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March 13, 2013

Jim Boeheim

James Southerland

Brandon Triche



COACH BOEHEIM:  I thought that Seton Hall was a team I really didn't want to play.  They really passed the ball extremely well.  They used the whole clock, and they've got four guys that can shoot.
We weren't active in the beginning.  We left guys open, Oliver and Smyth, and they had nine and six, I think, in the first five, six minutes, and they had two the rest of the game.  We got better defensively.
Our offensive movement was the best it's been probably all year.  We really moved the ball.  Mike played, I think, his best game of the year.  James kept us in it when we weren't playing well.  And then Brandon and C.J. got going the second half.
For us to be effective, Mike has to make plays, and Brandon and C.J. and James have to score.  That's what happened in this game.
I thought it was‑‑ we haven't played a good offensive game in a long time, but this might have been, if not our best offensive game, certainly right there in terms of ball movement, shots that we got.  The better shots you get, the more you're going to make.  We had really good movement.
Their defense is very good, and I just thought it was a really good offensive game for us.

Q.  You didn't lead at all in the first half.  What was different in the second half of play?
COACH BOEHEIM:  We really‑‑ I told them at halftime we're leading because we were so far out of it, to be tied at halftime was a lead to me.
Then we kind of got going, but they came back when we got the first lead, but then we just continued to move the ball, and our defense got a lot better.  Our defense got a lot better.
Again, the teams that play with four shooters‑‑ fortunately, there's not many of those teams, but teams that can put four shooters out from the three are very difficult to play against.

Q.  James, you're a New York guy playing here in the last Big East Tournament for Syracuse.  Can you talk about your emotions going out there, playing in New York.  How much do you want to keep the Syracuse run going here and also just how well you played.
JAMES SOUTHERLAND:  It definitely feels great being back at home, playing in our last Big East Tournament.  At the same time, I want to go in there and be focused, be a leader for your team, and just go out there and make plays.

Q.  Brandon, after you hit the one three‑pointer up at the top of the key, a little fist pump there.  We don't usually see any emotion out of you.  What was going through your mind?  What were your emotions like when you saw that go down?
BRANDON TRICHE:  I haven't made a three‑pointer in like a month.  So I figured I'd celebrate a little bit.  I'm showing a little bit more emotion this year than any other year.
But just trying to do whatever I can to help the team.  Just being confident out there and trying to make plays.

Q.  Coach, was there any different feeling for you walking into the building this morning?
COACH BOEHEIM:  Yeah, there was.  In the locker room before the game, I was thinking about all the times coming here.  I first came to the garden when I was a sophomore in college, the old, old garden.  Seems like about 50 years ago.  Oh, it was 50 years ago.
I was thinking in the locker room before about the game, some of the games, and some of the highlights we're playing.  Things have kind of been two years coming, but now that it's here, your whole life has been spent in this league, and the last 31 years coming to this building, that's a lot.  That's a lot of memories, a lot of time.
It's just been such an amazing place.  Unless you were here for all of them, you probably can't grasp it, and I can't explain it probably as well as I should.  But Dave Gavitt did something that nobody could have done ever, no one.  You can pick anybody.  Nobody except somebody above could ever have worked this out.  What he did to work this league out is incredible.
Like Louie said, he dragged us into the league.  We didn't want to go.  Louie and I talked about this.  We're winning.  What do we want to do this for?  What do we want to come to New York for?  Dave Gavitt was a great‑‑ first of all, he's a great friend of mine, in the interest of full disclosure, but he was a great man.  I mean, he really was.  He built something for all of us.
There's a lot of people in the Hall of Fame that would never be in the Hall of Fame, never, not a chance, if it wasn't for him.  Mike did an unbelievable job.  I think they both knew what was coming, and what was coming was inevitable.  Nobody should ask how the Big East was broken up.  People should ask how did it stay together with the differences, the schools.
Of all the games in the league and everything, those are great, but the games here‑‑ I mean, I've been fortunate to be in a lot of them, to have been in 14 finals here.  I remember every one of them like yesterday, the plays.  Walter Berry should have never blocked Pearl's shot.  It would have been a happy ending.
The heartbreaks are what makes the good ones so great.  You have to have them both.  I can't really describe it accurately.  It's just‑‑ it's my whole life.  I never thought it would happen.  I never thought I would last five years or ten years.
I'd have been happy if someone said, Coach, you're going to coach Syracuse and be in this league ten years.  We'll give you ten pretty good years, but that's it.  I'd have said, okay, I'll take it, right then.  It's just been unbelievable.

