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MU-UWM postgame transcript

Transcribed by Michael LoCicero

Jamil Wilson

Good to get break at this time?

I think it’s good for everybody throughout our whole program, not just our players. I think we absorbed a lot of information over this first semester, these first 12 games including a loss. We know how devastating that can be after making a run 10 games and then losing. I think us bouncing back tonight, mentally as hard as we could to get this win was good for us and now everybody gets to go home for a couple days and relax with their family and get off their feet and come back ready.

Get the ball 1-on-1 with a guy in a familiar position

I think we’ve been emphasizing a little more getting the ball into the post, especially with Davante (Gardner) getting there with as many moves as he has. Jae (Crowder) and being the face up player he is and me being the versatile player that I am, I think we’re emphasizing on getting the ball inside even more so we can get into the bonus area and get some free throws and free points from the line. Scoring while the clock is stopped and that’s good for our team.

Concern about response after a loss

I don’t think everyone was negative about it at all. I think everyone was pretty positive, the next day we watched film and we addressed it. A couple of guys stood up, Vander was one of the guys who pointed a lot of things out and everyone pretty much agreed on what the problem was. It wasn’t anything that needed to be blown up or talked about or argued about. We knew the problem and the next day we attacked it in practice. We got through it and moved past it.

Didn’t have a spark?

Everyone is kind of beat up, tired, flying back late, getting up early and working out. Everyone tries to get into Earnest (Eugene) and his student staff, try to get into the cold tub and get rolled out, do something for their bodies. Mentally, it was just wearing on us and with Chris (Otule) out, a lot of guys are logging more minutes and a lot of guys aren’t used to it yet and their bodies are still sore. As far as the pop and the enthusiasm and the spark we usually play with, we still have it, but it’s not as fresh as it used to be because we did lose Chris (Otule) on the back line. That does put a big dent in our team, but then again we’re still just two games out of that, so we’re still trying to play with it and how to adjust.

Jamil and Derrick subbing for Davante and Junior

Davante (Gardner) is not more of an offensive threat but a ‘big,’ so more times than not someone is going to foul him when he gets the ball. Junior (Cadougan) is more of an offensive threat than Derrick (Wilson), so on that end, Derrick would come in and play defense because Derrick (Wilson) is more of a defensive stopper. Me, he (coach Buzz Williams) puts me in when we’re going to do something where its more of a faster, up-paced tempo because I can move quicker than Davante (Gardner), I hope.

Physical game?

Not a real physical game. I think it was one of those things where guys are playing hard and you let your emotions go and one foul goes and it doesn’t get called and it kind of builds up and then another foul goes. Most of them, I don’t think they were as hard as they looked from a standpoint that I think that a couple were tough fouls, hard fouls, but most of them were good fouls, just plays on the ball and missing and things like that. It wasn’t a real hostile game.

Milwaukee missing threes

I’ve never seen a team shoot 4-for-28. I would say it was partially our defense. There was a few times where they had open looks, but then again that happens when you’re flying around and rotating like we do. Then again, running them off the line and being there on the catch and not letting them get too much space. We knew that a couple of those guys can really shoot it. Just constantly being in their face and making them uncomfortable, knowing that even if they got the ball that someone was coming to close out or someone was closing nearby. I think we set that in their head the first couple minutes of the game, so throughout the game they were probably second-guessing their shots.

Mentality change when Crowder went out early with 2 fouls?

It (the mentality) didn’t change at all. We were just trying to do the same thing, starting on the defensive end and work our way out. Offensively, it does because Jae (Crowder) produces a lot of points for us. I figured a shot or two or an offensive rebound, another possession, something on the offensive end to get us going or contribute to get us some points here or there would be good. Other than that, not at all.

_____________________________________________________

Rob Jeter, Milwaukee head coach

Opening statement

First of all, happy holidays. As I look at the stat sheet, as I told my team, I’m not discouraged by the things I see on the stat sheet because I saw a team out there that played hard, played the 10th-ranked team, the percentages as you look at the stat sheet where we made them play. They did the same thing to us, too. If we had a couple more shots, we may have been in a different position down the stretch to have a little bit better result. As I look at this tape again, I’m going to see some guys that were in some positions to be successful and I’m encouraged by that, because I know my guys and know how confident they are and they will be ready and they will step up and make shots. Defensively, they played with a lot of heart. We just wanted to get in here tonight and just try to play our base and play our game against a team that makes it very difficult for you to do that. At times, Marquette did that and they did it very well. They are a very tough team. They really get after you and really take you out of some things and we were searching and trying to find a rhythm with some of our offensive things and we just couldn’t do that. That’s a credit to Marquette. Again, I see some positives and I would love to crack a joke now, but there’s really nothing to laugh about other than if we would have just made a few more shots and I would have loved to make a few more shots.

Meier misses a three; Crowder makes a three to make it a 14-point lead

Tony (Meier) had a few. I’m looking at it and he had 10 of them. He had nine of them. That’s what Tony Meier does for us, so I’m not upset about any one of those. But we didn’t make them tonight, and Marquette had a lot to do with that. The way they really kept us out of our rhythm and I think after his first shot being challenged, it discouraged him a little bit, put him on his heels. But you’re right, we missed some of those shots and they came down and made a few and really put us on our heels.

Series taking on more meaning?

