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November 20, 2022

Tamar Bates

Miller Kupp

Indianapolis, Indiana, USA

Postgame Media Conference

Indiana Hoosiers 86, Miami Redhawks 56

Q. I guess for either of you, you know, Jalen had a kind of rough start to the game. Missed his first couple of shots. Kind of got into a rhythm. Being older guys on the team, how do you see him handling that being a younger guy kind of getting out of that funk?

MILLER KUPP: I mean, you know, he puts the work in. It's one of those things where it may not -- we've all been through it as players, but, you know, you put the work in, and sometimes it doesn't show right when you want it to.

It's like marinating chicken. You know, you need to let it sit maybe six, eight hours in the frig maybe and then put it on the grill. It tastes a lot better like that.

It's going to come, and the dude works his butt off, so I'm not worried about that.

Q. Miller, two games in three days. How do you guys feel like you handled that? That's something that doesn't come up too often, but it came up today. How do you feel like you handled the short turnaround?

MILLER KUPP: Well, it's good because the preparation is huge in terms of short turnaround is -- you see it in the NCAA Tournament and the Big Ten Tournament, so it's good to have it now kind of early in the season even for the young guys to experience that and be -- the importance of locking in and washing. You know, having a go ahead game like against Xavier and then coming back, learning from it, moving on, and then coming to a new game is big.

Q. For either of you. As players that sometimes look to capitalize off of it, how much have you seen Trayce improve the last couple of years? And whether it's trapping, extra attention, whatever, just dealing with the extra traffic and the extra attention he gets down low?

TAMAR BATES: I feel like because he is such a willing passer, it's pretty easy for him to make reads out of those traps and then with him having guys who can shoot the ball and make shots, I mean, he trusts us to obviously pass it.

Obviously, if he reposts we'll get it back to him, but he does a great job of finding us when we're open. We're fortunate to have him down there just because he brings so much attention to hisself.

He is executing at a high level right now, and that's what we expect out of him. Especially for him being our senior leader. So he is doing a great job of playing out of double-teams.

Q. Tamar, this is for you. What are the key things you are focused on adding to your game or improving or perfecting? And if you could draw it up, what would you want your game to look like come January, February, March?

TAMAR BATES: I mean, I always just want to bring a spark off of the bench. No matter how the game is going, I want to kind of pick up the pace or do what I can to affect the game with my particular skill set.

But obviously just making sure that I'm staying healthy. My best ability is my availability, so I just take care of my body, making sure I'm eating the right things, putting the right things in my body, getting a banana in before the game, don't cramp up or nothing like that.

But for me it's just really executing the game plan and doing what my teammates expect of me and continuing to work at it and just go in to try to -- I'm sorry -- go in the game and come out with the end result of winning the game.

Q. Miller, it was just 32-26 at one point, and then they shot less than 30% the rest of the way. Did you guys do anything different defensively, or was it just better effort, or what was the difference there between those first 8, 10, 12 minutes and the rest of the game?

MILLER KUPP: I think we just settled in. Playing any game, you know, you scout teams and you know their actions, you know what they're going to run, but getting out there there's a different type of -- it's different when you are out there guarding them and you see their tendencies and you see how they cut with pace and all that kind of stuff.

So, you know, we really just focused in and kind of got a feel for them. And then once everybody kind of understood what they were doing and got into the game really, it just showed.

So, you know, our defense is something where it's unrelenting. Over a course of a game we feel like it's just going to continue to get better.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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