Jan. 26, 2008
Oklahoma Head Coach Jeff Capel:
On the game:
"I am really proud of our team. That was a gutsy performance and a big-time win against a very talented Baylor team. We knew this place was going to be very emotional and very passionate because of the tremendous game and character that Baylor showed the other night against Texas A&M. We knew that Baylor was going to make a run, which they did, and this place was nuts. I was really proud of our guys when Baylor took that one-point lead. We started to get stops and executed. I was proud of our team getting this win against a quality Baylor team."
On the decision to play Blake Griffin:
"I honestly did not know until our guys came out for warm-ups that he was going to play. On Friday during shootaround, he tried to hedge a ball screen, and he couldn't do it as effectively as he would have liked. He went through shootaround this morning, and our team doctor told us that he could play. I didn't want to put him out there unless he was going to have success. I made the decision that we would give him some minutes. He only played 22 minutes, but he was phenomenal in those 22 minutes."
Oklahoma guard Austin Johnson:
On Blake Griffin's impact on the game:
"It helped us out having [Blake Griffin] back with points, rebounds and blocks, and just having a big man down low. When he got hurt we could not afford for Longar [Longar] and Taylor [Griffin] to get in foul trouble when [Blake Griffin] wasn't playing because we had to move a guard to the 4. Seeing him back on the floor boosted everyone's morale on the court."
On the atmosphere at Baylor:
"Usually when we came out here to play, there was hardly anyone in the stands. They had some, but it was nothing like it was tonight and not nearly as loud as it was tonight. With the way that [Baylor] is playing, if I was a Baylor fan, I would come out and support them as well."
Oklahoma forward Blake Griffin:
On having a full week to prepare for this game:
"We knew that they were going to come in with all of that momentum [from the Texas A&M] game, but we knew that they were probably going to be a little bit tired. That really didn't matter to us. We knew that we were going to come out and play hard and do all of the things that the coaches told us to do."
On expecting to play due to injury status:
"I wasn't even going to come on the trip until Friday morning before we left. When I found out that I was going to make the trip, I didn't even think that I was going to play. When we got here, [my knee] felt good, and that is why I played."
Baylor Head Coach Scott Drew:
On today's game:
"From a coaching standpoint, I was very pleased because for those last 12 minutes, we had a lot of reasons we could've laid down and died, and I think it showed the heart and the fight of these guys just to come back and make a run like that. For MVP awards, let's just go to the Oklahoma trainer for getting Blake back a couple games early. (He had) 17 (points) and 15 (rebounds) in 22 minutes. We had a guy with same injury a year ago, and he took five weeks, so it's a tribute to them and their hard work in rehab and whatever they did to get him back so quick."
On Blake Griffin being able to play:
"(I was) very surprised. I guess we made a mistake on that. We went over personnel, but we never really focused a game plan with him being in there."
On the end of the game:
"It ended up being too much Blake Griffin and Longar Longar down the stretch. Both of those guys are future pros, and they showed why. Again, I'm just very proud of our guys because we had a lot of reasons with fatigue and emotion, and we've had a long week. I was very pleased with the heart and the fight, and as long as we continue that fight, we'll be in good shape the rest of the year."
On fighting back to take a lead after being down by 16 points:
"When we took the lead it happened so quickly, that they came down and got the ball to Blake (Griffin), and he got the and-one, so that kind of changed everything as far as the lead, and we really didn't have it long enough to enjoy it."
On if the national attention this week affected his team:
"No, I think our guys emotionally and physically have probably had a longer week than we're accustomed too, but at the same time I think our players really did a good job getting ready for the game. We didn't make some baskets, but I don't think the effort was poor. I thought the last 13 minutes it was fabulous, and we just needed more of that throughout the course of the game."
Baylor guard Curtis Jerrells:
On being able to drive to the basket:
"Every day in practice we go against each other, and I think defensively all five of us play well, and all five of us are good offensive players, so when you've got that going in practice every day, it's not difficult to penetrate on other teams you're playing because you see it every day."
On recovering from playing five overtimes on Wednesday:
"At the beginning we looked a little tired. We were a step or two behind, and they were going to come with everything. They opened up a big lead on us, and then we started to fight, but it was just too little, too late."
On losing a game like this:
"It hurts more. Freshman year nobody expected us to win a game, and we were an underdog in every single game. Now we expect to win, and it hurts more when you lose."
On having six days until the next game:
"We're just going to relax, watch some film, and go to practice. That game the other night took a lot out of us, and it showed early, but showed some good effort and we didn't quit, and that was the important thing."
Baylor guard Tweety Carter:
On missing his last shot:
"It's just a shot that I know I can make, but it didn't go through. First, I'd just like to thank God for putting us in that situation, coming back from 16 down and just not giving up as a team. I think that shows a lot about our team. This loss can motivate us and get us prepared for Texas, because we've got to move on."
On the Oklahoma guards' defense:
"We go against each other every day, and sometimes Richard Hurd and Fred Ellis guard the guards. Give credit to them because they played great defense, and we've just got to keep moving on and getting better."
Baylor forward Kevin Rogers:
On losing the rebounding battle:
"Rebounding always plays a big factor due to the fact that we're not the biggest team, so we definitely have to key in and focus on that. Rebounds are always a big part of the game because they get you extra possessions. Credit those guys for sticking their noses in there and getting the job done."
On losing a game like this compared to his freshman season:
"Our freshman year we didn't have too many of the pieces to the puzzle that we have now. We have such good guys with experience, and we have such great depth that a loss like this really does something to us. We felt that we should've won this game, and we definitely clawed back and got it close. A loss in the freshman year and a loss this year are two completely different things."
-- Quotes courtesy of Baylor Media Relations