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March 11, 2011
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA
BYU Ã‚â€“ 87
New Mexico - 76
THE MODERATOR: We're joined by BYU. Coach, if we could start with comments on tonight's game.
COACH ROSE: Well, I thought it was a great college basketball game. Two teams that knew there's a lot on the line. Both competed really well. I was really proud of our players. I thought that from the very first tip to the last rebound we were all playing together and we were playing hard. I just was really, really proud of how our players competed in this game.
Jimmer had one of those real special offensive nights that kind of kept a lot of energy with our team. But you watch it, it's amazing how you can have a team win, as big a team win as this is with one player scoring 52 points. The steals by Jackson Emery, the rebounds by Kyle, the toughness from Noah Hartsock, Charles Abouo, filling up the stat sheet like they did, it's a great team win. We look forward to tomorrow night.
THE MODERATOR: We'll take questions now for the student-athletes.
Q. Jimmer, given the struggles that you have had with New Mexico, how satisfying was it for you to play like this and you to get a career high on top of it?
JIMMER FREDETTE: You know, it was just a great night. It was a fun matchup to be against them. They've had our number for the past four games. Sometimes teams do that. We were just looking forward to playing them again.
We knew that we could play better than what we did in Provo. Our minds weren't quite right and everything. But we felt that if we gave a good effort tonight, we would have a chance to win. That's kind of what happened.
So it's very satisfying to win and to move forward.
Q. How aware were you of approaching 50 points? Did you realize the free throw was for 50 points?
JIMMER FREDETTE: You can kind of see the score, the points, because it's right next to the scoreboard. They put it up there for you. I don't know if it's always correct or not. You can kind of tell where you're at.
But I wasn't a hundred percent sure at all times, you know what I mean? But I did see some of the times when I looked up there and just saw the score. I knew I was having a good game. I saw it sometimes.
Q. Jimmer, can you talk about the matchups you faced in the second half without Dairese on the floor?
JIMMER FREDETTE: They put Kendall Williams on me. They also put Jamal Fenton on me for a little bit. It was mostly Kendall Williams in the second half. He's a quick kid. Tried to just keep me out of the middle, tried to make me make tough shots. I thought they did a pretty good job of it.
But I was just making shots tonight. That was kind of what happened.
Q. Coach Alford talked about how amazing it was you got 52 and shot one free throw. You've managed to stay patient and poised, not get caught up in the fact that maybe you're not getting to the line.
JIMMER FREDETTE: Yeah, I don't know. That's just the way the game happened. That's the way they called it. I was just fortunate enough to be making shots. To have our team be playing well, it doesn't matter too much. We were still able to pull off the win.
But, you know, sometimes that happens. We got through it.
Q. Jimmer, we talked about it, you played 40-plus minutes, scored 52 points. What do you and the team do to get ready to come back and play a big game tomorrow?
JIMMER FREDETTE: We have ice on right now. You see that. Just get therapy and rest and relax and try to get as many fluids as you can in you and eat right, get a good night's sleep. Come back tomorrow night and do it again.
No matter who we play, it's going to be a tough game. We realize that. We're in the championship and we're excited. So I think adrenaline will keep both teams very energized. Hopefully that won't be an issue.
Q. What was that atmosphere like? Given there's two teams split in half, seemed like an amazing atmosphere out there.
KYLE COLLINSWORTH: Yeah, it's a crazy atmosphere. But it kept us energized. Both teams played really hard for 40 minutes. We were fortunate enough to be able to grind out a win for our team.
Q. You'll either get San Diego State or UNLV. Talk about what each team presents for you tomorrow.
JIMMER FREDETTE: Yeah, both teams are a little different. They're both athletic. They'll have a lot of length, can really rebound the ball very well. UNLV playing in their home court, the crowd is always very, very excitable. They play well here. So that's a tough matchup in itself. They have some very good players on the team.
San Diego State, we all know about them. Very athletic. Very athletic. Can get rebounds, can shoot the ball. D.J. Gay is a great player, really leads that team. Both matchups are tough for us. But we're looking forward to going out there and competing.
Q. Kyle, you had nine rebounds this game. Have you felt added pressure with the absence of Davies or seen more opportunity to play harder?
KYLE COLLINSWORTH: In zone I'm down at the five so I have to rebound a lot more for our team. I just try to pick up the rebounds for us and box guys out and play hard.
Q. This was your highest point total. Do you feel it was your best game at the college level?
JIMMER FREDETTE: You know, it's right up there. It was a very exciting game. I just shot the ball really well. I thought it was a huge team effort just because these guys were rebounding the heck out of the ball and getting it out in transition. They were doing a good job of setting screens, spacing the floor so that they couldn't just double-team me. If they did, I was hitting guys for shots. They made some big shots, got some big offensive rebounds.
It was a great team effort and something I'll never forget.
Q. Kyle, when you're watching Jimmer on his way to making 52 points, what do you think is the role for the rest of the team?
KYLE COLLINSWORTH: As far as offense goes, like he said, we try to space the floor. When he shoots, we crash the offensive board. Gives our team another opportunity to score. We just try to get rebounds, make steals for our team, just play as a team.
Q. Jimmer, can you talk about what Dairese went down. The Lobos hung in pretty well. Where do you think they missed him down the stretch?
