Self: It's going be a wild one.

Just the quotes. Coach Bill Self on the conference, Graves, and Padgett.

On Jeff Graves:

"Jeff knows what he is supposed to do. He even said he isn't going to say what he is going to do -- he's just going to do it. I think that is good and I do believe Jeff can do it. He also understands if he can't do it then there won't be much margin for error."

On the team overall:

"I think we are getting better. We have to do some things like improve our perimeter shooting, get to the point where we can play off our big guys in the post and get them to score with guys on their back -- things like that. I think a lot of good things have been taking place. I think we are defending much better -- we just need to rebound the ball like we defend it. I was real pleased with how we played against Oregon. I thought the guys responded real well."

On the Big 12 race:

"I think it is wide open. I think Oklahoma has played as well as anybody from the outside looking in -- based on record. Texas lost to Arizona but I thought they looked awfully good. I think they are just time away from putting it all together. They can be a team capable of playing at the same level as they did last year. Missouri is going to be terrific. Oklahoma State, Colorado and Texas Tech -- all of those teams are good teams."

"I saw Texas Tech play early in the season and I was very impressed. The reason the conference has gotten better is everyone in it has gotten better. Iowa State, Kansas State and Nebraska are off to great starts. This is going to be a great race and hopefully we are in there, if we play the way we are capable of challenging for a top spot. I don't think you can say at this point in time any team is a lock. I think you could have four-to-six teams that may be on paper ahead of other guys -- it's going be a wild one."

"If you get through this league with three or four losses then you have had a remarkable year -- whether that's good enough I have no idea. There are enough good teams in this conference and you can't look at the schedule and count on winning certain games. As a coach I don't think you could ever do that with a league this balanced."

On David Padgett:

"I never thought there was a point where we worried if David was going to come here or not. I think there was a point where we thought it wasn't a guarantee he was coming. We didn't know David's family well at all and I had only met Pete (Padgett) by running into him -- following teams around in the summer. The biggest thing we had to do was have David sit down and visit with us. I always felt he would be a good fit here."

"David is going to be terrific -- he is already good. There are so many things he can do well but as a freshman there will always be things you can improve on. I told David I wasn't going to promise him anything but if he just took care of his business then he would have an unbelievable opportunity here. Sure enough he has and works hard and is a tremendous young man -- he's prepared and I think the sky is the limit on what this guy can do."

"He's still figuring out how we want him to play and what we expect of him -- all guys are. I like everything about his game -- he will be terrific."

"At 6-11 he's not a finesse player but he isn't a banger either. He's a guy that will become a terrific face up big guy and is going to be a guy that is a terrific back to the basket big guy. He's good at both but strength and a little bit of skill level is going to benefit him over time. We aren't doing anything special with him other than the fact he just needs to play to his strengths -- he's a great runner and a good rebounder that has the potential to be a great rebounder. He can score over both shoulders, make the 17-foot jump shot and now all he has to do is put everything together -- he is just confidence away from being able to do so."

On the win against Oregon:

"We played without Jeff (Graves). I think it's beneficial to know we rallied around that. Moulaye (Niang) got in there and gave us some things defensively we haven't gotten from our back-up post position -- I was excited about that. I was also happy to see we shot 40 percent for the game and still have a good team down 18 points -- to me that's good because I know we will shoot the ball better. We also had a stretch where we ran and that's what distanced the game out. We did a lot of good things against Oregon -- we defended their first shot well. We didn't rebound great but there were a lot of positives to build on." Top Stories