Fran McCaffery Press Conference Transcript
Jan. 12, 2012
COACH McCAFFERY: Well, I don't think you can look at that game and see it as one or two things. We were down 40 at one point. That is a lot more than two things.
I think when I watched the game I sort of got what I expected to see, breakdowns. I think we should have been a little more physical. We talked about that, and some other things in that game that I was not happy about. So there are a number of things in there that we needed to evaluate.
Q. The video of you with the chair kind of went viral on line. It got mentioned on ESPN and a few others. After going back and looking at it, do you have any regrets or anything or what do you think about it?
So as far as that's concerned, a lot of people like to infer what was going on or what was being said. Nobody knows what I was saying. Nobody knows what we were discussing during that timeout except for me and my players.
I have no regrets, I have no apologies, none whatsoever. I'm going to continue to coach the same way, and we're going to keep working, improving, and battling, and fighting until we're up by 40.
Q. Do you ever worry about officials holding that against you?
Q. When you mentioned the officials or
Q. Is the message more toward the players?
Q. Did you receive any kind of communication from the Big Ten?
Q. Do you think that your players can feed off that in a way? Your goal is to use that as a positive, isn't it?
Q. One thing that was interesting is after talking to Aaron White the officials were allowing a lot to go on and you guys didn't take advantage of that the way Michigan State did.
We weren't dealing with it. We addressed it. We talked about it, and then it was time to take care of it, and we didn't take care of it. That won't happen. Not on any team I coach, that's not going to happen. I'm telling you right now. It will not happen.
Q. So like they were bullying you and you weren't fighting back?
So it's time for us to then adjust and do the same things. I don't think they would have called it against us either. I don't think it was an unfair thing. I'm not saying that at all. Not at all. You have to make sure, okay, this one's getting called tight, this one's getting called loose.
Q. Was it fair to say though your team needs to be tougher?
Q. What do you expect from Michigan regarding that?
Q. How has Trey Burke affected Michigan, and how is he different than say what Morris was last year?
Okay, what do you do? Well, they've got a great point guard who can penetrate. They've got one of the best players in college basketball in Hardaway who can drive and shoot it. They've got other great shooters on the perimeter, including one of their post players. And they have a legitimate big man now who is not only rebounding and being physical, he's rebounding, being physical, and scoring. So that's going to test your defense in a lot of different ways.
Q. And yet they almost lost at home to Northwestern. What's that say about this conference?
So you give Michigan credit. On a night where they didn't play particularly well offensively, they still gutted out a victory. To me, that is the impressive thing about that game.
Q. You talked about Aaron White's fatigue and energy level as games go on. Is he improving in that area?
But he's such a good player, he'll go make two or three other good plays, and ultimately be a positive.
Q. Did you see Matt Gaten's drawing Hardaway in the game quite a bit?
Q. You threw out a different lineup to start the second half just to get a spark offensively. Are you going to change that to open this game, or is it going to be what it was?
Q. What factors will go into the decision making?
Q. Cartwright's hamstring. How is he doing?
Q. Did you try to recruit Trey Burke and what did you like about him at the time?
I remember at the Big Ten meetings, everybody was saying, boy, it's a shame. They were really primed to be a Top 10 team, and the guy goes to the pros. I said, no, they're going to be better. Why do you say that? They've got Trey Burke. Coach Beilein's not talking about him.
Well, I understand that. But he's going to be playing them. He rarely comes out. John knows what he's doing.
Q. The first seven games you played topnotch competition in the conference. How are the guys going through this early stretch?
So, again, you look at our schedule and you figure you've got what, four or five ranked teams out of the last five games we've played? That's pretty impressive. So we've got another chance. We've got another chance to play against a team that is ranked, and play better, and focus harder. You know, those moments in the game where we didn't the game starts to get away from us a little bit. All right. You've got to bring it back.
We did that against Wisconsin. We did that against Minnesota. We've done that at various times throughout the season. We didn't do it against Creighton. We did it a little bit at Iowa State, but we got it to eight or whatever, but we never got it back to even. You can't let it get to 23 at Iowa State.
You can't let it go, for example, the last four minutes of the first half, we got it 30 22. We did a lot of things early that were not conducive to winning. But we sort of clawed back in, 30 22. They go on a 16 0 run. There is the game right there. You can't spot a team eight and then let them go on a 16 0 run.
You've got to get the next five. Even if we get five and they get two. We go into halftime and you're down six or seven, whatever, that's a maturity that we have to develop and the only way to get there is to go through it.
Q. You did the same thing up in Minnesota. You were down 21 1. What was different other than the competition?
Somebody's going to have to make a play there. Collectively we played better defense there, and that is kind of how you do it. I can't point to one person who is going to do one thing. It's a collective understanding that this is the situation we're in. It's 32 21. Is it going to be 40 24? Are we going to erase this?
Because we go into halftime with all the momentum, they don't have any, and now we played pretty well coming out, and now they're tight. Now they can't attack the zone. They're struggling with threes. They're not getting second shots. Sampson's not being a factor. All of those things.
We settled down offensively. We were executing offensively. Great shots, some run out basket opportunities. Even when they scored, scored on top of them, those types of things. So you kind of felt like -- and you were there, you kind of felt like yeah, this is kind of what we have to do.
But when they're scoring and we're not, we're turning the ball over and they're not, and we're not getting second shots and they are, pretty hard to bite into a lead.