Gottfried: "We Need To Play Our Game"

RALEIGH, N.C. -- NC State head coach Mark Gottfried met with the media to discuss the game against North Carolina.

Mark Gottfried

"By the time the game started the adrenaline was flowing. He was a little sore yesterday but hopefully that will not be an issue for us."

"I haven't watched [the games between UNC and NC State from last year]."

"They are very good. They score the ball in transition quickly, they rebound it well in transition."

"We've got to do a lot of things well to have a chance."

"Six or seven of the players they play were in the McDonald's game. Maybe all seven. They are very talented."

"Our guys are excited about the opportunity to play. We've played good teams this year. I think part of playing a difficult non-conference schedule is you hope it helps you when you get in your league. I thought our schedule in November and December probably helped us Sunday on the road."

"Our guys have played against good teams and we've got to play another on Thursday."

"I don't that there is a lot of adjusting from our perspective with [Dexter Strickland's] injury. I think what is important for our team is we have to play to our potential. We have to be who we are. You can't start re-inventing yourself for each opponent you play."

"I want to see us play the way we want to play."

"There is a lot of room for improvement with us."

"Outside of foul trouble I anticipate [Kendall Marshall] being in the game a lot. He's not going to be out of the game much. Again, he is such a good passer and so good in the open floor. It's hard to take away his strengths in those regards. When he has the ball on the break, good things usually happen. He's a terrific passer."

"We need to play our game and be who we are. That is where our concern is."

"There is no question this [rivalry] is unique."

"The last time I was in that building was at UCLA and it was our first year, 1988... J.R. Reid."

"[C.J. Leslie's] free throw shooting has been much better. We've worked with him on his release point... I think he has improved on just about every facet of his game."

"Early in the year I thought there was a lot of discussion after every call... collectively as a group we've got much better there."

"I think first with [Harrison Barnes] is the way he runs the floor. He runs the floor so well. You've got to get back and find him. They will shoot it quick, and he will shoot it quick. I think transition defense with him is the first priority. If you don't get back you are in trouble. He is going to score on you. He is going to shoot a three or take it to the rim. He is a very good rebounder. He is a very good one-on-one player. He is a handful to guard. It will be a challenge for us."

"Every game you play in this league has a tremendous impact on the race, how you finish, and if you can become a postseason. We need to beat teams that we think will finish at the top... can we get wins over them as well?"

"I think that Calvin has had a terrific year to this point. His percentages are better. The first thing I did with him was sit down and we talked about some of the negatives that were out there... outside of that when you really start to break it down his field goal percentages were not very good, his free throw percentages. How do you improve all those areas? I think he has done a very good job. He competes and wants to win. Which is something I really like about him too. He's getting better... to this point I think he has had a very good year."

"Every player has a dream of playing in the NBA and wants to be at the highest level. I've really enjoyed getting to know [Calvin]. Some days are challenging, but it is like I've told him. I fight with my wife, but then we make up and get on with life. So, part of with Calvin and other guys, he is not the only guy, is learning who he is and collectively figuring out how to get better."

"Let's get better. We've obviously scouted them very well and I'm sure they scouted us very well. We'll have great preparation going in and then the ball goes in the air."

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