Monday Roy Williams Quotes

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. --- North Carolina head coach Roy Williams updated Tyler Zeller's health status during his teleconference with reporters on Monday about Tuesday's N.I.T. quarterfinal game at UAB.

Do you have a gut feeling if Tyler Zeller will play on Tuesday after suffering a mild concussion against Mississippi State?
"I don't have a gut feeling. I talked to the trainer last night and he says its 50-50. It just depends on how he feels this afternoon and what he feels like when he wakes up tomorrow. Are you having headaches? Have you been able to sleep? Last night, everybody was starting to feel a little bit better about it, but he's not going to practice today, either. He's going to shoot some and then they'd have to give him the release and go from there tomorrow."

Has this team rebuilt its confidence?
"I think we have gained a little confidence down the stretch. Duke whacked us about as bad as you can be whacked, but we had won two games in a row before that and then we played very well in the first half of the Georgia Tech game and went south in the second half. I think we have been more confident and have played better over the last three weeks, it's just that we waited such a long time to do it."

On playing better in the final minutes of games in the NIT:
"We have been a little more confident and a made a little better decisions and the ball's gone in the basket. Against Georgia Tech at home, Larry [Drew] missed a layup that would have given us the lead in the last 20 seconds or something like that, and it was not as difficult of a layup as the one he made Saturday at Mississippi State. Like I've said 100 times, everything looks better when the ball goes in the basket, and that's part of it. But I do believe we are making some better decisions down the stretch in both the last two games."

What would it mean to this team to get to Madison Square Garden?
"It would mean that we had played really well Tuesday night in Birmingham. If we don't play really well down there, we're not going to win. It would be something that we would love [and] it would be something that would put a little smile on our face that would last a little longer. It means that we would still have a chance to win a championship – not the one that we wanted – but it would give us a chance to win a championship."

There was a lot of laughter in the locker room on Saturday. Is possibly the silver lining to this NIT appearance that your players seem to be having fun again?
"Well, I hope it is. I think you always want to have better feelings about the way you end your season. It's been a very bitter season. It's been one that's very discouraging and very disappointing, so any win that you get that helps smooth that over is going to be good, but the bottom line is that you know you're not in the tournament that you had hoped to be in. But still, I'm one of those guys that likes to let guys enjoy themselves and enjoy some success."

How disappointed were you that Jeff Lebo did not get another year at Auburn?
"It was really disappointing. When Jeff got the job, he thought that they were going to get a new arena a lot quicker, but because of the economy or problems or whatever it was, they never got that and I think that's something that he was pointing towards and talking about. I hate to see any coach lose their job, but if it's somebody within our Carolina family, then it really is very difficult to understand that. Last year they won the second-most games in the history of the school. It's a tough job, so there's no question that I was very disappointed that it happened. But Jeff is really, really good and Jeff is going to bounce back, but I was disappointed."

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