Feb. 26, 2012
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No. 16 Wisconsin 63 (21-8, 10-6), No. 8 Ohio State 60 (24-5, 12-4)
February 26, 2012
Value City Arena - Columbus, Ohio
Thad Matta, Ohio State head coach
On the team's recent losses
"We've played two very good teams. Today, we needed to have the ability to sustain what we had going, which we didn't do. We didn't get the execution or the defensive stops that we needed."
On what has been affecting Jared Sullinger's play
"I don't know. I know he has been battling a cold recently, but he's played through much worse than that. I do know that he's playing his best basketball when he's focused and engaged."
On Jared Berggren's last-minute 3-pointer
"Our ball screen defense had been effective to that point. He got it off quick, and we didn't do what we needed to defensively."
On the height of Wisconsin's shooters
"They've had a few good ones in the past couple of years. You're seeing more and more [tall, athletic shooters] all the way up to the NBA. It makes playing Wisconsin a challenge."
Aaron Craft, sophomore guard
On the ten turnovers in the first half
"We try to emphasize to get up-and-running on these guys because they play such a slow pace. At the same time we can't push it to a point where we are playing out of control and I think we did that a little bit. Some of it is also them, they came and they played really good defense. They're a really good defensive team. It's something that we have to learn from and get better [at]. Ten times you don't get a shot at the basket is not going to help us win basketball games."
On Wisconsin's play affecting Ohio State's performance in the second half
"They're a great team and every game they come and run their system regardless of who they are playing. They came in and did what they needed to do. They played the shot clock and were able to get shots and we weren't able to get into it. They made big plays and made their free throws down the stretch."
Deshaun Thomas, freshman forward
On the play made up in the huddle at the end
"It was a play for me, to come up and Craft screened. I thought I was wide open, he [Wisconsin's defender] got out of that screen quick. I was in my shooting range, but great defense by them made me change my shot. I can't let one shot affect me."
On the team not being together
"It all comes down to maturity. Talking to each other and helping each other out, that's what it's all about. To win ball games you need not just one person, you need everybody. Somebody needs to step up and be that guy to say this is enough and to bring us all together."
William Buford, senior guard
On the causes of the team's struggles
"Practice leading up into the game. We didn't have a great practice leading up into those games [the past two home losses] and it showed when we played. We weren't together for the entire forty minutes. Sometimes we were out doing our own thing. We didn't get enough buckets. We just aren't playing together. It's very concerning leading up into March. We should be together by now. Hopefully we watch film, have a great practice and get ready for the next game."
Bo Ryan, Wisconsin head coach
On the game today
"You always measure people by what it takes to discourage them, if you get discouraged and get frustrated it doesn't help in the game of basketball. Our guys stayed to the task. Sometimes the ball bounces a certain way, sometimes it doesn't bounce your way and sometimes it does. We needed to knuckle down and we started to make some shots. The rim looks a little bigger when you can make a couple."
On Jared Berggren's 3-pointer
"Wasn't that huge? Give the kid a lot of credit. He has done that before- against Penn State he hit two of those also."
On forcing turnovers
"We [Wisconsin] had 11 against Iowa. You need to make it as tough as you can on the other team. Sometimes it's your own mistakes and sometimes it's the defense forcing them. I just thought we played good, solid defense. We weren't doing anything different, not double teaming; our game plan was the same. We just executed better defensively, we moved our feet better, because we knew we had to coming in here."
On guarding Jared Sullinger
"I have never sold out a player. Our team defense was good. He is going to have his game - you can't take a guy like that out of his game. You just try to limit touches and try to make him work on defense. We try to do that with any good offensive player. It is the same game inside and outside for us. Our guys showed a lot of grit and did things that we worked on for the first game."