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January 7, 2013

Self talks after Temple Win

Kansas head coach Bill Self

Opening statement:

"We didn't play well at all. I wasn't pleased. I don't think anybody was pleased. The players weren't happy. Coaches weren't happy in the first half. That was about as uncharacteristic as we've played here lately because the ball stuck. We didn't guard anybody. Our first shot defense was pretty good, but we gave up five uncontested layups to start the game. They only had 10 points with eight minutes left in the half, and they were uncontested layups. It was unbelievable. Then, when we started playing bad and it started getting away from us, we played dumb and tried to make home run plays. We tried to make great passes after the play was broken down. We shot three pitiful threes on consecutive possessions that were all terrible shots. The ball hadn't had a chance to change sides. The second half we came out after a great halftime talk and go from six up to down three, or whatever it was, so that that wasn't any good either. Travis (Releford) showed great poise coming back after picking up his fourth (foul). We made our free throws down the stretch. Elijah (Johnson), who couldn't throw it in the ocean, made some key plays. Kevin Young, who had struggled from the free-throw line all year, steps up and makes them. Then, of course, Jeff Withey was off the charts good in many ways. We can learn from it. We'll grow from it. We'll watch tape, but you have to win some games where you're not your best. This was certainly one of those games."

On Kevin Young's performance with 16 points and key free throws late in the game:

"He was terrific. We're 16-for-18 from the line. It was amazing; we couldn't get to the free throw line. I'm not saying we got a bad whistle, but it probably wasn't a typical home whistle, so to speak. We couldn't get to the free throw line. They play unorthodox, and of course (Khalif) Wyatt was terrific. We knew going in he could be. He got Travis in foul trouble, and then Elijah didn't do a great job on him. Ben (McLemore) probably did as good of a job as anybody on him down the stretch. It was a good win. We rebounded the ball above average. We just didn't turn them over. If we could just eliminate our unforced errors, or half of them, this game would not have been a game that came down to the last minute."

On many of KU's turnovers leading directly to Temple points:

"They're 19-for-63. If you take away our turnovers, they may be 15-for-59, which may not sound like a big difference, but it is. Our turnovers, in large part, led to baskets. I was disappointed in that. Elijah turned the ball over today. Nobody was terrific, but we made plays and we hung together."

On Releford making a big three-pointer near the end of the game:

"He hit two when we really needed them. He's shot it really well as of late. Ben was never plugged in offensively. I thought we did a bad job of keeping him involved. We never had any rhythm. I think they guarded us really smart, considering what we're good at. They kind of took some of that stuff away. Jeff didn't make shots. We threw it to him, but he didn't make shots. It wasn't very fluid at all, but guys did make enough plays to get the `W.' The crowd was great. I don't know what it was, 57-54 or something like that, then all of a sudden I think we scored on a lob on a sideout play. Next thing you know, there's momentum, the crowd's into it and we made a lot of plays down the stretch."

On Big 12 play:

"I think we have four games in eight days. Guys played a lot of minutes. That means practice will be very short tomorrow for a lot of guys. We have to get ready for Iowa State. We need to put the first season (non-conference) behind us. It was a success at 12-1. The second season starts (Wednesday). I wish we would have played yesterday. We would have had another day to prepare, and this would have been an off day, but we'll respond. Our crowd will pick us up."

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