John Beilein met with the media following Michigan’s 62-46 win over Nebraska. Here’s video of Beilein’s post-game press conference with notes and quotes after the jump.
- Opening statement: “I think the game was a lot about our defense today. We have a couple of young men out there, two seniors Stu Douglass and Zack Novak, that really buy into playing defense. That’s not always normal for guys who are seen to be primary shooters first. They’re normally guys you hide in your defense. You don’t have to hide those two guys. They wanted to play their best players and did a great job on them. That kinda sets the tone for the rest of the team.”
- On the the 16-for-19 shooting performance in the 2nd half: “Well I think we did this in the Indiana game before. We gave them permission to make shots, it’s OK. It’s OK for three or four or five guys to make shots, and we can do it. We see it in practice. Doing it on the road is certainly a different environment. Really happy for Matt Vogrich. We need our bench to score more points, give us more defense, give us more rebounds. That was important for his mental psyche to get those looks.”
- On three-point shooting: “We got a little trigger happy. Don’t discredit their defense. They did not give us a lot of opportunities in there, but we did try to spread the court out a little bit and really get into the lane first. I think Tim set the tone with a layup in the second half.”
- On Zack Novak, who scored his 1,000th career point: “So few young men get 1,000 points. You just hope that first of all they’ll stay long enough before they end up getting 1,000, and then they have to have great perseverance and the opportunity to play when they’re young. So it’s not that often that people do that. It’s probably been the steadiest 1,000 points ever. If you look at him, he probably averages seven or eight points a game for four consecutive years, who does that? But he does that and he’s a great defender and just wonderful to coach. And if he’s got 1,000 points he’s also got a million points just in leadership that he’s shown us overtime… He has his life and priorities in the right order.”
- On preparing for this game: “It was different. It’s a one-time game, coming all the way out here I’ve got our guys drinking water like we’re going to California. But I’ve got so much respect for Doc, the way he carries himself, the way his team plays. I’m glad we didn’t fall the way Indiana, the Penn States and the Iowas did this year, because those are some teams that have really big time wins. For us, we have to get ready one time. For him, he’s gotta get ready 10, 11 times… It’s not easy.”
- On Tim Hardaway: “I said Tim, there’s other ways you can help us without making the 3-point shot. And that was it. He took the ball to the basket, he found Stu in the corner for a wide open shot, and then he ended up taking charges. There’s other ways when guys aren’t shooting well. I said, if i had you out on the court and you had a broken arm you’d still help us wouldn’t you? You can still do it. Five other ways to help us.”
- On Hardaway’s attitude after going 0-for-7 in the first half: “I think his teammates helped him get through that at half time. I wouldn’t let him get down. I told him to just take his time a little bit, find his seams, relax. I didn’t think any of the balls came off his hands very well. We just have to continue to work.”
- On coming on strong in the second half: “Michigan State and Ohio State are tremendous defensive teams… Those are teams in the category that you only see about 10 or 20 teams in the country. We felt good that we could move the ball and we learned a lot from that game and didn’t force. We took good shots. For a while there we missed a lot of threes. They were open. But we didn’t force things as much as we have in other games, whether it’s a drive or a shot.”
Words by Kevin Raftery, video by Patrick Radigan of CornFedSports.com.