Feb. 9, 2013
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Michigan Head Coach John Beilein
On whether they should have fouled at the end of regulation:
“We were trying to foul, that was the instruction coming out. We had two fouls to give, go foul. (Ben Brust) turned the corner on Caris (LeVert) and he couldn't get it done in time."
On whether the defense on Ben Brust was good enough in overtime:
“No, it was not. The scouting report on him is make him drive the ball to the basket. We have some guys in there in these situations for the first time. We put Caris in for defense and he's a very good defender, he just happened to make a mistake. Maybe (Brust) takes a dribble back and hits a step-back shot, but he was not a guy you want to give that type of room to."
On if the team is fighting fatigue:
“I think (we are) during this stretch right now, where we're three out of four on the road, and it came after the five games in 13 days, I've mentioned it over and over again. Student-athletes today have a very difficult schedule. They just played Wednesday night double overtime; they've got to be fatigued too. We at least finally got a day off after two weeks."
On if one loss means that much when fighting for the Big Ten title:
"If you look at it, somebody is going to come along here and someone somewhere is going to have a loss to some team on the road, but the teams that are holding their court here, now Michigan State got a big win here. We got a big win up in Minnesota. Anybody can sweep through this, obviously, and win the ones they are supposed to and then hold the court at home. But holding the court at home is no joke either, as Wisconsin found today and as we found out the other day. Two overtime games in a row, both last-second plays. It's a great way for all of us to spend a Saturday, including me. I think that's what it's going to come down to, maybe somebody is just going to be incredible here and sweep and win the rest of these road games, but it's probably going to come down to a lot of breaks to who is the champion. We saw it at Illinois, and we saw it today."
On his game-tying shot to send the game to overtime:
“We talked in the timeout about the positions everyone was going to be in. Mike (Bruesewitz) was going over his check downs. I went to the ball, got it, turned and knew we had to get it off, so I wanted to at least give it a chance. It looked pretty good and it went down…We practice half-courters at shoot arounds. I’ve hit two of them. The guards are beating the bigs. I think they’ve won one of them this year. (I) got the ball off, I thought it was contested--maybe a foul, but he didn’t--so I just tried to get it off and it went down.”
On Ben Brust’s recent offensive aggressiveness:
“Maybe a little bit more. I still just try to take what the defense gives me, play to myself and to the team. Just looking for different cuts and open up different guys too. Just trying to help the team in any way I can.”
On if that’s the best shot he’s hit in his career:
“That one by far. By a longshot, actually. Then, being able to win the game in overtime makes it that much sweeter. (I’m) just happy to get a good team win. There are a lot of games we still have to play in season and we’re right in the hunt still.”
On the scene after:
“People were putting hats on me. I was like, ‘Where did this come from?’ Pretty cool hat, too. It was awesome. Something I’ll remember forever and I’m sure a lot of people will.”
On the inbound pass, play that led to the game-tying shot to send the game to overtime:=
“We do situations in practice. That was not the first time I’ve made that pass. I’ve done that in practice before. It does a good job of preparing us. I kind of knew where we were going with the ball. Trae was coming to me and clapping his hands like he wanted the ball, but I felt like he was gonna be deep. Ben was curling a little bit more towards halfcourt. He broke open, came to the ball and knocked it down. It was awesome.”
On the important of the energy and emotion of a game in his game:
“That’s just something I’ve always brought. I love playing basketball. I feel pretty fortunate that I get to do it a pretty high level. I said thank you to all the fans afterwards, because that was awesome. I’ve been a part of some pretty big games here--I think all of us have--it’s still kind of mind boggling that we get this many people to come watch us play a game that we love to play. It’s really fortunate and that’s something that I try to bring to our team too. I try to bring a spark and bring energy. Get some guys going, get the crowd going. If I can get the crowd off their hands a little bit, it’s a lot more fun to play in a loud arena than it is crickets.”
On the scene after Ben Brust hit the game-tying shot to send the game to overtime:
“I saw Ben (Brust) break, I kind of looked at it and was like, ‘That’s got a chance…Hey! Let’s go!’ Then I looked over and saw that Bo Ryan actually put his arms up. He showed some emotion, which is odd. I’ve never really seen him do that. Every once in a while he’ll bring it out and that’s when you know something big happened. When he shows a little emotion, you know you’ve done something pretty special.”
On his and-1 dunk to tie the game late:
“Trae (Jackson) threw it to me. Obviously, I took a few 3’s before that, so I knew that--I think it was McGary closing out on me--he was going to come hard and probably expected me to shoot it. I saw and opening, attacked the rim and was just able to finish the play.”
On if he thinks Ben Brust has become more of a go-to guy for the team:
“Yea, I think he’s playing with confidence right now. He’s played aggressive and that’s what we need out of him, to give us a little spark in the scoring department. That’s what he excels at and that’s what he can bring to this team. He’s been doing a pretty good job of that these last few games.”
On if the team is a real contender in the Big Ten conference:
“Yea, I think we’re up toward the top of the standings right now. Obviously, there’s a lot of basketball left to play, but I think we’ve proven that we can beat anyone at anytime. When we play our game--I don’t know if this was a perfect game by any means--we do enough things to find a way to win. We’ve got a bunch of fighters in this locker room and guys that aren’t going to give up and give 100 percent until the final horn. We did that against Iowa and then we did that again today, just doing anything possible to find a way to win.”
On where this win and experience compared to previous moments, upsets:
“It ranks right up there. If I had to rank them one, two, three, I don’t know how I’d do it. I don’t really put any of those (other ones) on top of this one right now, obviously. We’re down by three with two seconds left and for Ben (Brust) to hit that shot was a pretty special play. Like Ben said, it’s probably something we’re never going to forget…An instant classic game."