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March 9, 2017

Billy Kennedy

Tyler Davis

Admon Gilder

Nashville, Tennessee

Vanderbilt - 66, Texas A&M - 41

THE MODERATOR: We're ready to continue with Texas A&M. We'll ask Coach Kennedy for some general thoughts on the game, take your questions for the two student-athletes, and then we will finish up with questions for Coach Kennedy.

Coach, would you begin?

COACH KENNEDY: Yeah. You could tell that Vanderbilt aggressiveness in trapping in the post gave us problems offensively. They looked like they -- they played like a veteran team. We just couldn't score. We played good defense the first half and really struggled scoring. We had three guys score 38 points and then we had 3 points from the rest of the team. Kind of like our Kentucky game, we had four guys score I think 60 points and the rest of the team scored 3. It's hard to win games when you don't get production throughout your roster offensively and defensively.

THE MODERATOR: Questions for either of the student-athletes?

Q. For either of the players, what was not working there in that ten-minute stretch in the first half when Vanderbilt was getting it turned over and the shots didn't seem to be falling in?
TYLER DAVIS: Just offensively we just couldn't get it going. We gave ourselves a great chance defensively in the first half, went down only by 3, but offensively we couldn't really find our rhythm.

THE MODERATOR: Other questions for either of student-athletes, please raise your hand. Hands up. Before we excuse the players, Admon, if you maybe could give a couple thoughts on the game, please.

ADMON GILDER: Like Tyler said, we weren't able to capitalize on the offensive end. Give credit to Vanderbilt, they came out and in the second half ready to play, which we wasn't, and give them all the credit.

THE MODERATOR: We'll excuse you back to the locker room, fellas. Thanks for coming down. We'll continue on with questions for Coach Kennedy. Questions for Coach Kennedy. Hands up.

Q. Billy, seemed like there were several times you got the ball around the basket area but just couldn't get it through the basket. What did you see there?
COACH KENNEDY: We couldn't score. I mean, we had opportunities around the basket and you've got to have production from everybody, you know. And I thought they did a real good job being aggressive in their trap. We ended up solving that a little bit in the second half. We didn't score. And Vandy is very good offensively. They can shoot the 3. When they start making 3s, their confidence level goes up. And when you can't score and you're not deep with your depth defensively, it's hard to grind out a win.

We've been able to grind out wins and beat Alabama I think 53-50, you know, but it was our last win. And the games we've won, we've been able get 50, 60 points. And the games we lost, it's all we've been unable to score.

Vandy, they're an older team. They play like a veteran team. Three of those guys started in the NCAA Tournament last year. You got to give them credit. They played like a veteran team. I thought LaChance was really good. I think he's been the key to their team. He's really playing like an upperclassman point guard, and you could see the difference in their guard play. So, you got to give them credit.

THE MODERATOR: Other questions for Coach Kennedy, raise your hand. Go ahead.

Q. This maybe is the same thing I just asked, what did you think of the quality of the shots that you got? Were they good shots, just didn't go in or --
COACH KENNEDY: I thought we got some good shots that didn't go in, and, you know, we shot 5 free throws. You know, we went inside a bunch. Our post -- our post guys, you know, scored 29 points. Their guards outscored us 25, 35 -- 43 to whatever we had. So, I mean, we were outclassed on the perimeter and you got to give them credit. We just -- we couldn't score. You hold Vandy to 39 percent from the field in the tournament, you should be in position to win and we just couldn't get enough points.

THE MODERATOR: Any questions for Coach Kennedy? Far back on the left.

Q. Billy, what kind of player do you think Robert can become here down the road?
COACH KENNEDY: You know, Robert has been a special player for us from the beginning. You know, you saw him facing up today and making shots. To their credit they double-teamed him and all year he's gotten better as playing out of the double-team, but he's -- he's obviously, you know, a lottery pick and when it's time for him to make that decision.

But he can be a special player. He's just young. I mean, you can see his youth when he plays. He gets tired. Defensively he may get beat off the dribble. Offensively he'll surrender some jump shots. He's made the quickest progress from when we got him from June 1st to this point than anybody I've seen, and it's a credit to his hard work and his family. And he's a good kid, got good character and a credit to my coaches because he has gotten so much better in a short amount of time.

THE MODERATOR: Hands up. Any other questions?

Q. Apologize if this is a repeat question, how much of your struggles tonight can be attributed to their activity on defense, their doubling and things like that?
COACH KENNEDY: They forced our guards to have to beat them, you know, and when we didn't turn it over, we got opportunities to score, we just couldn't score. Tyler Davis has 18 points, 7-13. Robert Williams is 4-8. Somebody else has got to help, you know, to -- to have three players score all your points. You're not going to win. Seventeen points off the bench for them and I think we had zero, you know. We had zero off the bench and we had zero at one of the positions that started.

So, you're not winning games and like Vandy's game plan -- at the end of the year everybody knows what you can do and what you can't do and it gets exposed. You know, we got exposed against Kentucky last week offensively when we couldn't score. Vandy came in and did the same thing and, again, it's a credit to their team.

THE MODERATOR: Time for one more question. Anyone? Hands up. Last question. All right. Thank you.


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