Return to Recap

Oklahoma Head Coach Lon Kruger
Opening comment:
“First of all congratulations to Michigan State. As always, Tom (Izzo) does such a great job and they’ve got another really, really outstanding team. I’m proud of our guys. I thought we battled to get back in it in the second half. The stretch ending in the first half was a lot to overcome. I thought we had pretty good ball movement on the night with the exception of that stretch and, again, Michigan State is the type of ball club that can do that to you. If they get you going sideways it’s kind of hard to get in the right direction. But the guys responded in the second half with a good effort and we’ve going to learn from it and get better from it and I know this group will.”

On Cameron Clark and Isaiah Cousins:
“These guys love to compete, and Cam (Clark) from the start did a really good job carrying us and has done a lot on the season. Isaiah (Cousins) as he’s gotten healthy here is especially showing that he’s going to be a guy that can attack and make plays, and both are really active defensively. They have a great desire to compete and have good team attitudes and they’re fun to be around every day.”

On holding Adreian Payne to four points in 25 minutes:
“He’s such a good player. Obviously, the two fouls early helped reduce his minutes a bit, but Ryan (Spangler) and Cam (Clark) for the most part really battled in there. We had a lot of help around in every way. When Payne caught it, other guys on the team helped a lot. He’s a guy that even if he doesn’t score he attracts the attention that maybe creates some opportunities for teammates to score, and that’s what good players do. We battled him, but still not quite enough.”

On what was going well early in the game:
“We were moving the ball well pretty early and Cam (Clark) was making some shots and got us a lead. We stopped moving the ball like we need to. I thought their defense took control for those last few minutes of the first half. We’ve got to be able to overcome that and move the ball better and make plays for each other during that stretch. Credit Michigan State, they had a lot to do with that. They got some offensive boards and some run outs. I thought we did a pretty good job with their transition on the night. But again they just keep coming at you and just keep pounding away, and we just had too much of a stretch there that we didn’t do what we needed to.”

On the team’s overall play:
“I’m disappointed with the result in terms of not getting in the right column, but like I said, at halftime we had the opportunity to find out some things about how we’re going to respond to coming out after a really bad stretch to finish the first half. And I thought the guys really responded well. They battled and made good plays for each other and did some things defensively pretty good in the second half. Yet I’m still disappointed and realize we have to do some things better to beat the best team in the country.”

Senior Forward Cameron Clark
On staying close with Michigan State and on being named to the all-tournament team:
“That’s big for us as a team. It all started off with my teammates. They did a great job of moving the ball and letting me attack the bigs and things like that. We’re just going to go back to Oklahoma, work hard, and go from there.”

On the game:
“I’m a competitor, and it was a big challenge. We didn’t get the result that we wanted, but we’re always going to go out there and play hard.”