home jobs contact us
Our Clients:
Browse by Sport
Find us on ASAP sports on Facebook ASAP sports on Twitter
ASAP Sports RSS Subscribe to RSS
Click to go to
ASAP Sports e-Brochure View our


March 18, 2017

Scott Drew

Jake Lindsey

Manu Lecomte

Ishmail Wainwright

Tulsa, Oklahoma

Q. Jake, have you had much of a chance to look at USC yet and do they look similar to anybody you've faced?
JAKE LINDSEY: We had a chance to look at them last night. They had a scout prepared for all of our possible opponents, so we hopped right into that and went over some of their stuff today. So we've gotten pretty familiar with personnel and some of the actions they like to run.

As far as being similar to anybody, maybe Iowa State because they just have a lot of guys who can really shoot it, but they're a little bit bigger. Bennie Boatwright is a matchup problem. Jordan McLaughlin is a really good player. They're a good team, and we're looking forward to the challenge.

Q. Other than Xs and Os or schematically, what jumps off the film when you watch how USC plays, how they manage to do what they do? You know, what stands out maybe intangibles or however you want to describe it?
MANU LECOMTE: They're a very talented team. They play freely. They have a lot of talents. They have a lot of shooters and good post players, so it makes it hard to guard them.

ISHMAIL WAINWRIGHT: He said what I was going to say. They have a great point guard. Boatwright, I know he's NBA. Everybody's saying he's the NBA guy. He's a great player.

They have a shooter, I believe number 30, that's extreme. He can shoot anywhere on the court. He had big shots last game to win the game.

They're just a great team. We watched the game and had film, walked through a lot of their sets. I know they're going to add more wrinkles to it, so just go do whatever we have to do, execute.

Q. Ish, what does it mean for you as a senior to still be alive and still be moving on in the NCAA tournament? And is there a load off your shoulders having won that first round game yesterday?
ISHMAIL WAINWRIGHT: I'm going to start with that last question. The load is off. We're not worried about the past two years or three years or whatever people are saying.

And me being a senior, it's just a blessing. I've seen a lot of seniors leave recently, which is tough. And just having guys like Manu and Jake by my side to take me -- take us a long way. Yeah, just excited I'm still playing. My career's not over yet. I want to end this with a win.

Q. Ish, kind of to follow up on that, how much of those early exits weigh on you all heading into this tournament?
ISHMAIL WAINWRIGHT: Just motivation. I mean, I know we're young. Our generation is on social media, and that's all we were getting. And that's all they were preaching to us is no first round. They were saying this two months ago. And we took it to heart, and we have a lot more to do. We're not done yet. Our confidence is up and just continue to play with a chip on our shoulder.

Q. Manu, yesterday was your first start back. How was it getting in the rhythm and how you're feeling and the ankle and everything?
MANU LECOMTE: It felt good to come back with my team, start again. It was fun. I was pretty excited. My ankle was okay, not 100 percent, but mentally I was good.

And man, our bench did a great job. I didn't play my best game, but Jake came in, did a great job, T.J., Al, Nuni picked us up, gave us a huge spark off the bench, so that helped me a lot.

Q. You know how people talk about like tournament destiny or magic or whatever you want to call it. I'm just curious to get each of your thoughts on does USC come across as one of those teams that you kind of have to be weary of because of their two improbable wins now? Just curious about your thoughts about whatever you want to call that.
JAKE LINDSEY: I feel like, I mean, we had a few comeback wins early in the season in the Bahamas. And when you have a few wins like that, it definitely sparks a sense of belief in your team. I remember when we came back, down 22 to Louisville, it really boosts your confidence. And I mean credit to them, I think 12 of their 26 wins, something like that, has been down -- either down or double digit deficits, something crazy. So I mean credit to them, and that shows they have some resilience, some fight to them and they don't get down when the chips are down. So that's an awesome accomplishment for them.

But as far as we look at it, every game is going to be different. If they started the game off on a huge run or we start the game off on a huge run, the narrative would shift pretty quickly as to whose tournament magic, per se, would be going at the time. So I don't think that's weighing too much on our mind.

MANU LECOMTE: Yeah, like Jake said, it's a great team, but I think we're the team to have to worry about. I think in the beginning of the year nobody would have thought we would even be in the tournament. So it's March and anything can happen.

ISHMAIL WAINWRIGHT: My turn? We just can't overlook anybody. Like they say, this is March, anything is possible. I know a lot of teams that looked over -- looked past other teams and prepared for teams that they were supposed to play the next round, and they're no longer with us. But we can't overlook anybody, and they can't overlook us. It's going to be a great one.

Q. Manu, you ended up -- Baylor ended up in a regional with Miami. What was that experience like for you and did you end up talking to any of those guys? What were the interactions with you and some of the guys you might have played there with?
MANU LECOMTE: I haven't seen any of the guys here, but I talked to some of them on the team. We have a still great relationship. Obviously, it was a great experience for me, two years at Miami, gave me the chance to come here, Baylor. So I'm very grateful for that. I saw they lost against Michigan State, but it's still a great team. It was fun watching them play.

Q. Jake and Manu, what does it say about your team this year that guys like Al and T.J. can come off the bench and have the kind of games that they had yesterday?
JAKE LINDSEY: I think I would start off by saying that Al and T.J. are two of our most talented players. And if you had the opportunity to come watch us in practice, there would be some days you'd Wacha way thinking Terry Maston was the best big guy in the gym. And when you have two NBA big guys as your teammates, that's an impressive thing to say about anybody. So his performance yesterday didn't surprise us.

And Al yesterday, too, Al was two-year starter, been a big part of what we wanted to do, faced some adversity this year, rebounded from it. And as a credit to him, he's come back even better, been shooting the ball great, been a great teammate, and we're all really happy to see him really pick us up yesterday and make some big plays.

