All of the Big Ten men’s basketball coaches participated in a teleconference on Monday in advance of the Big Ten Tournament which begins on Wednesday in Chicago.
Below are the statements by Indiana head coach Archie Miller.
Courtesy of IU Athletics.
Head Coach Archie Miller
March 11th, 2019
“Our team had a really good week for our team playing against teams that have really improved throughout the course of this season and has made our conference one of the deepest in the country. I thought our guys did a really nice job this week of just staying in the moment and focus on the daily approach which is how we had to navigate a tough January and February. Our attitude is great and we are playing a lot like the staff has envisioned us playing. We have a good vibe and we are excited to go to Chicago as the Big Ten Tournament should be one of the most entertaining and competitive tournaments in the country due to the fact that how all the teams in the conference are laying right now. There isn’t a team that isn’t capable of winning multiple games.”
On preparing for Ohio State:
“We had a fight when we played them last at our place as they were able to come out on top and made some real key plays late. I thought it was a tough game and that’s what I’m expecting the same thing on Thursday. At the end of the day, for us we just have to prepare, continue to get better, and find a way to keep playing the best we can.”
(NOTE: Kaleb Wesson will play for the Buckeyes on Thursday)
When asked about the differences from Feb. 10 Ohio State game to now:
“You have to dive in and be immersed in your current feel as everybody finished the regular season yesterday. I’m sure we’re all regrouping and trying to figure out what has happened in the last month, looking back at our first game against them see what each other has done since. Each team prepares to play against the other in a certain way and I think they chose in our first game to pack the paint, defend certain guys around the post and I think they did a good job of it. We just had a really hard time scoring the ball in that game. We ended up making couple shots late which gave us a little room but give them credit they finished the game better than we did. For us, we have to be a lot better defensively because we haven’t been in our last couple games. We are going to have be better in a couple areas as we go to Chicago and focus on ourselves but the big thing for us is when we play a team like Ohio State is you’re going to have to be tough minded group, not give up second chance shots and you can’t get rattled through the course of the game. We’re going to have to dig in and look at game one and really dig in. We’re a different team and I’m sure they’re different in ways but the current state of our group is that we’re excited play.”
On what has been the key to late season success:
“I think the big thing is focusing on our attitude. There’s time where you go on these ups and downs where your attitude is masked by wins and when you lose you see everything so to make the best out of our situation was to collect our attitude as a team. Our staff has been willing to embrace guys and make them better by challenging them but at the end of the day you can’t have any slippage when you don’t have any room for error. I think we have some guys right now with great attitudes and our practice habits have been good as any these last few weeks. I think one or two wins in this business removes the cloud from over you and the players having experiences some wins down the stretch a good thing. Confidence is such an amazing thing to watch come and go and I think right now our team has as much confidence as we have had all season.”
When asked about his vision for the team:
“Every coach sits down at the beginning of the season and says to themselves do we have the ability to do A-B-C. For us, it was going to be a mesh of a lot of new guys, five freshmen, a grad transfer, second year returners, and two seniors and how are we going to mesh these guys. I think at the front end we saw a good team that we could play a lot different combinations with but that got derailed with injuries and we haven’t been able to find that chemistry. Now, we have become a deeper team here as of late and we’ve had some more guys gets in the game which helps with morale. Without question if you’ve watched us play in the last couple of weeks you would see a good team who is playing hard. At the end of the year that’s all you hope for, making the best out of everything, turning a positive into a negative.
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