March 9, 2011
Lady Vol Head Coach Pat Summitt Teleconference Transcript
"I think this team is a much more mature team, just that they could win both (conference regular season and tournament championships) is a testimony to the team's maturity, focus, and their toughness. Obviously, in our championship game against Kentucky in the second half - that was a pretty outstanding display of offense. You're always trying to find something to get their attention. When I watched the film I didn't have any problems finding out that we were not very good with our defense and we didn't rebound the ball. We let our offense get the best of us. "
On coming back to practice:
"First thing we're going to do is watch film. That will probably be very telling. We want to make sure that they understand that on a given night when you don't shoot well, you have to be very focused while playing great defense. With that said, we'll go in and start and look at our lack of commitment on the defense end. We'll start with the bad and get with the good. We did a lot of good things in the tournament."
On if the Lady Vols deserve a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament:
"I think we've earned that right. I definitely think we have earned a No. 1seed. If I got to choose I'd say, oh yeah let's go to Dayton (regional site). The committee is going to make that decision. They will take into consideration the distantance from home. We would travel a lot of people to Dayton. We've got to get out of the first and second rounds before we can really (think about that)."
On getting outrebounded versus Kentucky in the SEC Championship, something junior post Lyssi Brewer quickly noticed in the locker room after the game:
"Lyssi (Brewer) hasn't done a good job on the boards for us, and she's not alone in that regard. One thing that I felt we had a advantage over Kentucky and the other teams was our size, but we have to make sure that Lyssi (Brewer) isn't trying to play with one hand, and we have to make sure that we are doing a better job overall playing defense. If (junior center) Kelley Cain is healthy, and that's been a big if for us, that gives us a lot of size in the post game. We cannot depend on (junior post) Glory Johnson all the time, and if we have (junior post) Vicki Baugh and Lyssi and Kelley, I think we have the biggest post game in the country. Are we going to be healthy? Are we going to be mobile? I talked to (Associate Athletic Director for Sports Medicine) Jenny (Moshak) yesterday, telling her we need to know who is healthy. We have to get us a game plan."
On if the Lady Vols' impressive shooting lately can be a disadvantage because it allows the players to relax on defense:
"I think it can be. Here's the thing we're going to address with my staff. The farther you go in postseason, the more difficult it's gonna be because everyone is going to play great defense and everyone is going to attempt to get on the boards. There's no coach in America, who isn't going to be tied into those two things. That's how you win games and that's how you win championships."
On the team's health:
"They had two days off, so I would expect everybody to be in good health and ready to roll. We will have to gage things and move forward. We will be putting in some time and it's not like we are going to be going all out at the highest level. We will challenge them, but we also want them to be fresh for the first and second round."
On UT Martin, Summitt's alma mater, making its first tournament and possibly coming to Knoxville for the first and second rounds:
"It would be a neat thing. I'm doubtful that they will actually send (UT Martin) here. It would be great if they did. If they do send UT Martin here, the whole town will come to Knoxville."
On SEC Tournament MVP Shekinna Stricklen:
"If she gets in one of those stand-and-watch modes, all you have to do is address it and she responds. When you identify what she needs to do, she's going to go after it."
On Tennessee's point guards:
"I think they were both pretty solid. Their maturity overall has been much improved. I'm excited about the play of Kamiko (Williams) and Meighan (Simmons)."
On the transition from player to coach:
"You've got to forget that you're player and you have to know t hat you are coaching and trying to bring the best out in each of the student-athletes. It's not easy. When I was 22, I became the head coach and I had no experience. As a player I loved the game and I learned a lot about it. It's just a process. I know you can get frustrated as a coach because - to be quite honest with you - it's a different generation. It's a constant opportunity to watch tape with your players, to bring them in and do that one-on-one. Try to encourage them and teach them and not get frustrated. As a young coach, I got frustrated a lot. I know that (current Ohio University head coach and former Lady Vol All-American) Semeka (Randall) is passionate about winning. She has to be relentless at everything she does. We've got a great relationship, I wish her the best."
On helping players mature:
"You really can't fast forward it when you have that much youth on your team. Like I always say, `Every moment is a teaching moment.' It's more that you can sit down with them and tell them how they can get better. Getting in the gym and getting extra shots - being invested to be the best they can be every day. There's no coach in America who doesn't want to bring out the best in their student-athletes. The student-athletes have to respond to the coaches and coaching staff."