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March 24, 2019

Chris Beard

Nortense Odiase

Jarrett Culver

Tulsa, Oklahoma

Texas Tech - 78 Buffalo - 58

THE MODERATOR: Chris, please.

CHRIS BEARD: Yes. I want to start on behalf of everybody in our program, coaches, players, staff, just congratulate Buffalo on a great season. 32 wins is just unbelievable at the Division 1 level, multiple championships. One of the toughest teams we've played all year. Congratulations to the players and staff, a program we have a lot of respect for.

In terms of our guys, we came to Tulsa to play 80 minutes of basketball and I thought we did for the most part. Now we move on to the next regional. We're a team put together, just trying to make a statement in this tournament, not just win a game or two. So, extremely proud of our guys.

We're not supposed to be here. They picked up bottom of the Big 12 and haven't gotten much respect this year, but these guys have continued to keep a chip on their shoulder and just realize that we can do a lot of things if we play as a team. I thought that's what we did tonight, we guarded at a high level. Had different guys step up offensively until the game got all sloppily late but one of our cleaner games this year. Texas Tech basketball the story this year is team. Play for the guy next to us. I've never been more proud of a team I coached.

THE MODERATOR: Thank you. First question.

Q. What was the main thing that your team wanted to key in on defensively shutting down UB early?
CHRIS BEARD: Transition. You know, they score a lot of points, they get out and spread and shoot the ball well. They have great guards, great overall team. We're keying in on the 3-point shot, mainly, transition, and just one-on-one plays like driving. We tried to keep them out of middle as much as we could, try to make them take tough shots and keep them off the boards. I'm glad we were able to do that for 40 minutes.

Q. Jerrett, the coach in the past has talked about the tradition of the Red Raiders, but never in Red Raiders history has the has the team gone back-to-back years of Sweet 16s. What does that mean to you as a Lubbock kid?
JARRETT CULVER: Means everything to me. I'm glad to be a part of it, making history like that. It's a blessing to be something -- be a part of something that special. Coach Beard came to Texas Tech and built a great culture. We all bought in and carried us a long way.

Q. I'd like Chris and Jarrett to address this. 15-point win in the first round, 20-point win in the second round. Take you back the last year when you guy's season ended, 71 - 59 to Villanova, they go on, obviously have success. How much how did that game drive you the last five minutes of that game in the off-season, coach and recruiting and landing guys. How much did that game drive you the past, I don't know almost 12 months?
NORENSE ODIASE: Of course, it's been on our minds since it happened, since the buzzer went off. It's how we get back to that level. When we get back to that level, how can we seize the moment. That's the process that everyday the grind is thinking about that game, trying to get back the that level with a new team, a new team that nobody thought they could get to that level. We're proving it so far. We've got to keep going. The process got us here and the process will take us as far as we need to go. That's all it's been.

JARRETT CULVER: Last year's team, when we lost in, I mean our experience from last year, that loss kind of hurt. I mean, we got to work since the summer, everybody who came in, new team, like Norense said, we wasn't supposed to be here. We got to work since the summer, everybody bought in. We got our experience and the new guys bought in with us. So we got to work every day and just trying to get somewhere, make a far run in the tournament.

CHRIS BEARD: Yeah. More important than that game is just always striving to be the best. We study best players, watch NBA film every day with our team. We watch the opponents, we watch our former players, we'll watch Zach Smith, offensive rebound or Zhaire's screen. So that Villanova game was a close-up look at one of the best teams in the country, the eventual national champions.

We take a lot from those guys. Just a culture of rebounding. So, yeah, that game was big. I think we played some clips of it during the summer in preseason in the weight room. That's where your trying to get back. Ultimately, it's just a sign of respect to Villanova. They have the kind program we would like to have. This is just our third year. It's our second Sweet 16 in three years. We're building something. We've got a long ways to go, but we're going to get there.

Q. Chris, UB took a 25 - 24 lead late in the first half on Davonta Jordan's 3-pointer. How important was your team's response to that, to seeing UB come back, take that quick lead?
CHRIS BEARD: It was a big part of the game. The end of the first half was big. We talk to our guys all the time about 10, 4 minute games. No one of those is more important than the rest. Those of us in sport, we always talk about the last 4 minutes of the game, but what about the other ones where you had a chance to win or lose the game.

We got off with a great start with emotion. We obviously had great fan base here. Red Raider Nation, some of the best fans in college basketball. Great to let the whole world see them today.

They definitely helped us win this game. I thought we got off to an emotional kind of urgent beginning, and we knew Buffalo wasn't going to quick. They have too much championship DNA in them. They made a run. We talked about it. We had some poise timeouts. We were composed. Let's see if we can't get the lead by halftime.

Q. Coach, obviously the defense and the rebounding is going to get a lot of attention tonight. I was wondering if you could talk about your ability to defeat some very, very intense ball pressure and intense quickness from Buffalo tonight.
CHRIS BEARD: They definitely heated up a little bit on us at the end of the first half and the start of the second. Went to our secondary ball handler. We have three guys that can make the plays. We're not the typical team that just has a point guard. I never really understood what that word means.

Jarrett Culver is a player. Matt Mooney is a player. I did think they made a great adjustment pressuring us, but we responded for the most part and our players started sharing the ball a little bit more.

Q. Chris, for you, you guys have been here since Tuesday or Wednesday. Your thought on Tulsa as a whole. Share your thoughts with being here a week or so.
CHRIS BEARD: The NCAA Tournament is like Disney World to us. They're involved in basketball. It's all we think about. It's what makes Norense get up at 5:30 in the morning in the summers. It's what makes Culver come in at 10:00 p.m., seven nights a week to get shots up. It's what ultimately makes us coaches do what we do. This is it.

First I want to recognize the NCAA. This is the best sporting event, just like from the way everything is handled to the whole deal. It's great to be a part of it. We never take it for granted. I told our guys, "enjoy everything, man. Enjoy the towels, enjoy the pregame meal, the dark carpet that you walk on to the floor, enjoy everything."

I thought it was great. In terms of Tulsa, the city, you know, I used to live in Oklahoma and coach at Seminole State. I'm aware of what a great city. Had great fans come out to the games. Our hotel situation was great. This is a great city and we've really enjoyed being here.

THE MODERATOR: Anything else for Texas Tech? All right. Gentlemen, thank you very much and best of luck.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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