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 18, 2010

Rick Barnes

J'Covan Brown

Damion James


Wake Forest – 81
Texas - 80

MODERATOR: Coach Barnes, comments on the game.
COACH BARNES: It's a disappointing, tough, heartbreaking loss. But, you know, people will look at the free throws at the end for having the lead and not being able to close some of those out.
But we really got just pounded on the glass. I can never remember getting outrebounded 59-34. We could have just came with, you know, one or two of those rebounds at the end of the game. I think that that obviously would have been a big key.
But they're a good team in terms of Ishmael Smith creates a lot of stuff for his teammates. Because you have to give him so much attention with his penetration. And I did like it better at the end of the game when we got more aggressive instead of backing off of him and going after him that way. That's when we were able to turn him over a little bit and do some things.
But I am proud of our senior class. You go back to four years ago when they got here, we had gotten down to four players in the program, in the entire program. And what Damion and Dexter and Justin Mason have meant to this program over four years is something that we all truly appreciate. And love them for it. But it ends so quickly.
For those guys, it's very disappointing.
MODERATOR: Questions for the student-athletes.

Q. Can you go through the motions of hitting the big shots to tie it, and then go ahead and letting it slip away at the end?
J'COVAN BROWN: Well, you know, I was just trying to help my teammate, you know. Help my team. It's just have confidence in each other, so I stepped up and tried to hit some big shots.
Towards the end of the game, my first two free throws, you know, couldn't believe that I missed them. So I'm just frustrated right now.

Q. How do you guys kind of wrap your head around the way this season kind of ended? You know, just the way you guys started off fast and just kind of disappointing at the end? Can you wrap your head around how this season kind of ended up?
J'COVAN BROWN: Well, you know, we started off good, you know. Playing as a team, and moving the ball, you know. Once we got like later towards the season we started doing little things that made us a good team. And Coach was trying to keep that in our minds. And every game, you know, just play as a team. But we just got away from it.
DAMION JAMES: No comment.

Q. Did you ever think when you guys went up like you did and were making those threes that you could lose this game?
J'COVAN BROWN: No. No, we was getting good stops, you know. But when we gave up and we were making them shoot threes, you know, we turned around and try to put it by somebody, you know. And the big man came in, like two or three big rebounds for them.

Q. Do you feel that after -- now that the season's over, do you feel like you've learned enough about playing the point guard spot that when you guys start up next year you're going to be able to take control of the team?
J'COVAN BROWN: Well, you know, I learned a lot this year from Coach Barnes. I had my ups and downs, you know, but still he helped me fight through them. So I've just got to make sure I just have to bring, you know, just effort, you know, to practice and everything. Just take care of my teammates.

Q. Question?
MODERATOR: Questions for Coach Barnes.

Q. You're in overtime and you've got the freshmen in, and the guys people have been waiting for and they're making plays and stuff. Did you think at that point things have come around to what you were waiting for?
COACH BARNES: Well, yeah, they did. They showed some obviously great moments there. They really did. Yeah, yeah, you know. We wanted to see them do that, obviously.
But, again, they've shown all year their ability. We just couldn't get it consistent enough. You know, J'Covan and Jordan have shown signs of what they did tonight. We've seen other signs at times.
Avery I think has had a tremendous year. He probably -- there is no probably to it. He played way too many minutes early. That's why he went through some struggles. The minutes he played as a freshman were probably in some ways probably overwhelming, but he tried to fight through it.
But, yeah, they did some good things, they did. But they're disappointed. I told them you've got to remember this feeling. The seniors, they've been here and they've done some good things, but it can end real quickly. It is disappointing.
The one thing we kept trying to do when we did have the lead was to keep them into the game, because, you know, so much time left when you take a lead. We knew we were going to have to make some free throws. But it goes back. We needed to get some stops. Even though we forced some of the shots that we'd like them to take or they took some of the shots we wanted them to take, we just needed to rebound.
We just got pounded on the glass. There were two things coming in that we wanted to accomplish. One was transition defense and the other was rebounding the ball. And we didn't do a great job of either one of those throughout the entire night.

