"That was a big-time game. I would've been proud of our guys if we didn't win. I'm of course more proud because we did. Those two teams played a hell of a game tonight. Every possession was fought. I have ultimate respect for Michigan State and Tom [Izzo's] team. For us to beat them was a huge accomplishment for this group right now. I really they would be ahead of us, and they probably are, but we just had real grit tonight. We had such a rigorous preseason program and it paid off, because, at the end of the game, Daniel [Ewing] had his legs, J.J. [Redick] played 40 minutes, Sean [Dockery] played 20 minutes straight in the second half, Shelden [Williams] played high minutes and we still seemed fresh. It's nice when you work that hard and good things come about. They're a very difficult team to defend and I thought we did a nice job of stopping their break. Everyone contributed, our bench kind of righted the ship a little bit in the first half. We had different lineups in there, with two freshmen or four guards, and the next thing you know, we have the lead. We just needed a good team effort and we got it. We're proud of our guys."
On the success from the outside and struggles inside
"Shelden had a great game up there last year, so this time they tried to take him out of the game and I think they did that. Those two guys [Redick and Ewing] are really good players and tonight, they were great players and it just opened up some things. The next game we play, Shelden might have 29. We have three kids right now who can get 20 points. That's a nice balance. Daniel's floor game was good tonight, too. A lot of things had to happen tonight for us to win."
On the difference between this year's Michigan State team and last year's
"I think they're better. They're more experienced. We could play eight games with them and probably split. It's not like we really beat somebody, we won the game. There are games where you really beat somebody, but here, we won the game. We could play tomorrow night and they could win the game. They're a high-level team with a well-conceived offense. Our two guys were just really good offensively tonight. We slowed them down a little bit to where they had to play a lot of half-court."
On Daniel Ewing and J.J. Redick
"There were a lot of good players out on that court, but he was the most mature player out there. He had the look of a champion out on the court. J.J. was great, don't get me wrong, but Daniel was handling it and he was absolutely great. In the second half, we thought they were really going after J.J. because had 21 at halftime. We called more things, especially in the last 10 minutes, for Daniel. Both teams were in foul trouble, so we tried to get something off the dribble where we might go to the line or get a kick-out. It's hard to defend those two guys. They're really good players."
SENIOR GUARD Daniel Ewing
"It was a good game. That could easily have been the type of atmosphere for a March game. But Michigan State came in here looking to avenge the loss that we gave them last year at their place, and they came in looking to play 40 minutes. It's lucky for us that the guys stepped up, and we made some big plays down the stretch."
"They did what they were supposed to do. It was more us not really communicating and not getting back. We gave up maybe four layups to start the game off, and they were up 19-9. Then we had a foul trouble situation, and that kind of put us back a little bit. But once we got going and got some stops, we were good to go after that."
On J.J. Redick
"We called his number in the first half especially, and he had it going. You just have to let him roll with that. He's going to take tough shots, and he's going to hit a lot of them."
"They weren't really that physical. They got up and down a lot. They were really trying to push it and get some easy buckets, and luckily for us, our team is in really good shape. That was a big factor for us, being able to hang in there with them when they tried to run like that, and I think they kind of wore down there toward the end."
"J.J. [Redick] pretty much had it in the first half. He had it rolling, and I took a couple of shots playing off him. In the second half, it was almost like we were taking turns. He started off in the second half and hit a couple of buckets, and then I hit a couple in a row, and after that we were just finding the open guy and making plays."
JUNIOR GUARD J.J. Redick
"With [Shelden Williams and Shavlik Randolph] in foul trouble, I don't think either of them really could get in a rhythm. And we were having trouble scoring early, and [Michigan State] seemed to be getting easy buckets. So at the beginning of the game, I just wanted to get us off to a good start offensively, and I hit some shots."
"We have two of the most talented big guys in the country, and we're starting to develop really good role players. So on a night where Daniel [Ewing] and I don't combine for 60 points, I still think we can get the job done."
On Coach K and any emphasis he puts on the ACC-Big Ten Challenge
"He doesn't put any extra emphasis on it. I don't think he's ever mentioned it in my three years here that we have to represent our league or anything like that. But it is important to us - it's definitely in the back of our mind and the back of his mind. But the main thing with us is we're trying to build a team here, and for us to get a win like tonight against a really good Michigan State team just gives us confidence. That's what we're focused on - just getting better."
On Michigan State
"They're going to be a tough team out in the Big Ten. They're a talented team. They're going to have a lot of big wins this year. They're an older team. They've got a lot of guys that are seniors or juniors and are very experienced. They just kept battling back, and it seemed like any time we made a big bucket, they would come up with a couple of big plays. That just shows that they're an experienced team."
MICHIGAN STATE HEAD COACH TOM IZZO
"I guess that was, to me, a very good college basketball game. I thought both teams played extremely hard and we just couldn't come up with a couple big plays. You have to give [J.J.] Redick and [Daniel] Ewing credit, especially Ewing in the second half. I thought he really came up. I'd like to blame our defense, but I thought he made some incredible shots. For us to go 21-of-31 from the line, this team has shot extremely well from the free throw line last year and this year and that was our chance to maybe steal one here, but not many people steal one here. That's the way it went. I was pleased with our effort. I thought that, as a coach, I didn't do a very good job in the first half. After going into [Paul] Davis, we kind of got out of sync when we got Chris Hill out of the game with the fouls and we quit going inside. Davis was ready to play and I thought played awfully well. As I told him, that's the problem, when you don't bring it every night, I think our guys weren't sure when to go to him. I think this is, in a lot of ways, a good stepping stone for us and I think Duke is going to be awfully good. It was a great place to play and I wish we could have found a way to steal it at the end. We're going to get better from this game."
On what the team can take away from this game
"I think there were some games last year that I didn't think we competed as hard. I don't think there's any question that both teams competed very hard. I think that was very important. I think both teams laid it on the line pretty good and, like I said, I have no qualms about the way we played. Even most of our defensive effort, that's a hard team to guard, especially when Redick is hitting those threes from the parking lot like he hit in the first half. We made some pretty good adjustments in the second half and did a few different things on those ball screens. That helped, but then Ewing picked it up. I just thought that we did the things, we made some adjustments, we had some opportunites, we went back to getting the ball inside ... We just couldn't get one big shot to fall or make one big defensive stand or make a couple free throws and that was the difference."