Q.  You didn't get to play against Pitt about a month ago.
JAMES SOUTHERLAND:  I thought I did a good job of moving the ball.  I'm capable of spreading out the floor.  I know Pitt plays a physical game.  We're going to go out and be physical and move the ball around.  We'll be tough to guard.
COACH BOEHEIM:  No scouting reports, James.

Q.  Brandon, just a followup on what coach is saying.  Syracuse has been identified with this tournament and vice versa.  What does this event mean to you as a player?
BRANDON TRICHE:  It means a lot.  It's one of the reasons why I chose Syracuse.  Just being able to play in the Big East meant a great deal of me coming to Syracuse, just to be able to play tough basketball.  Being from Syracuse and not being able to come down to the city as much, just being able to play and just remembering G Mac, the run he made his senior year, just made it that much exciting than watching my senior year, Johnny Flynn going to six overtimes and played a hell of a game.
All these memories, it's a lot.  Especially being here four years, being able to come down here with my team, it means a lot, especially to be the last one.

Q.  When you say that to us, it's been my whole life.  So like how do you feel about that?
COACH BOEHEIM:  Basketball life.

Q.  I guess, but in your basketball life, it is going to be different next year.  Are you going to be able to embrace that part of the challenge in the same way that you always have?
COACH BOEHEIM:  Yeah, it's a new chapter.  This has been unbelievable, but next year we'll be tremendously challenging, and I think that will help me next year.  I think that will be good for me because it's such a tremendous challenge to change leagues and to go down there.  It's very difficult to do that.  We know that.
So it is a tremendous challenge, and I think that's good for me.  Tired of the same old thing every year.  It will be great.  It will be a different thing, but I think a tremendous opportunity for us and for our players.
The Big East, as great as it is, has changed over the years.  There's always change in teams.  So we're going into a league where the reason I never wanted to go to the ACC years ago when it first came up was I didn't want to be the only team in, and I don't think that's been a good thing.  I think that's hard.  I think we're going in.  Six or seven Big East schools are going to be there in two years when you look around.
First of all, Miami and Virginia Tech were in our league.  Boston College was in our league.  And Pitt, Notre Dame, and Louisville are going in.  So you've got six or seven teams that you're familiar with.  So I think it's different than it would have been going in ten years ago.
And I think it was‑‑ this was inevitable.  There was no way this wasn't going to happen.  It's a miracle that it didn't happen sooner.

Q.  Seton Hall played pretty much five guys today.  Did you sense they were starting to get hotter?
JAMES SOUTHERLAND:  We did a great job playing in the first half as a team.  Even though we got down, we made smart plays and moved the ball, and we didn't try to rush anything when we were down.  We did a great job in the first half of hanging in there, and the second half just took control.
We had a lot of guys come off the bench giving us energy.  We had Baye coming in playing hard against good shot opportunities.  We had Jerami Grant, who didn't have that many minutes but got a nice tip dunk.  Just having them go in there and play hard was to our advantage.
COACH BOEHEIM:  This was a slow game, and they were going to play five guys or six, and that's what we did.  When you play against a matchup, you've got to get a certain rhythm on offense.  It's different than if you're playing a team that's playing man to man.  It's easier to play more people.  Very difficult against a matchup you're trying to get in a certain rhythm, and there's free movement.  There's not really a pattern, you're running against a matchup.
So I think it's important instrumentally to keep the same guys out there, and they're keeping the same guys out there.  It's a slow pace.  Pittsburgh tomorrow will be more physical, man to man.  We play more people tomorrow.
JOHN PAQUETTE:  Syracuse, thank you.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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