UNC-Clemson: Locker Room Report

<I>Inside Carolina</I> talks postgame with Rashad McCants, Jackie Manuel, Jawad Williams, and Raymond Felton after Carolina's 80-77 loss to Clemson.


Talk about the last few minutes of the game.

"We had our opportunities. I myself turned the ball over too much toward the end so (in that way) I take credit for our loss. We didn't really get the looks we wanted, and took quick shots."

What happened on the late turnover?

"I was trying to penetrate and kick – find the open man. They faked out and stayed with their men and kinda stuck in their position."

This seemed like the most winnable road game on the schedule, where do you go from here in terms of the goal of making the NCAA Tournament?

"Of course [that's still the goal]. We just go to the next game. We regret many of the games this season, but you've got to put them behind you and go on to the next one. We can win the rest of the games on our schedule."

Was fatigue a factor in the second half and did that change the rebounding margin?

"I think a little bit. We were running and jumping and pressing a lot, and that got a lot of our guys tired real quick. They have bigger guys than we do, and that definitely had an effect on rebounding."


How hard was it guarding Ed Scott when you were matched up on him?

"It's very hard guarding a guy like that, especially when he's coming at you full speed. I think I did a decent job and my teammates did a great job of helping me. I was trying to keep him in front of me and there were times I was trying to just deny him the ball. He's one of the harder covers. He can do it all - he's quick, and can do it all. It's hard to contain a guy like that, so I just try to do my best to keep him in front of me.

How hard is it to bring the same level of defensive intensity to every game?

"It's not hard. We should be able to bring our defensive intensity every game. That shouldn't be a problem."

Was fatigue and/or Clemson's size a big factor in the second half?

"They have some big guys, and battling in there tends to wear you out, especially when you're trying to guard someone over a ball screen. I think we did a pretty good job of boxing them out, but sometimes they got around and somehow the ball ended up in their hands. I think there were times when we had a few defensive lapses in the second half."


What did Coach Doherty say at halftime about all the 3-pointers?

"Just try to drive them, and draw fouls. I think we did a better job of that, we did get some open looks."

Carolina seemed quicker in the first half, but Clemson's strength seemed to show in the second – was the team fatigued from all the banging?

"I wouldn't say that. I think we just didn't execute and stick to our defensive game plan. When we were applying pressure we just paid so much attention to helping sometimes that we lost sight of our own man."

Did that (losing sight) have to do with Clemson's advantage in the second half?

"It had to. We had some defensive lapses. We just can't do that if we ant to be a good team – especially on the road."


Was there contact on your last three-point attempt to tie the game?

[Said in a tone indicating understatement:] "Umm…yeah…a little bit."

What about on the previous possession, when Carolina was down 2?

"No, I just missed that one."

Did you have a lot of people here from Latta to see you play?

"Yes. I couldn't even put a ballpark on how many."

What was Clemson doing on defense to stop you?

"Basically they were trying to stop me on my drives. I penetrated and they were trying to stay (with their men) to not give me anybody to pitch to."

Was the team not able to get the foul as early as wanted on Clemson's last possession?

"My teammates were trying to foul (earlier). I guess the refs didn't think they were hard enough."

Did you feel like the team had enough defensive energy in the second half?

"Not at first. We had some mental lapses a couple times and were not playing defense the way we normally do."

Was fatigue or Clemson's strength a factor?

"Those guys are strong guys, but they're kinda dirty guys, too. They got away with a lot of stuff… pushing and banging. The refs don't see everything. The refs do a great job, but they don't see everything- they can't see everything. Those guys do their pushing up under the basket."

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