Miss. State vs. Auburn Postgame Quotes
AUBURNTIGERSDOTCOM
AUBURNTIGERSDOTCOM

AUBURNTIGERSDOTCOM

Feb. 12, 2011

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Auburn Locker Room

Head Coach Tony Barbee

On the defense during the last three minutes of the game...
"I thought the last three minutes were solid. We did some things defensively, and they also missed some shots that they didn't miss early in the game. The thing that I liked, down whatever it was in the second half, the guys didn't pack it in. We haven't all year long, but all I talked about was being mean and nasty and tough and then come winning time, let's not break down defensively. Let's not break down offensively. I thought we executed well on both ends of the floor. They missed some shots that they were knocking down early in the game, and some guys stepped up and made some big plays. I was disappointed in Kenny Gabriel's effort for the majority of the game. I was on him bad. I was taking him out of the game because he wasn't giving us much, but that is the response I want. When I get on you, when I'm down your throat, I don't want you to go dig a little hole and disappear. I want you to respond, and he came on the floor and responded with some big defensive plays, a big three, some big free throws. I know it feels good to get a win, especially at home in front of our fans because they were great tonight."

On being down 19...
"I felt like we could make a run at it because they were missing some shots. We just couldn't make any. We had balls at the rim, we had post-ups, but that has been the story all year long so it's not surprising. I just kept telling the guys in the huddle that when you get the opportunity to contribute offensively, you have got to contribute. You've got to be able to make that shot, whatever that shot is, and we got some great looks. Finally we were able to get some tough ones to go in. We stopped fading away. We started attacking the rim, and then some guys made some big plays down the stretch offensively and defensively."

On the decision to play Rob Chubb...
"Chubb is again disappointed in the decision he made, but at the same time, he is a college kid. What most college kids do, like most of us did when we were in college, we made dumb decisions. It doesn't mean you throw him under the bus and forget about him. He served his punishment. It hurt the team, us not having him for that two game stretch and nine or 10 practices. I though he did the right things. He apologized sincerely to everybody. As much as he embarrassed this program and me and his family, more importantly he embarrassed himself, and he truly understands that. He's back and he contributed to us winning today."

On getting the first SEC win at home...
"I think it's as much mentally for the kids. I say that, and it's not like we haven't gotten a win at home so the guys have been let down. They haven't. Their effort has been great. Their effort has been consistent. Some of the other things offensively, the toughness, the desire, those things have been a little inconsistent, but the consistency in terms of the effort has been there. They see that you can't break down mentally, no matter how bad it is. You can turn it around, and they did that today."

On the win and the rest of the season...
"It shows us. We've had our opportunities. We had our opportunities at the Georgia game. We even had some opportunities at the Tennessee game. We didn't get it this close, but we had our opportunities when we made a run in the second half. It shows you if you keep believing, keep executing and keep believing in each other, good things can happen."

On struggling the last few minutes of game...
"A lot of that is experience and you don't gain that experience until you go through it over and over and over again in games, and that's where you gain confidence. You can recover situations and over and over again, whether you're down five with three minutes to go or you're down 18. I don't know if we've ever gone over it when we've been down 18, but we've gone over those situations a bunch of times. It gives you confidence when you drill it in practice that this is what we are trying to do, whether we are up five with three minutes to go or we're down eight with three minutes to go. This is what we are trying to get accomplished, so it's not like it brand new come game time. We attack those situations in practice every single day.

On fouling out Mississippi State's big guys...
"We were able to get to the rim which put them in some situations to foul. I was disappointed in the way our bigs attacked their bigs early in the game. We were settling for, what I call, soft fade-aways, which officials aren't going to give you fouls when you fade away from the basket, whether there is contact or not. So I just told the guys at half time to throw it to the post, give me something strong, give me something aggressive at the basket. Put the official in the position that he has to make a foul. If you fade away even if there is a foul, they aren't calling it. I thought the bigs did a good job of that in the second half, which we got some fouls on and our guards did a good job of turning the corner, with our ball screens to put the guys in the position to foul."

#33 Earnest Ross, G, So.

On tonight's comeback ...
"It was tough. Coach (Barbee) told us to keep believing in our game and fighting back. We kept on, and I am glad that we came out with the win tonight. Coach told us that as long as we believe, we have a chance to win and at least compete in every game."

On gaining confidence from tonight's win ...
"It gives our team a lot of confidence. In the previous games we have been coming close, like going into overtime against Georgia. Coach keeps on telling us to work hard in practice and that it will pay off in the end. As you can see tonight, we worked hard and got the win."

