Ryan Boatright: "We've got to win four straight"
(on the "formula" to making a long postseason run)
(on Amida Brimah winning AAC defensive player of the year award)
"Sometimes we tell Amida he needs to rebound a little more, because he tries to block every shot. I think the Temple game, he gave up a couple of offensive rebounds because he got himself out of position. Other than that, he’s a monster back there. We don’t want him to try to block and go help everybody. That means we’re not playing good defense.”
“To have the big fella back there, not even blocking every shot but deterring every shot ... we just need him to rebound a little bit more. I told him one rebound in 28 minutes is unacceptable. To be the defensive player of the year, you’ve got to finish possessions with rebounds.”
(on whether Brimah needs to be more assertive on offense, or if his teammates need to look for him more)
“A little bit of both. He’s got to go in there and post up hard, make himself available, create his shots. All my coaches used to always tell me, when the shot goes up, that’s a pass to you. You’ve got to go get a rebound, you’ve got to involve yourself in the game. That’s running up and down the court. We had plenty of fast-break opportunities.”
(on playing in front of the home crowd)
“It’s an added shot in the arm. You get down, or you get up, you hear the crowd going, it gives you a boost of energy. But we’re not gonna say we’re gonna win the AAC tournament because we’re in front of our home crowd. We saw in Memphis, the quarterfinals last year, we beat them in front of about 17,000 people. So, we’ve been on the other end of that.”
Ollie noted that Sam Cassell, Jr. won't be available Thursday night.
(on the need for other guys to step up)
“We’ve got two players, Daniel and Rodney, that can do that, easy. We’re playing 4-on-3 sometimes. It should be easy to get the basket. I told them, in order for us to go far, you’re gonna have to do that. They took it positively, and these last few days, they’ve been working extremely hard and having the right attitude.”
(on what it would mean to win the AAC tourney)
"A lot. It’s my last year. It could possibly be my last game every time we step out there on the floor. It means a lot and the team obviously because we want to make the tournament. In order to do that, we’ve got to win four straight."
(on memories of watching UConn's five-game run to Big East tourney title in 2011)
It’s similar. I think they had five games, that’s even tougher, man. It’s kind of similar but we’ve just got to dig down deep and have a lot of pride. It’s going be tiring. There’s going to be some ups and downs, but we’ve got to stay together and keep fighting."
(on talking to his teammates after calling them out a bit after Saturday's loss)
"We had a real long film session and we watched every clip, one by one. Then we watched the last five minutes and the first five minutes… I just told them they’re even going to come out showing that they’re going to take me out of the game and we’re going to figure it out from there. Or they’re going to go out and try to play us straight up and once I get to going off they’re eventually going to try to take me out of the game.
"I told them in order for us to go far, you’re going to have to do that. They took it positively. These last few days they’ve been working extremely hard and have the right attitude."
(playing at the XL Center)
(on winning defensive player of the year, other stuff)