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March 6, 2018

Danny Manning

Bryant Crawford

New York, New York

Syracuse - 73, Wake Forest - 64

DANNY MANNING: Well, obviously we didn't play well enough to win. I thought there were a couple spurts or a few spurts throughout the course of the ballgame that we went on that gave us life and gave us a chance to get back in it, but we could never get over the hump. Late in the game, we gave up too many dribble drive opportunities, and they were able to throw the ball over the top for lobs, and we couldn't get back into the ballgame.

Q. Bryant, they kind of knocked you back the first eight, ten minutes of the game. What happened, was it nerves? Did they just kind of hit you with something you weren't expecting?
BRYANT CRAWFORD: Yeah, we came out flat. They came out with way more energy than us, and they were hitting shots. We were trying to match their shots with jump shots, which is something that they wanted us to shoot, and when we started to get it into the paint and get lay-ups or found open shooters, then things started going in our favor.

Q. Danny, last year you guys were a fairly successful team. This year obviously your season just ended. Why do you think things changed so dramatically in the course of a year?
DANNY MANNING: Well, obviously you don't have the same team each year. Just a different team. You know, we lose a couple guys that are doing fairly well at the professional level right now that were underclassmen, and when we started out the season, we didn't get off to a good start, and we battled back. We had a little winning streak at the beginning of the season, and then we got to conference play, and we couldn't get over the hump in quite a few ballgames. We put ourselves in situations to have some success. In most of those games in league play we had the lead at some point in the second half, we just weren't able to finish ballgames.

Q. Can you talk about the impact that Marek had, and obviously it's a surprise, but when you're focusing on their big three, how does he change Syracuse when he's being so aggressive?
DANNY MANNING: That was the scouting report. We know three guys that you try to take away, and that's what we tried to do. He found himself -- he did a very good job of finding open areas and getting to the rim. I know one time he kept an offensive rebound alive and did some good things in that regard.

Q. Syracuse is going to be a team on the bubble of the tournament. You've seen them three times this year. What do you make of them as a team?
DANNY MANNING: Well, obviously I think they have what I consider their big three, very talented basketball players, and that's no disrespect to any of the other guys on the team, but those three guys do the majority, I think 72 percent of their scoring. And so those guys are as talented as they come, and those other guys do a good job of fill-in roles. I think they're a talented team, and I think hopefully for our league, we get as many teams in and possible, and I definitely think they're a team that their name should be called.

Q. Can you just talk about kind of the learning curve this year? You're having to play a lot of guards, play a young lineup, undersized, particularly in this game it kind of showed a lot of times in your match-ups. Can you talk about how that's going to pay dividends down the road for you?
DANNY MANNING: Well, we hope it does, but part of that tonight was I didn't think our bigs rebounded the ball well enough. Our leading rebounder came in off the bench for us. So our bigs have to have more of a presence on the glass, rebounding the basketball. And we played that four-guard lineup quite a bit throughout the course of the year. You know, it gave us a chance to go on some runs and win some games and get back into some ballgames, as well.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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