It’s a basketball game. I think that’s for you guys to talk about. We enjoy playing basketball and that’s why we put on the uniform and we want to play. We want to play whoever we can play. Just by being here right in the city, this is a fun game for us. I’m excited to come over here. It’s no different than any other game that we play, other than it’s fun because we have two groups of fans in the city that enjoy watching basketball, seeing a good basketball game. I think that’s what makes it more exciting. But other than that, it’s another basketball game that we enjoy playing.

Controlled game defensively

That’s why I’m not discouraged. I just have to believe that we’re going to make some shots. I have to believe that some of the guys running at us tonight, hopefully we don’t see those same types of guys in our league. We do have some teams that are pretty talented. I’m not discouraged other than just make sure that as a group, it’s an emotional game for both teams and you just hate to see it get ugly. I’m sure Buzz (Williams) would say the game thing; you don’t want to see it get ugly. You just want to see two teams play and we got back to playing basketball, and it was fun.

Kelm two fouls early, Haarsma and Meier didn’t step up

That’s how it happened tonight. Normally, in the past, guys have been able to step up and pick up the slack. Kyle (Kelm) hasn’t been able to practice and I could give you a lot of different things on what could happen or why it could have happened that way. But the result is, you put guys on the floor that are ready to play and you play. So that’s what we did tonight. I could give you all types of things; final exams and this guy is hurt, but we’ve been doing it all year that way. We just didn’t do it better.

Ryan Allen

It was spectacular. Thirteen (rebounds) and 16 (points), six blocks, one turnover. I guess he could have went six for six from the free throw line. Other than that, he played while cramping up too, he played like a senior. Pleased with his effort.

Allen on DJO

He played him hard. He did a nice job. He made him take tough ‘twos.’ I look down at the stat sheet; their three-point shooting percentage was 18 percent. 2-for-11. That’s more like how we like to see it. We want people to take tough ‘twos,’ and Marquette made tough ‘twos’ tonight.

Junior Cadougan

You look at any team and you try to get other people to make decisions and plays. Its no secret of Marquette that Junior’s job is to run the team and he does a great job of that. Tonight, we wanted to make him more of a scorer and he did that. He played a nice game.

_____________________________________________________

Buzz Williams

Response after loss

I thought the maturity of our team collectively was outstanding. I’m really proud of them. You think about all that we’ve been through since Chris’s injury and you think about the days that we’ve had to practice. It’s been really tumultuous in regards to at Wisconsin, travel, at New York, finals, a week off. You can’t really have good practices during finals. Play Saturday, travel Sunday, at LSU Monday, back Tuesday morning at 3:30, in bed at 5:00, practice really good yesterday, play today, it’s been a lot of stuff. I thought that how we handled the loss, how we responded to what the film taught us, how we practice yesterday, how we had shoot around today, how we handled not making shots tonight was superb.

Tired mentally, push through it

I think that’s the thing man, I agree. I’m tired. They say that you should always pay attention to your best two conditioned guys to understand when they’re tired physically. So then what two guys do you suppose, I’m asking, you should pay attention to mentally and emotionally? Because you think about the difference between Jae Crowder, who has been to three schools and is 22 years old in his college career. And you think about the accountability we have grown into in counting on Todd Mayo, who is 19 and a freshman and played 12 games in the last 60 days for a top-20 team the entire time and we really need you to guard a really good player and be a really good player on offense. That’s a lot of stuff. But, having said that so is every other team in the country. I think it’s been by far our toughest non-conference schedule since we’ve been there, but I think our non-conference schedule should always mirror the preparation needed to the complexion of our roster for Big East play. So I think fighting through the fatigue, I don’t think its mental as much as it is emotional. Everybody is excited to play us guys, you realize that right? When you go from hunter to hunted, that’s a transformation that only the ones that continue to stay, even though their the hunted, if they continue to stay with the hunter mentality, those are the only ones who are able to stay through. Making that last step as a coach, making that last step as a team, that’s hard man. It’s hard. And I think that in a lot of way, I think our guys are going up. But we do need three days off.

Thoughts on Milwaukee

I told coach Jeter before the game that I hope he can get his team back healthy, because I think they’re better than a 9-3 record entering tonight. I think they’ve played a really tough schedule. Loss at Michigan State. A lot of teams are going to lose at Wisconsin. A lot of teams are going to lose at Northern Iowa. I think they’re really good. I hope a lot of teams lose at the Bradley Center. I just think juggling is (Kyle) Kelm going to play? Juggling is (Ja’Rob) McCallum going to play? Juggling is Tony Meier going to be a 30-minute guy or an off the bench guy? Is (Shaquille) Boga going to play? When is he going to play? Because that puts more pressure on number 2 (Kaylon Williams). I think their roster is really good. I think he (Jeter) does a really good job in their style of play. I think they have a distinct plan and I think their purpose and execution is really good.

Series growing?

They asked me this, Tom asked me this before we played, I guess it was Green Bay. I’m not from here. I probably don’t have the perspective that coach Jeter does, that (Wisconsin) coach Ryan does. I think it’s good for the state on a lot of different levels. I don’t what else to say. No, I don’t have a problem with it. I respect coach Ryan, I think he’s a hall of fame coach. I respect coach Jeter. I respect (Green Bay) coach Wardle, so let’s play. Everybody plays everybody it seems, so yeah, it’s good. I think in most states, that happens too.

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