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 19, 2019

Greg Herenda

Darnell Edge

Jahlil Jenkins

Dayton, Ohio

Fairleigh Dickinson - 82, Prairie View A&M - 76

THE MODERATOR: We're joined by Fairleigh Dickinson head coach Greg Herenda and student-athletes Darnell Edge and Jahlil Jenkins. Coach, an opening statement.

COACH HERENDA: I just want to -- hats off to Prairie View. Obviously they came out and made 15 3s, and they shot 32 percent, I think, for the year. So they were ready. Their defense -- we were lucky to be in the game at halftime if it wasn't for Darnell Edge. We were down seven and we were fortunate.

I want to thank our fans and Fairleigh Dickinson administration and anyone that ever put on a blue and burgundy jersey. Tonight we made history. It's the first time in the 75-year history of Fairleigh Dickinson that we've won an NCAA Tournament game. That's history. And it's really -- it's overwhelming from where we came to where we are now.

I sat here three years ago losing to Florida Gulf Coast by over 30 points. And I was proud. And I sit here today, winning our first game ever, and I'm proud because of these guys. And I told Reggie Miller before the game, and I've told everybody, Jahlil Jenkins has the biggest heart in Ohio right now. As a sophomore he took over the game in the second half.

And what can be said about Darnell Edge? He became our all-time-leading 3-point shot-maker, scored 33 points. And he scored all the points to keep us in the game at halftime. Without Darnell we would not have been able to come back.

I'm just humbled. I love Dayton. I loved it the last time. And I love it more. And I'm very, very humbled but very excited to take our basketball team to Salt Lake City to play a No. 1 seed in Gonzaga.

THE MODERATOR: Questions for the student-athletes.

Q. Could you describe your emotion? I think you had the ball when the clock went off and you threw it in the air. Could you describe what that moment felt like for you?
DARNELL EDGE: It was just a great feeling for me, being here three years ago and losing by over 30 points. And then coming back this year and being able to get a win. It's a great feeling. It's history. I wouldn't have wanted to do it with any other team.

Q. Jahlil, looked like you got a shove or something from Coach there going into the 16- or 12-minute timeout in the second half. And then you came out and I think in the next four possessions hit buckets. Was there something that kind of got you going?
JAHLIL JENKINS: No, I just kept playing my game. My teammates and my coaches always told me like keep your head up and just keep leading the team. They always give me confidence. I knew if I kept playing, I would be fine.

Q. Based on where your coach was almost a year ago health-wise, is there a little extra motivation or specialness to this moment because of that?
JAHLIL JENKINS: Yes. Coach G is probably one of the best coaches I've ever had. It was tough when he wasn't doing so good. And we knew we had to win this game for him and for our fans.

DARNELL EDGE: Definitely. Having Coach go through that last year, I remember us being in practice and him always just telling us that he just wanted to be there with us. All he thought about while he was in the hospital was us. So we rallied together and it's just a great win for us, for our program and just happy.

Q. Darnell, did you have any flashbacks of three years ago in the first half, you're down 19-6 and I guess --

Q. I guess Coach talked, said yesterday that just he felt how big experience would be for you guys. And maybe if you were younger you guys wouldn't have had that fight in you. How much do you think experience helped today?
DARNELL EDGE: I definitely think it helped a lot. I've been at this stage before. And I've been through the battles with this team. So just being able to share my experience with younger guys and just help lead the team and keep everybody composed, yeah.

THE MODERATOR: Thank you. Questions for Coach.

Q. Mike Holloway is a guy we covered in high school and everything. And he had a big bucket down there near the end. I know he had some tough shots tonight. Could you tell us what he's meant for this program?
COACH HERENDA: Mike had a tough night and a great night because everything was -- they were really gearing their defense towards him and he just kept battling. And he had 10 and 14.

And everyone -- and me and Mike have battled because I know how good Mike can be. And Mike knows how he could be. And when you are at that edge of greatness, conflict is a part of it. But it's great conflict. He's been the cornerstone of our program, and people still want him to get better, because he's as big as a house. And he's got a heart -- and he's a beautiful kid.

And it was a tough night, but the perseverance that he showed tonight was great. And our team just kept on talking to him and talking to him. And he texted me something personal right before the game, which my players never text me because -- they stay away from me. And as soon as we grabbed each other after the game, we had a special embrace.

So I've got great kids, man. And that is the battle in this world. The better the kid, the better the team, the better the chance you have to succeed. And Mike Holloway is just a superb kid, as well as these two guys.

Q. I think I saw Darnell when he was going into his, I think it was summer of his senior year, he had no offers when you guys saw him. Can you take me through --
COACH HERENDA: Grant Billmeier, I give credit where credit is due. I was an assistant for 22 years. And I know what assistants do. And Grant Billmeier made me go watch this kid play. And I wanted to save the scholarship.

He was like, G, I like him. He's your kind of kid. He shoots it. And he played the point guard position. And I went and I loved him. And I was mad because I wanted to go home after the first game and say, Grant, I don't like him because it was the last day of the recruiting period.

I loved him. And I followed him and followed him and followed him. And he committed, I think in July or August of his high school year. So he had already graduated and he was only 17 years old, averaged four points a game his freshman year. Averaged nine. Averaged 14 and now he had 33.

So if any of the kids that are watching this tournament -- I know you want to watch Zion and all the great ones; so do I -- but these are the heroes. These are the heroes, the kids that are like the people watching TV that get better every day. And that's why March to me is mad. It's mad.

Q. Trying to figure out why he didn't have any Division I offers.
COACH HERENDA: I'm happy he didn't get any offers. There's a lot of kids out there. There's a lot of kids in Philly -- I see John Feinstein -- a lot of kids in DC. A lot of kids don't get the opportunities. And that's the key. You've got to find the kids.

Give them the opportunity and then the work ethic, and guess what? Bang. It's over. And these are -- and you hear it on this podium all the time about how great the kids are. But my kids are better. I just believe that and they sense that and their goes their enthusiasm.

Q. You said you were having flashbacks to Florida Gulf Coast and that first half.
COACH HERENDA: We made the first two 3s and I'm, like, here we are. And then we went cold for eight minutes. And they're good. That's a good, fast, well coached -- they're good.

But I knew he had it. I knew -- not that I knew we were going to win the game, but I knew we were going to show our mettle, and we did. And I think it was the under-eight timeout, I said, we just have to get the lead and we're going to run away and hide. And then they started making 3s, I've never seen those 3s from anybody.

So they didn't quit. That was a great first game of this tournament, I think. Is that correct, guys? I mean, that was exciting. And Jahlil Jenkins, if you don't want to take him home and hug him, that kid took the building over.

And that's our goal, to go to Utah and stay close, hang around and get a lead. That's quite honestly what we're thinking about right now. And call us crazy, but that's what we are.

Q. After this last year, looked like you were very much soaking in and enjoying the moment there after the win. Do you have a different level of appreciation or being able to be in the moment because of that?
COACH HERENDA: It was just -- it's overwhelming. When you coach for 35 years and you take a team to a NCAA Tournament and a team that, when I got here six years ago, we had nothing. And to build it -- it's all those hours and all those -- and then it's here and it's so sad that every coach can't experience this -- high school, college -- because the feeling that is here should be in every coach because every coach does what I do. They work hard. They love it. They are engaged. They try to do -- and when you get here it's -- and I was here three years ago. I was the first coach out of 68 to be up here after we got our fannies kicked. I know that feeling too. But this feeling is -- it's special.


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