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MOUNTAIN WEST CONFERENCE MEN'S TOURNAMENT


March 15, 2013


Steve Fisher

Jamaal Franklin

Chase Tapley


LAS VEGAS, NEVADA

New Mexico テや 60
San Diego State テや 50


THE MODERATOR:テつ We're joined by SanDiego State.テつ Coach, some remarks on tonight's game.
COACH FISHER:テつ Always hard when you're the first team to come up and talk in these kinds of events.テつ Means you're going home.
We were beaten today by a really, really good team that can hurt you inside and outside.テつ They did that to us tonight.
They went inside to Bairstow and Kirk and effectively Snell got hot at three‑point range, made back to back‑to‑back threes on us.
Disappointed we didn't play better.テつ Disappointed we didn't keep it closer.テつ Proud of our effort and fight.テつ We weren't quite good enough today.
The good news is we'll live to play next week.テつ And I do believe we'll be good enough when we suit it up next week for somebody.
We're going home.テつ We had a goal to be playing on Saturday, where we'd been the last four years, and we're not.テつ So it hurts.テつ It should hurt.
New Mexico's very good.テつ I'll reemphasize that.テつ And I'm hopeful that ourselves first, but others in this league, will go into the tournament and prove how good our league is also.
THE MODERATOR:テつ We'll open it up to questions to the student‑athletes.

Q.テつ Jamaal, can you talk about the battle you and Tony had tonight.
JAMAAL FRANKLIN:テつ Me and Tony always battle.テつ We're basically brothers from another mother, 21/21 all the way.テつ He had a good game.テつ He got hot from the three in transition.テつ I think I made it difficult for him in halfcourt offense.
In transition he got hot in the three‑point line with three threes in transition.テつ But the battle is always going to be like that, me and Tony, since we was in Arizona at Westwind Prep.

Q.テつ Could you talk about how tough New Mexico is down low.
JAMAAL FRANKLIN:テつ Their bigs is real good.テつ Bairstow started off real hot.テつ First half I think he had 10‑8.テつ Dominating the glass.テつ When you're chasing good shooters around, it's hard when they're setting real good screens.

Q.テつ You and Tony are very different players on the court.テつ Do you talk at all on the court?
JAMAAL FRANKLIN:テつ Like for us talking trash to each other?

Q.テつ Trash or otherwise.テつ Is he vocal at all on the court?
JAMAAL FRANKLIN:テつ No.テつ When we playing against each other, it's basically quiet.テつ We give each other as much respect as possible because we're basically family.

Q.テつ How tough is it to play in an environment like this where there's so many UNM fans?
CHASE TAPLEY:テつ Shouldn't be tough at all.テつ You should want to play in this kind of environment.テつ If you don't want to play in this environment, you shouldn't be in this team or in this league.
You should have been excited.テつ Just makes you play harder.

Q.テつ Chase, what is it that will be different if you guys are to be better next week, as Coach alluded to?
CHASE TAPLEY:テつ We just got to be tough, bottom line.テつ We have a mental toughness like Coach said, just play hard for 40 minutes.
THE MODERATOR:テつ We'll continue with questions for Coach Fisher.

Q. テつYou alluded to it a little before in your opening remark about the strength of this league.テつ What do you think the capability is for your team and our teams in this league in terms of making a deep run, past the Sweet 16 for the first time in Mountain West history?
COACH FISHER:テつ I think a lot will have to do with the luck of the draw.テつ I do know New Mexico will go in with a good high seed, so that will be very helpful to them.
I think New Mexico, in particular, maybe Vegas, Colorado State have the size that it won't matter who they play.
I think we're better served when we play perimeter‑driven teams.テつ And you got to go in unafraid.テつ You got to play well.テつ You got to get a little bit lucky.
I do think there's an opportunity this year for somebody to advance deep.テつ I'm hoping that it's us.テつ We're going to have to obviously play better, play a little smarter if it's going to be us, because this is a really, really good league and all of us have been battle‑tested, both in the league and outside the league, and have been successful both places.

Q.テつ You beat up on New Mexico the first time.テつ Evolution of their two big men, the difference between now and two months ago?
COACH FISHER:テつ This sport is really funny in terms of scores.テつ Sometimes you can do everything right, but you can't make a basket.テつ Then you don't look good.
In our first game, they scored 34 points.テつ They had some good looks.テつ We played them at our place.テつ You get in the flow, not unlike tonight.テつ I think when you're always churning and chasing from behind, that adds exponentially to the stress that you feel.テつ And if you try too hard, especially at the offensive end, it can show.
But they're a good team.テつ They were a good team when they came into our building.テつ They didn't play particularly well.テつ I think we had something to do with it.テつ But they're playing awfully good right now.

Q.テつ You alluded to the strength of the conference.テつ How would you compare the last couple years in the Mountain West to the years when you were coaching Michigan in the Big Ten?
COACH FISHER:テつ That's been so long ago that I can't remember back to that point.
I do know I've been in the league for 14 years.テつ I'm the only guy.テつ And the league has never been as good as it is right now.

Q.テつ I asked Jamaal about this.テつ It's been something repeated throughout the course of the season when they match up against each other.テつ Steve Alford talked about how Snell's defense has improved.テつ Can you comment on that.
COACH FISHER:テつ Tony is a good player on a good team.テつ He's a very willing basketball player to do whatever he's asked to do, to attempt to do that.テつ We all like players like that.
He's talented.テつ And I think that he's just starting to realize how good he is and how much better he can be at both ends of the floor.
Sometimes when you make a couple shots, that helps your defense.テつ But I think not just Snell, but all of the New Mexico team, they guard, they guard you hard.テつ They're very, very tenacious with how they guard you.

Q.テつ You can look at the stat sheet and see what their bigs did offensively.テつ It seems like their bigs really gave you trouble defensively when you got into the lane.テつ Could you talk about that.
COACH FISHER:テつ Their bigs did give us trouble at our end.テつ In situations against a lot of teams, we would get to the rim with a chance for baskets and/or fouls.
And today they made it hard.テつ They made it hard for us to get shots on the rim with their length, with their size, with their aggressiveness.
We tried to spread the floor, but they do a good job of, when there is dribble‑penetration, of sinking, filling, making it hard for you to turn what maybe looks like a shot at the rim to a really, really difficult shot at the rim.
THE MODERATOR:テつ Thank you, Coach.
COACH FISHER:テつ Thanks.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports




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