Villanova 70, UConn 61: Kevin Ollie’s Take

by Categorized: Kevin Ollie, Omar Calhoun, Ryan Boatright, Shabazz Napier, UConn men's basketball

HARTFORD – Highlights of Kevin Ollie’s remarks following UConn’s 70-61 loss to Villanova …

“Tough game. I’m disappointed because the crowd was so good, and they came in and wanted to support us. They wanted to push us through. But in the second half, we just got out-rebounded. It came down to a street fight out there. They threw it off the backboard and they went and got it. And we didn’t make the hustle plays, the toughness plays that I want to see from my team.

Credit to Villanova. Jay [Wright] had them ready to play. They got offensive rebounds, 20 of them to our five. The killer is what we’ve been doing really good, we had 19 turnovers. And we’ve been taking care of the ball pretty well. You put those two combinations together and it’s always going to end up in a loss.

… We couldn’t get out-rebounded like we did, and we didn’t make the crucial shots and get the crucial stops. And when we had the ball in our hands, we didn’t take care of it the way I envision us taking care of it.

I’m not jumping off a cliff. We’ll be ready for Cincinnati. I told my team, ‘this is going to be another team with the same recipe, so if we don’t get tougher, it’s going to be a tough road ahead. I think our guys are going to come back. They’ve been a very resilient team all year. … We’re there, we’re there.  I’m comfortable and I’m confident in my team.”

This team has a lot of heart. I’m not worried about this team. But we do have to tighten some stuff up and we’ve got to get them playing with the toughness we need each and every day.

[Villanova] just played good defense. They played good gap defense. We had to move the ball against them, get in the cracks. And then we’d have to hit some shots. But we couldn’t get out in transition because of all the offensive rebounds. If you keep us in a half-court game, then you can bottle those two up, but most of the time they are getting out in transition, and that’s what gets them their layups, their threes. And then they get some confidence and make some plays in the half court. But when you give up 20 offensive rebounds, of course you can’t run like you want to run.”

[Napier] was in and out with foul trouble. It throws a player’s rhythm off when you’re in and out of foul trouble.

“It’s more about being tough. That’s tough on offense, tough on defense, tough on the boards. Because when tough situations happen, you have to have the mind-set that ‘I’m going to get this adversity.’ I don’t think we have did that quite well today.

You have to walk like, ‘This is my rebound, nobody else is going to get it.’ You say that with your body [language]. When you check in, you don’t have your shoulders slumped, you have your chest out. You’re talking to  yourself, ‘I’m going to get 10 rebounds today.’”

I’m very pleased with Omar [Calhoun], but more important, not just with h is scoring, but his defense. That’s what I am seeing a bit more from him.”

I’m sorry for the fans, we couldn’t get them a great victory to start their weekend.”

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7 thoughts on “Villanova 70, UConn 61: Kevin Ollie’s Take

  1. ray-ray

    shabzz and boat were horrible.the nova point guard took advantage of those two guys pathetic defense.if bazz wants to play in nba he better stop reaching.boat is a turnover machine.u cringe when he has ball.daniels and giffey are getting better every game.

  2. Hip Hop Hood

    Our guards have already checked out. They are leaving after this year and playing soft so they don’t hurt themselves.

    1. FrankyB

      Nonsense! They both just played terrific games against Syracuse. Both have character and neither is the type of person to do what you suggested. Also, they are not stupid. A few more games like today and they can forget being drafted.

  3. buddy

    If they play like they played again Nova, Cinci will kick the cr@p out of them. Doubtful that either guy will leave after this year. Keep studying boys!

  4. Clifford Ruocco

    Possibly the worst game in a UConn uniform ever played by Boatright. He started out playing poorly and just got progressively worse until Coach Ollie saw enough and benched him in the second half. No defensive rebounding whatsoever. And what’s with the plethora of turnovers committed by UConn? Just a terrible, terrible effort. A very difficult game to watch by any UConn fan. Coach Ollie knows what went wrong. Let’s hope he can get it fixed. Possibly UConn just had a huge letdown after a big win and a very emotional game on Wednesday vs. Syracuse.

  5. ray-ray

    hood—-where are these guys checking into?unless they can get some time in viet nam pro league they asre going nowhere.

  6. George Syms

    Wow what a shame. The 2 guys had a bad game wonder what happened. Maybee they had a tough day at school and maybe they had some events to attend to that morning? To bad it rouined a good season. Well still maintain that UMASS is the best in New England.

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