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March 10, 2016

Shane Henry

Buzz Williams

Washington, DC

Miami - 88

Virginia Tech - 82

THE MODERATOR: Questions for Virginia Tech.

Q. Do you think this team is going to earn an NIT bid or do you want to play some post-season? Some coaches want that time.
COACH WILLIAMS: I don't know. I don't feel any of that stuff. Honestly, I've never played in the NIT as an assistant or as a head coach. I'm not sure of the process.

But I think what we've done speaks for itself. If that's good enough for the NIT, we'd be thankful for an invite.

Q. Miami shot 56% from the field. What did you hope to do better defensively today?
COACH WILLIAMS: We tried a little bit of everything. I guess in different parts, sometimes it would work for consecutive possessions but not very often.

We ran the gamut of all the different defenses we could, changed the ball-screen coverages as often as we could. None of it was very effective.

Q. Might be too early to evaluate this, but what do you think are some of the biggest takeaways you can take away from conference play and some things you got better at?
COACH WILLIAMS: Yeah, that's a good question. I'd like to be able to be emotionless when I answer it and I'd like to have some evidence so it would be conclusive in what I had to say.

I do think our team has improved. I do think that we play incredibly hard. I think we try to play the right way relative to the roster makeup. I think our maturity has continued to evolve in a positive way.

There's just a thin margin in this league. We're not the only team that's trying to get better, so as you're trying to do that, you have to be aware, and you are aware, that other teams are doing the same thing.

I've really enjoyed being around these guys. I'm thankful for the lessons that I've learned from them. I think they've represented the department and the institution in a really fine way. I think that's always a good place to start.

Q. Shane, at the end of the first half when you were starting to get your way back into the game, then took the lead, what do you think changed in the first few moments in the second half when Miami took the game away?
SHANE HENRY: I really just think we turned the ball over too much, wasn't playing our game.

But I think everybody did well staying in the game and just kept on pushing.

Q. Buzz, a bunch of the players in the locker room mentioned the goal of getting to the NCAA tournament, what that meant for your program. You haven't been in the post-season at Virginia Tech for quite a few years, even since you got here. What do you think some kind of post-season berth could mean for the program?
COACH WILLIAMS: Well, I hope that we recruit guys that want to play at the highest level. Not to defend those guys, not to be disrespectful to the past, but 63% of our minutes were played by guys that have never been here. So when you talk about what's transpired prior to their arrival, it's somewhat hollow to them because they're kids. Kids want to accomplish their goals.

They dream big. They have dreamt big all year long. I guess if you're asking me the same question relative and including the past, I would say we're distinctly ahead of where anybody would have thought, including you.

Q. Coach, Miami's ability to connect from three in the second half, what were they able to take advantage of?
COACH WILLIAMS: I thought that was the change. Shane was right. We turned it over I think three times before I called the timeout. May have only been two. But I know of the eight threes they made, seems like four of them were in that run.

I think three of the four were contested. I can't remember what the ATO score was that first ATO. They started great offensively. We started poor offensively. Those multiple back-to-back-to-back threes, I don't know if they were consecutive, but they were grouped fairly tight together.

Q. What did you think of Zach's night, his contributions when he got back in the game?
COACH WILLIAMS: He's been great all year, for a guy that nobody knew, nobody anticipated much from. I thought we were out of sorts for most of the first half. 5 was in foul trouble. Zach was in foul trouble. We played five guards for four to six minutes there to close it.

To be where we were at half spoke to the resiliency of the group. To close the half, considering we were fouling to try to extend the game, to only lose the second half by five after the previous question with all the threes, again, I thought they hung in there.

Q. Buzz, you said you guys are ahead of where we thought you would be at this point. I'm curious, are you ahead of where you thought you would be?
COACH WILLIAMS: I don't get into that. I think those questions are remedial. I think they're softball, no thought. It's nothing. Just from my lens and how I operate, I know that sounds condescending from my part, I'm not trying to be that way, I don't look at things like that.

On the path of getting better, I hope that we're going in the right direction. But give it a number or, This is what we want to do overall, this is what we want to do in league play, in my entire career I've never done that.


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