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Minnesota-Nebraska Quotes
Courtesy: NU Media Relations
01/26/2014
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Nebraska Coach Tim Miles
On his team's second Big Ten win
"It feels a very it took a long time. Second? Is that all? I thought we played better than that, but at the same time we needed this. A good win over a very good team, and we're fortunate to come out with a win; you know, we kind of hung on. But that's what this team's 'M-O' has been and this is what this team has been ever since I've been at Nebraska. We just kind of get a big lead and hang on. I think we're going to change our motto, but it was a good win."
 
On his team's attitude after last week
"They were pretty ornery in practice. They were not, you know, the friendliest visitors after watching the Penn State tape. No disrespect to anybody, but I felt they thought they deserved the win (at Penn State) and just gave it away and I'm not so sure they're not correct on that. What's interesting is that we just came out, watched a little bit of Minnesota on film, practiced really hard and not that long. I was mad from film too so I started out with some smash-mouth, ball-handling stuff and we forgot to shoot. And here tonight we made our season-high threes so we may be done shooting for the year."
 
On Terran Petteway's performance tonight
"He's a machine, he really is. He is an excellent athlete. He can score in transition and make threes. He had one or two bad shots that he took and he made on of them. So, I can't get mad at him even though it was a bad shot. I'm not going to stop him and risk slowing him down a little bit."
 
On how bad Petteway wants this role as the go-to player
"Terran is obsessed with work. There's no doubt about it. I've had really hard workers throughout my career - 19 years - and I don't know that I've had a guy work harder at their game than Terran. And then be able to put it in to team form. How it translates into not just me doing my thing but team form. And that's really an important integration that not every player can pull off."
 
On the success the Huskers had with ball movement vs. Minnesota
"It was awesome. I thought the guys really moved the ball well. Shared the ball well. Anytime you have 19 assists on 25 field goals that's exceptional."
 
On Minnesota's Malik Smith
He's a terrific shooter. I told the guy's we're picking him up once he gets off the bus and they kind of chuckled. After he had a big first half, they weren't chuckling."
 
On the Deverell Biggs situation
"Deverell is not with us today for personal reasons. That's as far as I'm going to go with it today. I'll be more willing to discuss it at a later date when Deverell, and I have a chance to discuss it."
 
On the Huskers making a big run to start the second half
"We haven't come out strong after halftime. I thought our guys did a nice job of concentrating on the game plan and really had a hop in their step and did a nice job coming out in the second half. That was big to open up a 15-point lead and then it hung it around double-digits the whole time. Your’ not going to hold a Big Ten team down forever. They did a really nice job."
 
On his team thriving on momentum
"They are an emotional group, which is why we lack discipline. And it's okay to be emotional. I mean, I'm emotional. I'm an Irish Catholic. There are some things running through me that aren't normal. I expect those guys to have a blast, but we also need to focus and concentrate on the job at hand, so we need to balance those two out." 
 
On the importance of defensive high-ball pressure tonight
"The game plan on (DeAndre) Mathieu was effective. I just think he is so good that if you don't make him see two people you are really asking for trouble."
 
On the roller coaster ride of the last week
"EKG. Remember this is what we've been. It's the same deal. I'm really focused on - I'm proud you guys have bounced back, but it's been a long road here, so we need to take some time to decompress tomorrow and then we just need to find a way to beat Indiana on Thursday to get on a little run here. I keep telling them that when we get on a little run here and start playing as a team, the wins will start coming in spurts. That's the mentality that I want them to have."
 
On comparing today's win to the Ohio State victory
"I don't remember. We played good today. We really played good today."
 
On being more consistent
"I think it's holding them more accountable in practice and doing a better job in practice. But what becomes difficult - you know with basketball you end up game planning and playing three games in seven days or whatever it was here. You only have so much time. What are you going to work on? For instance, we need to work on getting back on defense and getting our defense set. But we also need to get ready for Minnesota and we have one practice. So, how much time do we spend? So, we spend 20 minutes on simple get back to defense and get set up. And then 40 minutes on Minnesota and their screen-and-roll stuff so we understand how to handle those actions. So, you just have to try and balance that out. When they are not doing it, you run them or whatever you might do - you have to hold them accountable. You have to continue to work on those things. Sometimes I feel that coaches in basketball become so game-plan oriented - and I've been guilty of this. It's always game plan, game plan and you forget about the basic principles of fundamental basketball and you lose sight of those. And we have to continue to practice those and hold the guys accountable. And now you know when it's done over and over and over again and you understand you can go out and do it in a pressure situation."
 
