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March 19, 2015

Rick Barnes

Jonathan Holmes

Isaiah Taylor


TEXAS - 48

MODERATOR: We'll start with an opening statement from Coach Barnes and then Q&A for Jonathan Holmes and Isaiah Taylor. Coach?

COACH BARNES: Congratulations to Butler. I thought he did a good job of executing the things that they like to execute and they did a really good job in the second half getting to the foul line. And otherwise I thought defensively, we were really pretty good defensively against a team that does some of the things that they do. We just had some fighting back in there, we had some untimely turnovers and a couple -- I mean, a tough one and one we missed. And we, coming out of a time-out, fouled the wrong guy. Plays like that at the end of the game. It pretty much sums up our year, to be quite honest, where we've had three or four possessions at some point in the game that has hurt us, but really the toughest part is the guy sitting to my right here. I mean, I can't tell you how much we all love this guy and appreciate what he's done and what he's meant to our program. I wish every coach had a chance to coach a guy like Jon Holmes, which I'm sure other coaches feel that way about their players. But we love him and are going to miss him.

MODERATOR: Questions for the student-athletes.

Q. Start with Jonathan. You had four of the tallest players that combined for eight points. Martin, Ridley, Ibeh and Turner. What did Butler do to make it so difficult for the post players to score?
JONATHAN HOLMES: They played pretty good position defense and, I mean, our post guys are good and we can get offensive boards and put-backs that way and they kind of limited us from doing that today. So they kind of -- they kept us off the boards and because of that, we struggled.

Q. Isaiah, you finished with a flurry there, but you had your struggles in the first half. Is there any reason why it took you so long to get going?
ISAIAH TAYLOR: It was just, I was playing in the flow of the game. I struggled in the first half and I was fine. My teammates helped me out, they picked me up. It wasn't about me in this game. It was about my teammates and everybody contributed.

Q. Isaiah, you mentioned playing in the flow of the game. Was it tough to get some offensive rhythm going for either side with the way this game unfolded?
ISAIAH TAYLOR: It was a little bit. We know that they had five guys back. They were worried about our transition game. They did a pretty good job at that the first half. Second half, we tried to get out in the open floor a little bit and get some easy buckets.

MODERATOR: Any other questions for the student-athletes? Thank you very much. Questions for Coach Barnes.

Q. I'll ask you the same question. How come your length wasn't an advantage offensively as far as points?
COACH BARNES: Well, people question our shooting. You saw how they were playing Isaiah. They were backing up on him as far back as they had to go. When that happens, it's hard in terms of space. It's hard to pass the ball in the air. Demarcus Hollands, again, they played personnel. Demarcus, even though he's had a good year shooting the ball, people backing up. And there's just not a lot of space there. But it goes back, transition, the start of the game, we were just wasting too much time not getting into the pace that we wanted coming down the floor. We knew that they would get guys back and we kept trying to encourage our point guards to get the ball in the middle of the floor as opposed to standing on one side. Turnovers hurt us. But with all that said and done, I mean, we had chances to get back. When we really needed -- had 15 turnovers, I think they called Isaiah for two carries and those -- the one at the end was a big one, obviously. People just back up. That's where we've got to get better as a team. We've got to shoot the ball better. Everybody wants to know why we don't put the ball in the air. It's not that we don't want to. When we do sometimes, there's not a lot of room and it's easier said than done. But we need to be able to stretch people out more and we haven't been able to do that.

Q. Rick, you're not going to make the Sweet 16 for the seventh straight year. Can you describe the personal frustration you have in where you are in terms of your future?
COACH BARNES: I don't -- I mean, I'm disappointed because I'd like to see us, obviously, dancing in this tournament. If you know anything about basketball, this tournament's not given to anybody. All you have to do is look around today. I know we've got teams in our league that struggled today. You get into this tournament, you saw the first game here today. I don't think -- we tell our team this all the time. There's no one that's entitled to any of this. Obviously, we want to be a team that we want to play deep into this thing. To do that, you got to be able to score the ball. There's no question about that. Again, I don't think there's any -- we don't have any entitlement. We want to do it. There's no doubt about it. But I don't think we're any different than any other program in the country that gets into this. You want to go as far as you can go. Again, I'm disappointed. I just felt like that we -- every coach does. I don't care. This time of year, I don't care what coach you talk to this time of year. Whether you get knocked out right now or you get knocked out in a week, two weeks, there's always an empty feeling.

MODERATOR: Other questions for Coach Barnes?

Q. Rick, just I guess in terms of getting these guys to come together and finish, why didn't it happen this year?
COACH BARNES: Well, one, I mean, I'm not going to make excuses for any of it. We know that we had to deal with a lot of different things throughout the year. I think in a nutshell, you go back to today, one and one was a big play. Turnover. And we had a defensive breakdown when our post player didn't step up. I mean, Demarcus Holland's out there really having to defend a heck of a player, and we come out of a time-out and foul the wrong guy. I asked the question why. Trying to get a steal. That's where it goes back to being disciplined enough and understanding the game and the situation at that time. Some of that has to do with, again, I think, Isaiah, the games he missed early in the year I think really hurt him, because that's where we'd like to see him be further along in terms of time management, game management, all that. But it is what it is. We are who we are right now. We finished, what, 20-14. Disappointing, but yet we don't ever take getting into this tournament for granted, which I think some people think it's just a given. It's not a given. We'll never be just satisfied just again being in it because we want to win it all.

MODERATOR: Thanks, coach.

COACH BARNES: Thank you.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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