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NCAA MEN'S 2ND & 3RD ROUNDS: LOUISVILLE


March 15, 2012


Craig Cusick

Noah Hartsock

Dave Rose


LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY

Marquette テや 88
Brigham Young テや 68


THE MODERATOR:テつ Welcome to BYU.
COACH ROSE:テつ Congratulations to Marquette and Coach Williams and his staff and his team.テつ They played outstanding.テつ I thought it was really hard‑fought battle.テつ They came out with great energy, and we had a hard time early in the game, rebounding their misses, and they scored a lot on second shots.テつ Then I thought we got that corrected, and then they just made plays.
When we made a run at them, they always seemed to come back with a big shot, a big basket somewhere.テつ So I'm proud of our guys for how we battled.テつ I thought that we had a lot of opportunities that we could have converted here or there.テつ We could have got over the hump and maybe challenged them there at the end.
Marquette was just too good today.テつ So my congratulations to them.
THE MODERATOR:テつ Coach, now we'd like to direct questions about today's game to the student‑athletes.テつ If you could, raise your hand.

Q.テつ Noah, what did Coach Williams say to you when you guys were in line at the end of the game?
NOAH HARTSOCK:テつ He just came up to me and said‑‑ he came out and watched me play when he was an assistant at Colorado State.テつ I didn't remember that.テつ That was a long time ago.テつ It seems forever back in high school.
He just mentioned that and said great year.

Q.テつ Noah, can you just talk about the frustration in the first half, especially when you were saddled with the three fouls and had to watch.
NOAH HARTSOCK:テつ It's always frustrating.テつ You always want to be out there to help your team.テつ Just made some foolish errors on my part.テつ They played great defense.テつ It's tough being on the bench and watching your team play.テつ You just got to do your best to cheer them on.
Second half I wanted to come out and play as hard as I could.テつ We made some runs but not enough to get the victory.

Q.テつ Noah, as far as trying to live up to last year in the program and a lot of guys stepping into new roles, now that the season's over, could you sum up what it's been like, maybe the pressures and everything.
NOAH HARTSOCK:テつ Last year it was incredible.テつ The roles were reversed.テつ We were the 3 seed, and we had Jimmer, Jackson, one of the greatest players at BYU.テつ This year bringing seven, eight new freshmen.テつ We had high expectations, especially since we got a 30‑win season last two years.
We talked about take it step by step, preseason, work out what we need to do there.テつ And then the conference play, focus on that.
I think we did a great job and had a great year.テつ Just really proud of the coach, staff, and teammates and all the hard work they put in.

Q.テつ For Craig, could you just kind of reflect on the game and your thoughts on the game that was just played?
CRAIG CUSICK:テつ I think, as already expressed, I was glad to see that we had opportunities to come back and win.テつ I think that's reflective of our team this season because all my teammates and as a team and the coaches, everyone was believing the whole time that we could come back.テつ Just proud of the way that all of us played and how the coaches coached us to be able to believe.
We cut it down below ten a few times.テつ Unfortunately, Marquette was‑‑ they did a good job of holding that lead that they had because they're a good team and well‑coached.テつ But just proud of the way everyone played tonight and how hard everyone fought.

Q.テつ For the both of you, can you talk about what it's like to play against a guy like Jae Crowder, who's got guard tendencies but then also battles tough in the paint.
NOAH HARTSOCK:テつ He's a very versatile player, very skilled.テつ He can shoot the ball.テつ He can get in there and rebound.テつ Just very aggressive, strong player.
He's just one of those special players that coaches always, when they find him, they just want to keep them as long as they could.テつ He's a great player and a great competitor.
CRAIG CUSICK:テつ I just feel any time you get a caliber of player like that with the size that he has and the strength that he has, you just have to be aware of him at all times during the game, whether it's on offensive rebound, defensive rebound.テつ He can shoot threes.
So like Noah said, he is very versatile.テつ So it's a privilege to play against him, and I think we tried as hard as we could and we fought hard, but he is a really good player.