On putting the puzzle pieces together
"I thought tonight was our biggest step forward, but that's all it was one step.  This game counts as one win - not two or three. We are still probably 10th or 11th in the league. We need to put a string together to get back in the thick of things."
Sophomore Terran Petteway
On offensive adjustment without junior guard Deverell Biggs
“I just stayed within the offense. That’s what Coach Miles told me to do. He told me not to get too crazy and take bad shots. Just keep the ball moving. I think we had 19 assists. That was fun. I just really stayed within the offense and that’s where all my shots came from.”
 On the Huskers’ ball movement
“I think we finally bought in to the team attitude. Like our shirts say, “Us Always.” I think we are finally buying into that and it shows tonight with 19 assists.”
 On his career-high scoring performance
“When the commentator told me after the game that I had my career high, I was kind of surprised. Even the guys were saying it was a quiet 35. I didn’t even know.”
 On sophomore forward Walter Pitchford’s hot start giving the team momentum
“After the first few shots I knew it was going to be a great night. He made some clutch threes. That just tells you what kind of night we were going to have as a team. We were fifty percent from the 3-point line. That was outstanding.”
On preparing for Minnesota after Thursday’s loss
“We just had a good practice. Everybody was locked in even though we only had one day (to prepare). Everybody was locked in—the coaches and the players. So I knew we were going to come out and do what we did today.
On this past week
“It’s been kind of up and down. We let one go at Penn State. Everybody knows that. We were all kind of down about it. But then Coach (Miles) came in with a lot of energy and got everybody excited for practice and kind of moved past it. We got a great win against Minnesota.”
 On how far they’ve come the last two weeks
“Even as players we learn everyday. But the coaches do too. I mean they’re not perfect. Coach Miles is doing a great job putting us in place in the right positions in games. That’s what he did tonight. He’s still learning and we’re still learning together. We’re going to be alright.”
Sophomore Forward Walter Pitchford
On the team’s overall improvement
“Oh, you could see it tonight. Everybody played as a team. We worked the ball around. Like you said we had 19 assists. There was no selfish play.”
 On his overall game plan
“I want to win. Whatever I have to do is what I’m going to do.”
Minnesota Head Coach Richard Pitino
Opening Statement
"Certainly you have to give them (Nebraska) a lot of credit. Offensively, they were really hard to guard. They had a great game plan, we just did not guard the three which was evident. They made 11 threes, some of them were contested, others were not. They did a good job getting to the foul line, and when we had to make crucial stops we made them, but then we didn't get the defensive rebound. So we will certainly learn from it, and get better this week." 
 
On if this game was a let down after playing Wisconsin
"No not really, I thought we played hard, we didn't give up--I think they (NU) made some really big shots, and they did a great job preparing. I can't say enough about Coach Miles, he took over a tough situation, but he is building it the right way. I have no doubt, they will continue to improve. When you look at the fact that one of their better players didn't even play, why, I don't know, but he stuck to his principles and they got the win. I know he is going to be happy with them." 
 
On Terran Petteway 
"We really liked him, I think he is a good player. Ben Johnson told me he is probably the hardest working kid he has coached. So that definitely says a lot about him, he definitely deserves success. He made some big time plays and some big time shots. Guys that work that hard deserve to get better, he deserves success." 
 
On Malik Smith's play, if the team started to stand around and watch him play
"I don't think offense was the problem, we shot 49 percent, 52 in the second half. Certainly we turned the ball over too much. I don't think the offense was as much as the issue as when we needed to get stops we didn't do it. You have to give them credit, it was a good offensive game plan." 
 
On Nebraska's game plan
"I don't think they did a whole to of things differently offensively, they just made shots. Some big-time shots. We were pretty prepared for that, but that is a team that averages I think six threes a game, and they made 11. They made some tough ones--at the end of the clock-they made some couple back-breaking type threes. Give our guys  credit, because they could have wilted. they didn't. We know who we are, we just have to get better." 
On what changed in the final minutes
"Yeah I think we got stops and got on the break. I think we are tough to guard when we get out on the break. When you don't get stops you can't run. I think we just got stops and loose balls and made some big shots. I am proud of them, because they could have wilted. They didn't." 
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