2003-04 BKM vs. Hawaii -- Postgame Quotes

Michigan Coach Tommy Amaker

Opening statement ... "Certainly, it was a very special night for us. To advance to New York City and the final four of the NIT in the fashion in which we did, playing unselfish basketball and have this environment. It's been a blessing for us to be in this tournament. We've found something within this team and our fan support which has been phenomenal. It is something we're very appreciative of and a big reason why we've been able to advance this far."

On his team's performance ... "I thought we had good balance with several people in double figures. Certainly, Bernard Robinson Jr. with seven assists and his unselfishness was the difference for us."

On Lester Abram's return to the lineup ... "I wasn't anticipating to play him as much as I did, but with Bernard picking up early fouls and it being a tightly contested game early he did. He really came through for us. To play the way he did after the long layoff says a lot about the kid's toughness and his desire to do good things for this program."

On the growth of the team through the NIT ... "We've taken some steps of maturity and it's nice to see that. The team knows it too. It's one thing for us to say it, but that they recognize it and they feel it, those are good things. We played the right way, being unselfish with the basketball. We love when a team can play that manner."

On the play of Bernard Robinson Jr. ... "He got in foul trouble early, but to come back and play, I felt, really smart basketball. He put himself in positions in the second half to make other people better. That's one thing about the way Bernard plays: he helps his teammates and makes the play in a different way. To have seven assists from someone who plays the small forward position is pretty good."

On going to the NIT final four in New York ... "I think the team is very proud to advance in the final four of this tournament. To go to New York City is certainly a great benchmark for this team. We were fortunate to have home games and the crowd really helped us, but certainly our players realized they played in a manner that allowed our crowd to get behind them."

U-M Senior Bernard Robinson Jr.

On his last home game ... "It was a great win, especially the way we handled it today was great. I'm happy I played here."

On the team's performance ... "Today we were very unselfish. We were finding each other and finishing around the basket. Coach told us today to finish, and I think we did a great job of that today. The guys were very unselfish and we were all finishing. It felt good. For about 10 minutes I think we did a very good job of passing the ball out there. It felt good."

On maintaining focus with early foul trouble ... "You have to keep your focus. You hate to go out there and get your third foul and have to sit early. You just have to keep your focus. You have to be ready for when your name is called to play the same way you've been playing. I think I did a good job of that."

On the team's defensive adjustment in the second half ... "We just weren't being very alert in the first half. We weren't alert to their plays. We knew what they were trying to do and we weren't fast getting to the spot. I think in the second half we adjusted well and we were able to take those things away."

U-M Sophomore Forward Graham Brown

On the balanced offense ... "Tonight we just moved the ball around and looked for the open guy. It seemed to be the key for us. Some of our guards drove our ball through the lane and looked for the open guys down low and found them and we finished down low."

On the crowd ... "The crowd was great. It was amazing for us. It's been great being home and having the fans with us. I'm sure it helped us pull through all three of these games. We just did what we could to play as hard as we can and the fans were there the whole game."

U-M Sophomore Guard Daniel Horton

On reaching the NIT final four ... "It feels good to accomplish something we can be proud of, and we're not finished. But it's nice to have something we can look back on the end of the season, and next year to have something to build on."

On his complete game ... "I just wanted to go out and play and lay it out on the line. It was all or nothing tonight. Those guys fought hard, to say they flew so hard in such a short time. You could see at the end of the game they were tired, but they kept fighting and kept knocking down open shots and tried to keep us out of the game."

On the balanced offense ... "We were moving and cutting hard. Like I said, they had to fly so far so we wanted to take advantage of that. I think we did a good job of running the cutting and making them work on defense. It was a slow process, but in the second half we ended up getting what we wanted."

U-M Sophomore Wing Lester Abram

On coming back from his injury ... "Bernard (Robinson Jr.) got into foul trouble, so they needed me to go in the game. I just went out there like my regular self. I really didn't expect to play."

Hawaii Coach Riley Wallace

On his team's performance ... "You're asking them to do the impossible: come in here, beat a good Michigan team at home with a great crowd, hostile situation. You're asking the impossible. I think they gave a valiant effort, they didn't wear down until the 10-minute mark. We were able to keep it within six or seven and stay right there."

On Michigan's balanced attack ... "When anybody has balanced scoring like that, it makes it tough. There was no one person you could get on defensively, so what they had was five-man movement and we just didn't get there defensively sometimes."

UH Sophomore Forward Julian Sensley

On the game ... "We just started making mental mistakes in the second half. The first half we were able to trade baskets with them; the second half they kind of just made a run on us and we couldn't keep up."

On the key to the game ... "It was really transition. In transition we weren't getting back on our man to know who had who, so from there they made a run on us and we kind of let the crowd get to us."

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