Nov. 16, 2012
Mizzou Head Coach Frank Haith
On tonight's victory over Nicholls State...
"Give Nicholls State a lot of credit, they were very disciplined on the offensive end. It was sort of a long, dragging game, and I thought they brought the fight to us on the offensive end to start the game. Then in the beginning of the second half, we brought the fight to them."
On Alex Oriakhi and the importance of having presence on the low block...
"We got to keep throwing the ball inside to Alex and establish that as an emphasis to who we are as a basketball team. We're going to keep going to him, even though I think it's a little different for him. But it's an important part of who we are as a basketball team."
On Earnest Ross's performance....
"It's the second game in a row for him. I think he's matured a lot since the first two exhibition games. If he lets the game come to him, he's going to shoot it at a high percentage."
On Keion Bell's performance...
"He's really been pressing. And when he made that play (a soaring baseline rebound in the early stages of the second half) I called him over and told him to just play his game, not to worry about making a mistake. And I think that got him going. He hit a three on a pull and kick situation, got active on defense and ended up with four steals tonight. So I think you started to see him play the way he's capable of.
Mizzou Player Quotes
On Keion Bell's performance tonight...
"Keion (Bell) is a great player, once he gets going, man, it's hard to stop him. He is an athletic player. He is going to rebound; he is going to get out there and finish."
On his (Ross') three-point shot....
"Once I get my feet set and just get my feet under me, I have the confidence to knock shots down. (If I do that) I will see a lot more go in."
On the defense tonight...
"As a team I don't think we played great defense, but we played good enough. We came out with the win and that's all we're concerned about."
On the upcoming tournament in the Bahamas...
"We have a lot of work to do and we're just preparing for that and only time can tell."
On his improvements on offense...
"I think Coach Haith is just doing a great job at giving me confidence, and I think as a player, that's what any basketball player needs."
On his role on the offense...
"Honestly, I feel I'm not really much of an offensive player, but Coach Haith is doing a great job of emphasizing throwing the ball to me and I feel when they double team me I'm going to be able to make plays as well."
On his improvements from the free throw line...
"After practice I would just run through free throws and obviously post moves, but I was working on my free throws a lot. It's definitely been paying off."
On finishing around the rim...
"I think I'm just rushing (shots) honestly. I just get so excited when I'm down there, I think I just rush. So, Coach Haith just told me to take my time and finish."
On the first half against Nicholls State...
"I think we do come out flat, but I feel we don't start to play with our energy until we are in a hole. That's something that definitely has to change, especially with the competition we have coming up."
On heading to the Bahamas next week...
"We all came to Mizzou to play our best, so I think guys are real excited. It will definitely be a true test. We are going to play guys just as big and just as athletic as us, so I think we are ready. This is what we are going to face at the end of the season."
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