Tyler Smith: No. He deserved it. HE put up two great performances and helped us come back and win against Michigan. He was just hot Saturday against Indiana.
Q: Do you see teams defending him differently, maybe putting emphasis on stopping him?
Smith: I think every team tries to do that, but Adam comes off of screens well, we try to get him open and he gets his shots.
Q: Coach Alford was saying that Coach Neal spent a lot of time recruiting you. What is your relationship like with Coach Neal?
Smith: I saw him as many times as he could come. My relationship with him is great, not only as a coach and player but as a friend. I like to get to know the coaches, not like it would have been at Tennessee. He was great in recruiting me and he was a friend. That was a big factor in my picking Iowa; having that relationship with him coming in and Coach Alford as well. He is a great person.
Q: What sold you on Coach Neal?
Smith: He came to me as, like I said, as a friend. He didn't sell me a lot of dreams like other schools. He just came to me, talking to me as a person, not talking about basketball all the time. That is what I really liked.
Q: There has been some chatter about you turning pro after this year. What kind of things do you think you need to work on?
Smith: I have a lot of things I need to work on. My outside shooting, ball handling, just a lot of little things. As far as that, I am not considering that at this point at all.
Q: You seemed to scoff at that (the mention of turning pro after this year); will you be back next year?
Smith: Oh yeah, for sure. For sure.
Q: You and your teammates are ready to hit road again, where teams will be taking shots at you guys now; you probably won't be the underdog in some of these games anymore.
Smith: We prepare hard, we finally got that road win against Michigan and we want to keep things rolling and play up to our abilities.
Q: What are the keys to playing well on the road?
Smith: Coming together as a team. Not individual things, plus we have to get Adam open; that would be one good thing. Just playing together.
Q: Your hometown, Pulaski, Tennessee, has about 8,000 people in it. How do you become a great player in a small town?
Smith: Just trying to work on my game every day, not trying to go out and do the typical things that teenagers would do. My father helped me out a lot, my mother helped me out. So did a lot of people.
Q: Who could you measure yourself against?
Smith: The older guys who were pretty good in high school; the ones that made it to college and didn't finish college.
Q: When Kentucky offered, how did you say no to them?
Smith: I never wanted to go to a school based on their name. I wanted to go to a school that recruited me well, where I knew the coaches well and getting into a great opportunity.