TODD LICKLITER OPENING STATEMENT
As I watched Drake and I was preparing for them, I was extremely impressed. I like watching teams be put together and how they compliment one another. They put together a team there that really compliments one another and they play with good poise and to each other's strengths. It's a team you can cheer for and one that you have to respect before you play them. With that said, I thought we missed opportunities in the first half, but we continued to defend decent when we didn't allow them to get out in transition. That hurt us. When we didn't do that, we defended well. They are averaging about 80 a game, so you can see that 29 at half time was something we can be pleased with.
In the second half, we made a few adjustments, we talked about them and the players made them and they were effective. When it came down the stretch, I thought that we struggled. We had some decent looks and couldn't get them to fall. We struggled with ball handling a couple of times and they took advantage of each situation. We were up five with the ball and it was stripped from us and they made a three. That was a huge play. From that point out, I thought that they were more in control than we were, obciously. They were the better team tonight. There were times when I thought we played pretty good basketball, but not near consistent enough to beat this Drake team. Q: You didn't shoot any free throws tonight.
Todd Lickliter: We drove a few times, we shot a lot of jump shots and our big's shot 14 field goals. I don't know that I have been a part of something where we haven't. You might look at our teams in the past, and I have been involved with jump shooting teams before but we have always tried to drive. I will say this, Drake changed defenses, they played some zone and man and we had to go to a certain scheme and read. I thought they played a solid defense.
Q: Jarryd Cole had 12 points, that was more than the rest of your big's combined.
Lickliter: Again, Jarryd got more involved in the second half. We missed them in the first half. We didn't recognize when we could go to them. We need to deliver the ball better. I think we have made numerous passes that will not work, yet we continue to try them. I guess we are waiting for that magic moment. I don't think they will work, but if we do them enough times, maybe. We throw Kurt Looby bounce passes, which is hard in the paint. We pass one another into trouble sometimes. You mention that Jarryd had 12 points, he also had four turnovers. If we pass them into problems, that is not their fault.
Q: What do you want to work on with the practice time you will have no before your next game?
Lickliter: I would like for us to be consistent. We have a really hard time carrying over. You request something in a timeout, and we have a tough time now, and maybe its being unfamiliar with my approach, but we have a tough time carrying that over. We have to practice a better job of those scenarios. There are so many things to cover, so you get these games and you will run into some things that you have not covered well enough.
Q: In the second half, you Looby out on the point on defense.
Lickliter: They are very versatile, and we had to decide who was going to play…at the end I put Kurt in a tough spot where they spread the floor and had all three point shooters. That is my fault. He is pretty long, you know. He can play off a little bit and still get there.
Q: What did you think of Tony tonight?
Lickliter: I said this before, I think Tony is a better than…he is a very capable catch and shoot guy. He hasn't practice a whole lot, so his ballhandling and his timing is not as good as it will be. Defensively, he hasn't played in the system enough. So he is not always in tune. He has been out. I didn't expect him to…I don't think he should bear the burden of whether we have success or not. That is not realistic. I do think he can give you something. If he will play off of our guys and catch and shoot, he will be very effective.
Q: If you had to pick one area you wanted to most improve in, what would it be?
Lickliter: I would like for us to make better decisions with the basketball.