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Ashway: Translating coaches’ views on March Madness
Denton Ashway
DENTON ASHWAY

It’s Tournament Time!

As always, the Tournament has lived up to its March Madness sobriquet. The Sweet Sixteen features four double-digit seeds — including 15 seed Saint Peter’s. And I’m telling ya, the Peacocks can play!

Once again, we’re quick with the explanations. Here’s what the coaches had to say, followed by the translation to what they wanted to say.

All quotes are from the official NCAA post-game press conferences, as transcribed by asapsports.com.

Nate Oats, Alabama: I mean, I gotta give Notre Dame a lot of credit to play in a play-in game and go double overtime, fly in here as late as they did, play with one day of rest, and give the energy they got. We talk about veteran college players. I think it showed today.

Translation: When we lost our point guard, Jahvon Quinerly, to a knee injury early, it gave Notre Dame a lot of juice.

Mike Brey, Notre Dame: We defended. Really, the last 30 minutes we defended.

Translation: Certainly they’re a different team without Quinerly.

Chris Beard, Texas: Today was about us.

Translation: We just took down the team that won the ACC tournament. We can play with anybody in the country.

Mike Young, Virginia Tech: Longhorns outplayed us, needless to say. They were better than us today.

Translation: They can play with any team in the country.

Andy Enfield, USC: Well, I thought Drew [Peterson] got fouled on the possession before when he drove and tied the game. They hit his arm. So, I guess, if you’re going to call it at one end, you should call it at the other end.

Translation: We were a possession short tonight.

Jim Larranaga, Miami: What I’ve come to learn about this team is they really rise to the occasion.

Translation: It helps to get a few calls at the end.

Shaheen Holloway, Saint Peter’s: Proud of my guys for battling, like we do all year. This is something that these guys understand, no disrespect to anybody, but we wasn’t coming down here just to lose. We came down here to fight, and we did.

Translation: Hey, we played like a bunch of guys from Jersey City.

John Calipari, Kentucky: You have an eight-point lead with three minutes to go, you win the game. I’m not taking away from St. Peter’s. They deserved to win the game. They fought the entire time.

Translation: You have an eight-point lead with three minutes to go, you win the game.

Chris Mooney, Richmond: Particularly a great defensive effort against one of the best offenses in the country. Big Ten champs.

Translation: How’d the Big Ten get nine teams in the Tournament?

Matt McMahon, Murray State: Congrats to Coach Holloway and Saint Peter’s University. Great accomplishment for them this weekend. A really tough and physical team.

Translation: They play like a bunch of guys from Jersey City.

Shaheen Holloway, Saint Peter’s: These guys came out here on a mission. Everybody keeps saying we can’t do this, we can’t do that, we don’t have this and we don’t have that. We got heart. That’s what matters.

Translation: This is what we do all year. This is who this team is.

Juwan Howard, Michigan: I appreciate all the support. They have been in my corner since day one.

Translation: Sorry for the boxing analogy.

Bruce Pearl, Auburn: We’re obviously very disappointed that we’re not able to play better and advance to the Sweet Sixteen.

Translation: Glad I signed that new contract before this debacle.

Jim Larranaga, Miami: I listened to Charles Barkley tell the CBS crew that if Auburn won he would take off his shirt, and I thought to myself, man, no one wants to see that!

Translation: None needed.

Chris Beard, Texas: With our guys, every season ends like this, I guess, unless you win the final Monday night game.

Translation: I thought we could play with anybody in the country.

TJ Otzelberger, Iowa State: Our ball pressure took away the shots they normally get in the flow of their offense. They weren’t the same shots, they weren’t in rhythm.

Translation: Wisconsin made 2 of 22 threes.

Greg Gard, Wisconsin: Obviously not the way we envisioned it ending.

Translation: No one envisions bricking 20 of 22 treys.

Mike Krzyzewski, Duke: What a game!

Translation: I’m not yet ready to retire!