Those two have both rebounded from some adversity this year and we're proud of them, happy for them.

MANU LECOMTE: Yeah, they both had a great game yesterday, but like Jake said, didn't surprise anybody, I think, on the team. Because you can come watch practice and they can go off like that anytime in practice. So it's always great to have people like that coming off the bench and give you a spark when you struggle, too, so it was great.

COACH DREW: We're excited to be here to answer questions today. I know the benefit of playing the early game yesterday is we got to be able to relax and get some rest and watch all the exciting games as far as SC goes. Anyone that advances to the second round is obviously a very good team. Andy does a great job X and O wise and poses a lot of challenges especially in short turnarounds because their offense is a little different. They run a lot of different sets.

As far as our team goes, the good thing is I think after yesterday's game and being able to get the jitters out, hopefully we'll be able to be a little more efficient in the beginning of the game and not turn it over so much. So that's all I got.

Q. Coach Enfield said you guys know each other fairly well, I guess. And I guess, also, do you see similarities with his team at USC to maybe Florida Gulf Coast?
COACH DREW: I think shooting the three like they do, their offense, the way they run it, they get a lot of opportunities at the rim, and with the great athletes that he has, that usually leads to a lot of the dunks. So you see similarities as far as that manner goes, threes and dunks.

Q. What stands out to you, what jumps off the page about USC and how they do what they do? Not necessarily the Xs and Os, but what do you see when you watch them play?
COACH DREW: I think it's their resilience, to be down double digits 13 times and come back and win. I remember at the beginning of the year, for a while there, we led the nation in comeback wins from being down at halftime. So I don't know who wants to be up at halftime. Maybe it's better if you're down in this game. But I think their resilience, and because they do shoot so many threes, they're never out of a game, even if they find themselves down.

One thing that is interesting, both of us started out the year so hot. They didn't lose their first game until, I believe, December 30th. And us and Gonzaga were the last two teams before we lost a game. So I think both of us did a great job in the nonconference, and then I know they got a little banged up. We got a little banged up, and I think both of us are peaking right now again.

Q. They played in that first game the other night. Is that an advantage or disadvantage? They've got some momentum going.
COACH DREW: Well, if you think about fatigue, you would have thought yesterday, second half, that's when it would have showed up, but they shot lights out.

And nowadays, I think with exempt tournaments, three games in three days, conference tournaments, three games in three days, AAU basketball, three games in one day, these guys can go all day long. I think it's us adults that need rest.

Q. Scott, you're connected to one of the all-time great buzzer beaters in NCAA tournament history. We haven't really had that through the first two days. Do you have any thoughts on why that's been the case, some of these finishes?
COACH DREW: Well, when you're preparing your team, that's the only bad side of things. You don't get a chance to watch many other games because you're watching so much film of your team and the opponent.

I would think -- I know there were some games where, especially early on, from what I've heard, there wasn't a lot of separation until maybe later in the game. And there wasn't for the first time someone that won by, what, more than 20 in the first day? I know someone had mentioned that.

So my point is I think we've had close games. We just haven't had a lot of buzzer beaters. As long as, if we do have one, we're on the right side of it, I'm good with it. Otherwise I'd prefer not to. And the thing about March is if you're in it long enough, you're going to have great experience in tough ones. My brother's probably my all time favorite memory and us coaches' sons are always partial to other coaches' sons. So I'm happy for R.J. Hunter hitting that buzzer beater against up, but obviously that was a tougher side of things for me.

Q. Scott, in some ways is maybe a second game a little easier to prepare for once you kind of get over that hurdle of the first game?
COACH DREW: Well, I think in the first game, you do so much more prep work, and there is more jitters in that first game.

I think the second game coaches don't have as much time to mess up their guys, so they get to play more and they're a little more relaxed. So I think players always like the second game better.

Q. Al said yesterday that the way the flow of the game went for him without having a whole lot of complex things to do kind of opened it up for him. That's obviously not going to happen all the time, but how do you recreate that and still have the structure of the plays calling and all that stuff?
COACH DREW: I think more it was the flow of the game. It was an up-and-down game. We were in transition a lot. And you'll find more of that with teams that you're not as familiar with. But at the same time that's because New Mexico State liked to play an up-and-down game, and rather than a half-court game.

So with SC and us, both of us like to play in transition when it's there. But why both of us have won games is we can play in the half court as well. So I think you have two teams that have a lot of similarities, a lot of great athletes and a lot of good players.

Q. Scott, do you maybe see USC as a little bit of an underrated team as an 11 seed that had to go through a play-in game?
COACH DREW: Well, one thing I know about the NCAA tournament, going into this year I think since the tournament expanded to 68, 5 and 12 are even as far as win-loss record. To me I say that every year, it doesn't matter the number. If you're in the tournament, you've won a lot of games, you've got talented players, you're well coached. So I really don't look at the numbers as much. I think everyone that's in it is more than capable of winning any game, especially with the parity.

But you look at USC, they were one of the best teams at the beginning of the year. Then had some injuries. And when you do, it affects everybody. And now they're healthy and they're back to being one of the best in the country.

Again, to go undefeated until one of the last six or how many teams, that's quite a tribute out of 351.

I know you guys don't have a lot of questions today because it's nice out and you're trying to get out of here.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

ASAP sports

tech 129
About ASAP SportsFastScripts ArchiveRecent InterviewsCaptioningUpcoming EventsContact Us
FastScripts | Events Covered | Our Clients | Other Services | ASAP in the News | Site Map | Job Opportunities | Links
ASAP Sports, Inc. | T: 1.212 385 0297