Arizona player quotes

ANAHEIM, Calif. - The five Wildcat starters sat in front of the media. Although they answered every question, you just knew that they want nothing more than to get this day over with and play Kansas for a shot a the Final Four.

Wildcat forward Rick Anderson

On Nick Collison:

"Nick Collison, in my view, I've never played a better player in my college career. He just takes people apart, plain and simple. He gets down and dirty. He's probably one of the toughest players. I played against him at the Nike camp a couple of summers ago. We were just playing in a little scrimmage and he still got after it. He's a hard-nosed ballplayer. He comes from a high school coach, his fundamentals are sound and he just knows how to play the game."

On the keys to winning the game:

"I think that dribble penetration and kick-outs will be key for us. If we penetrate too much, there'll be charges and blocked shots because Collison is out there and he's one of the best players in the country."

Luke Walton

On the keys of the game:

"The main thing is to get back on defense early. They like to score and push the ball up. Hinrich had an off-shooting night last game so he's definitely going to come out shooting it. He's such a good player. I doubt he's going to shoot like that back-to-back nights. So we're going to have to do a good job of containing him as well."

On his father's advice about his injury:

"He just told me to stay positive. Being a captain and one of the leaders of the team, that how I present myself would influence the team. Being hurt so much early, I just dealt with it and tried to stay involved as much as I could at practice or hanging out with the guys. I just tried to stay upbeat. The guys did a great job keeping me involved, going out and winning games. It made it that much easier knowing that we were still winning and the fact that I was out wasn't really hurting the team that badly."

Channing Frye

On the keys of the game:

"One of the things for us is to play our game and understand their personnel. We've been unselfish lately. We're aggressive on the defensive end, being in the passing lanes and making them do things that they don't want to do. I think we should cause some problems."

On Nick Collison's impact on the game:

"I think that Nick Collison is the best opponent I've ever played against in the post. HE gets the team involved and he inspires the team to play harder by the way he plays. I think Nick Collison is on of the best fundamentally sound big men. If you noticed, he doesn't really make bad passes and he always does the smart thing."

Salim Stoudamire

On playing Kansas this early in the tournament:

"It's the draw. You have two great teams and we should meet. I'm just excited to be playing in this game."

On hitting his jumpers:

"I credit my teammates for looking for me and I credit myself for finding the open gaps and knocking down the shots."

Jason Gardner

On playing Kansas again:

"I think that both teams kind of played half games. I think both teams know that two teams can't play half games. Both teams are expected to come out and play the full forty minutes."

On Luke Walton:

"I think that with Walton being 6-9, he's able to handle the ball in the full court situation and for us, that makes us such a better team. The guards don't have to always worry about bringing the ball up court."

On his decision to stay in college following his sophomore season:

"I think that the biggest thing is that I have a lot of great people surrounding me, the coaching staff, teammates. The first thing that Coach Olson talked about was the guys that were coming in and how good a team we had. Knowing that we had two chances to get back to the Final Four (made the decision easier). Last year was a great year and this year is even a better year. I think that this was the best decision for me.

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