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March 8, 2012

Brittney Griner

Kim Mulkey

Odyssey Sims


Baylor 72
Texas Tech 48

THE MODERATOR:  We're now joined by the Baylor Bears, who have arranged everything up here.  Coach, your thoughts, and then we'll take questions for the student‑athletes.
COACH MULKEY:  I don't have any.
THE MODERATOR:  We'll go straight to the student‑athletes.

Q.  After that very first media time‑out of the game, you guys came out, got like a shot clock violation on defense, came down, scored real quick.  You were kind of off and running after that.  Talk about how your defense creates offense for you.
ODYSSEY SIMS:  Just from the finish, we were going into the game knowing that they were going to be physical.  I think coach did a very good job of not preparing us for it.  We didn't take any team lightly.  Can't second guess ourselves.  Thought that we did a great job.  We knew that they were going to drive and take the hit.  So we did our best to stop that and get on the shooters.

Q.  Brittney and Odyssey, did you sneak a little peek at K‑State and Iowa State today?  You handled K‑State pretty well the first two meetings.  Jalana Childs had quite a game.  Could you talk about either playing them before or what you look forward to tomorrow?
BRITTNEY GRINER:  I caught the last eight seconds of the game, but K‑State, they've got great players, and they're well‑coached.  It will be a good game.  It's always tough playing a team three times, but we'll do it.  We'll get in film, see what we did wrong in the film and just try to correct it and go out and play hard.

Q.  Odyssey, what do you know about Kansas State?
ODYSSEY SIMS:  They're a very well‑coached team.  Got to get on the shooters.  Can't have too much help side and keep them in front.

Q.  Brittney, you mentioned how tough it is playing a team three times.  Texas played you guys so close the first two times.  The third time obviously wasn't a problem for you guys.  Why was this time easier than the other two?
BRITTNEY GRINER:  I don't know how many threes they shot, but I know it wasn't too many.  I just felt like we were really able to come out and play today.  I'm just glad we got the win.  My team is very special.

Q.  Odyssey, it seemed like your shot has struggled a little bit lately.  You had a rough night.  Talk about what was different tonight and had you been in the gym taking extra shots?
ODYSSEY SIMS:  I guess I was just coming back slowly.  I've been in a little shooting slump lately.  I've been in the gym shooting before and after practice.  Just you never know when you'll be in a position to hit the game winner, or I just shot the ball well.  That's all I can do.

Q.  Brittney, you had 15 points and then took a seat with about 10 minutes to go.

Q.  I apologize.
COACH MULKEY:  That minute matters.

Q.  Everybody who checked into the game for Baylor had a bucket.  How nice was it to get an early breather and then watch everybody get out on the floor?
BRITTNEY GRINER:  It was great.  This program is way more than me.  They always say Brittney Griner and Baylor, but I can't do it myself.  On nights when I'm not shooting that well or my team, we still have everybody that can attack and score.  So you can stop me, but you got to stop everybody else on our team too.  I love being able to sit on the bench and just watch my team play and execute and keep playing.

Q.  Brittney, kind of continuing that theme late in the first half, Makenzie gets a three, and then Ashley banks one in at the buzzer.  How nice was that to see those two have a big moment like that?
BRITTNEY GRINER:  It was great.  Makenzie shot, and then Ashley's shot‑‑ after Ashley's shot, everybody running on the court, it was like a buzzer beater.  It was good.  It was just really‑‑ it was really nice being there, watching our team, and everybody on the bench jumping up and celebrating.
THE MODERATOR:  Any more questions for our student‑athletes before we turn them loose?  Okay, ladies.  We'll let you go back to the locker room.  Thank you very much.  Congratulations on your win.  We'll take questions for coach now.

Q.  Kim, did you feel like your defense was pretty special today?
COACH MULKEY:  I did.  I thought that we were very aggressive.  I thought we picked up too many fouls, had to sit players.  At the same time, those players going to the bench gave other players opportunities.  With me not playing Brooklyn today, it gave Ashley an opportunity, and you like to see seniors do well, and you like to see your own kid do well.  So I was a happy momma at halftime.

