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March 16, 2017

Andy Enfield

Bennie Boatwright

Jordan McLaughlin

Tulsa, Oklahoma

Q. What did you guys learn from SMU the first time that you take into this one?
BENNIE BOATWRIGHT: We looked over the film. They've gotten better since then, but we looked at what we need to do defensively. They've pushed it up court. They have five scorers. So we need to go out there and execute our game plan.

JORDAN McLAUGHLIN: I would say they're a well-balanced team. All their players get minutes, they score. They play well together, and they get what they want on offense. Defensively they're in the gaps heavy, so we gotta just make sure we play our game plan and stick to it.

Q. What exactly have you seen in film that is different from the first time that you played them, and what are the challenges of playing this team a second time, given that they have such different composition?
JORDAN McLAUGHLIN: They're a good team. You know, they're a 6 seed for a reason. There's only really good teams left in the tournament. So you gotta come and compete every night. But they just play together well. The players that they have, they play together, they got the shots they want. And they're well balanced. And we just gotta figure out a way to disrupt their offense.

BENNIE BOATWRIGHT: Like he said, they're well balanced, have great team chemistry. They're not sped up. They get the shots they want. So we just need to play our defensive principles and defend them as best as we can.

Q. Bennie, do you think it can be an advantage having played already once this week? And do you think there's a little momentum that you all can gain from having that game already?
BENNIE BOATWRIGHT: Yes. I think so. I think we can use the momentum from the last game and carry it over to the SMU game. But it's a whole different team than Providence. So we can't just bank on what we did against Providence. We gotta go out there and play hard.

Q. Jordan, we mentioned that they look a little different this time compared to last time. How offensively are they different without that big they had that ended up transferring out when you're going back and watching film?
JORDAN McLAUGHLIN: I mean, it's still the same. Not much of a difference. They're still the same team that we played back then. But they're in a rhythm right now.

Our coaches say they won like 26 out of their last 27 games or something. So they're in a good rhythm right now, and we just gotta figure out a way to disrupt that.

Q. What was said in that locker room at halftime last night? What was that scene like? What was said? Tell us. Bring us there.
BENNIE BOATWRIGHT: The coaches just got in us. You know, we didn't come out with the urgency we needed to start the game. So the coaches just told us straight up we weren't playing, we weren't playing with enough heart. So in the second half, we changed that.

JORDAN McLAUGHLIN: Yeah, I'll say the same thing. The coaches just talked to us and got in us a little bit. And we responded well, you know. They challenged us, and we rose up to the challenge and we were able to come out with a win.

Q. Not to go negative on you guys here, but on the flip side of that, so much energy expended to make that comeback. Then you've got the one day off, you've gotta travel. How tired are you guys realistically?
JORDAN McLAUGHLIN: I was exhausted after the game. But the day's rest, I'll be good. Go get to the hotel later on in the day, get into NormaTec. Technology is crazy for recovery nowadays.

We had a light practice, light walk-through going over plays and stuff, and just resting. Everybody get some good sleep tonight and we'll get another good sleep tonight.

BENNIE BOATWRIGHT: I think we'll be all right. This is what we grew up wanting to do, playing in an NCAA tournament. So I think we'll be motivated enough to play and be ready to go.

Q. Whenever you saw that they were going to get you all possibly again in a rematch a couple of the guys were excited to get another crack at you all. Does that add another element of excitement or what does that do for you all knowing there's a team looking to get some revenge in the tournament?
BENNIE BOATWRIGHT: We just gotta worry about what we gotta do. We're not too worried about them. If we focus on our principles and staying together as a unit, we'll be fine.

COACH ENFIELD: Well, it's nice to be here after a few hours' sleep and a long night of travel, but we're excited to be in Tulsa and compete tomorrow against SMU.

Q. How much sleep did you get, Coach?
COACH ENFIELD: I got about three hours, but our players got more than that. I have to watch video with our assistant coaches. So when you wake up, your mind is racing, and you have a game to prepare for. So we got together as a staff this morning, and our players slept in.

