2001-02 BKM at Michigan State -- quotes

U-M Head Coach Tommy Amaker

On the difference between the halves ... "That was a real key for us, that we weren't able to get some quality shots in the first half. I think that has a lot to do with their defense; they are a real physical group with a lot of movement. I thought we did a better job in the second half by being aggressive offensively. It wasn't that we ran any different plays but we thought our movement and aggressiveness improved like we talked about at halftime."

On Michigan State ... "I give them credit. I think they are an outstanding basketball team and are very strong up front. ... I thought we were outmanned on the front line. They were very tough and physical, which is an area we need to improve very rapidly."

On his team's resolve ... "We came up short in a lot of ways. You're not going to beat anyone when you only shoot 29 percent for the game. I was impressed at how our kids hung in there. I thought we made a little bit of a run in the second half. Certainly one thing that deflated us was that we couldn't convert from the free throw line. That's something that we always count on. We're one of the best free throw shooting teams in the league, but that certainly wasn't the case for us tonight."

On how he thought the team would play ... "I thought we would play a little better. I really did. I didn't think we would struggle as much offensively. That was part us and part of some of the things they were doing. I thought once Chris (Young) got into foul trouble it really shook us a little bit. We couldn't really throw the ball in on the block against a team like Michigan State. They can really lock in on you and use their size. That really hurt us."

MSU Head Coach Tom Izzo

Opening statement ... "We're shooting the ball really well. I think Michigan came at us and put some pressure on us defensively and made it hard for us to run some things. We didn't handle that very well, especially in the second half. We had Kelvin Torbert and Chris Hill cramping up on us. It isn't Maui up here, so I don't know what the problem was. There was some things that we didn't do well. Because of their pressure on us outside we should have got the ball inside more. But when you shoot well, and you shoot well from three and shoot great from the free throw line things are going to go your way. All in all it didn't seem like a game we should have won by 20-some points, but I am very pleased with the win and very pleased with the way we handled it."

On his team's defensive effort ... "I think this is a very good defensive team. We took away their penetration. I was most pleased because I think (Bernard) Robinson is a heck of a player and we took his curl moves away and stopped his penetration for the most part and I think that played a major role in tonight's game. We got some guys who didn't play particularly good on the defensive end, I can tell you that, but we had some guys who really did."

On Michigan senior center Chris Young ... "I think Chris has made progress each and every year. I think he has made what you hope to see as a coach, steady progress each and every year. He played better last year than he did the year before and this year he has improved from last year. He is definitely hard to handle. He has a good jump hook and he doesn't miss many free throws. He missed two tonight and that is rare for him. I think we did a decent job on him in even though coming out into the second half they wanted to go to him down low. But he has made a steady improvement every year he has been there, and really that says a lot about a player."

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