JIMMER FREDETTE: Just his leadership. He's been there for four years. He's the rock to that team. Keeps them all together. It's so unfortunate to see him go down like that. I've been with him for the last four years. He's had a great career here. He's one of the best players that I've played against in this league. He's a great defender. He's a great guy. We always talk to each other before the game. We like to battle.
He's a tough competitor and I realize that, and so am I. I've had great times battling with him. I just hope the best for him. I hope that his knee is okay and he'll be able to push forward in his career because he's a great player.
THE MODERATOR: At this time we'll dismiss the student-athletes and continue with questions for Coach Rose.
Q. Was there ever a time when you thought Jimmer was getting tired and you may have had to replace him tonight?
COACH ROSE: Not tonight. We've kind of negotiated between playing a lot more zone defense and putting Jimmer in a position to where maybe he can rest a little bit defensively, not chasing guys around.
It looked like the last three or four games in our man, one of the, you know, tactics of the other team was whoever Jimmer was guarding, he was having to chase him off of all the screens, everywhere he was going. Our coaching staff, they're terrific. They're the best guys you could possibly work with. I thought our game plan was good tonight.
We kind of flipped the two top guys, Jackson and Jimmer, because Dairese likes to come off on that right side. We had him coming into Jackson who did a terrific job on top of that zone.
I just thought that Jimmer would have been a little upset if I would have taken him out tonight, so we waited till the end.
Q. It seemed like in the first half it was kind of a shootout but in the second half you were able to up the defensive effort. Talk about the adjustments you made in the second half and how much of that was the absence of Dairese?
COACH ROSE: I think that, you know, that's kind of the nature of college basketball. The other night against Wyoming, I think we scored 30 points or so in the first half, then came out and scored 64 in the second half. You just kind of watch the film and wonder why that happens.
I think a lot of it has to do with the mindset of both teams. I thought defensively at halftime we made some great adjustments in our zone. We played a little bit more man in the second half because that first half with Jimmer getting a foul in the first minute of the game, it really kind of concerns you as a staff. You don't want him to pick up that second foul early.
But the second half, as the game went on, it seemed like we had most of our guys that were in pretty good shape as far as foul trouble was concerned. So we played a little bit more man.
But there's no question that, you know, Dairese's absence in the second half had an effect on this game. The effort of our players was as good as it's ever been. They were determined to win.
Q. Do you think this game answered any questions that the selection committee might have regarding seeding? Do you think it proved anything?
COACH ROSE: It proved that we're a good team that can win games. What the selection committee decides, if they watch this game, I think they probably still have a pretty good feeling about this team's ability to win games.
Q. What are your thoughts on Jimmer breaking Danny Ainge's all-time school scoring record? What do you think about what it means?
COACH ROSE: It's really hard to imagine where he was, like you said, to start the season, for him to actually break the record. I mean, Jimmer deserves it. Jimmer has played terrific all year long. He made a big decision to return to campus and forego the NBA draft. I think his preparation in the summer was probably unmatched.
How consistent he's been throughout this season, he deserves all the good things that have happened to him because he's worked really hard for it.
Q. In your mind, can he take a bad shot? Does he have carte blanche to do whatever he wants?
COACH ROSE: Oh, yeah, he takes a lot of bad shots.
Q. Is that hard for you to see as a coach?
COACH ROSE: I think it's different. I think it's different for our players. That's the one thing that our players have done really well throughout the entire season, is that there have been different times when we've needed Jimmer to do different things to help our team win. And he's the one that kind of figures out the nights that he has to have big offensive nights.
I think tonight it was so important for us to get off to a good start because we played maybe one of the first games we've played in Jimmer's career behind all 40 minutes the other night. They got off to a lead. We never caught 'em. It was really important to get off to a good start. I think he took that upon himself to score and to get a lead. Our players all responded to it.
Q. Can you address tomorrow night's matchup individually, how you're going to approach it, what kind of challenges they present?
COACH ROSE: Well, they're both really good teams. Both NCAA tournament teams, in my opinion. So whoever we get, it will be a really good preparation for us. Because I believe we'll be selected to play on. We can get some more time out on the court against a really good team.
UNLV will cause us a lot of problems. Defensively they like to get out and trap and try and take the ball from you. That's that challenge.
And San Diego State is extremely frontline oriented where they're going to pound it in. They're going to really rebound the ball. We'll have the similar challenge of trying to defensive rebound the ball as we did tonight against a bigger, stronger, deep, athletic frontline. That's a couple things we'll have to deal with.
Q. You've seen a lot of basketball over the years. Are there ever nights, tonight in particular the first half, where Jimmer leaves you and the coaching staff just shaking your head?
COACH ROSE: Well, you know, earlier in his career we would kind of shake our heads. Now we really kind of expect that, which is probably not the right thing.
But when he's in that rhythm where he believes everything he's going to shoot is going to go in, he's really hard to guard. They tried length, they tried quickness, they tried a combination of pressure and double-teams. Tonight Jimmer just found space, got into space and made shots.
I think, you know, everybody on the team has seen that before, and they were happy that it happened tonight.
THE MODERATOR: Thank you, coach.
COACH ROSE: Thank you.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports