Paine College vs. Auburn Postgame Quotes

Nov. 1, 2011

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Auburn Locker Room

Head Coach Tony Barbee

On Auburn's performance...
"This game came at a great time for us. It got to the point in those preseason practices where everybody was getting tired of everybody. These guys are tired of practicing against each other. They are tired of smelling each other's breath. It was good to get out there and compete against somebody else. I liked the way we started tonight. We came out with a lot of energy. We were tough and alert defensively. The biggest thing that I have been harping these guys on the past few weeks is how we haven't been finishing practice. It always happens. When practice starts to drag and the newness of the season has worn off, those practices get long. We haven't been finishing practicing, and that is what happened to us tonight. You want to win these exhibition games, but this isn't about Paine College. This is about us. I understand it is natural instinct when you are up 30 at halftime to let down, but what I am trying to across to my team, is what kind of team do you want to be? It is about finish, and we didn't finish tonight. There are a lot of positives from this game. I like that we out rebounded them by 17. I was proud that we had a 2-to-1 assist to turnover ratio. Those are goals of ours for every game. We got a lot of looks, but we didn't knock them down because we didn't have that killer instinct. There is a lot we could get better at."

On the status of point guard Varez Ward...
"I think it is a mild sprain. The doctors are still looking at him, but he had sprained that ankle earlier in the preseason, but now it has flared back up. I think it's just a mild sprain."

On Chris Denson's peformance...
"Chris played well. He has carried over from how he finished the year last year. He has gotten a lot better. One of the things we have talked about with Chris is his killer instinct on the floor. As a team and an individual, I want them to play with that kind of fire in their eyes. He struggled with that last year and got better as the season went on and that is why he played well at the end. That has really carried over. He has really worked on his shot. He knows that I have been on him. He rebounded the ball well tonight. With the lineup I started tonight, he essentially started at the small forward position so he will be guarding someone that is bigger than he is. A lot of times tonight, he got caught on the backside rebound position, and he didn't block out. Against Paine College, they just went over his back and rebounded the ball, but against these other teams that are a little bit better. It could get scary. He still has a long way to go."

On how long Josh Langford and Tony Neysmith will be out...
"No idea. They have some things that they have to do for me and the team to prove that they want to be a part of what we got going on. As of this point, it is indefinitely and then I will decide depending on how things play out on when they will return."

Chris Denson, SO., Guard

On performance during the game...
"I think I did well. Coach (Barbee) moved me to a different position so that I can get my offensive game going and help my team. We still have long way to go though, but we will be alright."

On individual improvement during the offseason...
"Anybody can tell you that my jumper has gotten a lot better. I went 20 percent shooting last year, and I have just been working during the summer just shooting and shooting. As you saw I hit a couple tonight, but I still think that I can do better."

On the new rotation system...
"It is pretty good. The way Coach Barbee coaches, you have to go 100 percent on every trip. You can get tired after three trips down the court so it is nice rotating in and out every three minutes or so."

Allen Payne, SO., Forward

On overall team performance...
"I think we played well in the first half, but one of the things that we struggled with last year was our consistency and to play a full game. We played very well in the first half but not as well as we could have in the second half. I think the other team outscored us by five in the second half, and that is not acceptable for us."

On individual improvement during the offseason...
"My body. Just maturing, getting stronger and working more on my handle of the ball so that I can be a more versatile piece for this team. Mainly in the offseason I was getting into the weight room with Coach Jason Riddell and working on my body so that I could be stronger."

On the lack of intensity in the second half...
"Naturally you go out there at the half up 50-19 and you think that we have the game already, but we have to sustain that intensity that we had in the first half. This is just an exhibition game. We are not going to be playing Paine College throughout most of the season. We are going to be playing teams like Kentucky and Tennessee, so we have to consistently play a whole game and not just a half."


Paine College Locker Room

Head Coach Jimmy Links

On the exhibition game...
"I thought the second half, we really finally got comfortable. For our guys in this atmosphere, it was new for them. It was the first time they've played together. We have a lot of new players, a new staff, a new coach, a new deal. I thought the first half was an adjustment for them, but the second half I thought we really came out and played pretty well. We just have to shoot a little better, and we will. We're just getting better every day."

On adjustments made in the second half...
"I thought we did a good job with our zone. It's funny because I put that zone in four days ago, and our team really figured it out and started guarding it well and contesting and boxing out. We only had 13 turnovers, so I was happy with that. We kept it low considering who we were playing. I think the guys made the adjustment to really come out and execute. We didn't execute any of our offensive sets well in the first half. The second half, we executed a lot more."

On goals for the rest of the season...
"For our conference, I think we can compete in our league really well. That's the goal is to play Auburn and then we're playing Georgia Southern on Friday in an exhibition game. Then we have a scrimmage, and we'll get into our league. These (games) get us ready for those."

James Devlin, Jr., G

On the exhibition game...
"First off, I think we didn't do as we would do in practice. In the second half, I think we came out and played and just relaxed. In the first half, we came out and we were just too excited to play this team. In the second half, we just came out and did what we do at practice, and it seemed like it worked out."

On having a young team and gaining experience from this game...
"It gives us a lot of experience because this is a high caliber team. They're Division I. We're Division II. The teams in our league aren't as good as this team, so I think we'll do very good in our conference."

On adjustments made in the second half...
"Just nerves, everyone calming down and just relaxing. Not worrying about who Auburn is, we just came out and just played."