great plays. Kinda went on his own 7-0 run to salt the game of way. Him being aggressive, taking it to the rack like that, is exactly what we want to see.”

(on Purvis's defensive ability)

“When he gets down in his stance, it’s hard for people to get by him. One-on-one defense, when he really puts his mind to it, he’s a terrific, terrific defender.”

(on Jerry Tarkanian, Dean Smith)

“I knew Jerry Tarkanian a little bit more than Dean. I didn’t ever really get a chance to talk to Dean Smith. The latter part of his career, I was still in the NBA. I had a chance to get recruited by ... UNLV, had a chance to talk to Tark. It’s unfortunate. I love those guys to death. They’ve done a lot for our profession and really allowed us to do what we do now. They paved a great way for us. And they always cared about their team and their student-athletes. It’s two guys we’re really gonna miss in the game, and my heart goes out to their families.”

(on what Huskies must do better this time vs. Tulsa)

“We’ve got to keep them off the free throw line, gotta cut down our turnovers, got to be more efficient on the offensive end. I could keep going down the list. We can’t have live turnovers, and we’ve got to do a better job boxing them out. They had 17 offensive rebounds. That’s the combination for a loss, with stats like that. Hopefully, we’re a better team, and we can correct some of those things that are just effort plays -- boxing out, rebounds, 50-50 balls, eliminating the turnovers. Those are the small things we’ve got to do for us to win against good competition.”

(on if Sam Cassell, Jr. has shown any progress lately. Cassell is still on crutches)

“Not really. We have an MRI next week, but it’s still kind of swelling up. He is working on a bike a little bit more, so he is moving around a little bit. Still no significant process. We’ll see the MRI results next week. Hopefully, we see that stress fracture calming down a little bit.”

“Hopefully, we can. Hopefully, we’ll be playing deep in to March and April. Then, I know it’ll be a possibility to come back. But it’s hard to say now, with eight games left on the schedule. I know he’s not gonna be back in a week or two.”


“It’s been really, really, really tough for me. I’m one of the guys who really gets down on myself when I’m not doing so well. He stays in my ear all the time. The main thing is staying focused, through the highs and the lows.”

(on the Jan. 13 loss at Tulsa)

“We didn’t show much toughness down there. We didn’t hit them at all. We got off to a terrible start. The main thing with Tulsa, we’re coming out with a lot of energy. I think they’re one of the best transition teams in the country. They play four guards, as well, so it’s gonna be a really good game. The main thing for us is getting back in transition and playing with a lot of energy and passion.”

“Coach Ollie stays on me a lot, about having a quick memory, getting things out really quick, even if I mess up. Just forget about it, ‘cuz it’s behind. He always says the good ones bounce back after bad things. I was just happy I was able to show a little toughness, because that was a tough period. Four minutes, and I missed two easy layups, and I think we were down. I just stayed positive, my teammates continued to encourage me, and I was able to go out there and help my team get a win.”


“It’s the last home stretch, we’ve got to win all our games. We’ve got a huge two-game stretch right here coming up. We want to be in that tournament, we’ve got to take care of these wins.”

“Everything. We played a horrible game up there. We played sluggish, took bad shots, didn’t make shots, didn’t play defense, they beat us in transition ... they beat us down real well. It’s got to be a whole different game.”

“I didn’t come back to play in the NIT. I know what it takes to be where we were at last year. I know what it takes to get into the tournament, with the predicament we’re in right now. I’m just trying to express to these

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

If yo wish to be creative, unlike preechermanz; interview a hoop guru outside UCONN sphere of influence to get bonafide comments. Yo stick the mic in front of the same guys; voila , gets same silly commentary. Maybe ask an nba scout to comment on UCONN or get a prospective student athlete's view of courant UCONN boyz team. The latter would be very on point with the myriad of player procurement failures. Ask Stone his views on currant performance. If he sez no comment, yo no what that meens. The truth is the acid test in journalism. Keep interviewing in-house dudes to waste yo time. Time that could be better spent writing yo next book. You know all these inhouse dudes will just continue to attempt to cover their keesters with inane banter.

February 12, 2015 at 2:58 AM 

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