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December 18, 2010

John Calipari


COACH CALIPARI: Because obviously I'm restricted in what I can say, all I can tell you is I've done this 20 some years. It's the first game I've ever been thrown out of, pro or college. That's what I can tell you. Never been thrown out of a game.

Q. Can you talk about any disappointment?

Q. You couldn't explain what your thoughts were. The ref wouldn't come over to talk to you, to hear you out.
COACH CALIPARI: That's his prerogative. I coach the game. He has a whistle. If he wants to throw me out of a game, that's what is in his mind, he does it. I've never been thrown out before.
I tell you this. I wore the brown suit today. Was Coach Rupp ever thrown out of a game? The question is, will I ever wear a brown suit again? I don't think so.
But, anyway, what about the game?

Q. What did you like?
COACH CALIPARI: We shared the ball. But we just got out-rebounded. Had seven turnovers in the second half. Had five in the first half, which I thought was pretty good. We got guys that have to get better. Shot the free throws pretty good. We're doing that better.
But we're practicing tomorrow. We'll probably go twice on Monday. Practice on Tuesday. Play on Wednesday. Have a break. Come back. Then we start two-a-days, three-a-days. We just got a long way to go.
The great thing about playing Mississippi Valley State, one, they've played all great opponents. They haven't played any slouches. They've been in every game they've played. A lot of them they were up at halftime.
They are an athletic team that comes at you. They were physical. So some of our guys didn't play up to snuff. You know what, they exposed them. Terrence has got to play. Those numbers, I mean, how do you start the game this way? In a league game, a big game, kind of like North Carolina, you can't do that. It's important that we have everybody come and play.
He has some numbers, but they're not real. Like I said, we'll watch the tape, go back and try to get better.

Q. John, that three-point shot before halftime, what does that do for you for the first part of the second half?
COACH CALIPARI: The first five minutes of the second half we went right at Terrence. All of a sudden it was a 17-, 18-point game. The three at half was wow for the fans, put us up three more. But, you know, I'm glad he made it, so now he knows he can, if we ever need one of those, but...

Q. In 27 years I'm assuming you came close to having nights where you left early. Were you surprised when you were asked to leave?
COACH CALIPARI: Let me say this. In the last four years, you guys will go check this, but I bet you I haven't had two or three technicals in the last five years. Didn't have any last year. I mean, so I was surprised, especially since I didn't say two words to those guys today.
But you know what? If I stepped out of the box, that's his prerogative. If I did it, I don't know. I might have. I probably did.
Again, I can only control what I do and how I respond to it. You know, if he chose to call that second one, he did it. We move on. There's a first for everything. 2,000 wins, first time I get thrown out of a game.

Q. What did you do during that period when you left the court?
COACH CALIPARI: Took my coat off, put my feet up, had a little drink of water, said, This ain't so bad (smiling).

Q. (No microphone.)
COACH CALIPARI: I didn't put it on TV until the last two minutes. He did fine. He was telling me to run the back door, run the back door. DeAndre got it. He kept after me to get it. DeAndre missed the layup. John is a good coach.

Q. Is it disappointing that Terrence had this kind of start again?
COACH CALIPARI: It is. But it's all part of growth. It's all part of him learning, saying, I got to do better. Even the warmup in the second half, you can't go through the motions. You got to go out and go through an unbelievably tough warmup. We're going at you to start the half. That's not what happened.
These guys are so young. We're learning how to play together. We're learning how to warm up for games. We had two good practices. We had a terrific shoot-around to getting better at that kind of stuff. We have to carry that stuff into the game.
I thought Eloy got a couple tough rebounds. First two or three tough rebounds he's gotten this year, he got today. Basically what I'm telling him, If you get the ball jerked out of your hand, I'm taking you out. So either hold on to the ball and bring it in or come out, you're not playing. So he jerked two or three balls in today, did some good stuff.
Again, we've got a ways to go.

Q. Is this just a personality thing with Terrence or a question of maturation? Will you eventually get him where he needs to be?
COACH CALIPARI: We better. It's important when you're not playing a whole lot of people. The guys that have to be on the court have to give it to you. Same with Darius, he has to start playing better. He has to start coming up with balls. He can't stand there and watch a ball bounce from you and hope someone else grabs it. He needs to play. He is dong some of the things good. Again, I want him to be special. I don't want him to be just out there making free throws, threes now and then. You be the man, and he's capable of that.

Q. Can you talk about Doron during that stretch when you made your run in the first half.
COACH CALIPARI: Yeah, he played well. He tailed off the second half, but I thought he played well. He got to the rim. He got layups. He makes some bumps, makes some threes, makes some free throws, playing with more of a motor.

Q. Early on Darius got to the free-throw line quite a bit. Did that indicate that he was perhaps playing a little harder?
COACH CALIPARI: He made the free throws. I was happy about that. But, you know, he's better than he's playing. He is. He's better than he's playing. We just got to bring it out of him. He's got to get it out of him. We have to figure it out.
Again, you know, he goes for 14, five assists, and I'm saying he's okay. I'm telling you, he's better than he's playing. He's kind of like stuck, you know, on the floor at times instead of being aggressive and confident enough. Just go after balls. Don't expect someone else to get them. You have the mindset to go get them yourself.
We'll break through. Like I said, Terrence got some things. I think Brandon is playing better. He's talking more, being a leader on the court, doing more. Doron is doing his thing. DeAndre played a little bit better today. He's doing his stuff. Five rebounds today. I'd like to have had a couple more rebounds from him.
And this is a hard game because of how they play. I mean, they ratted it up a little bit. They pressed. I thought we did some good stuff versus their press.

Q. John, on your radio show Monday, John said he thought there might be some confidence issues with Darius. How does a coach instill confidence beyond what you always say about you got to do it on the court?
COACH CALIPARI: Demonstrated performance is the only way. Demonstrated performance, because if it takes me to build you up, the first time I jump on you, I can take it away. Can't be about me. It's demonstrated performance.
What I can do is prepare you, make you tougher, do things to do it, get on you. You do it in practice and then you carry over into the game, you're not afraid, you play. You have a toughness to you, a mental toughness to you.
He's not been in this position before ever, not at this level. So now it's on him a little bit and he's having to deal with it. But I think he's going to be fine. I mean, again, he goes 14 and five assists, five-for-five from the line, and I'm saying he's better than that. That's how much I believe in him. But it's not what I think or believe. He's got to see it and do it himself.

Q. Sean mentioned how much better you are now than earlier in the season. Thoughts about how well they're playing now compared to early in the season.
COACH CALIPARI: Well, the schedule they just played, I mean, they're all on the road. Sean has done a terrific job of keeping them together. They post it a little bit, they shoot it a little bit. They're doing a good job. They're physical. So in their league, they'll win. They could be an NCAA tournament team. They could go win their league because they shoot it and they got enough athletes and they got a couple big kids. They go and win their tournament, they're in.

Q. You said Poole was going to steal some of Hood's minutes. We didn't see him tonight. Anything happen?
COACH CALIPARI: No. I was playing the six or seven we're going to be playing. I'm just playing those guys. And then I think I got tossed about seven minutes to go. So whether I would have put him in or not, I don't know. I was going to send out signs from the locker room.

Q. (No microphone.)
COACH CALIPARI: No. No. No. Only had a few technicals there, too. You know, look, I'm not mad at anybody. Stuff like this happens. You know, you're up 26 in a game like this, you get thrown, I mean... But that's just how it is. Move on. Not throwing punches or anything. Just go on.
Thank you.

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