Improved Aggression Defines Robinson & U-M

After Michigan's 72-69 victory over Ohio State Glenn Robinson III discussed his team's calm during times of adversity, his improved aggression, matching up with Michigan State, and more.

Glenn Robinson:  “Today, we had a number of guys who could score on a number of occasions.  Zak (Irvin) coming off the bench and knocking down shots for us.  Myself, Caris (Levert) and Nik (Stauskas) are hitting double digits. 

Question:  You’re in a championship game.  Does that mean anything to you or is that just expected? 

Glenn Robinson:  “I don’t know how many teams won this thing, regular season and the tournament but we are looking to do that and it would be great for our program and great for us.” 

Question:  Do you want one or the other? 

Glenn Robinson:  “No, we don’t care.  We are just happy to be in the championship game and we are coming with the right mindset.  We are ready to play wherever we have to.” 

Question:  If it is Michigan State, how special would that be? 

Glenn Robinson:  “That would be huge, that would be great, you know.  A lot of fans will be watching that game.  It will be another Michigan rivalry and I think we will be able to know we will appreciate it.” 

Question:  How much is the number one seed on your mind in the NCAA tournament picture? 

Glenn Robinson:  “We definitely are, that has been mentioned, but at the same time, I think that we are doing a good job of just not thinking about that, just trying to win our next game.  That is something that we have had the right mindset of doing, it’s just thinking about beating Ohio State today, you know, beat whoever we play tomorrow and not necessarily look past that.” 

Question:  You guys have given up big leads in the past couple of games, a couple of times again today.  What are you going to do fix that?

Glenn Robinson:  “You know, it’s tough, it’s tough.  We know teams are going to make runs but at the same time, we have to stay consistent on defense like we started off with.  We know that we are not going to be perfect on defense and they are going to have some times where we kind of give up some buckets but at the same time, you know, we can’t let that too big of a slip away.” 

Question:  What do you feel about your teams ability at this point with you guys getting to the title game last year and everything you’ve done this year to sort of not panic in the moment, to stay calm? 

Glenn Robinson:  “We have a lot of veterans on our team, people who were there last year in those situations.  I think that we have all learned that you cannot panic in any situation.  We have been through it a lot but yet again, our freshman have learned that quick out of the block.” 

Question:  This team is so good, can you, Nik, and Caris have double digits when you guys each score 10 points or more you are 12 and two.  Can you just talk about the balance your team had today. 

Glenn Robinson:  “I thought we had great balance.  Like you said, myself, Caris, and Nik getting double digits is huge for us but also Zak Irvin and other guys coming of the bench and scoring for us is key.  When they key in on us, the other guys have to be ready to knock down those shots.  People are doing a great job right now of hitting those shots.” 

Question:  How do you stay focused when your team makes the comeback that they made?  You knew they did it against Nebraska, they did it against Michigan State earlier this year. 

Glenn Robinson:  “We knew they were going to make runs.  We never doubted that but we had to be ready for it.  I think that we stayed composed enough where we didn’t get too rattled and we were ready for their runs.  So we know they are going to make them.” 

Question:  This has been a season of firsts for Michigan this year, at least in a long time and now you’re back in a championship game for the program for the first time since 1998.  How does it feel and what is your approach? 

Glenn Robinson:  “It feels great.  I don’t know how many teams have won this thing outright in a regular season and then come back and do it in the tournament.  That’s our goal and that’s what we’re trying to do right now.  We’re not looking past anything else but today we’re trying to beat Ohio State.  Tomorrow we’ll try to beat whoever wins that game.”

Question:  Do you think this team secured a one seed in the NCAA tournament? 

Glenn Robinson:  “I’m not sure, that’s something that we are not even worried about.  We’re just going out playing our basketball.  We’ll let those things falls.  If we’re not, that’s fine.  If we are, that’s great.” 

Question:  I know you’re not worried about it, but isn’t there a part of you that thinks, if we win this thing, we’ve got a pretty good chance of being #1 seed?

Glenn Robinson:  “I don’t believe in that.  I just believe that puts a little bit more pressure on ourselves.  We’re just trying to win this next basketball game and win this championship.  That’s all we want to do is win a Big Ten Tournament Championship.  If we do that, maybe we’ll be a one seed, who knows.  I think that we’re coming into this thing with the right mindset.” 

Question:  Jordan’s calling that kind of a street fight kind of the game you love to play.  Tell me about your thoughts on that?

Glenn Robinson:  “It was, it was a dogfight, especially at the end.  I know you’ve seen a couple of rebound towards the end with, you know, it was difficult to get.  They called foul on some of them.  It might have been a foul and it might not.  It was tough down there and I think we did a great job down the stretch.” 

Question:  In the first half, things went very very well.  In the second half, maybe a little bit of the same scenario as yesterday, shots not always falling, rhythm maybe not perfect but yet it came down to making really big plays at the end.  Talk about that.  Obviously Caris rebound was really what secured it.

Glenn Robinson:  “That was huge.  Caris’ rebound kind of sealed that thing, I thought.  Spike (Albrecht) coming in and making that free throw, I think that we did a great job overall in that situation, handling that, not getting rattled, and doing what we had to do.” 

Question:  What’s different about you, the last six games or last seven games you have gone to the basket much more.  What happened to kind of change that? 

Glenn Robinson:  “Just kind of playing confident, you know, trying to attack, trying to attack.  I know there are not many guys there that’s at the four that necessarily wants to play defense that long, just trying to attack where I see holes and going to score.  My outside shot is just starting to fall a little bit.  I’m feeling great right now.  I’m very confident.” 

Question:  At the end of the game a couple of times this season, you guys executed in the situation.  You never seem out of sorts.  What is it about you guys? 

Glenn Robinson:  “We’re together.  Off the court we are together, on the court we are together.  I think that we are playing great together, great basketball right now – Michigan basketball.  I think that we are doing a great job and just handling any situation that is thrown at us and coach has done a great job of simulating those in practice.” 

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