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March 12, 2008

Rachel Allison

Kim Mulkey

Angela Tisdale


THE MODERATOR: Coach, your thoughts on the game.
COACH MULKEY: Tale of two halves, if I wasn't so young in my career, I would resign tonight, put that in the paper. Make shots! You make shots the first half, you take the lead, you miss shots the second half, you lose the lead!
First five minutes of the second half, opportunity after opportunity after opportunity, and we just couldn't finish a shot! Now why, I don't know. I could say fatigue, seven players; I could say confidence, I could say panic, I could say leadership, who the heck knows? Who the heck knows, but it happened.
THE MODERATOR: Okay, questions for our student athletes.

Q. Rachel, what happened, in your mind from the first half to the second half?
RACHEL ALLISON: I think we came out flat in the second half. We ended the first half really good, and I think we just got too high and we came out and they made a run and we just didn't answer.

Q. Angela, how are you guys -- obviously you're down right now, but what affect is this going to have on y'all in the tournament?
ANGELA TISDALE: Like you said, we're down right now. We've got a lot of stuff to work on, and so we've got to go back and practice. If it has any affect, we don't know. We've got to wait and play them games, but we've got to work on stuff when we go back.

Q. Rachel, they seemed like they did a much better job in the second half of shutting down y'all's breaks, and y'all got a lot of layups on easy passes in the first half and that wasn't there in the second. Were they getting in the passing lanes better? Just not allowing y'all to have that one extra pass?
RACHEL ALLISON: I think you said it; we didn't make the extra pass and it was there, we just didn't execute. We were shooting too quick when we were making the extra pass in the first half that was getting us our easy layups.

Q. What was going through your mind as you couldn't get anything to fall and they were hitting everything, and whatever you guys were trying seemed like it wasn't working in the second half. What was going through your mind at that point?
RACHEL ALLISON: We were trying to stay calm and not get too riled up, and just deal with the fact that they were making a run and try to get some baskets. We were just trying to stop them.

Q. Angela, you had the 3-point play to stop their run and maybe kind of give you a little momentum. Did you think at that point maybe you had stemmed the tide?
ANGELA TISDALE: I thought we were going to go on a run then, but we didn't.
THE MODERATOR: Okay. Questions for the coach.

Q. Coach, so many times this year you've said, "Give credit to the other team." Do you give credit to Texas tonight, or was this a case of a collapse?
COACH MULKEY: I don't know. I don't know, man! I'd have to look at the film. Give Texas credit for winning the game. Good grief, we scored only 21 points in the second half, so you gotta give them some kind of credit.
We just couldn't score. I don't know if it was fatigue. I don't know what it was. I thought we played as well as we could play in the first half, and as bad as we could play in the second half.
Was Texas's defense any different in the second half than it was in the first half? I didn't think so. Did they stop us in transition any better in the second half than the first? Actually, I thought the first half they were hounding the rebounder to keep us from doing that, and in the second half they quit doing that.
Was it fatigue again? In the first 5 minutes when we didn't score, they didn't score, and it went back and forth. We had an inbound layup miss and an offensive rebound miss and another miss here and there. It started to snowball and that's where leadership on the floor should take over and gather your team and say "we're okay," and I don't think I found that with anybody tonight.
It was two freshmen out there saying, "Oh, boy, what do we do?" And two sophomore players that gave you 4 points, one played 25 minutes and one played 14 minutes, and we got 4 points out of two positions there. We got 2 points out of the two freshmen positions. Gotta get more from everybody.
We're so depleted depthwise, that anybody that's good, you've got to get production from everybody, and we didn't.

Q. Do you think these games are anomalies, or are there things in both of these losses that are trends that bother you? Other than the fact that it was a loss?
COACH MULKEY: Bryan, when you lose an athlete on the perimeter like we did in Jhasmin Player, you lose a rebounder, a defensive player, you lose a physical athlete on the perimeter. We're replacing her with two freshman and they're giving me everything they have; they are just inexperienced.
Jhasmin has the ability when you play athletic teams, A&M, Oklahoma State, Texas, their bread and butter is their athleticism on the perimeter. That was our bread and butter, but when you take a piece of the puzzle out, you're fighting with two freshman to try and patch it up.
So I think it's the style of play of these three teams, and those are the three teams we've played in the last three games. A different style team, I'm not sure we would have had as much trouble. We've got to play with the schedule -- what the schedule dictates you play. And we will head to the NCAA Playoffs.

Q. I think Rachel mentioned "came out flat ." Did you feel like that?
COACH MULKEY: Jerry, how are you going to come out of the locker room flat when you're up 16? Where it all snowballed and went to pieces is when you miss shot after shot after shot after shot, and then you look like, "Oh, you shoot it. I don't want to shoot it; I'm scared to shoot it," and it snowballs on you.
And they go down and make a 3 and you turn it over and you get trapped and that kind of stuff -- that's what happened. And with one senior and all the playing time, the younger people have gotten playing time during the year, you hope you don't get caught in those situations.
And we were and we will continue to be when you have an athletic team on the perimeter that hounds you and guards you the way those three teams do. You have to get offensive production in the paint. You can't win anything big if you don't have a good point guard and a good post player.

Q. With the 3-point play that gave you the lead back that Angela made, did you think maybe you had stemmed the tied, maybe get a little momentum going?
COACH MULKEY: No. I really didn't. I thought we were just hanging on. I think it was a sense of trying to hang on. I never got a feel from anybody on that floor, including Angela, because she was out there making some bad decisions herself.
I just didn't feel a sense of calm that I had prepared that basketball team and that they could take over and get it done. That can be attributed to a lot of things. I'll always protect my kids, but good grief, guys, some point you play in the game.
I can call as many timeouts as they allow me to call and drop as many plays, but at some point you gotta make shots. You've got to make shots, and I know that sounds simplistic, but that's what got you in the lead in the first of place, you made shots.

Q. At the same time, Coach, you're in good company; the No. 1 seed is out, Oklahoma is out of the quarter finals, did you ever think you would see the day when that happened?
COACH MULKEY: Yeah, I think the game is good, I think the parity in the game is good. Conference tournaments are where you see all this kind of stuff take place. Rutgers loses to a nonrank team. Maryland up for a No. 1 seed loses. None of it surprises me anymore.
The game is getting good. The good thing is it's not our last game of the year. The good thing is all of them are back but one. The bad thing for me as a coach is they'll go to bed tonight and they'll sleep good. Because they're 18, 19 and 20 years old, I won't. I'll beat myself up, toss and turn all night because I'd have to go back a long way to think of a tale of two halves where you have a 16-point lead and then you get beat by 15.
And that's a big turnaround there. That's what coaches do, and I'll protect 'em as much as I can, but they've got to grow up. They've got to grow up. They've given me unbelievable effort all year, seven players. I'd like to trade places with some of those you just said that got beat out early, give me their depth and talent. I'd trade places with 'em just to see how far I could go, but I wouldn't trade any of my kids.
They play hard, they represent Baylor well. We've fought through a lot of things late in the year. We fought through a lot of things late in the year. To think we may get a 2 seed, huh, 2 or 3 seed somewhere down the road.
THE MODERATOR: Coach, thank you very much.

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