"First of all I don't know that I would say that I would pick that apart because they are a good defensive team and that is just part of an overall picture. I don't think one guy ever plays post defense by himself unless it is Ralph Sampson at 7-4 who can just stand behind you and block your shot. But I think they have a really nice defensive package. They put pressure on the ball and that makes it difficult to throw the ball into the post. They front the person who is low three-quarters when he is off the block so it makes it difficult to throw it in. If they do front it, they got weak side help, so if you throw it over the top they have got that. I think their overall defensive package is good and it does emphasize covering from the inside-out, which I think every good defensive team tries to do first."
Against Virginia, what could you have done more to get to the free throw line more?
"I told my team I thought that was the key point of the game. In the second half we were one for nine from three-point line. If you are going to go the one for nine from the three-point line you shouldn't be shooting them. We just needed to do a better job of getting the ball inside. We needed to do a better job of challenging the defense. In the second half we only shot three free throws and made all three. They shot seven for eight. In the second half they were in the one-and-one and we were not. You can have all kinds of pretty plays drawn up but if the other team is just going to foul you, you are not going to be able to run it again. They took away some precious seconds the first time we took it out and had another one to waste. That is the reason they were so aggressive coming up on Rashad (McCants) when he was trying to come up from the corner. I think it has been our philosophy ever since the day I thought about coaching, and that is that we have to attack the basket and challenge the defense and we didn't do that against Virginia."
What are the most important factors in a rivalry?
"I think proximity, history and big games in the past. I'm not trying to pick on anyone, but Kansas State for example when I first got there (Kansas), it was more of a rivalry then it was at the end because we won something like 29 in a row. It is not much of a rivalry then. So I think big games in the past is one."
If there is one thing that this team is not doing consistently at this point what is it?
"Do the little things that make the difference in the big picture. You know we get box out where we failed three times. We get one box out and get the rebound, we probably win the game. But we didn't get the box out. We didn't box out Devin Smith the first time, we didn't box out the second time and it was Jackie (Manuel) and Jackie has been better then anyone we have had at doing that, but he actually failed to do it that time. Usually I wouldn't point him out but I have been bragging on him so much I have got to make sure he stays honest with me. We have two box out failures or we win the game. That is a pretty little thing to do. If we don't foul the guy at the end of the second overtime against Wake Forest, we win the game. Twice in the huddle we said ‘don't foul the shooter.' So I always think it is the little things that make such a difference in games."
How difficult is it to guard N.C. State's offense?
"It really is difficult because you have to cover so much floor area of the court then you normally do. By that I mean the big guy has to go out farther then he would normally do. The little guys not only have to cover way out but they may have to cover somebody in the post area. When they go backdoor they go at full speed, so you are covering a team who's cutters are really going hard. It is an offense that fits that team very, very well."
Do you try and adjust to the personnel that you have, or do you just try and play as fast as you can?
"We try to do a little bit of both. I mean everyone thinks that we have just tried to run, run, run, run. But we tried to run when we had an advantage and we slowed it down. At Kansas sometimes, I would tell them to just run anyway, if we don't have the advantage, just make it the advantage. But we have tried to, I shouldn't say slow it down, but if you were to go downstairs and ask every kid to finish this. That coach says he wants you to run as fast as you possibly can. And there is two words to put in there and every kid on our team would say ‘under control.' No question in my mind. Go as fast as you can under control. It has been tough because there is a fairly significant drop-off when you start making some substitutions."