Let me look at [the stat sheet] for a second. There are a couple of things I'm looking for there on the stat sheet to see what the rebound totals are, because I thought that was a big key. There was poor play at times in the second half the other night. I thought we were much better defensively except we didn't finish the defense by rebounding the ball. I like that--60 to 27. We are smaller than last year, but we can be a very good rebounding team if we continue to box out, get defensive boards and be really active on the offensive boards.
I think our play the other night got us much more focused to play, and even Mike said that we didn't play like the team that he saw on tape the other night. And I don't think we did. The other night we were so tight and our plays led to so many turnovers. Tonight, I thought we were really focused.
I tried to give everybody about the same amount of time even though David Noel is always going to get more minutes than anyone else. It was a fun time. A lot of guys got involved and really did some nice things for us. And we caught them on a bad night. They aren't usually going to shoot 25 percent in a half like they did the first half.
Did any of the guys who came back tonight talk to the team?
Raymond [Felton] came in and sat in the coaches' office and talked to us for a few minutes. I don't think he went in to see the team. Sean came straight out on the court. I think we were already out warming up when he got here.
On the contributions of Wes Miller and Byron Sanders:
Wes is a good shooter. He hasn't had many opportunities yet, so I was glad to see him knock some of [his shots] down. He rushed one, but I think he made his last one. He is doing a nice job for us in practice. I have confidence in Wes. Right now we are trying to give everybody--not everybody, but those first nine guys--some playing experience to see who is going to be able to do it in a positive manner.
Byron--I told Byron he was going to end up playing more tonight. I was really concerned about Tyler's toe. If we had played the game yesterday, Tyler would not have played. He was shooting better today and went through a little shoot-around this afternoon and that got it loosened up. I still waited until pre-game warm-up to decide if Tyler was going to start or play at all. I think Byron was more active tonight than he has been. If he had hit a couple of those free throws [that he missed] he would have gotten double figures as well, and that would have been fine.
On continuing to play up-tempo this year:
It's not an easy way to play, but we have had 28 practices or 29, and we are still trying to do the same things that are our bread and butter, guarding people in a half-court situation, hopefully getting a turnover, but if not forcing a bad shot and getting out and run. A couple of times tonight we ran well; certain times we didn't. We were substituting to try to get guys to run. Hopefully, we can continue to build on that.
On how the team plays off the ball on defense:
Let me think, we had one or two charges [drawn]. That's usually where you see it. Tyler one time crossed the lane and made a big-time block for us. I think we are better today than we were yesterday. I do think this team understands how important that part of the game is and they will keep doing it.
On the balance the team has in all the statistical categories:
David [Noel] was really something, but you look at those four assists, five turnovers, and he's not going to like that. This is going to be a balanced team with the exception of David. He does so many things for us that he is going to get the extra minutes. The other time remains to be seen. We do need balance in every part of the game, particularly the scoring so [the opposition] can't focus on one guy
On Tyler Hansbrough's injury:
He has a sore toe. They x-rayed it and the x-rays came up negative, but it was very painful.
On Quentin Thomas's play:
He has ability and he has another gear that he hasn't used as much as I want him to use. He probably surprised people how, on the break, he didn't have much distance and he still got up and dunked it easily. But again, we have to get his confidence [up] and the more playing time he gets he'll continue to do that. I was trying to see--Bobby [Frasor] played 19 minutes and he played 17. Bobby was two [assists], one [turnover]; he was five, zero, so that's seven and one. The other night they were 1-9; tonight they were 5-6. That's much better.