Q.  You mentioned not playing Brooklyn.  Is she injured?
COACH MULKEY:  No, she's not injured.

Q.  Coach, did Tech do anything different offensively?
COACH MULKEY:  They tried to do the same stuff they'd done the previous two games we played, but the difference is they didn't make threes.  When you spread the floor and go to a nontraditional type of offense to attack Griner or to keep Griner from being effective on the defensive end, you have to get away and deviate from what you normally do.  Well, that's good if you're successful at making threes.
But I thought we were out there and didn't give them many open looks for threes.  3 for 14, it was pretty good.  And to hold somebody at 18 percent, or 18.5 percent shooting in the first half, you're guarding people.

Q.  Kim, even if it's not three‑pointers, how important is it for Odyssey to shoot like that and give you an outside presence?
COACH MULKEY:  It is.  Odyssey can shoot.  Odyssey is really trying to be too generous, I guess, in passing the ball around, and she's passed up a lot of good shots.  Odyssey can shoot the ball.  She just‑‑ any time she wants to, she can light it up.  But I think she's trying to develop more of her game on passing the ball and finding the open player.

Q.  I know you sneaked a peek at the first game.
COACH MULKEY:  No, I really didn't except for about the last three minutes.  So if it was something in the last three minutes, I may can answer.

Q.  You beat Kansas State twice by 30 points.  They snapped their losing streak today.  Just in those three minutes, what did you see?  How do you see tomorrow?
COACH MULKEY:  Well, those last three minutes, I really was trying to pay attention to both teams because I wasn't sure who was going to win.
I noticed Childs was very, very good those last three minutes.  And Chambers getting to the foul line.  You want the ball in her hands when the game's on the line.  But details, other than what I already know from having played them twice, I probably couldn't talk much about the game because I didn't get‑‑

Q.  Tell me what you know about them.
COACH MULKEY:  I know that you'd better defend them on the perimeter.  Don't leave them open.  I know that their post players don't shoot threes.  So to me, that's to our advantage defensively in allowing Griner to roam and help teammates.
But I also know they have two people on the all conference team, and we did too.  So they're pretty darn good.

Q.  Did you think B.G. was going to dunk one there?
COACH MULKEY:  Yes, I did.  I sure did.  I thought she was going up to lay it down.  I think everybody in the stands did.  Her mannerisms let you know that she meant business right there.

Q.  Brittney almost led you in assists.  I think at one point she was leading you.  Is that a part of her game maybe that's developed more than maybe even some of the other parts?
COACH MULKEY:  Well, it is.  She used to have way too many turnovers when she was a freshman, and really about half of her sophomore year because she was seeing a different level of play.  She's probably seen double and triple‑teams in high school but not at this level.  And I think that Brittney Griner makes everybody better.
What you saw happen today, Tech did a very good job defensively of eliminating or kind of keeping her from having as many touches as she normally would.  Now, four of those were turnovers by her.  So credit Tech a little bit, but what Brittney did, because Brittney Griner has to touch the ball, she makes everybody else score.
And that's the X‑factor or whatever you get with Griner.  Just the other night she breaks her scoring record because they guarded her one on one.  Take what the defense gives you.  If the defense is not going to let Griner get many touches, then the rest of you should lick your chops because you're going to score tonight.  If the defense is going to guard Griner one on one, then we're going to keep throwing it in there to her.
We've learned to take what we're being given.

Q.  Kim, the previous two meetings Tech kept these games close against you guys.  Other than the three‑point shooting, what else contributed to you guys blowing them out today?
COACH MULKEY:  I think we kept them from gaining momentum.  They were 6 for 8 at our place on threes.  I tend to think we played pretty good defense.  Sometimes you need to just give them credit.  I thought they shot the ball from the three extremely well the last two games, and I didn't think they did so today.  I'd like to take credit for that and say our defense was better, but I don't think our defense was all that bad in the last two games.  I think they just made shots, and today they didn't.
THE MODERATOR:  Coach, thank you very much.  We'll see you tomorrow afternoon.  Congratulations.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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