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Men's Basketball

South Carolina-Mississippi State Post Game Quotes

Feb. 23, 2008

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Post-Game Press Conference

South Carolina Head Coach Dave Odom

"We shot poorly over the course of the game. Their zone completely stifled us. I thought we had plenty of looks, we just couldn't get one to go down."

"We never really solved their zone. I thought it took a lot of courage to come out and play the zone like that as they've been playing almost no zone this year. To come out and do that showed what a great coach Rick Stansbury truly is."

"Clearly our worst shooting day of the year, both overall and three-point wise, yet we were able to play well enough to be up 1 at halftime, which I thought was remarkable."

"Our team fought extremely hard today. They played hard. They wanted to win. Mississippi State is truly talented, those guys all played excellent together. They've got the nucleus of a fine basketball team."

[On the last possession]--"We told everybody to man up; do not come off of [Ben] Hansbrough, do not come off of [Barry] Stewart, do no come off of [Jamont] Gordon, do not come off of them for any reason, do not foul three-point shooters. If you can get to [Jamont] Gordon as he crosses half-court, foul him. Well, we didn't foul him. We end up trailing him across half-court instead of being in front of him, and that was the first mistake. The second mistake was we came off of [Ben] Hansbrough to try and help with [Jamont] Gordon for whatever reason. He was inside the three-point line. He's not going to hurt you there. Evka [Baniulis] saw [Ben] Hansbrough with the ball and ran at him to try and get his attention, and [Baniulis] did foul him."

"I think Dominique [Archie] getting 18 minutes today was a big factor depth-wise. Mike Holmes played 28 or 29 minutes, close to being his top for the year. I think he was exhausted in overtime. He played well and gave us another good game. He's a tremendous competitor, and he's getting better as he goes along."

"Charles Rhodes was a load for us today. He was very aggressive taking the ball to the basket, and he was hard to handle."

South Carolina Players

Mike Holmes

on his best game--"I think this was the best game. I was feeling good and energized. I also think this game was better than Florida."

"It was tough. This was the first time the team has experienced overtime this year. With Dominique fouling out, I knew I had to take the road and play hard."

on his ability to play the college game-- "Every time I show up, I remember everything I have learned in the past. From now on, I have to make sure everything is right."

Brandis Raley-Ross

"We did everything we could in practice this week to prepare for this game."

"We stopped Jamont Gordon, but we couldn't seem to stop Charles Rhodes."

"How do you explain shooting? We live and die by the three-point shot. We're going to have a bad game if we are cold and it's not our night from behind the three-point line. Tonight was one of those nights; it just didn't go our way."

"I am feeling healthy again. I'm moving around and I think I'm doing better since I've been back from the injury."

"It's tough to keep losing like this. I was gnawing my nails off. We have been in so many close games. Everything happens for a reason though and it's a learning process."

"This was our first overtime game, and we had our energy sucked out when [Ben Hansbrough] made those three free throws. It's an experience we must learn from."

Devan Downey

"This last stretch of the season, we just haven't been finishing. We really couldn't ask for more out of this game; we just couldn't get the win. I don't even know what more to say about it."

On the last play of the regular game time--"I thought Dwayne fouled him in the back court, but I'm not a referee. I guess [the referee] was doing Mississippi State a favor. I felt like the foul was committed."

"It was tough to go into overtime when the game could have been over, but I told the team this is just a five minute game and we need to win it. Unfortunately, we couldn't get it done."

Mississippi State Head Coach Rick Stansbury

"You'll never find a classier guy in this profession than [South Carolina] coach [Dave] Odom. He's one of the best guys in the league, and he's going to be missed."

"This was one of those games where the opposing team was fortunate to win. Dave [Odom] has had 4 or 5 games slip away from them like that. They were well prepared, but it slipped away from them at the end."

"Our game plan was to stop [Devan] Downey from getting to the lane. I don't feel like anyone's been able to do that effectively. If you can stop him from getting inside, you stop his passes and a lot of shots. We were in a 1-2-2 press and then fell back to a zone to keep Downey out of the lane. It was like rolling dice though, because they usually shoot about 40% from behind the three point line."

"[Devan] Downey is the best point guard in the country. I told Dave [Odom] that, and I will tell anyone that."

"Fortunately for us, they didn't shoot the ball as well as they're capable of."

"We had to find a way to play in overtime without our center and point guard. Anytime you win on the road in this league this time in the season is a big deal."



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