VU-St. Xavier postgame quotes

Nov. 2, 2012

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Vanderbilt Head Coach Kevin Stallings

Opening Comments:
“This is why we wanted to get in another exhibition game… Everything was as I expected. James [Siakam] was terrific. He has always been a good offensive rebounder, although I didn’t think he’d get 11. He was terrific for us. This game was a starting point. We needed to figure out where we’re at.”

On Vanderbilt Forward James Siakam:
“I didn’t think he’d get 22 points and 17 rebounds. Those are Wilt Chamberlain numbers. James is a guy who plays bigger than he is. He plays much bigger than he is. He plays much taller than he is. He has long arms and a quick jumper. I didn’t anticipate that he’d have this kind of effort. He was certainly the bright spot of bright spots tonight.”

“It’s great to see him have a game like this… Now, we can afford at times to play James close to the basket. He’s actually a much better player there because he’s so good around the goal. He’s worked hard.”

On the Goal of Exhibition Games:
“I’m happy to get these guys out in front of people and see where we are in general. We got to the basket and we got to the foul line well. I liked our dribble penetration. We had a number of guys get to the line, although we didn’t shoot it well. We didn’t really do anything I didn’t expect. Defensively, we had lapses. Offensively, we had turnovers. It’s November 2nd, although it feels like it’s October 15th.”

On Vanderbilt’s Mentality:
“These guys are fun. When they do anything wrong, it bothers them. It’s a step-by-step process for us.”

On Vanderbilt’s Guard Play:
“Both of them handled the ball well and made shots, got to the line, and made plays for other people. What I don’t like is when I look down and see that our guards had 11 turnovers. That’s a bad sign for us. We’re not going to play smoothly offensively when that’s the case.”

On Vanderbilt Guard Kevin Bright:
“He’s a mature basketball player. He still needs to get used to the rules… He has a good way about him and he’s a good passer. I think he’ll play a lot of good minutes for us.”

On Vanderbilt Center Shelby Moats:
“He was probably very nervous. He was one of the guys we needed to run out there. He can make shots, he’s a good defender, and he’s a good rebounder. Those are three things we can get out of him. That will benefit us.”

Vanderbilt forward James Siakam

On what was working out on the court:
“I think my mindset was different for this game. I know I didn’t get a chance to get in games last year for the most part, but I was prepared. I was coming out there just to try to do the best I can to help the team and that’s basically what I did. I was working on my strengths, so rebounding, trying to block shots, playing defense – that’s basically what I try to do.”

On whether this can be used as a building block moving forward:
“Definitely, we need to feel comfortable. I needed to feel comfortable and see how things actually work since its been awhile since I’ve got in a game and played this many minutes, so for me it was just a first experience type of stuff and I was trying to just find my spot, see where I’m good at, and just build off of that.”

Vanderbilt guard Kedren Johnson

On what it was like trying to get comfortable with the new group:
“We just got to get the chemistry down pat. Really that’s just it, just getting more games with each other and getting a feel for the players around us because we really haven’t played together that much besides practice. Not against other teams or competition anyways. So, I mean, that’s just the thing, just keep our head high and keep learning while we’re on the way.”

On turnovers in the back court:
“I know mine personally, all of mine are my fault. I put that one on me one hundred percent and I told coach that. Just like I said in the last question, it’s just learning as I go. You know, just learning what I can and can’t do out there on the court, and I kind of just need to slow down sometimes. I mean, it’s just things that can be corrected, and that’s good that all the things we need to work on are things that can be corrected.”