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  • John, You talked about how Mississippi state, uh, inside the way they dominate around the rim.

  • Was that just a toughness issue?

  • Was or was Mississippi State doing things to get the ball inside on you?

  • Uh, easily.

  • We had worked for a few days about sitting on the post, basically fronting the post.

  • And in the first half, we just stood behind the post, and we don't weigh enough.

  • We're not tough enough.

  • So they would turn shoulders into you, elbows into you, move you and just laid the ball in.

  • We're not.

  • You know, he weighs 2.

  • 60 are gay ways.

  • 1 95.

  • And so we said, You gotta sit on him.

  • You gotta You gotta get around.

  • You gotta, you know, what happened in the second half was we We started switching ball screens.

  • So when you watch what was happening, they were going Boston.

  • We just switched everything and had our bigs guard, their guards, and our guards guard their big until we could switch back.

  • And that's where we made a run on them.

  • Um, but in the first half, they were driving it down and throwing it to the post.

  • Our guards got beat on the dribble, and then they were dropping balls to the post and we were standing behind.

  • The other one is they rebounded.

  • So when you talk about how they scored, they probably scored 78 baskets by just offensive rebounding, where we just couldn't come up with balls.

  • Michael Bennet.

  • Go ahead, John.

  • It seems like the first half that you obviously got outrebounded out replayed in the paint and Mississippi State was just owning it, and there was no sense of urgency on the team.

  • I'd like to know what you said at halftime to totally turn this around.

  • And then what did you say after the game was over in the disappointing loss at halftime?

  • You know, the staff was going crazy a little bit.

  • I walked in.

  • I said, Just stop.

  • This ain't about us.

  • This is If they want to do this, they'll fight, and we're going at it in the post, and you're going to either prove you're tough enough or you're not.

  • We talked about Do you understand that if we get this close, you're going to watch a different game?

  • Um, I talked about like all right, I'm starting Dante.

  • This half Jacob just to physical game for you can't play in this game.

  • And so now we went with him, and the team was kind of Jack that we did it.

  • Um, but the reality of it is, we thought we threw it into the post.

  • We weren't trying to shoot jumpers were coming at you just like you're coming at us.

  • And then a couple of things.

  • And then after the game, I just said, Look, there was I'm just gonna go Two things.

  • One, the two plays that they ran in a row for the three that we did not speak, Not one word.

  • And then when they did it a second time, you didn't have to speak.

  • You knew what was coming, and you still let them get the shot off.

  • I said now, the way you fought, the way you came back, man, I'll tell you what.

  • I can't begin to tell you how it made me feel to watch you do that, I said, but again, what you're going to learn in this sport.

  • If you physically can't do it, then you you're not gonna be able to do it, so you can skills bounce it do your thing.

  • If you physically can't do it, you can't do it.

  • And this was a great lesson, and sometimes you can physically do it.

  • And I'd rather not, because it's kind of rough and guy hits my body.

  • So I'm just gonna push instead of wedge.

  • Um, you know, he drives.

  • I'm gonna back away from him and give it, um if I have to offensive rebound, he may touch me.

  • So I'm gonna stay out here, Okay, But here's the point.

  • Either you play that way or you You know, not this sport.

  • This sport is a man's sport, and, uh, the way they played in the first half, and we gave ourselves a chance and, you know, But that's and then I just thought and then the only other thing I talked about is academics.

  • It's time to finish the term, and it's not an option here.

  • You know, you you finish the term and, um, you get with Mike Stone and you line whatever up you got to line up.

  • But you finished the term Gary Graves finishes off.

  • Yeah.

  • You were talking about the about to come back.

  • I mean, how encouraging is it for you with this roster to see, even though you're down by double digits.

  • But they come back and and make it a game.

  • I mean, going forward.

  • I know it's too.

  • So I know I'm sorry.

  • I coach at Kentucky.

  • No, no, Uh, I'm happy for them that they fought to get back in and we had a chance to win.

  • And if you noticed me or the step, none of us stopped.

  • We didn't stop coaching like we're doing everything we can to give them a chance to win.

  • Here's the problem.

  • We're not on the court and they've got to finish things off.

  • You have to make winning basketball plays.

  • I'm not shooting a shot that cannot be rebounded.

  • I'm not.

  • I'm either getting fouled or I'm making a basket or I shoot it and we rebounded.

  • I'm not taking something that we can.

  • And on defense, they're not beating us at the foul line.

  • We've had it happen.

  • How many times now they're going to have to make a basket, not free throws, and we file.

  • That's not winning basketball.

  • Um, but no, I'm the coach of Kentucky, one being in the game, being down at half.

  • No, I'm not happy how they fought.

  • I'm happy for them to get them to understand.

  • Um, it's a great lesson for him.

  • This season was a lesson for him.

  • Hopefully, if they self evaluate, they know where they are as an individual player.

  • They also know this is a team game.

  • You don't play together, you can't win.

  • And again, you know, I feel bad for him.

  • They did not get to experience Kentucky.

  • Now you and I know if we got up five in a normal season, how many people would have been in this building?

  • 17,000 out of 19 would have been Kentucky people.

  • And then you finish off the game.

  • What would have happened for Dante?

  • Just the same thing that happened for Davy on the other night, where he made all those shots.

  • This place would have been going.

  • They didn't get to experience it.

  • They only experience the other side.

  • You lose here, you struggle at home.

  • Come on, man.

  • We lost What?

  • Four or five home games or more?

  • We don't lose at home.

  • We haven't lost that in my entire time here.

  • This experience for them, they've been cheated But you know what?

  • I'll say this.

  • They could have taken better advantage of the opportunity that was here playing wise.

  • Um and I wish I could have helped them more.

  • I wish I could have done more.

  • I wish I could have thought of different things.

  • But I will say, you know, I walk away knowing that the staff and I, we worked and never stopped for these kids.

  • And it was about them.

  • We never took it personal, not looking at it like my record.

  • I don't care about that.

  • Don't care what my record is forever.

  • I don't care.

  • This is about how do we help kids?

  • How do we get them prepared for life, for basketball, for life after basketball?

  • How do we get them prepared as a man, as a father, as a husband.

  • How do we do this?

  • What do we do together to do this?

  • And and I think these kids were cheated in one way and weren't cheated in another way.

  • Going through this is one of the great life lessons that they're going to have that they survived it and they had their chance.

  • If we win this, who knows what could have happened.

  • You know what?

  • They had the chance.

  • And when you let stuff go, you learn to fight more.

  • Somebody's going to die, Them or us.

  • Well, you must be okay if it's you because you're going to take a shot or you're gonna fire you.

  • You must have been okay.

  • That was you to die.

  • My teams historically played like if they lost, they were going to the electric chair.

  • This team did not times we did, but maybe physically, you know, we weren't capable of that.

  • But you know what?

  • Here's what I would say for them to play how they started that game.

  • And then to play the second half the way they played says something about them.

  • They never quit on anything.

  • They didn't quit one time this year.

  • Thanks.

  • Thanks for watching ESPN on YouTube for live streaming sports and premium content.

John, You talked about how Mississippi state, uh, inside the way they dominate around the rim.

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Coach Cal is proud of his Kentucky team despite 9-16 record: 'They didn't quit one time' | ESPN

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    林宜悉 posted on 2021/03/13
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