McNeese State vs. Auburn Postgame Quotes

AUBURNTIGERSDOTCOM
AUBURNTIGERSDOTCOM

AUBURNTIGERSDOTCOM

Nov. 11, 2011

Recap |  Box Score |  Photo Gallery 

Auburn head coach Tony Barbee

On having fast starts to both halves...
"A lot of that has to do with our depth which allows us to play more aggressive and when you play more aggressive, whether you press or not, then good things happen. Like last year, we had to play a little slower style. We had to slow the game down, and when you are trying to slow the game down it is hard to get off to fast starts like that. The press really got us aggressive in every area of the game, offensively, defensively, and then we went right back to it to start the second half. I always talk about the first five minutes of that second half being the most important five minutes of the game. You either let them back into the game or you give them no hope, and we didn't give them any hope. First of all, how about that crowd? The students were unbelievable. The overall crowd was great, but I keep saying it. We are going to need our students to be like that. It looked to me like that student section on all three sections was sold out. They were there early, they were going crazy and I want to tip my cap to them because we are going to need them all year long, but our crowd in general was great. I was pleasantly surprised, but that's what I've been asking for, so it looked like they responded to me, too, because just like hold my team accountable every day in practice and every game to bring it I'm going to hold these fans, too, and they did tonight. So, I'm excited about that."

On Rob Chubb's performance...
"He's been working on it. He's been working on it. We all saw glimpses of that last year, but he was almost like a freshman last year. For his first time playing extended minutes last year like a freshman, you're going to be inconsistent. You are going to have your moments and then other times you are going to disappear. All these veteran guys who played for me last year, I expect them to be more consistent. Twenty-one (points) and seven (rebounds), career high for Rob Chubb, do I think he is going to get that every game? No, but when it is an off night it can't be two (points) and two (rebounds). It's got to be 14 (points) and nine (rebounds) on an off night. He's a very good player and he's turned himself with hard work into a very, very good player, and now he's got to believe that about himself because it's not what I tell him he is. It is what he sees when he looks in that mirror. That's confidence. That's where confidence comes from, and he's really grown his confidence through the hard work. Physically, he's worked on his body, become stronger, so now he is able to finish some of those shots even against a big body like the (Rudy) Turner kid. He was good tonight.

"It was good to see Frankie (Sullivan) back out there healthy. He didn't have a typical Frankie night, but he's still trying to work his way back, getting his legs back under him. Those shots that he didn't make tonight, he'll make. Varez Ward was very good tonight. He made shots, made plays, delivered passes, rebounded the ball. Josh Wallace was good. Those two are going to play great off of each other as a one-two punch in that point guard spot. The fact that we had four guys in double figures and Frankie should have been or Allen (Payne) should have been that fifth guy in double figures that's the kind of team I envision, a balanced team with five guys, maybe six, in double figures because those are the ones that are hard to guard. One night it will be Chubb's night. The next night because of how a defense might play, it could be Chris' (Denson) night and so on and so forth. It was a great start. We did a lot of great things tonight, but still we've got to finish better. We've got to finish better. You get the big lead and that next step in the program is not becoming complacent and we did. It seems like we held them scoreless at the start of the first half for the first seven or eight minutes and now you look from that 12-minute mark on, the amount of points we gave up that's unacceptable, but they're a good team. They've got good players. We just played well tonight."

On Auburn's good shot selection...
"It's what happens when you are around for a year or more. Veteran players who have played for me, they understand. We really talk roles and define roles for these guys so they all know what's a good shot for them. What's a bad shot. I didn't see many bad shots out there tonight. The guys really played for each other. When you've got what I think is a talented group and they play unselfishly and they play for each other and not themselves, good things are going to happen."

On Bernard Morena and Cedrick McAfee's status...
"Bernard was just a coach's decision. He was out so long with his little knick knack early in the year that he still hasn't had the reps that he needs, and I'm not going to put him out there until he can show what he can truly do. Cedrick is banged up. It looks like he has a stress fracture in his foot and could be out four weeks or more. We are hoping we get him back by the holiday tournament and so we'll see. I'm disappointed for him because he has really worked his tail off in the preseason practices, but he is a hard worker just like the rest of these guys are, so I know he is going to be diligent in his rehab to be back as soon as he can for this team."

Rob Chubb, Jr., C

On setting the tone...
"During this summer, the emphasis was on us. We wanted to get bigger, stronger and faster. After months of practice and getting beat up, it is time to start dishing it out. Last year, we were on the receiving end of some whoopings. Now we have new pieces to the puzzle. We are more experienced. Now it is our time."

On the confidence level...
"Last year, we were a headless body. We didn't have a leader. We were out there, but people weren't taking us seriously. Now, we have Frankie (Sullivan) back. He is our pitbull, our leader. We are a different team with him in there. Now, we have new pieces like Varez (Ward) and Noel (Johnson). Once Noel gets healthy, he is going to be a great piece to the puzzle."

On his new post moves...
"All summer, my hook shot was where it began and ended. Over the summer, my emphasis was on free throws and different moves than the hook. Once they commit to guarding the hook, the only way to defend is to leave your feet. Once that happens, you can do a lot of left handed stuff."

Varez Ward, Jr., G

On team's performance...
"I think we played really well. We put a lot of emphasis on the defense tonight. I think we held them to under 40 percent shooting. There is always room for improvement. I am not content with just this one win."

On the big runs...
"Coach has been preaching at halftime to not come out and play sluggish. Tonight we wanted to come out and play the zone. I wanted to play the zone, because I wanted to come out and play hard."

On the defense setting up the offense...
"It definitely set up our offense. They were missing a lot of shots, and they got us into our transition game."


McNeese State Coach Dave Simmons

Overall thoughts on the game....
"Well this is a tough place to come into. We knew they were going to be good, a lot better than last year. Coach Barbee is doing an excellent job. He is recruiting well and has some excellent players. I am pleased with a number of things especially our freshman. They came in and played well. We wanted to find out where we were, and obviously we have a lot of work to do. It's a long ballgame. Our season is not made in one game. All that matters is where we are at the end. My hat goes off to Auburn they are a very good basketball team that is going to win some basketball games this year. We knew it was going to be tough playing in their building with their fans, just like it is tough when teams come and play in our building with our fans. We shot the ball extremely well from the free throw line which is something I was concerned about while watching practice, but we did not rebound the ball like I would have liked us to. We are just as big and strong as those kids are but I thought they played harder. We have a lot of work to do. We have to get Patrick Richard going. He struggled tonight, but the main thing is that he played hard. We will be fine. We just have to make sure we improve every time out as a basketball team. I am not pleased with a loss, but I am pleased with the effort we came out with."

On Auburn's pressure defense...
"We knew they were going to come with pressure and I wanted to see how we would handle it. Obviously, we did not handle it well during the first five minutes of the game. After we settled in, we made some good runs at them and had a chance to cut it to eight before half then they put a run on us."

On the slow start...
"We had a veteran basketball team last year that could handle pressure well. We had guys that could shoot it from the three. Today, we were 3-of-18 from the three point line which is something we have to improve on, but for the most part, we are going to get there. I know we will because that's the type of character this team has."