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April 2, 2013

Logan Aronhalt

Alex Len

Mark Turgeon


IOWA – 71

MARK TURGEON:  Well, give Iowa credit.  Iowa was great tonight.  They made plays, they made free throws, they made big shots when they had to make it.  They were ready to play.  That's the story of the game.  They were ready, and we weren't.  They got off to a great start, and I thought we played incredibly hard.  I thought we tried to win.  We just didn't play smart enough to win tonight.  Our shot selection and our turnovers, decision making‑‑ if it wasn't for Alex down there who kept the game close, and then Logan made some big shots for us.  But we never quit.  We cut it to five twice and just made two or three really bad decisions when we did that.
But proud of my team, and give Iowa a lot of credit.  They were great.

Q.  Logan and Alex, you look at those first 10 minutes or so and it seemed like you guys were a little bit scrambled.  What do you think went into the slow start and was it really tough to fully recover from that at any point?
ALEX LEN:  I think it was most likely having so much time off this late in the season.  In the middle of the season that's good, but this late, it's tough to get in a rhythm and play, and I think guys maybe got out of rhythm a little bit.
LOGAN ARONHALT:  I think we were just over excited.  We wanted to win so bad, and we made a lot of turnovers.  We didn't take care of the ball.

Q.  The type of turnovers you guys had, traveling, kind of making sloppy decisions, it didn't seem like the team that's progressed so much the past couple weeks.  What went wrong there and why was that the case for you guys?
MARK TURGEON:  Well, Alex said, we were really excited, and we didn't handle the big stage very well.  We've been in a lot of big games, and we didn't handle this stage very well.  What Logan was trying to say, and I'll take some of the blame, we've limped home.  What I mean by that, Dez Wells took a lot of time off because he couldn't practice.  He was really out of sync, had a bruised knee, had some problems with his ankle, hasn't practiced a lot.  We've had one game in 13 days counting Alabama.  I didn't know what we were going to get in Alabama because we hadn't practiced a lot and the guys just played.  We were trying to practice yesterday and we just don't have enough bodies.  So we were out of rhythm.
But we just compete so hard, we try so hard, we're able to‑‑ I don't know how we kept it close to be honest with you.  It's really because of Alex protecting the rim down there.  We finally figured out their zone a little bit and we drove it.  But all the free throws we missed, front end and one‑on‑ones, lay‑ups, it's amazing we kept it as close as we did.  It's a credit to how hard these guys play.

Q.  You guys started the season at the Barclays Center here in New York.  Did you think that may have helped a little bit with the jitters and that maybe fully contributed to the lack of playing and rhythm?  Is that why you couldn't?
ALEX LEN:  It feels like forever ago, really, and this is‑‑ and New York is a great stage, whether it's the Barclays Center or Madison Square Garden.  We may have been a little over excited, but that's not why we lost the game tonight.

Q.  Logan, I know this is all sort of fresh and stinging, but when you look back at the season as a whole what are your thoughts on making this deep run at the end of the year and picking it up in the postseason?
LOGAN ARONHALT:  Well, I have to agree with what coach always tells us, it's good to play well late, and that's what we did, starting in the ACC Tournament when we played really well, and then to get this far in the NIT, not counting this game, we played really well.  It's the most exciting time to be playing well.  I'm just really proud of the guys, and we've made huge strides, especially the young guys.  They've come such a long way from how they were playing at the beginning of the year.  It's unbelievable.

Q.  I saw Seth go through warm‑ups.  Was he a possibility to play or was that just‑‑
MARK TURGEON:  In his mind, not in my mind.  He was pain‑free, but he couldn't shoot it.  He could handle it a little bit, but if it would have been his offhand, his right hand, we probably would have played him.  But it wasn't worth it.

Q.  The Iowa length or their change‑up defenses, did that cause some of the disruption?
MARK TURGEON:  I think two things:  The physicality which we weren't used to, and I watched them go right at Michigan State, and Michigan State is pretty physical, so we knew that and we talked about it, we just weren't ready for it.  But we could‑‑ I couldn't get my guys to understand the changing defenses and what we were supposed to do.  I couldn't coach from this end trying to help them in the first half.  Second half we were much better against the zone.  We just kept trying different things, and we spread them out and got to the foul line, just didn't make free throws.
I'll be honest, we don't get zone in the ACC, I just don't.  I'm trying to think, maybe Virginia Tech is the last time we got zone.  Like I said, we haven't had much rhythm in practice, so I was a little concerned about it and it showed.
But the good thing is we made adjustments and figured it out late, but the physicality and changing defenses definitely hurt us.

Q.  Now that the season is over, could you address even very briefly what your role is going to be with Alex as he determines what his future is going to be?
MARK TURGEON:  Yeah, I mean, come on.  The season is ended.  We were trying to win the NIT.  He was great tonight on a big stage.  We're going to do what's best for Alex.

Q.  Dez has been such a work horse for you guys especially in postseason.  How much did his foul trouble hurt you guys?
MARK TURGEON:  I feel sorry for Dez.  Dez wants it so bad, he gets so excited.  His foul trouble in the second half, he had three and then he came out and picked up four right away and then played smart and had a silly fifth foul.  I thought it hurt his rhythm and just wasn't his night.  Just wasn't his night.  It wasn't from a lack of effort.  He'll learn from it.  He's got to learn from this big stage and handle it a little bit better.  But wouldn't trade him.

Q.  It seemed like Roy Devyn Marble sort of played the Dez Wells role for them tonight.  How tough was he to guard for you guys?
MARK TURGEON:  He's hard.  And he's hard to guard for those guys that set really good screens for them, not always legal, but good screens.  We made two mistakes early, out of bounds under, hand‑offs, switch, and we didn't switch, and then they ran a ball screen early and Alex just didn't show, and the kid‑‑ he got going, he hit 10 points right out of the chute and he had confidence.  Pe'Shon is usually a guy that can guard him and I saw Pe'Shon did a nice job with him there for a while, but then there were other guys that made plays.  They had shot clock going down hitting shots, and the center hit one, looked like a shot put and it went in.  It was their night.  It was their night.  It wasn't ours.
I keep saying it's amazing we kept it as close as we did and competed until the end.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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