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Feb. 19, 2012

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USF at Pitt, February 19, 2012, Petersen Events Center

USF 56, Pitt 47

Quoting Pitt Head Coach Jamie Dixon

Opening Statement:

“I give South Florida a lot of credit.  They are a team that has made great strides this year.  They are a very experienced team and the addition of Anthony Collins has really made them a team in every sense.  Their patience and defensive mentality has really turned them around.  On our part, not what we wanted to do.  Things that we wanted to do better we did not do.  It’s hurting us.  Offensively, not getting to the free throw line, not getting in the lane and not finishing baskets are some of the things that have hurt us all year and tonight.  We have been getting offensive rebounds but we don’t seem to be getting the production that goes with that.  We battled back after a slow start.  Again slow starts are something we tried to overcome but again hurt us.  We got ahead late in the first half with some good energy from John Johnson and J.J. Moore but the second half got away from us.  It’s devastating in the locker room. The players are extremely disappointed.  The seniors are also very disappointed due to it being senior night.  You always want a win on senior night.  We will get back to work and get ready for Louisville.  We have to get better.  We have some time to practice which is really the first time we have had time to practice.  We will be off tomorrow due to NCAA rules but we will continue to fight and battle.  We showed some tremendous grit to come back in the first half after a very slow start but we need to show some improvement in what we are doing and what we are trying to do on both the offensive and defensive end.”

On J.J. Moore:

“J.J. has been playing better and better.  He has played better defense, he has rebounded better and that is why he has played more and more.  He is getting to the basket as far as cutting and moving without the ball and has gotten a couple breakaways.  He has been playing better defense first and foremost.  That’s good to see for a sophomore as he is going forward.  He can do other things and not rely on outside shooting at this point.  That will come as he feels more comfortable.”

On USF’s Defense against Ashton Gibbs:

“It will be a low scoring game with the way they play.  Their numbers have indicated that there will be fewer possessions.  It has worked for them this year.  Hugh Robertson has a lot to do with it.  They are very big on the wings and inside.  They are very experienced.  They are a very good, sound defensive team.  Robertson is a good defender but they have other guys doing well too.  They have done a great job.”

On playing J.J. More and Lamar Patterson together:

“We have been doing that.  Lamar is the four.  He got into foul trouble tonight. He got two quick fouls.  We have Nasir (Robinson).  It’s both sides though.  We have defensive and offensive things we need to work on and show improvement.  They play a lot together.  We have to find ways to get other guys to improve too.  It’s been great to see J.J. continue to play better defensively.  That will keep him on the floor and give him chances offensively.  We have Ashton and Trevon who have been productive for us but this was not their best game.”

Quoting Pitt’s Ashton Gibbs:

On the match-up against South Florida:

“They’re a tough team and we didn’t play up to our capabilities. We definitely have a lot to adjust.”

On his struggles in both games against South Florida:

“I think it was a mixture of both them playing tough defense and I missed a couple of open shots. I didn’t take advantage of the opportunities that my teammates created for me tonight and I didn’t do my job, which is to knock down shots.”

Quoting Pitt’s Nasir Robinson:

On the offensive struggles:

“Everything started on the defensive end. We weren’t getting anything on defense that we could convert to offense and we missed some open shots. We just had too many defensive mishaps that they took advantage of.”

Quoting Pitt’s J.J Moore:

On building off this game where he scored a career-high 21 points:

“It’s definitely something I can build off of. My teammates gave me the confidence and told me to just be aggressive and attack the rim. I had two bad shots in the first half, but they just told me to keep attacking the rim. I just tried to bring a lot of energy of the bench and get us the win, but we fell short.”

On being more aggressive:

“I want to be more aggressive because it gets my teammates open and gets me some confidence. I felt that being aggressive was the way to give us a spark and get us back on track.”

Quoting USF Head Coach Stan Heath:

Opening Statement:

“I am really proud of our guys; coming to Pittsburgh and winning is very unusual.  You have to have toughness, and our guys showed a lot of that tonight.  We handled a couple of the runs they made at us and we rebounded very well.  Anthony Collins doesn’t play like a freshman.  He kind of orchestrated the whole deal tonight.  He did a great job.  Ten wins in this conference is a big deal, but we are not satisfied and we need to keep winning.  We should be a big discussion nationally for what our guys are doing.”  

On the motivation from winning 10 games in the conference:

“It absolutely motivates us.  Sometimes you do what you are supposed to do and you win games.”

On defending Woodall and Gibbs:

“Gibbs has had a phenomenal career.  He is one of the premier shooters and scorers in our league.  I can’t give enough credit to Hugh Robertson who has been assigned to defend him and his teammates who helped a lot on the screens.  Anthony took defending Woodall as a challenge and did a great job.”

On Moore’s performance:

“He has been fantastic against us.  He was aggressive in the first half and kept them in the game.  He is impressive with his ability to shoot and drive the ball as well as rebound.”

On being a tournament team:

“We are not satisfied with staying where we are, but for right now ten wins in the conference is quite an accomplishment.”

On their record and standing in the Big East:

“It’s foreign territory for us.  It’s a new place.  We are trying to create and build a tradition at our school.  We know that we still need to do more to reach some of our goals so we are motivated.  There’s still a lot more work that we need to do.” 

Quoting USF guard Anthony Collins:

On their record and standing in the Big East:

 “We do not want to be satisfied with these ten wins.  We have four more games.  We are going to compete and play hard to try to win four more games.”

On neutralizing Gibbs and Woodall:

“We trusted each other and played defense like we do all the time.  We communicated so that we knew where they were at all times because if they get hot they can be a force.”

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