OU-Mercer Postgame Quotes

Athletics Communications
By Athletics Communications
University of Oklahoma
DECEMBER 02, 2013

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Head Coach Lon Kruger
Opening comment:
“We really had a lot of good plays in the ball game. Our guys had a lot of respect for Mercer going in and the first half was really hard fought. The guys made a lot of good plays, got out in transition, made shots and opened the second half really sharp. I think that showed their respect for Mercer. It was a good win for our guys and they made a lot of good plays, there was a good pace to the game, there were a lot of good things and we’ll just keep working on getting better.”

On the team’s passing:
“The guys were shooting it well and a lot of times you shoot it well when you get it in a good rhythm. I thought our guys did an excellent job of getting the ball out of their hands and being willing passers. They drive, kick with a long target, and step in with rhythm and it really helps the shooters when the guys do a good job of passing the basketball. We were playing four guards basically and Ryan (Spangler) is a good passing big guy. Guys were moving the ball well with each other and I think as a result we shot the ball well.”

On what they changed during the 16-0 run after the first media timeout:
“Not that much. Mercer is a good ball club, they’re going to win a lot of ball games. They came out and knocked down a couple 3’s early that we didn’t quite get to. For the most part, they missed a couple of shots and I think that got the pace going and we were able to set up a couple of traps during that time. The pace got going and I think we got into a comfortable flow.”

On having all five starters in double-figure scoring:
“Yeah, I really like it. We have been pretty consistent in that area of having a lot of guys scoring. Different guys on different nights, it’s always nice to have that. The good thing about this group is they’re not concerned with who is scoring, they just want to move the ball and make good plays for each other.”

On the game being an RPI builder and if they were worried about the team’s attention going in:
“Our guys have a lot of respect for Mercer. Was that your question? This group has been pretty consistent about getting each other ready to play and having energy coming out of the blocks. If you watch the film on Mercer you know that they execute things very well. They have a lot of size and good guards that caused us trouble on ball screens. Mercer is a good team and our guys realize that, so credit to them.”

On the 18-0 run to start the second half:
“I thought our guys came out of the locker room playing well. Cam (Clark) knocked down a shot, we executed things well and a couple of them hit 3’s and it really got them going. Then Mercer missed two or three open shots and that kind of got us going in transition again back the other way. It was a combination of us knocking down shots and them missing a few that they could have made but didn’t.”

Sophomore Forward Ryan Spangler
On playing against Mercer’s size:
“They were big. I just tried to use my quickness. Sometimes they are going to catch me and I just have to wall them off, but usually I can get around and just use my quickness.”

On playing in such a high pace offense:
“It’s fast, for sure. We want to be fast as a team, but we base ourselves off defense. If we can get stops, then we can run out. But we want to worry about defense first.”

Sophomore Guard Buddy Hield 
On playing in an offense that moves the ball so quickly:
“It’s good and it is great for the team. Everybody is unselfish and we make plays for each other. Like Coach (Kruger) said, we like making plays for each other. We are just trying to stay consistent on the basketball court and getting better at defense.”

On the 18-0 run to start the second half:
“We all play fast. I didn’t know it was an 18-0 run, but we were just making shots and we were trying to get stops and just playing Oklahoma basketball. We just want to get defensive turnovers and score the basketball.”

Mercer Head Coach Bob Hoffman
Opening comment:
“That was a serious butt-whooping from the beginning against a really good team. It was amazing watching them on tape. We pride ourselves in trying to prepare and get ready. They throw it to each other, they share it with each other and then they just jump up and shoot it. They make shots. It’s not real complicated. They’ve just got so many guys that can make it, maybe as many as I’ve seen on a team that had mid-range ability and long-distance ability, and they got to feeling good, had those feel-good 3’s going and they were rolling. Our guys weren’t up to the task that we needed to to play a team that was shooting it like those guys were tonight, but I was really proud of my guys at the end that competed and gave tremendous effort for us to finish with a little flair. We’re better than what we played tonight but they had a lot to do with that.”

On not being able to control Ryan Spangler:
“Yeah, we couldn’t control him because he’s so quick. When I saw him in high school I thought he was one of the best rebounders in the country, AAU circuits, and he was just fantastic. He could pursue the ball and rebound out of his area and he doesn’t tire when he rebounds. He gets back and he gets back quick. The second half Monty Brown did a better job being more physical and that’s what we needed to do. Daniel Coursey got hurt in our triple-overtime game Friday night and he wasn’t himself tonight. He’s a lot more athletic than he played tonight but Spangler’s a load.”



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