Postgame Quotes: Wisconsin vs. Southeastern Louisiana


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Nov. 11, 2012

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Postgame Quotes
Wisconsin vs. Southeastern Louisiana
Nov. 11, 2012
Kohl Center - Madison, Wis.

Wisconsin head coach Bo Ryan

On whether he was surprised Mike Bruesewitz was this effective so soon:
“You know, Mike hasn’t forgotten anything, the nice part is when you’re injured you can still be around practice, still be around the film work. He was in such good shape that Friday and Saturday his practices went fine, he had limited repetitions. Like today he wasn’t going to play 38 minutes, but it’s Mike, and just to see a guy like that back with that kind of experience, it was so obvious in practice on Friday and Saturday what he gives us and to have that back, we’re very thankful.”

On the minutes Bruesewitz played today and whether it’s going to be a gradual buildup in terms of playing time: 
“Whatever Henry (Perez-Guerra) tells me, I don’t know how many he’ll play Wednesday. I always have to wait to see the medical report. Every day we get a report from the trainer and we have to go with that. We don’t have any input into the trainer report, you can imagine what my input would be—put a little mud on it.”

On the Badgers’ 19 offensive rebounds on 29 SLU missed shots:
“It’s not like last year we said, ‘look guys, don’t go to the glass.’ You take advantage of opportunities, and we had opportunities today. It wasn’t so much initial rebounds at times, but if you look at those 19, I think 10 of them were somebody got a hand on it first, not controlled and then we got control. So that’s being active but it’s also our size and we’re going to play teams that are bigger.”

On what he thought about the defense on the perimeter and against Brandon Fortenberry:
“We knew (Brandon) Fortenberry could score. I thought we did a pretty good job of at times handing it off to the next guy, forcing him to squeeze into areas on the floor where he was uncomfortable. Our positioning wasn’t too bad, we got beat on a couple of drives where the help didn’t get there, but I thought we did a pretty good job and that’s why (Zak) Showalter went in there. He wasn’t sure about redshirting or not this year he just said, ‘hey coach whatever you want.’ Right now he’s the fourth-best guard on the defensive end and that’s probably where we could need the help. So that’s the position we’re in with the guards, but Trey (Traevon Jackson), Ben (Brust), George (Marshall) they did ok, but we’re obviously going to have to be better against the next opponent.”

On what Ben Brust brought in terms of rebounding:
“Hustle, good hard cuts, putting his face on the ball in traffic. You look at his size and you look at where he was in so many positions for rebounds. And he’s got a big heart, he’s a tough sucker, that’s why he’s out there and getting the minutes he’s getting. Oh yeah, and he can make some shots now and then too.”

On Jared Berggren’s performance:
“It’s always hard to tell against smaller teams, but smaller teams sometimes have given us a run, like when we’ve played against some big guys. I thought he did some really good things to keep the post presence, and getting to the free throw line was key. Ryan (Evans) got to the free throw line too, but I have no idea what he was thinking about on the free throws because he’s a much better free-throw shooter than that. We did get to the line, we did touch the post, with some teams you’ll be able to touch the post more than others, but Jared did a pretty good job of having a post presence.”

On the bench’s performance with Traevon Jackson and Sam Dekker contributing:
“We’ll take what they give us on the defensive end, rebounding, points, screens. The whole process matters to us. When we break the film down, I’m sure there will be some areas where they can improve, imagine that. With shot selection, Sam’s learning what I like, and what I think is a good shot, the same way everyone else has had to, it’s no different. God, he got me today though. I do the thing at halftime where I say, ‘well I don’t know what they did out there in the first half, whatever they got, they got some gifts. Sam what was the score at halftime?’ Somebody got to him, he said, ‘0-0.’ And I can catch a lot of guys. I’m known for that. You ask anybody that’s ever played for me, I usually get someone the first game. Sam said, ‘0-0,’ I don’t know if it’s because his Dad’s a coach, but he passed the first test.”

Southeastern Louisiana head coach Jim Yarbrough

Opening Comments:
"We came in here knowing it was a tremendous challenge here at Wisconsin. A great program -- well established. Coach [Bo] Ryan does a great job so it's an honor to be here on opening day. I think sometimes you would like to have a little bit different opponent to ease into a season and kind of get your feet under you. I think we have a good ball club in there somewhere that just got overwhelmed by a tremendous performance by Wisconsin. They were just terrific in every way. At one point weeks and months ago, if you told us we'd have 47 points, we probably would have been ecstatic in some ways, thinking well maybe the game could be 58-47--a low-scoring affair, grinding it out. But if this is any kind of example, I don't think they're going to have to worry about low-scoring affairs around here this year. Their defense will be fine and their rebounding--there's just no replacing seven-footers. So great performance by them today. And I've been in a few blow-outs before. As a low-major program sometimes you get on the road. We've had a few wins over the years--an upset here or there. But sometimes a game gets away from you and you feel terrible. I actually felt like our guys really had a great approach and real freshness about them. But we just ran into a very good opponent today. There's no softness or anything like that. It's just about, can we learn from this and get better in the next couple games as they come down the pipe."

