Auburn’s Tony Barbee says His Team was Competitive

Auburn Head Coach Tony Barbee

On his team’s performance …
“I’m proud of the guys and the way they competed. It’s the only way as a team that we’re going to survive and give ourselves a chance, especially against a team as talented and well coached as Kentucky is. I’m proud of the way that the guys fought.”

On not having a post presence…
“It’s hard when they’re both on the bench, but I talked about going into this game with our team. It was part of our game plan at home. (With) this team, it’s so hard to score at the rim against them, that you’ve got to make 3s. They’re going to protect the paint with those two big guys. I thought we did a good job of attacking the rim and getting some baskets at the rim with our guards and our wings. We did something here that we didn’t do at home, and that’s make 3s so we gave ourselves a chance. ”

On his game plan…
“To be competitive. To be competitive, that’s all I got to say.”

On containing Nerlens Noel…
“We tried to do some things to get him away from the rim. You leave him in front of the rim, he’s going to block shots like he did at Auburn. We tried to do some things to keep him up in ball screens to clear off that baseline.”

On the difference between fighting and competing…
“I don’t know what happened in the rest of the league today. I thought our guys played a clean game.

On whether Granger will be suspended…
“I have no idea.”

Auburn Student-Athletes

#3, Chris Denson, G

On if he thought there was any disparity in free throw attempts…
“I’m not going to comment on that, but we just have to adjust to the way the referees are calling the game.”

On if the early flagrant foul calls had anything to do with how the game was called…
“I believe so. I think the refs think that we were trying to flagrant foul them. When Frankie (Sullivan) took him down it was nothing of that nature. He just wanted to foul him easy so he could just shoot two easy free throws. I’m not going to say that it was reason for all of the foul calls, but we weren’t trying to flagrant foul them on purpose or anything like that.”

On what it means to be competitive…
“I would say competitive would be diving for loose balls, getting 50-50 balls and things that really matter in the game. I think they beat us to the 50-50 balls tonight, so we still have to work on our competitive spirit.”

#32, Noel Johnson, G

On if the fouls in the second half threw them off their rhythm …
“They kind of did, we just wanted to come out and compete. We couldn’t let that affect us but it kind of affected the outcome of the game but we just have to play through that.”

On if being physical with Kentucky was part of the game plan …
“I think it wasn’t part of our game plan we just played the game of basketball how we should be playing from the start of the season. Coach has stressed toughness and we just tried to come out and play like that.”

On what playing competitive means …
“I feel like kind of what Chris (Denson) said, battling and going for 50-50 balls and just playing wanting to win and having a will to win.”

On how they feel they did against Nerlens Noel’s shot blocking skills …
“I feel we did a good job on him. He didn’t get as many blocked shots as he did last time against us. I think overall we did a good job.”

On how they were able to neutralize Noel’s shot blocking …
“Just attacking and we worked on pull-up shots and other stuff in practice.”

About Scott Anderson

I love covering the Kentucky Wildcats and even though I can't cheer on the outside when I go to games now, I am definitely cheering on the inside. You can follow me at @SAndersonNOB on twitter.
  • BearKiller1

    It looked like a public mugging to me! The refs could have called on Auburn every possession. They were grabbing, holding whacking and just plain mugging Ky each time down the floor. Coach barbee may be Cal’s friend but I think he told his guys to play this way and they did.

  • Michael Burch

    Auburn showed NO class. Bunch of street thugs. Barbee can spin this however he wants to but that was not basketball his team played!


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