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BIG 12 CONFERENCE WOMEN'S TOURNAMENT


March 8, 2015


Roshunda Johnson

Jim Littell

Brittney Martin


DALLAS, TEXAS

Baylor ¬Ė 69
Oklahoma State - 52


MODERATOR:  We're now joined by Oklahoma State university coach Jim Littell, Roshunda Johnson and Brittney Martin.
COACH LITTELL:  Baylor's very talented.  Their length and athleticism affected a lot of things that we did tonight offensively.  We probably needed to be in a situation where we play close to a perfect game and I don't think we did that.  But you've got to credit Baylor.  Nina Davis is a very, very tough matchup for us and she shows why she's the best player in the league tonight.  Just outstanding the things that she can do athletically set her apart from a lot of people.  Conventional thinking says that when you couldn't guard them in man, you go to zone and we did that.  She's probably more effective against the zone than she is against the man.
Just a tough matchup for us, didn't hit some shots that we feel like we normally do.  And also against Baylor you've got to get a lot of 50-50 balls and it seemed like they got a lot of those 50-50 balls, especially in the first half.  But we have got to regroup and get ready for the NCAA Tournament now.
MODERATOR:  We'll take some questions for our student-athletes.

Q.  Brittney, what happened between the first half and second half for you offensively?
BRITTNEY MARTIN:  In the first half my shots weren't falling.  I couldn't really do much about that.  I kind of just had to play hard on defense and hope it kind of helped me on my offensive end.  And in the second half my shots started falling, so I think that's the only thing that changed.

Q.  Questions for both players, Brittney first.  Coach talked a little bit about it, but Baylor, what does Baylor do on defense that creates so much disruption for you guys?
BRITTNEY MARTIN:  I think the main thing is they're just incredibly long, they're all fast, they're all athletes.  So I think it kind of, I can't say we're not used to it but it's a lot more pressure on because they're longer than us, we have to make better cuts to get open, we can't just stand to get open so we have to do a lot more things to get open than just standing and we have to help each other screen and things like that.  They're just long so we have to adjust our game to that.
ROSHUNDA JOHNSON:  I agree with her, and basically they just sped us up during the game and second half we just needed to calm down.
MODERATOR:  Okay, ladies.  Good luck in the NCAAs.  Questions for coach?

Q.  Jim, I asked you this yesterday and you referenced it there at the end, the NCAA Tournament.  Do you feel like you're in?
COACH LITTELL:  You know, all I can go by is what's occurred in the past.  I've been in this league 10 years either as an assistant or head coach and 9-9 has gotten in every year.  We're the No. 1 RPI conference in the country and if you believe any of the projections, yeah, I do.  I think we built our resume, we beat a lot of good teams.  And to win nine games (no audio) Texas, TCU with Iowa State with nine wins and we get nine wins, I think we are, but we won't know until Monday, the following Monday.

Q.  Coach, what are your thoughts on the team's effort in the final minutes in the game?  Do you think you can build on that going into the tournament?
COACH LITTELL:  I thought we played harder.  It's a difficult (no audio) stretches and we had some scoring droughts and it's hard to keep up your intensity on the defensive end.  It's a difficult game to play when you're not making shots.  I thought we continued to play hard.  Our turnover number wasn't very high.  Our rebounds were okay as far as that goes.  I think you could just look at the shot totals that we didn't make shots and that was the difference in the game.  I'm not going to question our kids' effort or our attitude, it's just a hard game to play when the ball isn't going in.  And credit Baylor on that, they do a great job defensively.  This game favors the teams that get the most easy baskets and Baylor doesn't give up easy baskets.

Q.  The last couple years since they split the men's and women's Big 12 tournaments, you guys have to wait the extra time to find out if you're in for the selection show.  Does that make it tough when you're not 100 percent sure to spend the next week-plus wondering?
COACH LITTELL:  Oh, yeah, there's anxiety involved in that.  I think you just proceed like you're going to be playing and I think it's a time this time of year that we'll give days off and let people get healed up, let people get rested both mentally and physically and get ready for the tournament.  We're proceeding forward like we are in the tournament.  I don't think there's any other way that you can do that, but we need to give some days off.  We've had a lot of players, especially our starters, log a lot of minutes.  I saw some quotes from somebody, I don't remember who it was, on rest versus repetition.  I think this is the time of year you probably need to get some rest.

Q.  Jim, Baylor, we talked about this is their fifth straight championship game they're going to, they won the regular season title five years in a row, but talk about the transition you've seen Kim make for that team.  She had Brittney for so long and she had Brittney and Odyssey, neither one of those girls are still there, but now look where they're at and look what they're doing.
COACH LITTELL:  Well, it's a very, very athletic team, it's a team that's got a lot of weapons.  I think this is her deepest team.  There isn't -- yeah, there is a star.  There is a star, you know.  You maybe think there isn't with Brittney Griner gone or Odyssey Sims, but Nina Davis is a star.  She's just a tough matchup for a lot of people.  They still have the star, but I think they're deeper.  What about Baylor is kind of a hidden mystery to some people, it's not a mystery to anybody who knows the game, it's how good Niya Johnson is.  I told her at the end of the game I think she's one of the premiere point guards in the country about decision making, getting the ball where it needs to be, not turning it over.  Baylor gets a good shot at the basket every time down and it's because of Niya Johnson.  Kim can coach defense, she can coach rebounding, and when you do those two things you're going to successful and that's always been a trademark of Baylor basketball.

Q.  Last night we had the time change, they lost an hour of sleep.  Do you think that had any impact on them and did you do anything different as far as coaching them on what to do with the hour less?
COACH LITTELL:  No, we didn't do anything different.  We didn't get up this morning and do the early shoot-around.  I talked about playing our players a lot of minutes and I didn't think that that would be the positive thing to do.  So we had a court taped down in the banquet room and we went through what we needed to go through today.  But it didn't seem to affect Baylor very much, that extra hour that they lost.  I don't think it was a factor in the game.
MODERATOR:  Any more questions for coach?  Coach, thank you very much.  Congratulations on your season and good luck in the NCAA.
COACH LITTELL:  Thank you.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports




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