Q.テつ Did you guys feel the effects of‑‑ or any fatigue or the effects of playing twice in two days?
NOAH HARTSOCK:テつ I don't think so.テつ I mean, we do a great job conditioning.テつ Every day in practice, we get up and down the floor.テつ That's how we practice is how we play.
There might have been a little bit, but I think we were able to get through the game.テつ Especially it's nice here in the tournament, the every four minute time‑outs is a lot longer.テつ So it gives us more time to rest there.
CRAIG CUSICK:テつ I think the same thing with Noah.テつ In our conference play, we got used to playing Thursday, Saturday games with only one day of rest.テつ I feel like we had the energy and the effort tonight, just made a few too many mistakes.テつ Or we had chances, but like I said before, Marquette did a good job of holding us off.

Q.テつ Noah, for the third straight game, you guys had a miserable start.テつ Can you put a finger on why that started happening?
NOAH HARTSOCK:テつ That's tough.テつ Just‑‑ it just happens.テつ It just seems like that's what's been happening.テつ We were able to make that run last night, but we knew tonight, if we didn't have a great start, it would be a really tough time to get back in.
Sometimes just how the game flows and how the season goes sometimes.

Q.テつ Noah, is it one thing to see Marquette on tape and another thing to face their physical play on the court?
NOAH HARTSOCK:テつ Yeah, I think when you watch film, you don't really know how aggressive it is until you're up close and personal.テつ But we know, being from the Big East and just how physical they play and the reputation‑‑ remember we played South Florida last year in a tournament, and I remember they were great physical, strong guys, and we just knew it was going to be an aggressive game.

Q.テつ Craig, can you talk about just what Noah's meant to this team this season?
CRAIG CUSICK:テつ It's hard to describe in words how amazing Noah has been for us this year.テつ Throughout the whole season.テつ Any time that we need a bucket, a stop, a rebound, he was that senior leader that everybody wants on your team.
And he came up plenty of times throughout the whole season, every single game when we needed him, to either hit a shot, offensive rebound.テつ I don't think words could describe how I feel about Noah and how great I think he is and how important he was for our team this year.
THE MODERATOR:テつ Any more questions for our student‑athletes?テつ Guys, thank you.テつ We'll have questions for Coach Rose.

Q.テつ Dave, kind of the same question that I asked Noah on the poor starts.テつ Can you put a finger on that at all or just what's gone on?
COACH ROSE:テつ I think we've played some pretty good teams.

Q.テつ Yesterday, you talked a little bit about the keys in the game, and one of them you mentioned rebounding.テつ Was the offensive rebounding a really good point of how they beat you today?テつ And how did that help?
COACH ROSE:テつ I think that's the one thing that‑‑ the question to Noah was what you see on tape and then what you actually experience.
We knew they were a really aggressive offensive rebounding team, but so was Iona but a lot different.テつ These guys were a lot more physical.テつ I think that they had nine offensive rebounds in the first 10, 11 minutes or so, and then we kind of righted the ship, and I think they ended up with ten offensive rebounds at halftime.テつ So the last ten minutes, we did a pretty good job of keeping them off the glass.
But our game plan was to try to keep them away from the basket and make them make shots.テつ They did.テつ They made shots.テつ If Marquette makes nine threes, the next game, that team is going to have a hard time beating them.テつ If they make nine threes the game after that, that team is going to have a hard time beating them.
They were terrific tonight.テつ Really good.

Q.テつ Dave, had Noah ever gotten into that kind of foul trouble that early, and how much do you think that affected things?
COACH ROSE:テつ We had one game in the season, I think, at Portland, where he picked up really quick fouls early, but he's been just so steady and so‑‑ we've just been able to depend on him.テつ He's just been so consistent all year.
I'm going to bet that his ankle is pretty sore, and the reason that I say that is because he played 23 minutes, I think, without a rebound.テつ And Noah is a competitor, and his line is offensive rebounds, defensive rebounds, points, blocks.テつ And tonight, that was difficult for him.
I think he worked on that ankle all day.テつ Yesterday on the bus ride down from Dayton, last night, and he's a warrior.テつ He fought through it and gave our team all he had.