Q. Coach, after Southern Cal's last win over SMU in November, you said that the SMU Mustangs were potentially a 20-plus win team. Now you're in this position. SMU's won 30 games. They've won a conference championship. They've outperformed virtually everyone's expectations. How do you prepare for a team that has grown so much, grown exponentially better as the season has gone on with such a different lineup that you saw in November?
COACH ENFIELD: Different lineup? They have the same six players that we played. SMU, when we played them in November. A lot of people said so what, you beat SMU. And I was trying to tell people that SMU is going to be one of the best teams we face all year. Offensively, they can score at every position. And defensively they're extremely solid and they hold teams about 60 points.

So I was their biggest fan when we played them in November, and I'm still their biggest fan. They're a great team, have 30 wins and to win 26 out of 27 is just a special year for them. So congratulations to the SMU Mustangs.

Q. On and off the court note, I know your wife is from this area. She must be excited to be back here. Can you talk about her getting to come back here and how March Madness kind of brought the two of you together?
COACH ENFIELD: Yeah. When you look at the NCAA brackets, first you have to get into the tournament, and then you look at the sites. I know her whole family said, wow, wouldn't it be great if you were sent to Tulsa. And here we are. We expect a big crowd and a lot of tickets, and Steve Lopes is going to be in for a lot of ticket requests here in the next day or two.

Q. And how about the way you guys met?
COACH ENFIELD: Well, we met in New York City, and I can remember my first time back, I had never been to Oklahoma City, very pleasantly surprised. And we took a couple trips to Tulsa. And I just love this whole state. It's great people, a lot of things to do, and really just a nice place to live, and especially to visit, especially when you're with my wife.

Q. Coach, I asked your players the same question, and maybe you can give us a little more -- paint a little more of a picture for us. Take us into the locker room at halftime last night. What was that like? And exactly what were you seeing from your guys or not seeing in that first half?
COACH ENFIELD: We got off to a decent start and had a lead. And then we got very passive and didn't guard anybody. We went zone, they made threes, we went man, they made threes. They got the ball inside. We didn't switch in a couple of their flex action, and we just were not playing defense the way we were capable of, and offensively we were being tentative. We missed a lot. We missed six layups in the first half and free throws. And we only had seven turnovers for the game but the majority of them were in the first half.

We just shut down on both ends of the ball, and we let our poor offense and our missed layups affect your defense awareness intensity because we were thinking about the missed lay-up we should have made ten seconds earlier.

So it was frustrating because we knew we were a better team than that, but Providence played great and they made seven threes in the first half, and then we fouled them on another one. So that's 24 points right there just from behind the three-point line.

So halftime was a little nice talking and some words to get them fired up, because this is their season. You work this hard and you get to the place where you want to be and then you don't perform. It had nothing to do with what plays we were running or Xs and Os. They just had to play better and play harder and have -- their backs were against the wall. So I give our players a lot of credit. They cut the lead down throughout the second half. They didn't try to force things. They stayed with the game plan.

We played entirely man to man in the second half and said you're going to guard somebody or you're coming out of the game. And they did that. And then we had to make shots.

Providence is a great team. We played them last year, they beat us at the buzzer. Give Ed Cooley and his whole staff credit, what they've done with that program the last few years is really amazing.

Q. What exactly were you hoping that Nick would bring to the table when you put him in last night? What was your thinking there, and then what exactly did he -- I mean we saw what he provided, but what were you thinking? Were there other things that he brings to the table that we may not know about?
COACH ENFIELD: He's had a tremendous freshman season. When we signed him late in the spring, we weren't sure, we had a player leave, Nikola Jovanovic, early for the draft. So we weren't expecting him to come in and be this productive. We thought it would be a freshmen year where he could learn behind some experienced bigs. And then when Nikola decided to turn pro, or Nick Rakcevic was in a much more prominent role. And he had to. From day one, he was getting playing time, and he kept developing.

And then he went through a little stretch in January-February where he hit the freshman wall, so to speak, and then he just snapped out of that. And the last month he has been terrific. And so we're very, very proud of him.

You saw that last night, he was not afraid of the moment. He was aggressive. He rebounded, he made plays, made his free throws and was a huge spark in the second half to help us win.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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