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Ohio vs. Ball State - MAC First Round First Round Quotes

March 10, 2014

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Ohio 76, Ball State 64
MAC Tournament First Round

Head Coach Jim Christian
On heading to Cleveland 
“We came to play. I told our team before the game that if you really believe in your heart that you can win five games then you're going to show it in the first five minutes. That is probably as hard and as well as we’ve played. Now this time of year we've got to beat people at their competition level and you’ve got to play smart. We have to try to be the smartest team in the tournament. There were some stretches we did that and there were a lot of stretches where we didn’t. So that is going to be big moving forward.”

On Playing With A Purpose
“We played hard, we focused, played aggressively, we were incredibly detailed with the game plan that we put together, we did everything the right way, putting pressure on the right off the gate. When we get out and run we’re pretty good. When we can get the ball going and move quick that’s good basketball. Its not like we have not done it. That’s what this time of year is all about. You just have to play well. We don’t have time to figure it out, you just have to play. Our guys have to play with confidence and refresh. That’s what we’re going to do as we keep competing."

On T.J. Hall's Performance
“It has been hard for him. It takes him a lot just to get to the court in terms of all of the things that he has to do. I don’t think a lot of guys would continue to play college basketball if they had to do on the daily basis what he has to just to get out there. Dealing with the frustrations of it…sometimes his mind knows what to do and his body just can't make the play, which is why you see so many travels from him and other things. When he plays extended minutes his legs go which is why he’s not shooting really well. It's tough but he doesn’t complain. He keeps trying and the guys root for him harder than anyone else on the team. There’s a lot to say about what kind of kid he is.”

On Bean Willis and Antonio Campbell
“They have been great. The development of Tony Campbell - we all knew it was a matter of time. We could see it in practice for the longest time. It was only a matter of time before he did it in a game. He has worked unbelievably hard in all areas. He puts a lot of extra work in, more than a lot of guys. The thing that he does better than anything is that he is able to play through his mistakes now. In the past when you’re a freshman and you make mistakes the weight of the world kind of goes on your shoulders and now he is able to play through it. “

“Bean - it is very difficult to do what he is doing out there. He has been our best defender. He has taken guys out of their offense, he’s containing the basketball and he’s playing the game smarter with a lot of confidence.”

“It’s game 32. In 32 games you see a lot. Now it’s just a matter of working. You just have to continue to play each play as a separate entity and continue to fight. We’ve got to learn from some things and get better. You can’t shoot 15-for-23 from the line or have 11 turnovers in a half if we expect to continue in this tournament. In the second half we only had four turnovers so we corrected that.”

On Revisiting Miami
“It’s going to be a great game. Miami plays hard as hard as anybody in the league. Their guards attack you and play unbelievably hard, constantly pressing and trapping. It's a lot. It’s going to be more than that. If we meet them at their competition level it's going to be a heck of a game but it we don’t we are going to be in trouble. They are going to play unbelievably hard. That’s why I was so proud of our team on Saturday because that is the hardest we have ever played. That’s the way they played here and at their place. It’s conference tournament time. It’s about intelligence now. You have to play smart. “

Javarez "Bean" Willis
On The First 10 Minutes Of The Game
“It was fun. I think Coach set the tone. The first five minutes shows who you are. When you hear something like that and it’s what you want, that’s how you are going to play.”

Looking to Cleveland
“I don’t think we are really worried about it. I don’t think it’s on our minds as much as people think it is. I think we already know in the back of our heads that we have to play five games and we have embraced it. Now it’s just time to work."