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March 11, 2011

Mark Fox

Trey Thompkins

Dustin Ware



THE MODERATOR: Like to welcome Georgia. We'll start with an opening statement by Coach Fox.
COACH FOX: It's a hard fought game, tough loss. Really a tough loss. Have to credit Alabama. They made the plays late. We just didn't close the game. We had some chances at the foul line, for instance, and but really, we didn't rebound the ball in the second half. I thought for the first time maybe all year we saw some signs of fatigue in the gut of the second half.
But you have to give Alabama credit, they played really hard and won the game.
THE MODERATOR: Take your questions for the student-athletes.

Q. Dustin, can you talk about some of the pressure in the last five minutes, Alabama do anything differently? Do you think you guys lost your composure at all? Can you talk about the run they made on you at the end .
DUSTIN WARE: They were really good defensive team. They really started trying to pressure the ball a lot and trying to keep it out of my hands and out of Gerald's hands. I thought Trey really did a good job of handling for us, but in the end they just made the plays and we didn't.

Q. Dustin, did you hear the whistle before you let the ball go at the end of regulation?
DUSTIN WARE: No, I honestly didn't. I thought it was a clean shot, but then I saw kind of the referee waving it off, so I knew coach had called a time out.

Q. Obviously you had to prep for overtime, but how deflating was that, just thinking that could have been the game winner?
DUSTIN WARE: It was definitely deflating, but in the end Alabama made the plays and we didn't.

Q. Trey, do you think you're a NCAA team after this?
TREY THOMPKINS: To be honest with you, it would be nice to be in the tournament, but that's out of our hands right now. I can't tell you whether we are or not. Hopefully we can be selected. It will be a great opportunity if we do get it, but that's not up to us anymore. We have done everything we can.
THE MODERATOR: We'll take questions for Coach Fox.

Q. You had four-something seconds left after they tied it. You didn't call timeout right away. I assume that was so you could get a look at their press that was set up. In hindsight would you have rather just let them play on than call it with 0.8?
COACH FOX: We wanted to get the ball in the front court for that reason alone. Didn't want to have to go the length of the floor because of their pressure. I thought that we would have a little more time than 0.8. I thought we would get the timeout with a couple seconds.
As a matter of fact, I think when I first hollered, it was around 2 seconds, I think I was trying to glance at the clock, but the referee went to the monitor and obviously got it right. Ended up with 0.8. The ball went in. So, sure, I mean, I wish I hadn't called it, because the ball went in. But, you know, that's a tough, tough break.

Q. You mentioned fatigue a little bit. How did that manifest itself? Do you think their pressure got you guys, how they got back in it? Is that where you think you guys got a little tired? What are you talking about when you talk about the fatigue factor?
COACH FOX: I probably should have played more guys. But this was a hard-fought game and I rolled the dice with those kids who have carried us so far this year. But their pressure wore on us. Second game in two days, and you really didn't see the effects of it, I don't think, until the second half.
And then we coughed it up a couple times just with some turnovers we hadn't had all year. Threw one in the corner right there out of bounds that they got and went in there and we just fouled them. And we haven't made that play in a while.
But you got to credit their defense for being pretty relentless. And I don't know if fatigue was a factor on the free throws, we missed a handful there in the gut of it.

Q. Do you feel like you needed this win to get in the NCAA tournament?
COACH FOX: I think we're a tournament team. I don't think we had to have this game to be in the NCAA tournament. Our RIP, I think, going into the day was probably -- when we started the tournament it was in the 30s. But a top 40 RPI, a top 40 schedule, a winning record away from home, a winning record in the SEC. And we avoided bad losses. So I think the things that the committee has traditionally asked us to do, I think that we have put together a resume that answers all those questions, and we don't have a lot of negatives on there.
So I think that we are a tournament team. If I don't call that timeout and the ball goes in, you know, you don't get to ask that question. That's how close it is.
But this team, I think, they have put themselves in a position to get serious consideration.

Q. Given the circumstances, big lead, the timeout and everything and the stakes, is this as bad a loss as you have experienced at Georgia? What are your feelings? Is it kind of a devastating feeling?
COACH FOX: No. This is a very hard loss. This is a tough loss for these kids, and they feel awful because they have invested a great deal. Their season's not over with. It's a hard loss and a very difficult one because of the stakes. I don't know if I compare one loss another. We make a couple free throws and handle the pressure there a little better then the outcome could be different, but we didn't do that. And so now we'll have to sit back and wait.

Q. When you saw Dustin's shot go in, what was your first feeling there?
COACH FOX: My first thought was that I knew I had called the timeout. But then I looked at the clock and I thought we would get some more time there. That was my first thought.

Q. This is the second time in seven days you played Alabama. Did they do anything different? Did you see them do anything different and did you prepare different? What kind of game plan did you use?
COACH FOX: We didn't play a lot differently. We felt like that in the first game that we had some pretty good schemes that we didn't execute very well. And we did a lot of the same things today that we did in the first game. I thought that they played fairly similar to how they did the first time, probably some adjustments. But both teams fought hard. It was a hard-fought battle.

Q. What do y'all do tomorrow? Do you practice tomorrow, take the day off, or how does that work?
COACH FOX: Tomorrow, we'll rest tomorrow.

Q. In your coaching career, have you ever come to Selection Sunday where it was this situation in terms of Nevada, or did you feel like there was less questions there whether you would be in and out?
COACH FOX: No. We lost a tournament game in the first round in Nevada and had to wait Friday, Saturday, and Sunday to find out whether we were in or not. So, yeah, we had that situation there.

Q. You got in that time?
COACH FOX: Yes, we got in.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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