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March 13, 2011

Jeff Brooks

Talor Brooks

Ed DeChellis


Ohio State – 71
Penn State - 60

COACH DECHELLIS: I'm proud of our kids. We came in, we competed. We didn't play as well as we played last night. We missed a lot of easy shots early. We weren't very crisp. And they're a very good team. Ohio State is a very good team, they guard you. They made some big shots. The shot before the half was a big shot by Jon Diebler, kind of got them a little momentum. But I'm proud of our team, and an opportunity to play here with tremendous force, and we thought we could give it a good shot, and I thought we did, we just ran out of gas a little bit. But I'm proud of these two guys here.

Q. Could you just speak to the impact that Diebler's shot at the end of half had?
TALOR BROOKS: It was a huge momentum boost, especially because I thought we defended him pretty well. We were scrambling, I was right there in his face, and he just knocked it in. It took the lead from 3 to 6 and gave them a little momentum going into the half, and then he buries one right at the start of the second half. So it was a big shot.
But I think the biggest thing is like coach said, when the second half hit, I think we ran out of gas.
JEFF BROOKS: Talor hit on it pretty well. It was a big shot. When I got taken out of the game to give me a little rest and he makes that shot, I could just tell that they got that momentum going for themselves, especially Diebler, that was a big shot for him and that got them going for the second half. That was a big play, and he's a good player. That's why he made that shot.
The only thing we could do was try to come back in the second half and take some momentum from them, and we took their best punch and we did what we had to do.

Q. How were you guys able to block any NCAA thoughts out of your mind because I'm sure you had to do that before you played?
JEFF BROOKS: To be honest, I wasn't thinking about it at all. The only thing I was thinking about was trying to finally take down Ohio State. You know, none of the seniors here, we haven't beat them yet, so that was the game plan for us. We really wanted to beat them tonight, especially for a Big Ten Championship, and now we can worry about the NCAA Tournament since it's after the game.
TALOR BROOKS: You know, we just came out. We wanted to win this thing, man. So the thought of the NCAA wasn't even in our head. We honestly wanted to come here to try to compete and win. Unfortunately it didn't go our way, but credit them, they're the overall No. 1 seed for a reason. They're a good team, and we can't take that from them.

Q. It seems like you guys are really starting to be playing with a lot of cohesion. Do you think you guys are saving your best basketball for last here?
TALOR BROOKS: You know, the only positive about the loss today, going into the tournament obviously is that we can see what we need to improve on. I've been listening to all the people talking about how U Conn won five in five days and their biggest concern is will they wear out come tournament time. But that's not crossing our mind. We're playing well.
But like I said, this game I think will help us going in understanding what we need to improve on and things like that.
JEFF BROOKS: I can't say it any better. I'm happy now to see that we're playing our best basketball, as well. We didn't play too well tonight, but this whole tournament I think we played very good defense the whole entire tournament and just Ohio State, they're a powerhouse, so we're just going to go from there.
We're going to go back tomorrow, everybody is going to get their treatments, rest up, and then wherever we go for the tournament, we're going to take it head on.

Q. It seems like most people have you in the tournament. What does that mean for you and this group of seniors?
TALOR BROOKS: That's huge. We're just going to go watch the selection show and wait for our name to be called. We never experienced that, jumping around how they put the camera on you. That's a positive. It's a great feeling, but I'm just ready to go in there and listen to it and actually see the show.

Q. You're an hour from finding out for sure. Is there any doubt in your mind that you guys are in?
COACH DECHELLIS: Well, there's no doubt in my mind. The numbers are pretty good for us in terms of strength of schedule, in terms of RPI, Top 50 wins, Top 100 wins, so there's no doubt in my mind. But we'll wait here for -- I guess it's about a half hour and see.

Q. Every coach has seemed to talk about the strength of the Big Ten. What does it mean to probably have seven teams in the Big Ten make the tournament for the first time?
COACH DECHELLIS: It's been a great league all year long. It's been very, very tough, very, very grinding. We play 18 games in this league, which is a little more than other leagues. You know, you just continually beat each other up, players and coaches. The league is as strong as it's ever been. I'm very, very proud to be part of the lead, in my opinion the best league in the country with our fans and support. You know, I can't say enough about the Big Ten.

Q. You guys made a deep run this week. What do you think is going to be the key to making a deep run in whatever tournament you're in again next week?
COACH DECHELLIS: Well, the key is for us to get home and get some rest and kind of clean up some of the bruises we got and bumps, regroup, and go back at it defensively and rebound. Offensively we didn't make many shots tonight. I think Jeff and Bubby made some shots, but I've got to get the other guys offensively in some rhythm because we didn't get -- Tim played well last night, got in foul trouble tonight, but I've got to get some other guys in some offensive rhythm.

Q. How proud are you of your seniors' work ethic this season despite coming up short?
COACH DECHELLIS: Yeah, our seniors have been great for us all year, great work ethic. They're wonderful kids, been great ambassadors to our University. They're all going to graduate. D.J. has already graduated, Talor and Jeff and Drew will graduate this spring. They've worked hard every day. They've given us all they've had. They've haven't been a problem on and off the floor. They've been a joy and a great group of kids to be around, and I'm really, really proud of them.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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