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March 11, 2020

Mark Fox

Kareem South

Matt Bradley

Paris Austin

Las Vegas, Nevada

California - 63, Stanford - 51

MARK FOX: First of all, we beat a terrific team. This league deserves to have seven teams in the NCAA Tournament. Stanford had some great wins. If you look at our league, the 12th seed in our conference, we beat Baylor, Colorado beat Dayton. Utah beat Kentucky. We have some unbelievable wins in the nonleague. For us to beat up on each other is to be expected.

Our team is way better today than we were at the start of the year because we have a new system, new coach and everything else. And so I don't think this is a bad loss for Stanford. I think they deserve to be in the postseason. We're very proud of our team today. We defended at an extremely high level, and we were able to sustain that and advance until tomorrow.

Tomorrow, if we're -- if health and the safety is the No. 1 priority that we say it is, then fully support keeping just those that are necessary to compete in the game tomorrow. And hopefully we can regroup and play well.

THE MODERATOR: Paris, talk about your game.

PARIS AUSTIN: Tonight me and my teammates, we did a good job offensively. But most importantly we defended. Myself, I just wanted to go out there and make plays that led to winning tonight. And that's just what I wanted to do.


MATT BRADLEY: Yeah, so I felt like my teammates kept me composed throughout the game, our coach, as well. I felt like I competed well. Stuff wasn't going for me here and there but we stuck with it and kept defending, and I'm proud of my team.


KAREEM SOUTH: Our main objective was to win a game. So my job was to do whatever it took to win. And whether that was making shots, getting stops defensively, leading by example, I just wanted to do whatever it took. And our teammates did a really good job following that.

Q. I wanted to ask the players, obviously playing in front of a crowd is part of the fun of a tournament. What do you guys think about coming out tomorrow and not having anybody else in the arena?
PARIS AUSTIN: I think the players and everyone's safety is the most important thing. We love to play in front of fans, but right now safety is the most important thing.

MATT BRADLEY: I agree with that.

Q. For any of the players, speaking of defense, you guys limited da Silva to four points on 2-of-11 shooting. That might be a season low for him. What were you able to do so effectively in terms of help defense or doubling or tripling him real quickly to force him into such a tough shooting night?
MATT BRADLEY: Our bigs aren't in here with us. It really goes out to Andre Kelly and Grant Anticevich and D.J. and Lars. They stuck to the game plan, and they stayed aggressive on him. Da Silva is a really good player. Coach knew his tendencies, and we just stuck with it. We competed the whole 40 minutes. And that's the result.

THE MODERATOR: Can you add more about defense and rebounding?

MARK FOX: Well, we lost the first game to Stanford, and we scored 52 points and our defense failed us because they have a good offensive team. In the second game against Stanford, we scored 52 points, but we won because our defense was terrific. We knew that tonight, coming into the game, that the only chance we had to win the game was to be great defensively. And I thought for the most part, outside of one little spurt in the first half, our defense was terrific.

Q. Coach, win 300 in your career. Any thoughts about the significance of that milestone?
MARK FOX: Not really. I've been blessed. I coached some unbelievable players at Nevada, and I coached some unbelievable competitors when I was in the SEC. One of them was here tonight, and -- little guy named J.J. Frazier.

I've been blessed to have good players and coaches. I haven't thought about the number, to be honest with you, but feel really fortunate.

Q. Congratulations. And, guys, congratulations. It's survive and advance, though. March, you win, but you don't have much time. You have to get ready for tomorrow. Can you talk about what you have to do against the Bruins tomorrow?
MARK FOX: It's been a long time since we played UCLA. They're a completely different team. When we played them, I told our staff, I said: They're getting ready to get hot. I could tell that their team -- that they made a transition, either the day before we played them or during that game. We couldn't score, their defense was elite. And it's remained that way.

We'll have to study them late tonight and figure out how we can make a basket or two. Our team is different now, too. And so hopefully we'll be able to regroup and come back tomorrow and compete.

Q. Coach, congratulations. The year before you started at Georgia, they won the SEC Tournament in front of an empty arena there. How does that change the dynamic for the defense in terms of calling out screens and switching on D when there's not 20,000 fans in the arena like that?
MARK FOX: That was two years before I got there, I believe. And I don't believe the arena was empty, I believe each school had a number of tickets that they were allowed to come to the game. And that was a unique situation, which I don't have a lot of information about because it was before my time. Dennis Felton, the coach at the time, did a great job to win two games in one day and to win in that situation.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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