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March 6, 2018

Kevin Stallings

Marcus Carr

Jared Wilson-Frame

New York, New York

Notre Dame - 67, Pitt - 64.

KEVIN STALLINGS: I thought it was a good basketball game. I thought our guys played very, very well, particularly in the second half. Obviously the difference was our inability to keep them off the foul line. And to hold them to four field goals in the second half is a tremendous accomplishment for our group defensively. And as our defense continued to play better, our offense started to get better.

But I've really admired my team all season long, to fight through the adversity that we've had and the results that we've had, and to see that they still have this kind of fight in them is inspiring to me and very impressive. We're disappointed with the outcome of the game. I'm certainly not disappointed in the effort or the performance of my players, though.

Q. Kevin, I know your season just ended, but what kind of concern do you have about your job status considering the way this year went and all the speculation kind of at the end of the year?
KEVIN STALLINGS: I don't have a whole lot of concern because I don't -- I try not to worry about things I can't control, and that's not in my control. I don't -- I worry about these guys. That's what I spend my time worrying about.

Q. Kevin, the team that you saw today and with the way that they played, how closely did it resemble the team you believe that they can consistently be capable of being?
KEVIN STALLINGS: Are you talking about next year?

Q. Even just throughout this year, too, the team that you saw today, how closely did it resemble the team that they could have been this year on a consistent basis?
KEVIN STALLINGS: I think that the team that I saw today was a team that continued to progress and continued to play hard and practice hard and be coachable, and I think as a result of that, it allowed us to play the way that we played today.

We had some inconsistencies. We had some inconsistencies in the game today. Honestly, we got the game kind of right where we needed it and we had a possession where we could tie it. We took a shot that wasn't great and then we fouled a guy on the rebound that's a 90 percent foul shooter 90 feet from the basket. So now all of a sudden instead of being three points, it's five points. And again, that's just the kind of mistakes that you don't want to make when it's in that situation.

But I just felt like our team continued to work and continued to try to improve, and that's why it enabled us to play well like we did today.

Q. You were in a ton of games this year, a lot of them came down to the wire like today. How much hope does that give you guys for next year and the years to come?
MARCUS CARR: I think it speaks to just kind of like Coach was saying, our progress throughout the year. We just kept getting better and found ourselves in positions multiple times to win games. For next year, it's definitely a learning experience for us, so whenever these games arise next year, we know that we've been through something like this before and we can kind of use what we learned from the previous experiences to get the job done.

JARED WILSON-FRAME: Like Marcus said, just piggy-backing off what he said, we made a lot of baby steps this year and a lot of close games, putting ourselves in opportunities to win the games, and I think building on next year with the guys we have in our coaching staff, we can take big steps and learn how to, like Marcus said, just get the job done when we're put in those adverse situations again.

Q. We've spoken with you the past couple weeks about your job status and you've mentioned how it's a decision that's ultimately out of your control. What do you anticipate coming in the next couple days as far as conversations with your bosses, and do you believe you'll be back?
KEVIN STALLINGS: I have not the slightest idea. I have not the slightest idea. And I have not the slightest idea what to expect. I know about as much as you do.

Q. Jared, I saw you calling a couple huddles with your team throughout the game. What were you trying to emphasize with them on the court throughout the course of it?
JARED WILSON-FRAME: Just the same thing that I tell them every game when we huddle up: Just keep fighting. Just keep fighting. Pick your head up. Just play harder. Little things that I see in the game, if we missed a box-out here or there, just things like that, just trying to keep everybody on the same page so we can play as a unit.

Q. Jared and Marcus both, this has obviously been a difficult season, but when you guys look back on it now and even years from now, what do you think that you'll see where you kind of look at it and see as maybe a highlight or a point of consolation?
JARED WILSON-FRAME: You know, just like I said before, we just learned a lot of things this year. Just learned multiple situations. It being my first year, along with a lot of the young guys, our first year playing at this level, you learn a lot of new things. Things that you think you knew might seem a little different when you watch it from home. So I think things like that are a lot of things we picked up, and I think going forward and looking back on this season, it'll just be something to build on, a learning experience, so that when you're put in a situation again, you can overcome them.

Q. How much would you say the loss of Ryan contributed to ultimately what became a winless ACC season?
MARCUS CARR: Ryan was definitely a key piece to our team. Anybody who's seen us play before since the beginning of the season knows he's a great player who pretty much does everything, is steady, and does everything on the court for us. The loss of him was definitely pretty big and definitely affected our team, but he continued to be at practice with us and trying to help us grow as a team without him so that we could play our best without him. But looking forward to next year, I can't wait to have him back, and I'm excited for what next year could be.

KEVIN STALLINGS: You know, I think that -- well, I don't have a crystal ball, but I firmly believe that we would not have gone winless with Ryan on our team. I think that there were a few wins in there that we would have had with his presence, and not only do you lose your experience and your go-to guy and a guy that's averaging a double-double, but you also lose the guy that everybody generates their confidence in when he's on the court.

We were kind of up against it, and these guys did a tremendous job of battling and doing the best. I think that's why we all have good feelings about what might be next year.

Q. Kevin, do you feel like you have to sell your bosses on your vision in order to come back next year?
KEVIN STALLINGS: I doubt it. And I think they know what my vision is. I think that's already been communicated. I doubt if that really is something that plays into it.

But again, I could be wrong. I don't know. We've recruited great kids and guys of great character, and we had to turn over an entire roster. We knew this was going to be a little bit of a tough season. We didn't know it would be this tough. We didn't know we would lose Ryan. But it is what it is.

I'm certainly not ashamed of it or apologetic for it. I'm proud of these guys. I'm proud of their character and their efforts and who they are as human beings and what they've done in the classroom and what they've done in the community and all the great things that they've done that don't show up in a final score during a game or after a game.

Again, I don't really know how to answer the question. But I'm sure comfortable with how we coached this group and how they responded to us and how we all held together and supported each other. The one thing I don't have any question about is they've got my back, so that -- and I think they know that I've got theirs. That's all you can hope for over the course of a season is your team to fight their butts off for you and you fight yours off for them, and whatever happens happens.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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