Thursday, November 23, 2017

Kevin Willard quote book: Rhode Island

On Khadeen Carrington's attempt to win the game in the final seconds and not calling a timeout:
"Yeah, sometimes when a team hits a shot that goes up one with that much time left, and five seconds is a lot, sometimes when you have a player that you trust in Khadeen, you let him go try to make a play. The kid Russell made a good play getting his hand on the ball and knocking it loose, but sometimes you've got to let your senior guard go try to make a play towards the end of the game."

On defending Jared Terrell:
"He just played phenomenal. He made a really tough shot over three guys. He played phenomenal, played like -- under poise all game, plays 38 minutes and he didn't look like he played 20 minutes, so he just played phenomenal. We actually switched into a zone to try to -- if they did run a pick-and-roll -- that both our guards...but they rejected it, and he made a really tough runner."

On whether Rhode Island's smaller lineup was a concern:
"The funny thing, watching them against Holy Cross, obviously E.C. Matthews is a phenomenal guard, but it just kind of -- Terrell is a really tough matchup and he just becomes more of a focus point, and when you throw (Stanford) Robinson in there, he's only about 6-foot-3, it was, but I thought we did a good job on the offensive end at times getting the ball inside. We just did a little bit too much one-on-one tonight."

On adjustments with Myles Powell in the second half:
"They didn't leave him. He actually had two good looks that -- again, he's unselfish -- he passed up. He made a really nice, unselfish play to kick it to Khadeen, and we have to do a better job of trying to find him a little bit and understand that he's such a weapon on the floor."

On this game helping Seton Hall later in the season:
"We knew going in this stretch going forward, the next six games, every game's going to be brutal. Danny and his staff did a great job, and I love the kid -- I love the way his kids play. They play really tough and really hard-nosed."

On Seton Hall's slow starts:
"I don't know -- it's something that I'm now going to take a look at, because I didn't mind the starts we were getting off to, but defensively, we've got to get off to better starts. I'm going to have to try to mix and match a little just to get us off to a better start defensively. It's really not offensively, it's kind of defensively that we're just coming out a little flat."

On his message to the team after the game and what he may have told them:
"We lost that game in the first half. I don't think we've ever given up 54 points as a team in a half. If we come out good defensive intensity and it's 45-45 at half, you're giving yourself a much better chance to win the game. You're down nine and giving up 54. If we had played with the same defensive intensity (in the first half) and given up 21 in the second, I'd like our chances better."

On what he as a coach could do after giving up 61 percent from the floor: (Rhode Island shot 17-of-28 in the first half)
"We gave up three threes just -- again, for us, it's a little bit more of a defensive mentality, a little bit more of an intensity. We were really flat defensively, for some reason, in the first half. I just -- I can't figure it out. Again, we haven't given up -- we've never given up 60 percent, we've never given up 45 -- I can't remember the last time we gave up more than 40 in a half, to be honest with you. For us, I didn't like our defensive intensity whatsoever."

On Seton Hall's morale after the game:
"They'll bounce back. We've lost games before. You're going to lose games, and we've got to get ready and bounce back tomorrow."

On offensive rebounds and keeping plays alive:
"I actually didn't think we had as many as we should have. We average 16 a game, so we were two below our average. That's kind of what we do. We play that way."

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