Head Coach Tim Miles
On the team being more aggressive
“I think as we’ve gone on and tried to define this team and what we do well, getting to the rim is a thing that’s important to us. We don’t have a whole bunch of three-point shooters out there that are going to just go out there and let you make your 10 threes a game. We’re gonna make five or six, so we have to get to the foul line. We have to shoot high percentage shots, so we have to be at the rim. First half, we were 10 or 12 at the rim. Those are important shots that you get there. That was important. You look at the points at the paint and in the second half they killed us, but in the first half, it was really important for us to establish ourselves. We needed that. I thought the kids did a great job.”
On the difference in Shavon Shields
“He was so determined. His legs were fresher, too. He had been beat up. He wouldn’t tell you that and we wouldn’t tell you that, but he was trying to do the right thing for the team. You could just see he looked fresher physically. But his determination, I mean, nobody was going to stop him. It was like that guy from last year that we knew was going to take the next step, that was Shavon taking the next step. We wouldn’t have won this game without him.”
On if he was concerned about the season unraveling
“I’ve been 0-16. I’ve lost a lot worse than this. I don’t worry about these guys unraveling. I don’t worry about this team unraveling. This is a tough league. This is a difficult thing we’re involved in. You look at the next opponent, Penn State, and there are three or four where they had won and they just found a way to lose, really. I don’t think, from top to bottom, it really matters. We just have to continue to get better, having an attitude of “be a better player, be a better teammate” every day. If we can stick with that process, I think we’ll be okay.”
“We started the second half with 7 out of 9 for turnovers and five in a row, I think. It was clearly the same thing that Shavon had, I think. They were like, “Listen, we’re Ohio State and we’re going to exert our will”. Their will is defensive pressure. They’re not a very big team. They’re not a team that’s gonna kill you on the glass. But they will exert their will on you defensively and disrupt you. I decided to play my normal lineup until about 6 or 7 minutes in. Then we decided to match up small just because they hadn’t got away from us. I thought we could hurt them some inside. I think we did for a few possessions out of C game. But when you look at things, that’s Ohio State. They have a tremendous amount of pride. It wasn’t so long ago that they were No. 3 in the country. They will bounce back. They have an unbelievable history. We’re just lucky to get the win tonight.”
On what got the team back in action
“We played as a team, played for each other. We did a really good job moving the ball and getting to the rim. We played for a full 40 minutes besides two lapses. That was the main thing. We played as a team and put a full 40 minutes together, finally.”
On if there was any fear that Ohio State might pull away
“Nope. What we’ve been working on all week was attitude and, like coach said, how can I be a better player, how can I be a better teammate. We came together and found a way to win the game.”
Ohio State Head Coach, Thad Motta
On why the team ultimately lost
"I thought our defense in the last four minutes of the first half, and the start of the second half was really-really good. We were active (defensively) we were deflecting passes and we were not giving up layups. Then offensively, I thought we had a pretty decent flow there to start the second half. For whatever reason, we had some shots at the rim--as I told the guys, we have to be able to finish through contact. Get some and ones and those types of things."
On if Nebraska's 26 points in the paint in the first half affected the game/team
"Yeah probably, they (Nebraska) did a good job putting their heads down and driving the basketball. Quite honestly they finished the ball well too, couple step-backs and floaters. It was kind of like going 'that type of night'. We opened up (the game) with a broken play right off the jump and don't finish at the rim. Those are the ones, when we get the ball to the rim like the other day, they just didn't go in for us."
On what is different from the start of the season to now (referring to losing four straight games)
"How much time do we have? (laughs) No I think you have to respect this league. Knowing that it is hard, it is hard. We had a shot four games ago at the buzzer and at the rim to win in regulation. We had a nine point lead the next game in the second half, get beat. You come back, you take the lead tonight--we need consistency. We play ourselves back into it after something doesn't go well. I think the thing i see the most is we are not able to answer the call and say 'ok they scored' we lost Gallegos on a trail, not a big deal. We have to go back down (On defense) and make the next play. We are clinging on the mistakes, and you have to play forward with it."
On Biggs steal against Aaron Craft, then finishing the layup
"It was big, LaQuinton (Ross) was open on the pop. We got to deliver the pass."
On the PBA Arena
"Great crowd. Phenomenal crowd. It was an electric environment definitely. We see that wherever we go, and without a doubt this is one of the best."