Dec. 30, 2008
University of Washington Basketball vs. Morgan State
December 30, 2008
Washington Head Coach Lorenzo Romar
"That was a great game for us. As we told our guys the first time we started talking about Morgan State, this isn't the same team that came in here three years ago when we played in the BCA tournament. This is a much improved team -- a team that went into DePaul and got a victory, a team that almost had 'Ole Miss beat. I thought it was not only a good game for us in terms of they had some athletes out there but we executed, we slowed the game but also there was foul trouble. We had to play with some of our guys out there and we had to find a way to win. We shot 35 percent in the first half and we found a way to be up at halftime. We found a way to make freethrows tonight and that made a huge difference. We took care of the basketball when we needed to. If we don't do well in any one of those areas, it's a lot closer of a game. I thought our guys did a really good job of ending this non-conference season."
(On Isaiah Thomas' Game) "We always say that there's going to be a game where he's going to get 25 or 30 and he almost had 30 tonight. I thought he did a good job and put of a lot of pressure on Morgan State. He got to the foul line and got in the groove a little bit. I think we saw what he's capable of doing. If we said to him 'go score,' he'd do it, he'd score, but no one else would get touches. His goal is to be as complete a basketball player as he can be. Isaiah is working to be very well-rounded. We talk to him a lot about play, don't miss one of your teammates when they're wide open, but go play. We try to not to hinder his game. It is a five-man game and I think when you saw when the game was on the line, the ball was in his hands and he made plays."
Washington Senior Jon Brockman
(On Morgan State's Play) "We knew they were going to be a good team coming in and we knew they had a number of players who were playmakers. They came in and did exactly what our coaches told us they were going to do. Their record doesn't show it but they're going to surprise some people this year."
(On getting his 1,000th rebound in first half) "I had no idea about it but it's an honor. I would've liked to had a better rebounding game today, I don't feel like I attacked the glass like I really wanted to in the first half."
(On team's readiness for Pac-10 play) "I think mentally, we're definitely ready. As far as our play, that will just get better every day and continue throughout until we play our very last day of the year later on in spring. We have a lot to get better at but at the same time I think we're all pretty excited about starting Pac-10's."
Washington Sophomore Venoy Overton
"I think we're improving in a lot of areas. We're most concerned with defense. We've been trying to hold teams under 42 percent [shooting] and we've been doing a good job of doing that. Defense is going to lead us to a lot of wins."
(On Elston Turner's absence) "We're a deep team so somebody's going to fill right in for him. He's a tough kid and he'll be back. We had Jon go down last year and we played Cal as tough as we could. We can't worry about anybody else, we just have to fill in and keep on."
(On his recent play) "I just accepted my role coming off the bench and try to give the team energy. Last couple of games the starters haven't been starting the game off too well so we've been bringing a lot of energy off the bench. I'm just trying to be the one to try to motive everybody else to keep on."
Washington Freshman Isaiah Thomas
(On his game and second half scoring) "I feel good about it, I just give praise to my teammates for opening it up and I took the opportunity to score. I feel like my teammates needed me and I told Venoy a couple times 'the lane's going to be open.' He and I did a great job of finding teammates."
Morgan State Head Coach Todd Bozeman
"I'm just happy to be back in college basketball. We played in the Bay Area last year so that was probably more significant as far as coming back out on the west coast, but really I'm just glad I have this chance to be here. I didn't really think about this being the first Pac-10 team we've played until today. I've always said I'm just happy to have this opportunity and I don't think the other stuff.
"Isaiah Thomas is a good. When I was out I worked at the ABCD camps so I knew all about him and what he could do. That was no surprise to me. He is a very good player.
"I thought we did a lot of things well. We played them close at home. We out-rebounded them and that is very significant because they are one of the best teams in the country at that. We were aggressive and played hard and that was good. We tried to throw the off with the press a little bit, but that wasn't new, that's what we do.
"I don't compare this team to that [Morgan State team that came to Seattle in 2005]. We weren't here yet. All I can do is take what we have here and try to create a good program. We're doing some really good things. This kind of game gives us more experience at the level we want to be at. We've played a team from the ACC, SEC and Pac-10; pretty much every big conference except the Big 12. We're in a bracket-buster and that's the first time our conference has been part of that and the first time for an historically black college, so that's important."