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March 19, 2016

Eran Ganot

Mike Thomas

Quincy Smith

Roderick Bobbitt

Spokane, Washington

THE MODERATOR: We'll start with questions for the student-athletes.

Q. Roderick and Quincy, you guys played a team with a strong back court in Cal in the last game. Melo Trimble and Rasheed Sulaimon. Another good back court. What do you see in those two guys that's maybe a little bit different from Cal, but maybe some similar things you can do to try to slow them down.
RODERICK BOBBITT: I would say they penetrate the ball a lot, try to get into the lane and create shots for others. So that's one big thing that I took out of seeing the film of Maryland.

QUINCY SMITH: I think they shoot the ball really good. They shoot a high percentage from three, and they get to the line a lot, and they shoot good free throws too.

Q. What did you guys do to appreciate and celebrate the accomplishment yesterday? And how long did that last for? And at what point last night or this morning did the focus start to turn to Maryland?
RODERICK BOBBITT: Celebrate? I don't know if we did too much. After the game we were pretty happy. But we know that we had to put that game behind us and focus on Maryland, who is a great team. And everybody on the island celebrated for us.

QUINCY SMITH: I got a lot of calls and texts, so just replying to all of those, that was my celebration. We got a lot of rest last night, got a lot of rest this morning, and the coaches, they prepared us for Maryland with the film and the walk through today in practice.

MIKE THOMAS: Our families are here, so it's good to spend time with them after the game and just reflect on it. But there's a 24-hour rule that you got to follow and get rid of it by 11 o'clock today and get ready for tomorrow.

THE MODERATOR: All right. Thank you. We'll have coach up in just a few minutes.


THE MODERATOR: We'll start with questions for coach.

Q. Can you talk a little bit about what part of Maryland's game concerns you the most, heading into the game?
COACH GANOT: Well, there are a lot of parts there. Obviously, their balance is so good, but we just played against a very big Cal team and these guys are bigger. So, we'll have our hands full there.

But one of the reasons they're so good and, obviously, why they're advancing to this point after having such a good season, is just their balance.

When you have an inside, outside attack you surround their size with shooting, and a dynamic point guard, you will have your hands full. Obviously, one of the more efficient offensive teams in the country. When I talk about their balance, they defend as well, defend and rebound. So it will be another tall task, a great challenge, a great opportunity for our program.

Q. Your bench, obviously, has its little celebrations and has gotten some attention for that this year. Did you have any hesitation about letting them kind of express themselves the way they wanted to or did you encourage it?
COACH GANOT: One of the great things every year is a team forms, every team is different, and a team starts to form their personalities. I like guys who are real and genuine and do things to support their team in a genuine fashion, provided it doesn't take away from the team.

These guys, our whole team, has found a great balance there. Back home our guys call them the Hawaii 5-0 and I joke that our Hawaii 5-0 has become our whole team. Because when our guys who maybe play more come out of the game, they join the club. And that's great to see.

Obviously, it's served us well to this point, so if it ain't broke, don't fix it kind of thing. But it's created great passion from every single guy in the program. There's a genuine investment from every single member of our team, and in a way that doesn't respect the game or our opponents. If it did, obviously, we would put a stop to it. But very pleased with their genuine respect for each and appreciation and support for each other.

Q. Aaron Valdes was saying that when you were hired, he was among a handful of players that was thinking about transferring, they were not happy?
COACH GANOT: That's encouraging there.

Q. What do you recall about that and how did you settle things down?
COACH GANOT: Well, I remember when I got hired, first thing I wanted to do, I remember it was a while wind, you get the job, you're jumping on a plane and then you have a nine a.m. press conference. And my request was, I would like to meet with the players first. And, look, there's, I talk a lot about there's so many things basketball wise, X's and O's, program building, recruiting, but nothing matters as much as relationships. And so I was obviously behind the 8-ball. And when I first spoke to them, I kind of just, it was collectively, and then we set individual meetings. And it was, this is who I am a, this is how we're going to run our program. I only had a limited time because they were running me in a press conference. But I just wanted them to hear from me first before they watched the press conference. And I appreciated the UH administration allowing me to do that. And I just, it was about letting them get to know me and spending individual time with them and spending time with each of their families and we went from there.

When you get a job, you're going crazy and you're trying to do everything, but I didn't think anything was more important than that. And I love that that's what we did and this program will be built like a family and about relationships and understanding how much we care about them and what we're about and vice versa. And so that I think that helped.

Obviously, over the course of the season, you get some buy-in when you have some success or you try to do things the right way, I think they go hand in hand. And trust, it takes time to build, but they probably heard some things about me when I got the job and people were in my ear about them. And I told them that. I said, there's no assumptions or anything. I don't want to hear from anybody, I want to hear from you. I appreciated them allowing me affording me that opportunity and trying to start a relationship from the start.

THE MODERATOR: All right. Thank you, coach.

COACH GANOT: Thank you.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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