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January 3, 2019

Romeo Langford

Juwan Morgan

Bloomington, Indiana

Indiana - 73, Illinois - 65

Q. What in your mind changed from maybe the way you started and the way you finished?
JUWAN MORGAN: This whole time preparing for them we just knew it was going to be I guess a weird game just because of how frantic they play and how great of a pace they play at, and I think it just took some time to get used to, and I don't think we ever went away, even when they went on a run. I think they were up 10. I don't think we ever just sat back and let them keep hitting us. We delivered a blow to them, too.

I think everybody really stepped up in their respective roles as far as defensively and getting out in transition.

Q. You really got your driving game going tonight. Why did you feel that was really productive and did you have an idea that would be a key thing going into this game?
ROMEO LANGFORD: Yeah, we knew going into the game they are a real aggressive team, so they like to play passing lane, so that's going to leave open driving lanes for me whether -- to score or kick in. When we had that little slump scoring on the offensive end, I felt like we weren't driving. So when I got back in the game, Coach told me I needed to get more aggressive to get us going, and that's just what I did.

Q. It might just be circumstantial, but it turned out you scored the first ten points of the second half. Was there anything particularly that you were mindful of coming out of halftime in that regard?
ROMEO LANGFORD: I just wanted to pick up where I left off in the first half, whether that was attacking the rim and getting other people the ball and that's what I did to get us going in the second half.

Q. Juwan, is there any juice or benefit from the shot clock violations that you guys get?
JUWAN MORGAN: Yeah, I think it's just contagious throughout the whole team. Whenever you get a good stop, it just translates to the offensive end. I think as we did that, Justin had some great plays on the ball. Just people trying to drive him and he's blocking (his) own ball, a jumpshot, that's pretty hard to do. You know, just went through the whole team and I think we went down the offensive end and made plays.

Q. Romeo, it looks like you're starting to get a little more comfortable. Do you feel like this was your best game so far, and are you starting to feel a little more comfortable at this level with the speed of the game and everything?
ROMEO LANGFORD: Yeah, I felt like this was my best game so far, all around, maybe on the defensive end, too. I am getting a lot more comfortable and now that Rob is out for a while with his little injury he has, that caused for me to have the ball more in my hand and I'm comfortable with doing that.

Q. At halftime, you had nine points and you finished the game with 28. What did you see out how the defense was guarding you? Did you see thins differently to want to attack and be more aggressive?
ROMEO LANGFORD: I just started seeing more driving opportunities and that's what I'm best at right now doing. With the way they played, like I said earlier, they like to play passing lanes, which leads for wide-open driving lanes for me to either score or pass to other teammates.

Q. You guys have talked about wanting to establish a defensive identity, and it seems like a lot of the time when they are having these slow starts, it's been defense that sparked you guys. I guess where does that spark come from specifically on defense, and how do you make that more of a habit earlier in the game?
JUWAN MORGAN: It just start from within, when the players -- regardless if you're making shots or not, you can't let your defense go to waste, and I think even though we really weren't shooting that well to begin with, we were making them have to work for every shot and I think that wore down on them a little bit, because I knew we were just going to start making shots eventually; and let Romeo get to the rim, making a lot of his foul shots. That opened a lot of things and just Al, Tay and Zach everybody driving and kicking I think that really opened up driving lanes for us to score.

Q. Maybe both you can talk about the fact that you're 3-1 in the Big Ten and you share the Big Ten lead and now you have a challenging game at Michigan. If you can talk about that.
JUWAN MORGAN: Yeah, it will be definitely a difficult game, just it's not easy going to Ann Arbor. I don't think I've won against Michigan since my freshman year with Yogi and that was the 28-0 run. I know they still remember that.

Just going in there, it will be a dogfight for sure, and just like today we had to anchor down on the defensive end and we know Michigan is a great defensive team, so we have to really run our stuff and be crisp on that end.

Q. Wanted to get your thoughts on Juwan and what impresses you the most when you're out there on the court with him about his game, either end of the floor.
ROMEO LANGFORD: What impresses me the most is his ability to guard bigger defenders. I know we're not the biggest team and we go against big guys every night just being in the Big Ten and his ability to guard guys taller than him, which also gives him an advantage on the offensive end to attack.

And another thing that impresses me is his ability to pass the ball out of the post. Guys his size and guys at his position really don't pass as well as him, so that's a really good talent he has.

Q. With about six to go, you left. Did you bump knees with the other guy and what's your status now?
JUWAN MORGAN: I'm fine. We just bumped knees and it was like a little stinger but I'm fine.

Q. If both you can answer this, first half, you came out sluggish or slow but the second half you guys were more aggressive. What did Coach say to you in the locker room, and what led to your aggressiveness coming the second half?
JUWAN MORGAN: He just said that the team that was playing defense for the last eight to ten minutes of the first half is the team that had to come out and set the tone from the defensive end as soon as the second half started, and I think we did that as a group; and our defense always leads to our offense and I think we got good looks on that end.

Q. Devonte didn't have a big scoring game tonight. But Frazier hit three late, but up until the end, Devonte did a nice job on him defensively. Could you comment on that a little bit?
ROMEO LANGFORD: With Rob being out, Devonte was the next man up to be the starting point guard, and with that he had a big task of guarding Frazier on the end. I felt like individually and as a team, we did, and he did a really good job of containing him the first half.

We know we let him loose a little bit towards the end of the game, but overall I feel like we did a really good job.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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