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March 11, 2007

A.J. Abrams

Rick Barnes

Kevin Durant


CHARLIE FISS: We will get started with the Texas student-athletes. As you can see, Kevin and A.J. are here for questions.

Q. A.J., can you talk about their -- they seem to really tighten up on the perimeter there in OT and just seems like you all were having a tough time getting good looks there.
A.J. ABRAMS: They're a good defensive team. They kind of cracked down when it came to clutch time, so we got to give them credit. They made plays in overtime.

Q. For both Kevin and A.J., you talk about swagger a lot, even in the loss. You take that swagger into the NCAA?
KEVIN DURANT: Oh, yeah. It is the bigger picture. It is a bigger week next week. We just got to bounce back off this loss and get ready for the tournament.
A.J. ABRAMS: We are always going to carry a swagger about us. That's what we do. We are going -- we are disappointed we lost, but we did a lot of good things out there and we can build from that.

Q. Can you talk about Oklahoma City as a host venue for the Big 12?
A.J. ABRAMS: It was a great setup. They had the girls across the street from us and we were in here.
I think it was a great place for basketball for the fans and for the players.

Q. Kevin, you had such a hot first half. Can you talk about the defensive effort, I guess Rush and some of their other guys did on you in the second half?
KEVIN DURANT: They didn't do anything different. I missed easy shots. They did a great job pushing me out of the lane and helped the defense. I credit them.
I just was missing shots and they did a great job.
CHARLIE FISS: Good game today. Good luck in the NCAA tournament.
Joined now by Coach Barnes of Texas. Coach, your thoughts on today's game.
COACH RICK BARNES: Great game. I really -- I told our team before the game, we just wanted to be in a position in the last four minutes to win it. Obviously we got off to a great start.
You know, whether it was us getting off to a great start or them getting off to a great start, I felt it would be one of those games where both teams would go at each other and come down to the kind of game it was.
We had our chances, and they made obviously a big three and even in overtime we had some chances. And the free throws hurt us a little bit.
Nonetheless, I'm proud of our guys. I thought a lot of good things happened here this week. We're disappointed but it is over and done with and we will move on to next week.

Q. Coach, you kind of talked about all the positives. Can you expand on that? Because it seems like you guys were able to come back in one game. You did a lot of things in this tournament. Can you just talk about those things?
COACH RICK BARNES: Again, I think we've got a team, I think we're a confident team. I think we're a tough team. I think for a group of guys that started from ground zero and to be where we are right now, I'm proud of the way they've grown throughout the season.
I am proud of the way they've gone into different situations and competed every night. Regular season, post-season, we came up a few plays short here, but nonetheless, I'm happy for these guys because they've continued to get better and we're playing -- if they're a No. 1 seed, we're not far behind and we are playing pretty good basketball right now.

Q. Can you talk about the decision with 22 seconds left about to have D.J. go for the quick two instead of a three to tie the game?
COACH RICK BARNES: That's what we thought. He had a couple different options. He could go to a two or to a dribble hand-off. We know they would defend the three-point line very well. They obviously defended the basket well, too. It worked out for them, it didn't for us.
Again, we will put it in his hand and let him make the play. We felt like he could get by and we wanted him to and he had some other ways he could go with it.
CHARLIE FISS: Thanks, Coach. We will let you go watch the show.

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