Q. Can I ask you more or less the same thing I asked J'Covan about? Obviously you guys had a hole at point guard a lot of this it year. Do you think when you guys come back for next year that he's the guy to fill it?
COACH BARNES: No, I don't know if I'd say that. I'm not going to say anybody's going to fill anything, because we're definitely not through recruiting either. And we would like to sign another guard, and we're going to sign another guard, because you look at we lost two players that -- in terms of leadership and toughness with Varez and Dogus.
But I don't know. We'll do what we do every year. We'll put it up for competition and see who wins it. But I'm not going to anoint anybody any position. I tell the players every year that who plays and will be the guys that they determine it every day in practice.
I think that's what he was alluding to; that he's learned this year that you can't be good one day and take a couple days where you're not putting the energy and effort into it.
So I do think that J'Covan learned a lot. But the same with Jordan and Avery. But, again, once we get back and start going, based on the off-season and summer, the players will work that out.

Q. I was wondering if that sequence where you inbounded the ball to Brown and two Wake Forest players went to him and didn't foul him as time was ticking away and they gave up the ball and fouled the next guy, did that strike you as odd? Did you wish that Brown had held on to the ball there?
COACH BARNES: Yeah, again, I think actually right when he got ready to get rid of it, they were yelling to foul. And I was watching the 10-second clock because he should have kept the ball. We wanted him to keep the ball. I told him that. What he should have done is dribbled it, and see if they would have -- because they would have fouled him, because they were yelling for the foul. And even in that situation, that's where he's got to throw it and run get it back. He had time to do that. But that's being young.
But the one thing we did tell him is you've got to go get the ball. You've got to make them foul you. And Gary Johnson's been shooting the ball well from the free-throw line. Again, people will look at the free throws at the end, and I understand that. But still it goes back. I mean, when you get beat like we did on the glass.
The difference, and the reason we were able to overcome that, you look at the turnovers. Tonight the one thing we did do is take care of the ball. And I liked what we did at the end of the game. I thought one of the key plays was when we turned the game around we got more aggressive, which we knew we were going to do. And Avery Bradley did a good job on Smith. He got up into him, and I don't think he liked it.
It's hard to do that for 40 minutes. But, again, there were some good things. There really were. Like I said, I'm just disappointed for the seniors. Because it's been a tough run here lately, but overall they've got to look back. Like I told them, you never take for granted getting to this tournament, but it ends quickly. It can end so quick.

Q. Did you feel like this game sort of represented the entire season and that something good happens and then something bad?
COACH BARNES: Pretty close, yeah. Pretty close. You go back, I mean, we lost a lot of games this year because of the free-throw line. We can say whatever. You look at it, we had some nights where we just really struggled. And Wake would tell you the same thing from their season I think. When you go back and really look into their stats, they lost some games because of some poor nights at the free-throw line. We had gotten so much better there.
I don't remember us getting outrebounded ever like this. I really don't. Some of that was because of helping. At the end when we were trying to double team the ball, they kicked out and we had to scramble out, you know, the guards and everybody's got to come down and try to put a body on somebody. And that's a tough thing. Wake, obviously, they rebound the ball very well.
But, yeah, in some ways you look at, you know, we would get down.
But the one thing we did tonight that we hadn't done a lot lately, when we got down, I thought our guys stayed poised and they worked their way back in it. So, yeah, in some ways you could say that.

Q. Another thing that seems like that's gone on this season is Hamilton hit a bunch of shots in the first half and then he only took three in the second. Were they just not getting him the ball when they should have?
COACH BARNES: They got a little emotional. You know, he just broke down a little bit mentally. We had to get him calmed back down where, you know, yeah. You've got to give Wake some credit, too. They're going to adjust their defense. But at that point in time is where you've got to keep executing and working.
But, again, Jordan has grown a lot. He really has. I know he cares deeply, I do know that. But he'll continue to, I think, understand when people do adjust and do some of those things, that he's going to have to also adjust.
Again, I can only tell you that those guys have really grown in a lot of ways that people could never understand unless they were with us every day. Thank you.

End of FastScripts

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