On the play of Brandon Fortenberry tonight:
"Well today he didn't perform particularly well, but it's great to have him back. He's a fifth-year senior. He's very familiar with everything that we do and he's a great talent too. He just didn't get loose today and give him a few chances to score. I thought he missed a couple of in-close shots, but he'll bounce back. He'll be fine. A lot of years you're able to start off and play some sort of low-major, mid-major program. We went on the road last year at Western Kentucky and played in a pretty good game. We played at Arkansas last year--our first game without him and lost by eight on the road. But this game I hope was just an aberration for us. He'll be a very good player for us. He will bounce back and had some very good nights, but some of the newcomers blending in with him are going to be the big question."

On if he expected Mike Bruesewitz to play today:
"No, I did not. I was extremely disappointed to see him out there today. They have enough weapons without him. But he's so rugged and tough and I was very impressed with how motivated their bench was. Every kid who came in for them was really motivated to play hard, and that's a great credit to Coach Ryan. That's the sort of thing you try to establish in your own program. You just try to get your kids to play with that kind of motivation. He was terrific. And I think I kind of messed this up a little bit in the beginning. I was trying to not let [Wisconsin] get that swing and inside-out action. I was trying to disguise our man-to-man action with a little zone action and after eight minutes of evaluating, I said, we're a pretty good man-to-man team, let's just play man-to-man. But the damage was done. And at least I learned that about my team today. And we'll use our match-up zone and so on, but we're a better man-to-man team right now with good rotations and stuff. Hopefully we won't play as many seven-footers every night."

On how the Badgers stopped Fortenberry today:
"They made the court really small. You know every time he came off a set of screens, there was someone stunting out and taking away his cut--at least making the area small. Like I said, I was a little surprised to see the stat sheet. It didn't feel like he was a 1-for-8 or whatever he was. I thought he was a little more effective than that. But they wouldn't let him get very many open looks from three, which was smart on their part. He's a pretty good shooter. And everywhere he went, there just wasn't much room for him to go. And typically that's how they play. They make you shoot over the top and if you can make some shots, great. If not, it's a long night."

Wisconsin Players

Senior Mike Bruesewitz

On if he knew he was going to be able to play today and how he feels about being back on the court:
“I was ready to go the day after surgery, so I was hoping to get back as soon as I could. I wanted to join these guys as quickly as possible. I had to take a few days off, and watch these guys play the exhibition games and the red and white game. That’s hard, I am not used to that, but I feel good now. I’m trying to get my wind back and everything, legs underneath me a little bit, and hopefully I can get back in the rotation, a little more minutes. It was limited today, just to see how I felt and I feel pretty good right now.”

On if he has more of appreciation for being on the court after his injury:
“Definitely. When you see your bone and everything like that happens, all of a sudden, a lot of stuff runs through your head. After taking a month off, well not really taking a month off, I was doing stuff with the team and rehabbing, but it was kind of a month off of basketball, I’m definitely recharged and refocused. I was really excited to come in to this season before the injury. Now, it’s about 10 times more, if you can say that. I was really excited that I got cleared to play today. I was all smiles last night, this morning and all through pregame, so I am just really excited to be back. That is the best way to describe it, I don’t know what else to say.”

Junior Ben Brust

On if getting a lot of offensive rebounds in today’s game is a sign of things to come, or if it was because of Wisconsin’s size advantage:
“I don’t know, we’ll have to see. I just kind of saw the ball and went after it. I made sure we had gotten back and if there was, I’d go after it. I was just trying to hit the glass hard.”

On defending the guards, especially with Josh Gasser being out for the season:
“Obviously Josh was all-defensive team last year, so collectively in the guard spot, me, George and Traevon, we’re going to have to do a good job at working together and making sure we stop penetration and do our best to get what we can without Josh. So we’re just going to step up.”

On defending Southeastern Louisiana’s guard Brandon Fortenberry:
“You just try and make them take tough shots. You make sure he doesn’t get any space because we saw these guys in film and they can put up big numbers. We just played good team defense and made them take tough shots.”

Senior Jared Berggren

On how he played today:
“I feel like I played alright. There was a couple in the first half where I didn’t finish, where I would have liked to finish a little stronger on the basket. I had a few roll offs that I probably should have got to go down. There is always room for improvement, but I think overall we did a pretty good job playing our game, and we’re just trying to get better every time we step on the court.”

On how it is to play with Mike Bruesewitz and what he thinks Bruesewitz can bring this season:
“The same thing he has been giving us for the last few years now. You guys have all seen it, what he is capable of. The energy and intensity he brings, the toughness. He does all of the little things, getting on the glass, getting rebounds. He’ll knock down open shots. He makes plays for himself and other people. That’s what we love about him and he’s a key piece to our team, so we are happy he is back now. I think he is ready for a couple more minutes now. He’s looking good.”

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