Q.テつ Dave, could you describe the guard line and trying to find‑‑ it seemed difficult to try to find the right matchups, the right time, each guy offering strengths and weaknesses.テつ Were you looking late in the season more at matchups or maybe who was just playing well at that particular time?
COACH ROSE:テつ That seemed to be our challenge as a coaching staff.テつ Somewhere in the middle of the season, our confidence, as far as our perimeter shooting, became an issue.テつ And we had such consistent play from our front line, but I think that we really kind of juggled our guard line depending on individual play that night.
We shot 38 percent from the field tonight, which is‑‑ it's difficult to win an NCAA Tournament game at 38 percent.テつ And a lot of that has to do with Marquette's game plan and their defensive presence, but we had a lot of open looks that I think our guys will spend a lot of time this summer working on so that we can become a better shooting team next year.

Q.テつ Dave, can you have any recommendations for teams that are going to be facing Marquette on how to stop Crowder?テつ What can you do against a guy like him?
COACH ROSE:テつ That's a tough assignment.テつ He's the Big East Player of the Year.テつ They probably have two Big East Players of the Year on their team.テつ Odom is tremendous in what he does and how he does it, how he plays the game.
The toughest thing is, when you crowd him on the perimeter, he can get right past you.テつ And then when they don't play through him, he is so aggressive on the weak side of the basket, trying to rebound the ball, that the best way you probably could play him is not let him touch the ball.
But it's hard when a post guy can go to the perimeter and is as skilled as he is and can shoot from the perimeter.テつ You try to say, okay, just keep him away from the basket, and he still has enough skill to score.
I would say probably good luck.

Q.テつ Can you just talk about the effect of your seniors, consecutive 25‑win seasons and tournament appearances.
COACH ROSE:テつ These two especially, our two seniors, Charles and Noah, are special guys.テつ They've been involved in more wins than any players in the history of the school.テつ So we will miss them.テつ I will miss them personally.
I think that the accomplishments of this team, as far as from the outside, maybe will not be appreciated as much as from the inside, as far as our coaching staff is concerned.テつ With the challenge of changing leagues and dealing with a whole different mindset and emotional approach to every game, traveling on the road in conference to every venue that no one's ever played in, being able to go through a season without losing consecutive games.テつ Those are all really important to us and our coaching staff and getting back to the tournament and being able to win a game in the tournament, it's always a special year.

Q.テつ With Gardner, the way that he changes the makeup of Marquette's style, were you guys expecting 22 minutes from him, and how much did that change the game?
COACH ROSE:テつ It's hard to get a beat on them as far as their personal style and how Buzz was going to play them.テつ We thought we were going to see a lot of full court pressure.テつ We did.テつ It wasn't quite as aggressive as we thought it would be.
I think Buzz did a great job of rotating his guys in and out and keeping them fresh.テつ That was a little more difficult for us.テつ We played a lot of guys a lot of minutes.テつ I don't think they played any harder than we did.テつ I don't think they fought any harder than we did.テつ They were just a little better today.

Q.テつ Could you sum up Matt Carlino's great year, when he came in, replacing a point guard, and what is important for you in the off‑season, both individually and how he revolves around the team.
COACH ROSE:テつ Matt had a tremendous year, and he's going to be disappointed in how he played tonight, but I think that as a true freshman, when you're in your 20th game, 21st game, those are places where you've never been before as a player, and I think this experience has been extremely valuable for him.テつ I think that he has got great talent, great ability.テつ Hopefully, his desire and work ethic will continue as it has since he was young because he continues to improve.
What we need to do is have him improve over the off‑season, and we've got all the confidence in the world that he will.テつ Like all of our players.テつ I think it's just desire to get better and to prepare yourself to help your teammates the next year, and I think our guys will do good at that.
THE MODERATOR:テつ Coach, we're out of time.テつ Thank you.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports




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