#22 Kenny Gabriel, F, So.

On defensive stops late in the game ...
"We were just trying to put a lot of pressure on them so they could not set their offense or run plays. We had an advantage by running people at the ball and getting in the passing lanes to get fast break layups."

On Mississippi State getting frustrated late in the game ...
"You could see it because a lot of them started trying to make plays at the end. They were making bad passes and giving us a big chance to get in the passing lanes, get lay ups and draw fouls at the other end. You get frustrated when things don't go your way."

On his steal and dunk at the end of the game...
"Like I said we were just trying to get in the passing lane, then Earnest Ross tipped it, then I got it. I saw him up the court, but I thought if I passed they might steal the ball. I took two more dribbles and jumped and tried to finish it. It got the crowd into the game and we got the win."

On the crowd noise in the arena tonight...
"It was the loudest since the Alabama game. We try to get the arena like this every night."

On the effect of today's win on the rest of the season...
"I think we can build from it, and it is a good experience for us. At the beginning of the season, we would be down by 19 and not know what to do. Now at this point in the season, we know what to do. We just need to execute and get stops and get to the free-throw line. We can just look at this game, takes notes on it and move on and get more wins."

On Mississippi State's players fouling out... "At halftime, Coach told us we needed to get to the free-throw line. We didn't have any free-throws in the first half. He told us to be strong with the ball, go to the rim and get fouled. That is what we started doing in the second half. When you start doing that, the referees are put in the position to make a call. We got to the free-throw line and made the free throws. Once we got the two main big guys out of the game, we could attack the basket. Then when they help down low, you can kick it out and hit jump shots."

On Rob Chubb being back...
"It really helped. He gave us some more rebounding and added another body, so we are glad that he is back."

On struggling in the second half...
"At the beginning of the game I was making shots, but on the defensive end I was a step behind. If you continue to do something wrong, Coach is going to take you out of the game. He may yell at you, but at the end of the day he wants you to let it go and go out and play basketball. I think I responded well to it."


Mississippi State Locker Room

Head Coach Rick Stansbury

Opening statement ...
"It is a disappointing loss, not just because it is a loss, but because we played so well for about 35 minutes and those last five minutes we just melted down. We had absolutely way too many turnovers, too many unforced turnovers. I think it started with that technical foul because that gave them two points and gave them the ball back. From that point on, there were just way too many turnovers. We stepped in and missed a big one that would have put us down the stretch. They just made all the plays down the stretch. They made three point plays, two on the post with the foul and then one in the corner in the last three and half minutes. Again, we had way too many turnovers that you just can't have in that situation."

On matching Auburn's aggressiveness ...
"We played good for about the first 35 minutes. We came out and played with great energy and took care of the basketball. We moved the ball and got it where we wanted to get it and made shots. We did that again in the first thirteen or fourteen minutes of the second half, but that last five minutes of the game was just a bad meltdown. We just didn't keep the same intensity defensively. We had a huge play. (Renardo) Sindey got a rebound, and we were up five. Then he walks around to get the rebound and turns around to get it and they foul him out. That is a huge play in that game. I don't know how many rebounds there were in the last five minutes of that game, but there was a bunch of them and you can't do that on the road. I don't care how big of lead you have."

On playing Kentucky on the road next...
"This is a tough one here. This is a game that you needed to win. You were in position to win, and you don't close it out. Now, we got to get ready for the next one, and they aren't going to be easy to beat."

#24, Kodi Augustus, F, Sr.

On the final eight to nine minutes of the game while Auburn was making its run ...
"We had lots of turnovers. There wasn't a particular reason, just turning the ball over."

On how hard this is to bounce back from...
"We're just getting ready for the next one. Like I always say, you can't dwell on losses. The referees called it the way they called it. You can't do anything about it."

#3 Dee Bost, G, Jr.

On the final eight to nine min of the game while Auburn was making its run...
"I don't know if I could tell you I would, but I don't even know what happened. It was really disappointing. I can't even say what I want to say. It's just disappointing."

On what the mood was like on the bench...
"It was exciting. We can't blame anyone but ourselves, not the coaches not the refs. It's us the players, it's our fault. Like me turning the ball over late in crunch time and doing dumb stuff. We can't blame anybody but ourselves."

On bouncing back...
"We got to. If we don't, it's going to be an embarrassing loss on the road."

On Kenny Gabriel...
"He was huge knocking down the big three-pointer to put them up one and dunks. I mean he just gave them a lot of energy and credit to them, they came out and outplayed us the final nine to ten minutes. We can't blame anybody but ourselves like I said."