Post Game Quotes - Alabama
Jan. 7, 2016

Recap

Ole Miss Head Coach Andy Kennedy

On Sebastian Saiz…
“It was his best game as an Ole Miss Rebel. If you remember, his freshman year against LSU he had 20 points and nine rebounds. He was really locked in offensively. Tonight, based on the circumstances and the enormity of the moment with this historic night in our program, he really stepped up and made hard plays. That was a hard game. Alabama is a good basketball team. You see why they can beat Notre Dame, win at Clemson and beat Wichita State because they’re tough. (Head coach) Avery (Johnson) has done a tremendous job. I can’t say enough about Retin Obasohan. He’s next to impossible to stop off the dribble. Between he and (Stefan) Moody, you probably saw as two explosive guards as you’ll see in the entire league. But, Sebas was the guy that galvanized us. He made hard plays, drew contact, kept balls alive for us. He really was the difference in the game.”

On Stefan Moody…
“You have to dribble through contact. They were hard-hedging ball screens and almost trapping him to get the ball out of his hands. Early in the game, we were giving in to it a little bit. He was trying to do some cutesy things as opposed to just doing what he does which is be low and powerful. In the second half, he did a much better job of attacking that double.”

On opening The Pavilion with a win…
“It was everything. This was my 320th game. I like to say that because I can’t even believe it myself. It’s such an honor for me to be a head coach in the SEC in my home state for the flagship university. I felt more pressure tonight than I did when we were in the SEC Championship game or in the NCAA Tournament. I didn’t feel that up until I was standing up on the sideline. I did not want to let these people down. We’ve never had a game like this at Ole Miss. This has never happened. I actually saw students running to the game, not away from the game. This is historic, so I did not want to let them down. I would have felt terrible if we would have not gotten it done. The energy was tremendous. We have a pretty short bench when it gets crunch time. That’s not an anomaly unless you’re at a blueblood school. We’re going to play our dudes, and I like my dudes. I wish we could develop a little bit more, but I think the energy in the crowd and in the building allowed them to play the way we did down the stretch. It’s very difficult for me though. Eye contact is not really big in this generation, and I was having a hard time getting them to engage with me. In Tad Smith, I can talk at this tone and everyone in the building can hear me. Those days are over as well. I’ve got to work on some of that as well to get the message sent, especially in the first half. In the second half, we can control our offense a lot better because it’s in front of me. In the first half, we lost our way a little bit.”

 

 

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